The boxes are unpacked (mostly) and the mail in the box reads your name. You’re officially moved in. But a house really isn’t a home until you’ve christened the kitchen with your first party. (Because let’s face it, there’s no better motivation for getting your act together).
Call up your neighbors and friends. These 5 simple tips from Tamara Dillard at Sophie’s Shoppe will have you hosting your first housewarming party without breaking a sweat.
1. Chalk it Up
Create a warm welcome at your door with a handwritten note on a chalkboard, like this one. Larger boards are also great for front door holiday messages, while smaller ones on the table can help identify dips or cheeses. If you don’t like the dust, opt for chalkboard markers, which are found in the office or stationery aisles of most stores.
2. Let There Be Light
A party without candles is like cheese without crackers. Their soft light creates ambiance and scented varieties can be party aromatherapy. Just be sure to skip strong scents around the food table, and elevate them if you’re expecting little people. Remember to also periodically check the ones you leave burning in other rooms, like bathrooms. Remember it’s a house warming you're after….not house fire.
3. Pick the Perfect Cocktail
The options are endless but finding the perfect cocktail can be quick and easy. Books like Cocktails for a Crowd offer great suggestions of large-batch drinks such as the Tipsy Palmer:
6 ½ cups of hot water
10 orange tea bags
4 ½ cups of sweet tea vodka
2 cups of freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup of Mint Simple Syrup
Fresh Mint + Lemons for garnish
4. Set the Night to Music
Every party needs great music and that no longer means stressing over playlists. Spotify is the perfect go-to for commercial-free music to suit most tastes. Some of Dillard’s favorite stations include Norah Jones, Leon Bridges and Lake Street Drive.
5. Let Them Eat Dips
Everyone needs a few go-to recipes in their entertaining repertoire (we know you can do better than store-bought hummus). Dillard recommends the Skinny Dips Cookbook for 60 guilt-free, fresh dips as well as crispy dippers to eat them with. One of her favorites is the Parmesan Spinach Dip:
½ small white onion, chopped
1 clove of garlic, smashed
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
10 ounces of spinach
½ cup of mayonnaise
½ cup of sour cream
½ cup of parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon of salt
Mix all together in a food processor and enjoy!