You shouldn’t have to give up entertaining just because you live in a small apartment. In fact, entertaining in small spaces can be fabulously intimate and have a certain charm. All it takes is a few smart choices and a little ingenuity. Here are 8 important tips for hosting the perfect dinner party in your small apartment.
How To Host A Dinner Party In A Small Apartment?
Keep Guest List Short
For obvious reasons. Before deciding on your guests, a good rule of thumb is to first determine how much seating you already have and how much extra you can accommodate. Don’t overdo it though. Guests should have enough space to move about freely without feeling cramped.
Plan Your Menu Carefully
If you have a small living space, chances are you also have a small kitchen. There might be enough space to make a chicken alfredo but not enough space to serve a five-course meal. Prep food ahead of time and keep it simple and quick. Easy recipes like finger foods for appetizers and a hearty entree of pasta and salad is a good start.
Remember, your guests are there to see and spend time with YOU. So try to avoid cooking something that requires you being in the kitchen for long periods or constantly running in and out of the kitchen.
Additional Tip: Empty dishwasher ahead of time. This way you have a place to stash dishes before it’s time to clean up.
Serve Snacks And Appetizers Vertically
Save a ton of table or counter space by using vertical serving trays and food displays. Use these for appetizers, chips & dip or desserts. Be sure to get collapsible food displays that don’t take up too much space when stored. For more space-saving kitchen ideas, check out these kitchen finds that will save you a ton of space!
Adjust The Temperature
When hosting a dinner party in a small apartment, keep in mind that multiple bodies in a small space can generate a lot of heat. FAST. Try turning the thermostat down at least 5 degrees from your normal temperature a few hours before everyone is expected to arrive. It might be a bit chilly at first, but once people start drinking and rubbing elbows the temperature will be just right.
Move Furniture Around
Some rearranging is to be expected when entertaining in a small space. Move your dining or breakfast table into your living room for a more relaxed atmosphere. Relocate your sofa and other non-essential furniture to another room, out of sight.
Option 2: If you have limited seating try moving it into the living room in front of the couch and have guests gather around it, using your sofa as chairs.
Option 3: For a more casual feel, try draping a stylish tablecloth over your coffee table and have your guests sit around it on soft floor cushions.
Use Every Surface
Hosting a dinner party in a small apartment means you have to improvise and get creative. If you’re hosting area is your living room, Don’t let the surfaces in that room go to waste. Use your TV console as a buffet area, bar or dessert station. Mobile bar/serving carts make great bar stations and they look great too. Found some stylish carts here at Wayfair. If you want to get a little more creative, try clearing a space in your bookcase and use it as an additional bar area.
When you throw a party, some crowding in the common areas is to be expected. So to help keep the foot traffic flowing smoothly, don’t put all the food and drinks in one spot. Use other surfaces in different areas of the common space for drinks, appetizers, and desserts.
Put your bar on a console or bookcase, your meal on the main table, and the dessert in the kitchen so there’s no crowding.
Provide two drink stations in different areas of the room. One for wine and one for liquor. This way guests can go to the station with the drink that they want.
Another way to avoid overcrowding is to serve a signature drink or cocktail that you can put in fancy glass pitchers. It’s cheaper than having a fully stocked bar and you get to show off your mixology skills.
Just try to space out where you set up these distinct areas, so your guests don’t end up crowded in the same corner. Having different areas will encourage movement and flow, and prevent a bottleneck.
Keep Table Décor Simple
Hosting a dinner party in a small apartment can be a fun opportunity to decorate. However in a small setting, too much extra tabletop styling can make the dining space feel cramped, so simplify your tabletop and serving surface décor. Try a stylish table runner, narrow glassware as vases for fresh flowers, and overhead string lights to cast a flattering glow. You can even use string lights spread across the table for a more ambient effect.
If you really want to save on valuable table space try adorning the walls and ceiling with lights or other decoration instead of table surfaces. Stringing lights and streamers attached to the ceiling still provides a festive feel while leaving enough room on tables for food and beverages.
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