It’s impossible to find someone who doesn’t enjoy a well put together dinner party… as a guest. For the perfectionist host/hostess however, planning the event they imagined in their heads can be their worst nightmare. Just beginning the process can prove to be a challenge if you don’t have a simpler way of approaching the process. The dinner itself will depend on the quality of the food, and not much can be salvaged without it but we do have some tricks up our sleeves to hosting the perfect cocktail party.
For you as the host, the cocktail hour is the opportunity to set the tone you wish for the dinner, be it elevating it to something classier or making it more homey. It’s also your guests’ time to socialize and become acquainted with their new environment before the formal and most likely, more intimate dinner table setting. While we admit that the quality and the variety of the served drinks pave the way for an enjoyable time, the presentation holds all the power to make a lasting impression. And so to help you dazzle all of your guests, we compiled the only 3 details you should focus on, to create an unforgettable experience at your next gathering, at minimal cost to your stress levels.
Arguably, barware is the most important part of cocktail hour. Even mediocre drinks in presentable glassware, with the most unique designs, are still remembered in better light than well made drinks with no presentation at all. Furthermore, tailoring the glassware to the audience and to the theme of the event allows for the event to flow even more harmoniously and makes the planning process infinitely more fun for you as the host.
If you are catering to guests above the age of 40 and the event is more formal than not (think: dinner party with coworkers and bosses) then, traditional glassware is the best option. While traditional is often thought of as the simplest, with glassware that’s not quite the case. Some ornamentation on the glass is classy and pays homage to the royal roots of quality barware. Crystal ware of this kind is sure to woo with its romantic and universally appreciated style and so consider the options:
If you are throwing a party for your friends, or for people who are relatively young, it’s the time to experiment with the boldest options in the market. In such a fun party setting, you should consider deviating from the standard shapes and colors, and choosing unique ones that speak to you.
Once you have chosen the right barware set, the accessories that will complement it are the next priority.
Here, the decision depends on the kind of barware you chose — for example, you can continue the experimental theme with bold options for accessories such as bee shaped stirs, illustrated lacquered trays, colored coasters and even gold rimmed bar carts.
The easiest way to unify the bar set and the accessories is through the use of an accent color. If the room for your cocktail hour has an established accent color, you can continue it with these accessories, though you can rethink the specific shades. Think stylized rooms of the ‘70s, where the clash of different muted hues was heavily embraced.
If you chose simple yet classic barware, consider making the accessories your point of focus. Stand out bar accessories can break up the simplicity with intentional details. For family gatherings, you can look for specific accessories with a special meaning, that you know each family member is going to appreciate!
For formal cocktail hours, where we suggested to go with the more ornate bar sets, the accessories should be kept minimal. The focus here will be the intricate etchings or gold gilding of the barware, so any accessory that stands out will detract or clash with the primary focus. The bar cart below is the perfect stand alone accessory.
The easiest way to drastically change a given space is by switching out the decor, and the easiest decor to target for change are the small details of the house. You don’t have to uproot your space in an effort to accommodate one cocktail hour; instead focus on putting out a new vase, or complementing the bar sets with similar types of candle holders.Vases, candlesticks, clocks and mirrors are equally great when you want to make subtle changes. Consider the options below:
You want to balance your taste, which is often influenced by trends, with timeless products, so your items aren’t outdated by the time your next cocktail hour comes around. A long line of successful decor from established quality ware such as Moser, St.Louis and Hermes among others, ensures timelessness but can also serve your desire to experiment.
By focusing on these 3 important details we are sure you will plan a delightful time for your guests!