House Party makes it easy to have a party in your own home and get exclusive access to awesome products for you and your friends. We provide the fun, you provide food, your friends and feedback and promise to have an amazing time.

Top Party Planning Tips for 2016!

Top Party Planning Tips for 2016!

Party planning tips. Everybody's got them. Most folks have their personal favorites they've gathered and learned over time. Some have co-opted the ones their friends have told them about and still others borrow from tradition with the ones that were once Mom or Dad's secret.So, as the summer months grow nearer and the chance for organized and extemporaneous parties increases at break-neck speed, we thought it a perfect time to review our Top Party Planning Tips for 2016. (There's no time like the present to brush-up!) And how appropriate after all, since our blog contributors have always had a party tip as part of their bio here on the House Party blog!

Ready? Got a notepad handy? Here we go!

party planning tips space

12. Make the space work for you...the host!

Traffic and conversation flow is one of the main areas of unpredictability for hosts planning a party. Don't happen to have the exquisitely-designed open-concept kitchen and great room we all yearn for? Fear not! It's your party and you hold control. Consider areas of the house that might pair well if you don't happen to have a single space that will easily accommodate the guests or, weather-permitting, consider moving some or all of the event outside.

Not sure about even those options? Perhaps your community or apartment complex has a common-area room you might be able to rent-out for a small deposit that will more comfortably accommodate the whole crew. In addition, armed with a couple tips contained later in our list including theme and activities, you'll be able to ensure that the party functions exactly as you'd like - a true ringmaster party host!

party planning tips frugality

11. Frugality can win the day!

You're hosting a party for friends and family to have fun, not sharing your recent Powerball winnings, right? Hosting a party can be an arduous planning exercise and also exercise for your wallet, too. Well, hosting should be fun, but it shouldn't be sacrificial. So, remember that you're doing something fun and exciting for folks, but it's got to be workable for you and your budget. The dollar store, clearance racks and homemade can be some of the best ways to control the cash out-lay for the par-tay. With the way that you present the party supplies, any associated dishes and activity there's no way anyone will be the wiser that you took the bottom dollar into close consideration. After all, if you're hosting Anthropologie or West-Elm-equipped parties it's likely that you won't be hosting many before going broke...and that's no fun!

party planning tips flexible

10. Expect the unexpected: Be flexible

As with nearly all aspects of life, fate can toss you some curveballs. Be ready for them by granting yourself some serenity ahead-of-time: Acknowledge that some things are likely to go wrong and not be perfectly to-plan. But, that's ok - that's to be expected! Do you have shall-we-say "control enthusiast" tendencies? That's ok, even better to prep yourself well in-advance about things shifting and changing. Focus on the three things that you want to make sure go exactly as planned (yep, just three) and let everything else have plenty of flex room, capisce?

party planning tips grilling

9. G-R-I-L-L-I-N-G!

Ok, this one's pretty simple. (And as this is one of my *top* party planning tips, this one's a no-brainer!) The flavors and atmosphere that grilling outdoors can provide to the overall feel of a party can be blissful, so consider folding-in some grilling into the plans for Party Day. Remember, this doesn't mean it needs to resemble a Viking meal flush with drumsticks and spit roasts. Consider grilling vegetables and perhaps soy products on a separate section of the grill to help assure that any non-meat eaters feel comfortable as well. Now, on the debate about gas vs. charcoal? That's a much more involved debate ;)

party planning tips details

8. Subtle, detailed touches

Ok, so this is a bit more nebulous - but, you know it when you see it, right? Whether it's a small floral decoration in a couple spots of your home for a spring party, nicely-appointed goody bags or small wine-charm to make sure your glass isn't confused with someone else's, these are refined, thoughtful touches that show your guests that you care and are seeking to make them comfortable and happy. These needn't be voluminous, but a couple, nicely-placed treatments of that 'je ne sais quoi' can totally make your party a frequently talked-about memory!

party planning tips photo props

7. Photo opportunities and props

This is one that we've become such mega-believers in. Party guests (and simply people in general, frankly!) love to snap photos and selfies...particularly goofy ones. So, why not give them something tangible to use to direct all that fun energy that will simultaneously make the photos from your party a cut-above-the-rest. Think about using props that are appropriate for the theme of the get-together: Perhaps some extravagant bows for the holidays or a birthday party, some of the tell-tale characteristics of your favorite characters for a TV viewing party (think fake facial hair, accessories, hats, etc.) or even make your own cut-out of construction paper and glue them on some popsicle sticks or tongue depressors to hold up mid-photo, Instagram or Snapchat! Then simply designate some area of the party as the photo station where people can gather and take turns in front of the paparazzi. Trust us - you're never going to party without these props from here-on-out!

