Holiday Hostess // Tips for an Epic Christmas Gathering

Posted by: Jamie Kutchman | Founder

Welcome to the Christmas edition our “Holiday Hostess” series! It’s no secret we adore everything hospitality, styling, community, and friends & family around here. So, it only makes sense to welcome back our favorite ‘Hostess with the Mostess’ Vickie Theodorou, owner of Heirloom DC! She was definitely a huge hit when we first featured her here on the blog just before Thanksgiving.

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Tell us about your favorite trends for hosting holiday parties.

In terms of styling, we’ve been into and have seen a trend towards mixing hues of the same color. We just recently had a holiday soiree where shades of green were the color palette for the party. A hunter, basil like green, a classic mint and a teal-ish turquoise. The three colors together were perfect together and made you feel the spirit of the season. Using real greens like evergreen or snow fern also helps provide warmth & texture and a chic festive aesthetic. Avoid fake greens because, come on, really. Don’t love green? Mixing metallics is what all the cool kids are doing. Copper, Gold, Rose Gold, Mercury. Get creative and don’t be afraid to experiment.

In terms of food, people still crave the Holiday classics. No matter how cheesy, literally, it is. Turkey, Ham, Corn, Greenbean Casserole etc. But they want to take the boring element out and look to us for help. Updating these classics with subtle, modern twists make impact with guests. Go ahead and cook your turkey then instead of serving it on a large platter like Grandma’s Christmas display, bake some mini cornbread muffins and make/buy some cranberry citrus chutney and create little tartine (open-faced sandwich). Put the base of the muffin down first, then layer a couple slices of turkey and top with the chutney. It’s the Holidays in a few delicious bites. Or bite sized brie tartlet. Wrap pastry dough around chunks of brie, bake then top with your sweet topping of choice.

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Image credit: Erika Bonnell

Can you give us an easy décor idea for styling for the holidays?

Use classic holiday staples as decor or to style the food. Get crushed peppermint (or crush some candy canes) and garnish a white serving platter. Use holly berry plant leaves and weave around platters, plates etc on a table and add accents like various height candles throughout. You can even have fun with fruit like pomegranate, orange, persimmons etc. Buy frosted spray paint from your local art supply store. Half the fruit and and spray sections of it with the frosted spray paint. It will look like like it’s frosted after a dusting of snowfall. So festive!

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Image credit: Sweet Tea Photography

How about a signature cocktail idea for holiday parties?

We’re getting into the constant cold now, adding warm spice tones in cocktails is always the perfect complement to a Holiday Bash. Seasonal fruits are harder to find now but Pomegranate & Cranberry will be readily available. Holiday Cranberry Pomegranate Sangria will be the perfect boozy drink for your get-together. Spiced with cloves & nutmeg. It’s hearty yet light and has a beautiful red color that will complement the vibe of the season. Garnish is everything, folks so don’t forget to get a slice of orange, cinnamon stick & mint to style that glass. Bonus, here’s the recipe:

Makes 1 Gallon / (16 –  8 ounce cups)

1 Bottle Red Blend Wine

2 ounces Brandy (optional)

6 ounces Premium OJ

6 ounces Cranberry Juice

6 ounces of Pom Juice

12 ounces Water

1 orange, halved + squeezed

1 lemon, halved + squeezed

½  cups of unrefined sugar or ¼  cup simple syrup

2 – cinnamon sticks

a small handful of cloves

⅛  teaspoon nutmeg

Directions:

-Mix all non-alcoholic ingredients in a large pitcher or seperate to 2 pitchers

-Add wine (and brandy if desired)

-Stir for 15 seconds

-Refrigerate overnight

Before serving add a splash of natural lemon lime soda (avoid Sprite!) to each glass or 12 ounces to the pitcher

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Image credit: Sweet Tea Photography

What are you most looking forward to this holiday season?

Eating soooo much food! With friends & family of course. Holidays can be stressful because of the amount going on. Work deadlines, maintaining a busy social life with friends & family, obligations to a million parties etc. Although, the best part about the holidays are these obligatory parties, whether friends or family, these are exactly what we should be focused on and thankful for. It’s a time where we have to make time to be with people. If we just remind ourselves that I should be enjoying this because I mean, isn’t that what life’s all about anyways? Spending time with the people that matter.

Any tips for all the hosts and hostesses out there?

  • Pre plan & prepare so day of is a walk in the park
  • Dress to Impress. Even if the party is a little more on the casual side. You are the host, look and act the part
  • Maintain a solid buzz. Glass in hand always, ladies!

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Thank you Vicky! As always, you make it seem so simple! Wishing you all the best this holiday season and see you back on the blog in 2016! xo

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