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As any good hostess knows, having the right basic home entertaining essentials can make your entertaining at home stress and hassle-free. 

home entertaining essentials

BUILDING YOUR HOME ENTERTAINING ESSENTIALS “CAPSULES” 

Building a home entertaining essentials capsule is pretty much the same process as when using the technique with your wardrobe.  I can’t help but see the clear analogy between the two “building” methods.

One entails building a group of clothing that can easily mix and match, and the other does the same exact thing, but with platters, bowls and dishes!

Today I’ll give you a primer on the absolute “basics” that are needed for efficient, stress-free and enjoyable entertaining at home.

 

HOME ENTERTAINING ESSENTIALS – LET’S BREAK THE MYTH, KINDA!

WHITE IS NOT BORING – IT’S CRISP, ELEGANT AND OH, SO VERSATILE

Conventional entertaining wisdom tells us that all our home entertaining essentials should be white.  Just white?  Well, yeah, mostly anyway.

home entertaining essentials

But, white doesn’t have to be boring.  Try to keep an eye out for unusual shapes and sizes of platters, bowls and glassware.  What about metallic gold or silver bands?  Patterns, textures and antiquing. Ceramics, porcelain, milk glass…

With all the available choices, I’m betting you’ll find plenty of items that perfectly fit your personal style of entertaining.

If you start off with a base of white pieces, you’ll end up with a fabulous “mix-and-match” selection of basic home entertaining essentials that give you tons of options.

There are different ways you can acquire these home entertaining basics, and I’ve used most of them at one time or another. 

I’ve shamelessly asked for specific birthday and Hanukkah gifts that helped complete my more advanced home entertaining essentials capsules.  Like my specialty asparagus pot with insert, or the creme brulee torch and dishes I just had to have. 

Keep in mind I’ve long since acquired and replaced most of my “basic home entertaining essentials” decades ago!

 

basic home entertaining essentials checklist

Here’s a few alternatives to buying everything you need for your basic home entertaining essentials:

  • Like I mentioned, ask for what you want for a special occasion gift
  • Attending estate auctions is another way to source high-end serving pieces, dishware and glassware for your home entertaining essentials collection
  • Hit Etsy’s website and type in a few keywords like “vintage silver” or “depression glass”, and see what pops up!
  • Keep an eye out for newly stocked items at consignment shops too, as they usually have a higher quality of merchandise for sale
  • Use major seasonal sales like Black Friday or Cyber Monday to pick up specialty items on sale for the holidays
  • Prowl thrift shops for depression glass, pottery or vintage sterling, you’ll be amazed at what you can find
  • Say “yes” when a friend or family member asks if you’d like to take a few things “off their hands” when downsizing their belongings
  • If you’re a bride-to-be, make sure you take a copy of my LIFESTYLE DIVA ENTERTAINING ESSENTIALS pdf to take with you when registering and you’ll start off on the right foot

 

ADD COLOR & PERSONALITY WITH SERVING PIECES & UTENSELS

When you want to stray from the “all white” motif, here’s a great category to do it. You can add a splash of color or pattern, and because you have mostly white basics, they’ll match everything!

You’ll want to get some colorful serving pieces, glassware and miscellaneous items that pull your personal entertaining style together.

Now is the time to let your love of color and personality shine!  Choosing a collaborative group of themed, patterned and colored serving pieces are key to pulling off the level of tablescapes you see in the magazines and on Pinterest.

It’s amazing what adding just a beautifully patterned salad plate into the tablescape can do for the whole “look”.

 

home entertaining basics

SOPHISTICATED, FESTIVE OR ROMANTIC – You can have it all!

See how sophisticated pulling in some depression glassware, pale pink dishes and mix-and-match flatware can become when using a base of white?

A tablescape of teak serving pieces, mixed with assorted pottery and bamboo mats and flatware automatically scream “theme”.  But, it’s still versatile! 