party planning tips activities

6. Activities: Have them and you'll thank yourself!

As with the preceding tip, sometimes it's fun to provide a bit of suggestion or direction for guests. Whether it's props for some fun photos, some prepared conversation starters ("This or That"?) or even a bit of a scavenger's hunt - these are all great ways to complement those moments of conversation and laughter. Think things like this are only for the young? HARDLY, people of all ages love these, trust us - you just to be young-at-heart. You're young-at-heart, right??

party planning tips conquer

5. Divide and conquer logistics

This tip can't be understated. Sure, you're hosting an event or party...but that doesn't mean you're on your own. (The guests are your friends after all, right??) So, be sure to demand a tiny bit from them for the chance to come and enjoy this experience. Does Kathy have a wonderful touch when it comes to baked goods? Don't hesitate to ask if she could chip-in by rolling up here sleeves and getting the flour out for some delish treats. Does Jim have a fold-away table that will come in handy for the poker game that is rapidly growing into a poker tourney? Give him a ring and arrange a no-fee rental from a friend! And it doesn't just stop with friends! Of course, for House Party events, we love to give you the tools to invite, track, promote and communicate with your guests, there's no way to do this for events that aren't party of our House Party site. Or is there?

Of course there is! You can easily create an event, invite guests and attendees, track RSVPs and have a beautiful looking events page by heading over to Eventbrite! Their Event Management tool makes it super-easy to set up, preview and communicate about your event and it's as professional a look as you'll find. So, why not spruce-up the logistics of your next party by giving it a try? Your party will rapidly move from simply a party to a legit professional event!

party planning tips laughter

4. Surround yourself with those who make you laugh

This one's as self-explanatory as they come and is our Blog Contributor, Meera's top tip. Make sure to invite people you'll have fun, relax and truly be yourself around. You'll thank yourself later when you opted to take advantage of this tip in a mildy selfish sort of way. No fuss, no worries, nothing but carefree times and memories - that's what we're aiming for after all.

party planning tips no stress

3. Do. Not. Stress!

This one seems easy to remember as you prepare for a party, but oft we all get our heads in-the-weeds preparing for the event and obsessing over everything. However, our very own Blog Contributor, Stephanie, suggests you simply take a deep breath and remind yourself not to stress. "I tell myself, 'Everything can be cleaned,'" she says. Agreed, Stephanie. Nothing's worth not having fun at your own party!

party planning tips theme

2. Theme is everything!

This one goes hand-in-hand with tips #6 and #7. A little bit of planning and direction for your guests can go a looong way...and can result in all sorts of wonderful surprises (read: costumes!) There's a reason your hosting a party as it is, so embellish on it a bit and let people know about the central theme of the party. Having everyone over for the season premiere of Game of Thrones? Well, let people know that medieval garb, goblets and replica swords (keeping safety in mind, of course!) are welcome. You can see where we're going with this and we'll just say that the possibilities are endless. Gloriously endless and oh-so-photogenic.

party planning tips cleanup

1. Find a way to make clean-up fun, too.

This one's a little less glamorous albeit quite necessary. You're planning and hosting an event, right? So, that doesn't have to mean that you're now solely responsible for cleaning up after 30 people in the lonesome waning hours after everyone's lurked-out. Perhaps make some of the clean-up tasks team-based activities with a small prize that hangs in the balance. We're not saying that you put Grandma Snyder in front of the kitchen sink hand-washing for hours; but, it is completely ok to find fun ways to have your guests give you a leg-up on the clean-up process. After all, the more of that that can be taken off your plate the more time you can spend basking in the glory of a party well-hosted and thinking about your next shindig!

// <![CDATA[ (function() { var _fbq = window._fbq || (window._fbq = []); if (!_fbq.loaded) { var fbds = document.createElement('script'); fbds.async = true; fbds.src = 'https://connect.facebook.net/en_US/fbds.js'; var s = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(fbds, s); _fbq.loaded = true; } })(); window._fbq = window._fbq || []; window._fbq.push(['track', '6044377782874', {'value':'0.00','currency':'USD'}]); // ]]</p></div>

House Party Reaches 300,000 Facebook Fans!

House Party Reaches 300,000 Facebook Fans!

House Party Goes to the Food Bank for Westchester!

House Party Goes to the Food Bank for Westchester!