December 2, 2020

How to Host an Intimate (yet festive) Gathering this Holiday

3 min read

With the holidays just around the corner, I think it’s safe to say that everyone is itching for a little holiday cheer {in a safe manner!}.

But how do you throw a holiday party without it being a party? Well, the first thing to do is remove the word “party” from your vocabulary, because sadly this holiday season we won’t be partying down like we used to. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t break up your quarantine bubble into very small groups of friends to have a festive gathering.

Last week, I wanted to celebrate my mom’s 70th birthday. My original plan was to throw her a huge bash and go all out. My revised, Covid-19 friendly, plan was to host a very small celebration with only a few of our closest friends who have all been in our quarantine safe bubble.

It ended up being such a fun night! And I wanted to share a few lessons learned from my experience, along with a few photos from the beautiful decor we rented from Found Rental Co. I went pretty big on the decor because my mom is always do so much for our family and we have never really thrown her a big celebration in the past.

Stick to your Bubble

I think the most important rule of thumb when hosting an intimate gathering is to keep the guest list very small and stick to only people you have already been hanging with during quarantine.

Dress Up

Even if you are only hanging with three people, make it an excuse to play dress up by setting a dress code. For my mom’s birthday I demanded a cocktail attire dress code and while everyone was a little hesitant at first, they ended up really loving the excuse to finally bust out some dressy clothes.

Small Bites

Offering appetizers in bite sized portions on a buffet table feels very “of the moment” versus a sit down, long family style dinner. Something more casual, light and easy to eat quickly.


Move Things Around

We opted to have indoor furniture in our outdoor space which offered a super cozy atmosphere for everyone. I love bringing rugs outside along with couches and chairs. Our evening felt nice and safe because we were outside but also felt cozy and comfortable. We hardly noticed we were outside once the conversations started. If you aren’t able to sit outside {because it’s freezing}, try rearranging your furniture inside the house or apartment. You could even lay down some blankets and floor pillows and do a picnic style soiree.

Pay Attention to Small Details

Lighting tea light candles, framing photos of you and your loved ones and having personalized place cards are all simple yet impactful ways to make the tiniest details count. Because we can’t go big on a big party, go big on a small one instead.

Have a Signature Cocktail

Have a signature cocktail because it’s fun, flirty and a very easy way to pop drinks into guests hands upon arrival. We offered a cucumber mint drink that could be added to so whether it was tequila, vodka or gin (oh my!) everyone had the chance to give it a taste.

Create a new Playlist

Create a brand new playlist for your gathering that includes music you wouldn’t normally play. At my mom’s birthday we had jazz Parisian music that really sparked a nice vibe for everyone.

Are you planning any intimate festivities this holiday season? I know this year can be quite a challenge to feeling festive so I wanted to share my way of how to (hopefully) make it all work. Sending you and your loved ones extra cheer this season.

xoxo jacey


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