Dinner Party Decor: Simple Ways to Get Creative

[ 0 ] August 26, 2015 |

By Kaitlin Krull

Having friends over for dinner ought to be fun and relaxing, but for most of us it ends up becoming a flurry of stressful preparations and haphazard decorations. At Modernize, we are always looking for ways to take the stress out of decorating your home, especially for a party. Check out these decorating tips for a dinner party your guests will be talking about for years to come.

Theme it

Contrary to popular belief, it is possible to theme your dinner party without making it cheesy or awkward. Themes can be unobtrusive, such as vintage, floral, and formal. For your decor, choose colors and fabrics that complement each other and tie the room together. If you are serving one particular type of cuisine, then take that theme and run with it (just remember to be tastefully sensitive when it comes to representing others’ cultures).


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DIY bar

Nothing says welcome at a dinner party like an introductory cocktail (alcoholic or nonalcoholic, as your guests prefer), so consider setting up a DIY bar station in your living room or another area of your house, away from the dining room and kitchen. Stock the bar with all the ingredients your guests will need to create their tipple of choice, and free yourself up for last-minute table setting and plate presentation in the kitchen and dining room.


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Alternative centerpieces

When your guests walk into the dining room, the first thing they see will inevitably be the table centerpiece. Because your table decoration is literally and figuratively at the center of your dinner party, it’s important to make it memorable. Why not mix it up with cherry blossoms, other alternative flowers, or even non-floral arrangements such as grass, candles, or other handmade decorations. If you’re going with a party theme, then the centerpiece can help tie it all together, as well as looking fantastic in the middle of the room.


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At the table

After drinks and preliminary socializing, it’s time to get down to the meal at hand. Make your guests feel comfortable with creative place cards and mini menus (handwritten or chalkboard menus are especially great if you feel you may need to change the menu at the last-minute). Get creative with your place settings, tying in any color palettes or themes you have going on at your party. Mix and match plates, napkins, chairs, and more for a whimsical, low-key effect and a memorable table.


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Dessert station

Because it comes last, dessert is often the most well-remembered part of a dinner party. End yours with a bang by setting up a dessert station back in your living room. The best part of this station is that most of it can be set up before the meal and simply stocked with treats after your guests have finished their dinner. Serve mini cakes, chocolates, and macaroons on delicate tiered cake stands to satiate everyone’s sweet tooth, and a cafetiere of decaf coffee or pot of herbal tea to wash it down.


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Category: Food.Fun.Stuff., Style Section

About the Author ()

Johnna French is a Harlem NY native with deep roots in Panama, Washington, DC and North Carolina. All four places have heavily influenced her life and the foods she loves today. After graduating Howard University School of Law and beginning her life as a young professional in the city she was led to start Johnna Knows Good Food in November 2007 to keep family, friends and colleagues updated on where to go and what to eat while dining in the nation’s capitol. French, who still practices law, leads a team of three writers to cover the ever expanding Washington, DC food scene. French has been featured in print and television, appearing in Washingtonian Magazine and is a regular contributor to various local TV affiliates including WUSA 9, FOX 5 DC and WJLA (ABC Affiliate) News Channel 8. During the 2016-2017 football season, Johnna aired on Comcast Sports Mid-Atlantic (CSN) show, Redskins Life, as the weekly tailgate host. Johnna is currently a regular contributor to the FOX Baltimore Weekend morning show.

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