Parties should be fun – they shouldn’t cause anxiety to the host or the guests. But sometimes, it can feel like there’s so much to do. We consulted with Jason Mitchell, the author of Getting Groomed: The Ultimate Wedding Planner for Gay Grooms, for advice on things to do before the party, to ensure we feel prepared! If you can’t do all of these (we’re not organized, either), we’re pretty sure doing just one or two will help.
1. A week before the party, solidify your menu. Make a detailed list of everything you’ll need: serving pieces, utensils, china, and linens. Then, make an organized shopping list.
2. Make a calendar for the few days before your party: What can be done ahead of time? Lots of recipes actually taste better the day after, or after marinating for a day. These are great party options. For beverages, lots of garnishes can be assembled the day before.
3. Plot out your serving dishes and label them in advance (*at FAT, we like any excuse for colorful Post-Its). This way you can be sure you’re not missing anything, and have time to purchase if you do!
4. Count your glassware — think about whether guests are likely to reuse their glasses, for example, if you’re only serving wine. You don’t want to be washing glasses during the party! #buzzkill
5. If you’re creating a food or beverage station that requires guests to assemble something on their own, put it in a low-traffic zone.
6. Make a day-of-party schedule for yourself. Work backwards from party time. How much time will each task take? Calculate, then give yourself a generous cushion. You don’t want to be racing against the clock to primp before the party.