  • What about going jungle with animal stripes and tropical florals 
  • Add bright colors, stripes and patterns and go Mexican the next weekend
  • Tropical flavor can be added with leaf-shaped platters, dishes & citrus-themed linens

 

See how many ways a few well chosen entertaining basics can be styled for endless entertaining possibilities?

It’s a simple, inexpensive and creative method of building a basic (or more advanced) home entertaining essentials capsule.  

 

LIFESTYLE DIVA HOME ENTERTAINING ESSENTIALS PRINTABLES

If you want to figure out just what the status of your Home Entertaining Essentials collection is, I can help!

I’ve created a set of three printables to help keep track of what you’ve already got and figure out what you still need.

home entertaining essentials

 

My 5-PAGE Basic Home Entertaining Essentials List will give you a clear idea of what kind of collection you’re working towards completing.

I’ve grouped the items needed to flesh out a basic home entertaining essentials capsule to help give you a plan of action as you look towards your future purchases and acquisitions.  

  • Table Top Essentials
  • Serving Piece Essentials
  • Bar & Beverage Essentials
  • Serving Utensils
  • Dining Essentials
  • The Hostess
  • Table Linens
  • Table Cloth Size Chart

 

LIFESTYLE DIVA HOME ENTERTAINING ESSENTIALS – Inventory Checklist

Now that you have a list of  what your Basic Home Entertaining Essentials Capsule should ultimately contain, it’s the perfect time to get started on the right foot.

lifestyle diva home entertaining essentials pdf pages

The next Lifestyle Diva Printable is the Home Entertaining Essentials Inventory Checklist. It’s designed to help you take inventory and keep track of exactly what entertaining pieces you already own. 

I’ve also included a “WHAT DO I STILL NEED?” Worksheet to keep track of the items you’re on the look-out for.  It will help you stay focused on the missing pieces and help avoid duplications or omissions in your collection.

And of course, I always like to keep track of what I’ve ordered online or purchased, so I’ve included an “ESSENTIALS PURCHASE LOG” to keep you on budget. 

Don’t forget to add each of your new acquisitions to the appropriate worksheet to keep them accurate.  

I find it empowering to see what pieces I have available to use for all my home entertaining in one organized place.  When I’m perusing my inventory lists, I often come up with combination ideas that will ultimately turn into a theme party!  You never know what creativity can come about from your home entertaining resource records. 

 

TABLE LINEN AND NAPKIN INVENTORY CHECKLIST

table linen and napkin inventory checklist

Lastly, I think it’s absolutely necessary to know exactly what linens, napkins, table runners, etc. you’ve got stashed around the house. 

I know I’d be lost without my Table Linen and Napkin Inventory Checklist.   We’ve downsized, and I have them in more than one location!

Since I keep my Checklist in my Home Entertaining & Household Binder, it’s easily added to whenever I make a new purchase.

It certainly makes the holidays and all my home entertaining a real snap to plan!

 

WANT TO BE A HOSTESS WITH A “REP”?

  • You’ve always wanted to throw those fabulous parties you see in magazines and on Pinterest. 
  • You’d love to be known as “the” fab hostess of your inner circle.
  • You’ve dreamed of entertaining at home with panache and style, and make it seem effortless.

 

Then you know exactly what you need to do, don’t you?

Yes indeed! Go ahead and DOWNLOAD your own set of the  LIFESTYLE DIVA HOME ENTERTAINING ESSENTIALS PRINTABLES right now!

Don’t wait for “later”, because it may never come.  The FABULOUS HOSTESS inside you doesn’t want to wait to get started!  The holidays are drawing closer…

 

RELATED POSTS:

Thanksgiving Dinner Preparation Essentials

How to Host a Holiday Open House

How to Buy the Right Size Tablecloth and Clean It Properly

 

Want your own LIFESTYLE DIVA HOME ENTERTAINING ESSENTIALS SET OF PRINTABLE PDFs, but you’re not on our list yet?

lifestyle diva entertaining essentials inventory checklistWhy not join in on the fun!

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