A few days ago I was speaking with my mom and I told her that my 6th Annual Classy Cocktail party is coming up in a few weeks. She immediately asked me what I was planning on serving and she seemed a bit surprised that I had not even thought about that yet. With the busy lives my friends lead, especially going into wedding season, picking a day that everyone would be able to attend was much tricker than nailing down what to make. While I am thinking a sparkly cocktail and definitely a melted brie appetizer one thing I do have down is how to throw a party in a small apartment.
Even if your home is a little bit cramped, it does not mean that you cannot host a fun party with your friends and family. Whether you live in a studio or 1-bedroom apartment, you can definitely throw a Thanksgiving gathering or, even a formal dinner party, as long as you organize your belongings and create a proper plan. Here are four useful tips on how to host a great party in a small space.
1. Remove the Clutter
The good thing about hosting a special gathering in a tight apartment is that you do not need have to clean a large area. However, this can also be quite problematic because you do not have a ton of storage space for tucking away all your personal belongings. If you have a bath tub, consider yourself lucky. You can actually use your tub to store your magazines, extra shoes, and other trinkets or decorations that will consume too much space. When I lived in a two-bedroom apartment we would move furniture into the bedrooms to create more space in the living room and also store coats on the beds. In a studio, thought, it can be tricky because there is nowhere to hide. Friends who had not yet been to my apartment were surprised at how much room I had – truth be told I took my oversized coffee table, flipped it on it’s side, and put it in the back of my closet so all of my friends would have room to mingle.
2. Set the Temperature
In the summer in New York City that means jacking the air conditioning to the coolest setting it will allow hours before the party to give the room time to cool down but I haven’t thought of the a/c in months. Oftentimes, the party season begins once the holiday season kicks in and even with a small apartment, you will be amazed at how cold your place can be once the snow starts to fall. Make sure that you have a handy space heater so that your guests will feel cozy and toasty warm throughout the night, I have two! These electric heating systems are ideal for
cramped small spaces because they efficiently spread warmth.
3. Make Snacks Accessible
As a rule of thumb, avoid serving “messy” food, especially with my baby blue carpet. I have found it is best to opt for snacks that do not require a large plate like chips, cheese & crackers, sliced fruit, and other finger food. From years of hosting parties I have learned more people will enjoy the food if it not just in one corner of the kitchen – make the food accessible by placing a plate of snacks on the side table, tv stand, or some other flat surfaces available. That way, guests will always have something to eat, no matter where they are. For my blog’s 2nd Birthday Party in August I made Funfetti dip and placed it on my dresser – it was a great hit!
4. Vary the Drink Selection
Because I like white wine, bubbly, and vodka based cocktails I have a tendency to think my friends all like the same but when planning parties it is important to consider the attendees. I know all of my girl friends will not turn down a glass of champagne or Prosecco but that after that most will switch to Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio in the summer and Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon in the winter. The guys, at least my friends, are easy the want a choice of craft beer and usually some type of whisky. I always like to have mixers that double as non-alcoholic options, Coke, Diet Coke, tonic, and seltzer along with a signature cocktail for the party.
5. Create the Playlist
Of course, no party will be fun without some background music. Make sure that you create a playlist that is in-line with the theme of the party. For my blog’s birthday I had a mix of the summer’s hottest songs, a few 90’s favorites, and a little bit of hip-hop but every get together is different! A small dinner party needs light and cozy tunes, while large gatherings may require a more upbeat playlist.
What are your tips for throwing a party in small apartment?