10 Entertaining Tips to Live By

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I’m not one to follow strict, traditional rules, but there is an art to being a good entertainer and host. So to help you become the best hostess or host you can be, I wanted to share my top 10 Entertaining Tips to Live By!

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These little tips are easy and pretty simple to do when entertaining. Over the past 8 years, we’ve hosted countless events and dinner parties, including a few weddings, which is actually how Sugar and Charm was started!

We’ve also attended some of the most luxurious dinner parties (one of the perks of being in this business!) and I’ve learned a few things and have taken some good notes on what makes a good party.

10 Entertaining Tips to Live By

So below is a list of my personal top 10 Entertaining Tips to Live By that I always implement when I entertain, no matter the size of the gathering!

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Pick a Theme

Adds personality and character to a party! Also, helps with planning the menu.

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Add Some Charm

It’s all about the details. Adding just a few sweet touches or details will help make the party special.

Entertaining Tips graphic for hosting a party. This is about prepping beforehand.

Prep Beforehand

Do all of your preparation the day before. Prep as much as you can the night before! Set the table, assemble flowers, prepare glasses, make juices, slice and chop fruit and vegetables. Anything you can do to keep the day of the event low stress.

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Simplicity is Key

Make just a few dishes, like the main course, side and a dessert. Then buy and assemble the rest!

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Appetizers Are a Must!

Most guests will come hungry and if dinner won’t be served for another hour, you understand why it’s super important to have snacks out.

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Create a party playlist or just stream a good station you love. Music is key for setting the tone of the party!

I really love the UE BOOM Wireless Bluetooth Speaker or the The Bose Alexa speaker. The sound in both is really excellent in every direction. The Boom is water and stain resistant too! You can’t take it more than 50 feet away from your phone though. Considering I’m not on my phone much when entertaining, it’s fine to leave it by the speaker.

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Always Say Hi!

This seems obvious, but make sure to greet everyone when they walk in and offer then a drink. Maybe introduce them to another friend at the party. Make sure all of your guests feel welcomed.

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Punch it Up!

If you’re entertaining for a crowd, make a large batch of spiked punch! Makes serving cocktails super easy and uses fresh ingredients. Here are some recipes to try!

Apple Cider Punch

Pineapple Carrot Punch

Irish Green Tea Punch

Citrus Holiday Punch

Watermelon Cocktail Punch

Lavender Gin + Tonic Punch

Spiced Apple Sparkling Cider Punch

Text graphic about not doing dishes during a party.

No Dishes!

This is more of a personal pet-peeve, but I can’t stand when the host gets right up and starts cleaning! Save that for when your guests leave and enjoy the time you put into the party and your guests. It also makes people feel obligated to clean and your guests do not need to clean at your party.

If you really feel like you want things to be orderly during the party, hire someone to help clear the table and load the dishwasher.

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Have Fun!

As the host, it’s imperative that you are relaxed and having fun. Guests will follow your lear, so make sure to keep positive, calm and fun!

More Wonderful Entertaining Tips

10 Essential Tips for Entertaining by Bon Apetit

40 Entertaining Tips From the First 40 Years of Food & Wine

10 Tricks for Easy Entertaining by Martha Stewart

How Much Food Do you Need for a Party?

This is a tricky question! Depending on the type of party and how heavy the food is. There is a 1 pound rule which means you calculate 1 pound of food per person, not including dessert.

You can also check out our party buying guide which will help figure out how much food and drinks you need.

How do you throw a stress-free party?

It’s up to you how elaborate you want your party to be. I’ve thrown some larger parties that took much more time and money, like our Tropical Summer Kick-Off Party. However, I’ve also hosted simple gatherings like our Wine and Cheese Party that takes almost no time at all!

Here are some tips for throwing a stress-free party:

  • Keep the guest list small.
  • Don’t make all of the food, only choose a few items to make.
  • Serve a cocktail punch and open a few bottles of wine.
  • Plan and prep early to relieve stress on the day of the party.
  • Order supplies and whatever you can online. These days you can even order all of your groceries online!

I would love to hear some of your entertaining tips you live by too! Tell me below in the comments!

2 thoughts on “10 Entertaining Tips to Live By”

    • YES!!! Oh my gosh, Shelbie that so needs to be on the list because there is nothing worse than stressing and tearing through your closet to find an outfit! I should add a little note about that under the prep ahead tip!


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