5 Tips For Throwing A Fabulous Dinner Party

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Here in the States, Thanksgiving is almost upon us. This can be considered to be the ultimate in entertaining, so if you are hosting the big dinner, I thought I would help you by letting you in my five best hostessing tips. For those of you not celebrating Thanksgiving, these tips are not specific to the event and can be used for any dinner party at any time of the year.

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One of my best tips is to have a pitcher full of a cocktail next to some gorgeous glasses so when you are busy finishing dinner and saying hello to other guests, everyone can help themselves. For some ideas on what to serve, check out my cocktail Pinterest board HERE.

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I find setting a table to always take longer than I expect it to. You never know when you might run into a problem, like the napkins need to be ironed or the table cloth isn’t quite right. Plus it takes time to set out each item. So I find getting it done as early as possible to be the best for setting my mind at ease. As a matter of fact, I forgot to set the table early this past Friday and was totally stressed out over getting it done in time before the guests arrived. I should really learn to follow my own advice!

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If you are new to entertaining, then I suggest investing in a set of white plates and a set of white napkins. There are a million ways you can use these two items to keep your table looking fresh at every event.

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One thing many hostesses forget when scheduling their day is to take time out to get ready! You would be shocked at how quickly time goes when you are preparing a meal, especially if you don’t hostess very often. Be sure to take the time to get ready a few hours before dinner is served and then use an apron to cover your outfit. This way you can continue to prepare food without worrying about spills. Plus it looks cute! I remember a male guest looking stricken as I took off my apron right before I sat down at the head of the table. He thought it was my dress that I was removing because he didn’t realize I was wearing an apron! How funny is that?

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Right before your guests arrive, remember to light the candles. I don’t always have candles on my table, but I always have a scented candle lit in the bathroom.

If you remember these five tips, you should be able to handle any hostessing event, including Thanksgiving dinner. Do you have any tips to share with everyone?


  1. says

    The candle in the bathroom is such a nice touch and is so often overlooked.

    Also, I think it’s good to work up to a dinner party. It helps with finding your footing for a larger event. Cocktail Parties and Brunch are good places to start!

    • BethanyThe Glamourous Housewife says

      I never throw either cocktail or brunch parties, but part of that is because I have kids and it is difficult to put those types of parties together with kids running around. But once I ship them off to college I think I will hold more cocktail parties!

  2. says

    These are great tips! #1 never occurred to me to do but it’s genius! I try to make ahead as much as possible. I think having everything ready and warm at the same time is the biggest challenge. And I often overlook the getting ready part and end up looking like a mess. Thank you for the wisdom!

    • BethanyThe Glamourous Housewife says

      I will be writing a post on how I manage to get most dishes ready and warm for serving at the same time. I have a few tricks up my sleeve :)

  3. says

    love that scene with the apron :-)
    and i have a tip if it´s your own birthday:
    – wish you from your husband that he throws the dinner. then leave the kitchen and dining room until the guests come. it will not be like you would do it – but you have a very relaxed celebration :-)
    (did this last sunday for my birthday brunch – the food was delicious, nothing broken. o.k., i helped deco the table…)

  4. says

    Wonderful tips! And I laughed out loud about the male guest’s face when you were removing your apron!!

    I am having a housewarming party next month and am going to try doing cocktails and punches in bowls and pitchers for people to help themselves. I thought I’d do a bucket of ice and sliced limes and things too for people to go to town with it!

    My other tip (in my limited experience) is to take advantage of offers of help when a guest wanders into the kitchen, they wouldn’t ask if they didn’t mean it. So, if you’re short of time, keep doing all the things that only you can do, and leave anything that someone else could help with – you can then delegate a few tasks.

    I’m going to look at your cocktail inspiration board now, I need some ideas!

    P xx

  5. Janice says

    Bethany, I love tip number one – serve it in a pitcher so guests can serve themselves. I always plan a special drink but who has time to whip up a cocktail when you are elbow deep in mashed potatoes. This works well for kids beverages too. My daughter, Stephanie, asked me yesterday when could she make the Pomander for the hot cider. The kids love it and it makes the house smell like Thanksgiving.

  6. says

    I love these tips and the orange and white color scheme, it’s so classy!
    I’ll definitely keep them in mind for any future dinner parties. Thanks for sharing!

  7. Grace-C. says

    Your tips are great! I have one to add: I make a list of everything I wish to serve, from appetizers, to main course/side dishes, to dessert. Otherwise there is always something I forget to put on the table (and it is a shame not to serve something after spending a lot of time preparing it.)
    Thanks for the inspiration you give to housewives everywhere.

    • BethanyThe Glamourous Housewife says

      Great advice. I have been known to prepare a dish and totally forget to serve it! LOL!

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