Hosting a holiday open house is the perfect way to entertain while keeping your home a festive “safe-gathering” destination.
Planning a casually elegant or super-casual open-house is really a holiday hostess’ dream party! When you throw a gathering that spans the afternoon into the evening, it creates ample opportunity for everyone to stop by. The gradual flow of guests throughout the party lets you spend more quality time with each and every one, safely.
And here’s how The Lifestyle Diva believes you should start your Holiday Open House!
A Gracious Hostess will provide a festive way for guests to stay safe while enjoying a fun visit to your holiday open house.
By having a basket full of cute holiday decorated face masks available when guests enter your home, you start their party experience off right!
They can relax and enjoy the party and other guests with confidence, knowing that you thought of all their needs.
I found these cuties at Amazon:
50 PC 3 ply Disposable Christmas Adult Face Masks by Lopty. Are they adorable, or what!
Of course, if you’re throwing a New Year’s Eve open house, basic black is always in!
I wouldn’t wait until the last minute to order some though, between the deluge of holiday mail and limited supplies, you could be out of luck!
You’ll want to start by checking your calendar to see what date you want to host your holiday open house. If you’ll be attending an event on Friday evening, that Saturday probably isn’t the right day.
Make sure you have plenty of time to do kitchen prep, decorate, and pull the party together the week before your open house. Maybe one of your besties can stop by to help one day that week.
And if that’s not possible, maybe she can swing by the bakery the day of the party to pick up the desserts! There’s no shame in asking for a little helping hand, especially since she’ll be one of your party guests!
Here’s a screenshot of the countdown timer I created for my Holiday Open House. If you click on the link below, you’ll be able to create a party themed “countdown timer” you can include in your Email-Invitation. Isn’t this adorable? Your party’s date and time will count down right until your party begins!
They have a whole bunch of themes that you can choose from, including retirement!
How cool is that? Let me know if you use one in your evite! I’m on a need to know basis on how it worked for your holiday open house. Comment below this post so we can all hear about your experience!
If you do indeed decide to use a printed invitation, I’ve created 3 lovely invitation designs for your party! I’m personally using the “Winter” themed motif, as I’m throwing kind of a combination Christmas and Hanukkah soiree. Everyone is invited!
NAN’S TIP: Let your friends with children know if they are welcome to bring them to your holiday open house. They’ll appreciate the “heads-up” when planning their holiday schedule.
I’ll tell you a little later how to get your free Holiday Open House Invitations download.
It’s important to remember that everyone will not eat every item you serve, so have a wide variety of holiday and party foods available. And of course, at a holiday open house, the food will be eaten all day/evening long. So it takes a little more planning beforehand, but it will be a breeze to maintain during your party.
Now, more than ever, it’s a great idea to separate your food offerings into several smaller displays. This allows your guests to keep their distance when serving themselves from the buffets. It’s also the go-to plan when you know that guests will be bottlenecking at certain “rush hour” times of the day. No one wants to wait in line for another meatball!
Offering your guests a drink as they arrive is the perfect holiday welcome. Steer them over to your holiday open house beverage station and acquaint them with their choices, it’s that simple!
There’s no need to stock a full bar for a holiday open house, in fact, I highly discourage it. It’s really not that kind of party, as your guests will be dropping in and out all afternoon or evening long. And so, most likely some of your guests will be driving. Keep your libations light, festive and delicious, and you’ll have a hit!
In fact, if you live in an area that’s cold during the holidays, I’ve got a great idea for you! Make a big batch of hot mulled cider in your slow cooker, and have its aroma wafting from your beverage station all day long!
There’s always some new cocktail I want to try out or create, so what better time than at a holiday open house?
I’ve collected a selection of pitchers, carafes and beverage dispensers just for this purpose! If you’ve got a few really delicious and varied cocktails whipped up in pitchers, your holiday bartending chores get much easier!
For example, I love to serve my BIG BATCH BLOODY MARY MIX RECIPE at brunches and luncheons, especially with lots of amazing garnishes for my guests to choose from.
