After the hoopla of the holiday season, throwing a large New Year’s party can seem daunting. We like the idea of a small celebration with close friends or even an intimate evening for two. Any way you choose to celebrate the New Year, we believe in making it as easy as possible. We gathered a few tips to help make your soiree sparkle and shine.
Drinking champagne on New Year’s is an iconic tradition. Why not try adding a new cocktail to your menu such as a French 75 or a cranberry mojito? Or simply embellish your bubbles with pomegranate seeds or blueberries. Often our designated drivers or non-drinkers can feel left out on New Year’s, make a few festive “mocktails” to make them feel included. Having a small bar area set up will ease some hostess stress, as your guests will be able to serve themselves. Just replace champagne bottles when they are empty or re-fill a punch bowl.
New Year’s Eve is all about the drinks so keep food easy to pick up with one hand. Elegant mini sandwiches, bowls of nuts, miniature meatballs, stuffed mushrooms, shrimp cocktail, or deviled eggs are all good easy-to-make options. Keep the snacks flowing throughout the evening. After midnight strikes serve simple sweets like brownies, mini cupcakes, or, whoopie pies.
New Year’s is all about the celebration of the past year and looking forward to the next. Play fun games like having your guestwrite down their New Year’s resolution and placing them in a bowl. At 11 o’clock ask all guests to pick a card and read it aloud to guess whom the resolution belongs to. Or use the same idea to have your guests predict what the next year will bring in current events or among your social circle—“I predict Susan will have quadruplets in 2013!” This is a way to wrap up the evening and ring in the New Year with a laugh.
After decorating for the holidays we tend to be simplistic when it comes to New Year’s parties. Staying with the classic black, gold/silver, and white is always a wonderful route. If you wanted to change it up, try adding one accent color to the New Year’s classics like a deep pink, or royal blue. Decorate with balloons, streamers, white lights, and sparkly ornaments. Place noisemakers and paper hats decoratively around the house. If you have old fashioned alarm clocks place them on the table as a centerpiece or on a mantle. If you have a lively crowd, hang up a disco ball (found at party supply stores) in a designated dancing area for everyone to gather for midnight kisses and dancing to Auld Lang Syne.
Most importantly, have fun and be safe!