There will always be an occasion to have dinner parties, whether it is for friends and family or for business guests… This makes it essential that you know how to organize it properly. You can end up making quite an impression on your dinner guests, even if they’re your family members, who have known you since you were in your cartoon pjs.
First off, choose a theme for your party. It doesn’t have to be something extravagant. These themes can be as simple as being formal, casual, holiday or even birthday oriented. This way you know how to set up your tables and plan out your night accordingly.
The second task you can do to prepare for this dinner party is to set up the props and silverware you are going to use. If it is a casual game night with friends, you might consider taking out some board games and using the normal everyday tableware to set on the table. However, if it is a formal dinner, you might need to put a little more effort into the prepping.
For a formal dinner, set up the table by first placing a long, rather off white, table cloth that can cover up your table and decorate it at the same time. Then, place your china or silverware accordingly:
Plates: The plate for the main dish on the bottom. On top of it: the plate for the salad. On top of that: the bowl for the soup if you serve some.
Cutlery: When eating, your guests will use the utensils from the outside to the inside as the meals progress. Thus, on the right, start by placing the main dish knife facing the plates. Then to the right of that knife, place the main dish spoon and at the far right end, place the spoon used for the soup, if needed.
On the left, place the main dish fork, closest to the plates, and the salad fork to its left.
Above the plates, place the dessert fork horizontally with the dessert spoon horizontally right above it.
Drinking Glasses: Place them on the top right hand corner of the plates.
Finally, finish off your table setting with some napkins folded and placed on top of your plates. You can even get creative and try out different shapes while folding the napkins.
These are traditional rules. Learn them well, master them. Then of course, feel free to break them according to your inspiration!
Next off we have flowers. Flowers are always a plus. They give off beautiful scents and decorate your house all while giving life to your surroundings. You can also add to their scents by placing some small scented candles that can also add a certain aura of relaxation and elegance to your dinner party.
Managing the lighting can also be a great way to fix the atmosphere and adjust it to your liking. Whether you are using bright lights to brighten up the mood or dimmer lights to give off a more relaxing and intimate atmosphere, lighting is key to how you want to set the ambience for your dinner guests.
Some other final tips that can also come in hand in situations like this are: trying to include platters to the menu that do not need last minute prepping, avoiding the desire to try making dishes for the first time (chances are they aren’t going to turn out as you expected them to), and if you get the chance, asking your dinner guests if they have allergies or certain sensitivities (like religious ones) to certain food.