How-To Throw A Holiday Party On A Shoestring

Everyone who entertains on any level knows how expensive it can get.  It’s not just the cost of the food and drink but all those little extras, like the cocktail napkins, mixers and unusual ingredients that you don’t normally use in your everyday cooking. It all adds up!! And while the economy is slowly bouncing back, many of us are still on strict budgets until things get significantly better.

So, if you are on a budget this holiday season these simple tips from can make the difference between throwing that Holiday party you have in mind or foregoing it.

  1. Host a traditional potluck. There’s nothing wrong with asking your guests to bring a side dish. You provide the roast beast, and let them do the rest. Be sure to communicate with your guests to avoid having 16 green bean casseroles and no mashed potatoes. Food is one of the biggest expenses of any party. Cut your costs and increase your enjoyment by delegating some of the cooking to others.
  2. Throw a cocktail “potluck.” Is a “spirited” party on your Christmas list this year? Alcohol doesn’t come cheap. Invite your guests to bring a pre-mixed pitcher of their favorite cocktail and keep the party going all night long. A cocktail potluck is a great (and far less tacky) way to throw a BYOB celebration. Supply some munchies and a keg of beer wrapped in a festive bow, which will likely run you about $50. Be sure everyone has a designated driver or set aside a room for overnight guests.
  3. Demote the decorations. Once the holiday spirits kick in, no one will notice the fresh flower centerpieces you spent a week’s salary on. Decorations shouldn’t be the cornerstone of your celebration. Chances are good that your home will already be decorated for the holidays, so no additional decorations are needed. If you must dress things up a bit, head for the Dollar Store or make the decorations yourself.
  4. Forget the stamps. In today’s world of Facebook events and Evites, there’s no reason to purchase invitations and stamps. Spread the word about your gathering through social media or email. Your parents’ generation may think this method incredibly tacky, however, it’s your party and you’ll Tweet if you want to.

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