The leaves are changing colors, the morning air is crisp, and the holidays are right around the corner. That means one of my favorite things – hosting elegant fall dinner parties!
Hosting a fall-themed party is the perfect reason to spruce up your home, treat yourself to a manicure, and purchase a new outfit. When you look and feel your best, you’ll be able to relax and enjoy the evening to the fullest.
I truly love hosting fabulous parties. It brings me so much joy! Entertaining guests is a hobby of mine, although cooking really isn’t, so my first tip for you is this: plan a party that suits YOU. When you become known for hosting truly authentic events that are carefree, no one in town will be able to resist an invitation!
The Key: Plan a Dinner Party That Suits YOU
My entertaining role model was always my Aunt Essie. She was a great hostess. From the time I was a little girl and into womanhood I revered her entertaining prowess. I watched her do everything with her outgoing manner, from greeting our family with open arms and her beautiful smile to her ability to set a magnificent or casual table. She did everything with grace and style. She was fun at her own parties and this was beyond memorable!
Guests can pick up on your energy and we want that energy to always be positive! You can’t be a great hostess if you are out of your element! Work ahead of time, get organized, and hire help if you need to so everyone involved (you included!) can have a fabulous time. If that means hiring a catering company, hiring an event planner, or getting help from other sources, then do it.
Remember darling, this is your party and it can be done your way! There is no shame in hiring some extra hands – especially if it leads to a more relaxed evening for everyone involved. If you’re busy chopping vegetables or stirring drinks, are you really focused on your guests and the evening at hand?
Outsource the pieces of the evening that leave you stressed so you can dive fully into the pieces that make your heart sing! Be true to yourself darling!
Prep For The Day
Organize your closet + pick your outfit
In advance of your event, you’ll want to look and feel your best – and that means preparing your home and your body. I suggest you start by cleaning out your closet and finding some peace of mind (this will help you narrow down your outfit selection as well). I know clearing away clutter in my closet and organizing what I loved felt like a personal cleansing. It also helps me find new joy in older pieces, some of which I can break out at my next dinner party!
Liven up your home decor
If your home decor feels stale, hosting a dinner party is the perfect excuse to add some new pillows, throws, candles, or floral arrangements to bring life to the space again. Choosing the right elements will help create a beautiful ambiance for the evening. I recommend choosing a few wonderful candles and lighting them before everyone has arrived. If you’ve really grown tired of the same old decor and need some creative insight, I recently featured a post from Narayana Montúfar about purchasing home decor according to your moon sign and it was absolutely fascinating!
Treat yourself to a fabulous night routine!
Looking your best is absolutely key to enjoying your dinner party to the fullest, and for me, feeling my best always starts with a great night routine. Pamper yourself and treat your skin and body well. You want to feel refreshed and ready for the night to begin when your guests arrive, not tired and overworked from a busy day!
Keeping The Dinner Party Elegant
Fall-themed events are generally full of warm colors, pumpkins, turkeys, and the like. Although there is nothing wrong with this, it simply just isn’t my style. I love a good pop of color where appropriate and my go-to for keeping a dinner party elegant is silver.
Silver complements my home well and I’ve collected several elegant silver pieces throughout the years to make every dinner party feel superb.
Uni Christofle Uni Large Vase
An excellent way to set the tone of your dinner party is with a beautiful vase. This Christofle silver vase is one of my favorites! It can be the focal point of your dinner table, the first thing people notice in your foyer as they enter your home, or you can even place it as an accent piece in your living area. It is elegant and timeless and can be used all seasons of the year.
Christofle Vertigo Wine Server
A fabulous way to serve wine in both a fun and sophisticated way at any dinner party is with this Christofle Vertigo Wine Server. This piece is something every woman needs in her hostess arsenal. It allows you to present and serve the wine simultaneously. Plus it’s a funky little conversation starter – and who doesn’t love a practical piece of art in their home?
Oh de Christofle Stainless Steel Ice Tongs
As you can see from the theme of this blog, I’m a fan of Christofle. These stainless steel, silver-toned, nautically inspired ice tongs will get much more use than just dinner parties. In fact, I use mine all the time! These are a wonderful way to add a bit of class and a cosmopolitan essence to every drink you serve as a hostess.
Create a dinner party schedule
In order to be the hostess that enjoys her own party, organization is key. Here is my go-to schedule when hosting:
9:00 am: My table is set. I always set my own table. I want perfection.
11:00 am: Shelly, my husband, makes sure the bar is set up and stocked to perfection.
12:00 Noon: All platters, trays, wines, etc. are organized.
2:00 – 3:00 pm: Flowers arrive.
4:00 – 5:00 pm: The cook, bartender, and servers arrive.
6:00 pm: Shelly and I dress and discuss the evening to come.
6:30 pm: Shelly modifies the lighting, turns on the music, rechecks the bar, and opens the front doors
6:45 pm: I light my dining room candles. I give the kitchen a once over and check with the chef and bartender. And then Shelly and I sit at the bar and toast the happy evening ahead.
7:00 pm: I am at the front door to welcome our guests. Shelly is at the bar. Friends and guests arrive for the cocktail hour.
8:00 pm: Everyone is seated. I sit at one end of our table and Shelly at the other. We exchange seats at dessert. Shelly begins by making a toast that ends with all of our glasses held high, as he says, “May there be peace in the world and God bless America!”