By

Holiday Party How-To

cookie swap

With the winter holidays sneaking up around the corner, now is the perfect time to begin planning a gathering of family and friends. Choosing a theme for the festivities makes things easier to pull together … and more fun, to boot!

cozy cookie swap

Party Idea No. 1: A Cozy Cookie Swap. First up, we have the classic cookie swap. I vote for giving this party a cozy twist by serving hot drinks like apple cider, hot cocoa, or hot toddies, and setting out a stack of plaid throws for guests to wrap up in. Invite your friends to bring enough cookies to share, along with a tupperware container to bring home their assortment of cookies, and get swapping! If you would like to provide food as well, choose an easy and comforting one-pot dish like chili.

Harvest Potluck1
Harvest Potluck

Party Idea No. 2: A Harvest Potluck. Whether you are hosting a ‘friendsgiving’, or simply want to hold a fun and low-stress gathering, a harvest-themed potluck is a wonderful way to do it. Give guests plenty of notice, as they will be expected to contribute a dish or drink. Pick up some seasonal fruit and greenery to decorate the table, and keep table settings simple with rustic linens and clear glassware or jam jars.

Christmas Candlelight1
Christmas by Candlelight

Party Idea No. 3: A Candlelit Christmas Celebration. Embrace the Christmas spirit with a peaceful candlelit evening filled with magical details. Warm your hands on mugs of hot drinks wrapped in knit cozies, hang wreaths of greenery and white twinkle lights from the rafters, and light candles all around. Make the dining area more comfortable with throw pillows and blankets, and play a soundtrack of holiday tunes, either modern or classic. For a handmade detail that will really set the evening apart, make your own menu cards using white pen on black cardstock in the style of a chalkboard sign. Your friends will be super impressed!

Rug Picks

No matter which party you choose to throw, consider warming your toes on a festive new plaid area rug. Or, change out a piece of art for the season with a Christmas-themed sign, like the one shown above. And remember, less is more! Just one or two decor tweaks is all you need to transform your home for the season.

What about you? Will you be hosting any parties this holiday season?

Shopping Guide: (clockwise from top left) Joy Carpets Whimsy Bit O Scotch; American Rug Craftsmen Dryden Billings rug; Joy Carpets Whimsy Bit O Scotch rug in Bark Brown; Barn Owl Primatives Dasher Dancer Print.

Photo Credits: (from top to bottom) Style Me Pretty100 Layer CakeThe Yellow Table100 Layer Cake.

Copyright © Rugs Direct ®

By

Tips for Squeezing in Extra Seating

Extra Seating 1

Believe it or not, the holidays are coming right around the corner — and if you’re planning to entertain, you’ll probably need all of the extra seats you can muster! From spare seats in the living room for mixing and mingling at cocktail parties and the holiday open house, to extra chairs around the dining table for big feasts, here are 5 ways to sneak in the seating you need.

1. Tuck in a spare chair (or two). A side chair with a lovely shape can easily be tucked against the wall in the living room or dining room, just waiting to be called into duty. If you can’t resist scooping up chairs at the flea market, this is the perfect excuse to do just that! It really doesn’t matter too much if your spare chairs match your other dining chairs — in fact, mixing it up is a great way to cultivate an eclectic look. Just be sure to make one element (color, material, or style) go with the rest of your chairs for consistency.

2. Stock up on cute folding chairs. Folding chairs don’t have to be boring. Seek out fun, colorful folding chairs (like the ones shown above) or classic folding cafe chairs. They are so handy to have around when you need to seat more people than you were expecting. Since they fold up, you can slip a few in the back of a closet, or even under a bed, and simply pull them out as needed.

3. Embrace poufs, ottomans, and x-benches. These decorator staples are well-loved for good reason — they solve seating problems and look great doing it. Use poufs or square ottomans as a coffee table alternative that can also serve as party seating. X-benches look chic anywhere you put them; keeping a few on hand is smart since they can be used as extra seating in the living room or at the dining table.

Extra Seating 2

4. Make a stack of stools. Sleek little stools that stack, like the ones shown above, look like an intentional part of the decor — only you need to know they are secret seating superstars that can leap into service at a moment’s notice.

5. Slide benches under consoles. Not only does a bench tucked under a console table look chic, it’s a smart way to hide an extra seat in plain sight. For extra credit, tuck a pair of petite stools beneath one console to double your extra seating.

Extra Seating 3
When it comes time to shop, hunt for versatile pieces that will work in any space, with any color scheme. We love the graceful lines of the Aiden bench (top left), classic style of the Ann side chairs (top right), secret storage of the Owen linen storage bench, and stackability and modern good looks of the Easton stainless steel side chair.

Now it’s your turn to spill the beans: where do you seat extra guests? Share your tips and tricks in the Comments!

Shopping Guide: Owen Cream Linen Storage BenchAnn Carved Mahogany Light Gray and White Side Chairs (set of 2); Easton Stainless Steel Side Chair (set of 2); Aiden Hand-Painted White Bench.

Photo Credits: Society Social folding chairs; photographer Hoi Ning Wong coral x-benches; Inspired by Charm living room; Scandinavian Love Song stacked stools; 2 Design Group elegant entry; Glitter Guide console with bench.

Copyright © Rugs Direct ®

Top