7 Tips for Prepping Your Home for a New Year’s Eve Party
You may still be vacuuming pine needles from your floor from your Christmas tree, but those leftover needles poking into your toes signify something larger than pain: It’s almost a new year. And let’s face it, each new year has to be properly celebrated. This year, you and your home are the lucky hosts to friends and family. These eight simple tips can help you connect with your inner party animal and ensure your house comes out looking like a home and not a zoo.
- Focus Décor on the New Year
There are some people out there who give the Griswolds a run for their money in holiday decorations. As full of light as your yard may be, a new year means a clean slate. In other words, pack it up. Put together and box up outdoor lights, ornaments and your red and green remnants. Trade them in for festive New Year’s Eve party décor with metallic accents.
If you’re looking to really raise the roof (read: make mortal enemies with your neighbors) consider a variety of noisemakers at your disposal. Many party outlets offer them at a discounted rate before the holiday. If you’re really ambitious, give the World-Cup-infamous vuvuzela a whirl. Nobody is going to miss the ball drop!
- Set up Stations
Parties should be interactive. Ensure that guests are mingling, chatting and having a good time by setting up stations that encourage activity. Consider a drink station, a place for games, a photo booth and a television screening area for watching the ball drop. DIY New Year’s Eve party hats make the event a little more festive.
- Make It Flow
Depending on the layout of your house, you may want to consider which areas would be most congested with people – food stations often lead to congestion for all of those hungry guests – and figure out a way to ease up heavy traffic. Instead of cutting your guest list, pay attention to the flow of the room. If you have the ability to break up the food into smaller parts around the room, you’ll be more likely to spread out the traffic, as well.
If you’re not into having alcohol in the house for the party, take friends to a local bar for a few libations and have the after-party at your home. Check out local bars that have a self-serve concept; you’ll reduce your wait time on a busy night and get your favorite brew faster. Just make sure that you have a designated driver!
- Centralize Seating
Guests may be floating around and socializing, but at some point or another, they’ll probably want to take a break and have a seat. Bring extra chairs in from around the house, and put them in a central location so the party animals can stay together.
Short on seating? Make your own seats with large throw pillows on the floor – just not in areas where they could be tripped over. A stack of them in a central location should work well.
- DIY a Ball Drop
Who says Times Square has to have all the glitter and fun? If you’re up to the challenge, DIY your own New Year’s Eve ball drop. Built from light strands and plastic cups, your New Year’s Eve ball will be ready and sparkling when it’s time to bring in 2016. Yes, it’s time-consuming, but is it worth it? Absolutely.
- Make up Guest Rooms
If you’re supplying alcohol or your parties have become notorious on the block for being a little rowdy, consider making up places for people to sleep. Rather than have someone unsafe behind the wheel, encourage them to stay with a small pallet of blankets and a fluffy pillow.
If space is an issue, make sure each carload has its own designated driver to ensure the safety of your guests.
- Have Plenty of Trash Cans
This didn’t make the list for no reason: Trash cans are a huge party necessity. Pull a few from your other rooms to ensure there are plenty around to catch garbage. Make a game plan to collect the contents midway through so nothing overflows. Doing this can save you a lot of time and effort the next day.
New Year’s Eve parties can be a lot of fun, and so can getting ready for one. If you plan to be the host this year, use these tips to get your house prepped for party success.
Megan Wild is a lover of celebrations and when she’s not planning one, she’s finding a better way to help her guests relax and enjoy time together. You can find more of her thoughts on her blog, Your Wild Home.