Yes, that’s a spicy shrimp perched on the edge of my Bloody Mary! It’s a great combo!
NAN’S TIP: Prepare a double or triple batch of your cocktails to make refilling your beverage station a snap during the party. (depending on how many guests you expect)
This year I’m planning on serving a flight of infused vodka flavored “mini-martini’s” at a small “after-Christmas” gathering. I think they’ll be a big hit with a menu of Gourmet Latkes and my Savory Party Cheesecake Appetizer.
Want to learn how to infuse vodka with all sorts of flavors, from pink grapefruit, to jalapeno-ginger, or maybe even coffee beans? You’ll need to be careful, because once you start making up fun flavor combinations, you won’t want to stop!
Click here to learn how to make 20 Infused Vodkas and Flavored Vodka Cocktails.
The way I cure that problem is to use some stylish beverage station signage that matches my party’s colors or theme. I love pulling together a “whole package”, so it was a no brainer to create beverage station tent cards that match the invitations.
CLICK ON THE IMAGE ABOVE TO DOWNLOAD YOUR COPY OF MY HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE BEVERAGE SIGNAGE PDF – I hope you enjoy using them!
Creating an inviting ambiance with music, seasonal aromas and twinkling party lights or candles is a perfect way to celebrate the holidays. If your garden thrives year-round, grab some sprigs of shrubbery and flowers from your yard to create bouquets that will add life to the party.
Or grab a few bunches of pine boughs and holly to cheer up your buffets and beverage station. Remember, a home decked out in holiday gear creates a festive atmosphere that gives your party the perfect vibe.
Remember that recipe for hot mulled cider? If you’re not planning on including a hot drink at your beverage station (my pals in Florida would cringe at the thought!), then this is a great idea for you!
Fill your home with warm holiday aromas to greet your guests with the welcoming scents of the season wafting through the air.
Here’s a simple simmer pot recipe for you to try:
Directions: Combine ingredients with 2 quarts water; simmer on low throughout the party, adding water as necessary. (keep the pot partially covered so it won’t evaporate as quickly)
Guests love to “mug” for photos, especially when surrounded by their pals! Give them the chance to take group photos together to help your guests create fun memories.
Here’s a few fun ideas for a creative photo-booth backdrop:
Of course you’ll want to provide some fun photo props to help your guests “ham it up”! I created some really great ones for the Super Bowl last year that were a ton of fun to use! Check out Oriental Trading or online party stores for a huge selection to choose from.
And don’t forget to have a few selfie-sticks nearby too!
I’ve been dreaming up and creating party favors for years. I made it a mainstay in my catering firm’s party package options, even for corporate affairs. You’d be amazed at how many times my clients chose to “add-on” a take-home party favor.
And for a holiday open house? They’re a really lovely way to thank your guests for coming to pay you a holiday visit. What a gracious hostess you are!
Here’s a few ideas for a festive take-home favor for your holiday open house party:
The possibilities are endless, the only limit is your imagination! And if that fails to inspire you, hit Pinterest one evening and you’ll have more ideas than you can handle.
The most gracious host is also a guest, so be present and have some fun of your own. The most important thing is spending time with friends and family this time of year. That’s exactly why you spent so much time planning a fabulous holiday open house for them!
Now let me tell you how to get your own Holiday Open House Invitations that I mentioned earlier!
Once you’ve decided to host a holiday open house, you’ll definitely want to have some fabulous invitations too, won’t you? I would!
I’ve created three different designs, each with a it’s own “vibe”. One’s got a wintery feel, and another a definite Christmas theme. The last design is a more “polished” style, done in black, white, gold and silver. It would be perfect for an evening or New Year’s Eve open house.
As you can see, no matter how you want to celebrate the season with a holiday open house, I’ve got you covered. At least I hope I do!
If you’d like to see a different style of holiday open house invitation available next season, won’t you comment below this post to let me know? It makes me really happy when I can address specific requests from my loyal readers!
It’s so simple to use these delightful holiday open house invitations! Here’s how:
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