Lifestyle guru and event planner Steve Kemble shares creative party ideas for an unforgettable New Year's Eve.
Set the Mood With Lighting
- Dim your lights and flood the house with votive candles. Candles are the most romantic and cost-effective way to create a festive, sexy atmosphere! To make your candles burn longer, put them in a ziplock bag in the freezer the day before your party.
- Buy pink bulbs at any local home store (for example, Home Depot) and swap them into your lamps for the night; you will be amazed at the difference it makes and the atmosphere it creates!
- They may be silly, but people still love the traditional New Year's Eve party items such as noisemakers, hats, tiaras, boas, and horns. I always recommend putting these items on a platter or in a big decorative bowl and letting people grab items as they wish.
- Ask all of your guests to give you their three favorite songs when they RSVP for the party. Create a custom playlist with all of your guests' favorites!
- On New Year's Eve, serve a specialty drink at the start of the party and Champagne at midnight, and then invite your guests to BYOB their favorites. As the host, be sure to provide all the setups, such as soda, tonic, soft drinks, lemons, limes, etc.
- For your menu, I recommend light snacks throughout the evening, such as veggies and dip, pretzels, minipizzas, and chips. Then around 10:30 p.m., set out a breakfast buffet with premade casseroles, danishes, and fruit. It's a change for people and puts something in their stomach toward the end of the evening.
- At midnight, there will be lots of kissing going on with everyone ringing in the New Year. So place mints in your bathroom to keep things fresh!
- Have phone numbers on hand for your local taxi cab companies in case ride share apps are overloaded.
- As a favor, give your guests fun care packages in small paper totes for New Year's Day. Fill the bags with aspirin, Alka-Seltzer, and vitamin C. Additionally, I like to give guests hot chocolate in a to-go container for the ride home!