It's better to give than to receive. Which is why each week this month, we'll be offering valuable tips from our December issue on how to survive the holiday party season. First up, how to be remembered for throwing the best fête-even when you're guests aren't doing much to help.
1. Think small.
If fewer people showed up to your party than expected, keep guests confined to two rooms, like the living room and the kitchen, and turn out the lights everywhere else. "The key to a good party is being in a tight space," says Eric Buterbaugh of Eric Buterbaugh Floral Design in Beverly Hills.
2. Keep guests mingling.
Introduce your guests to one another, and let them know what they have in common. It's the best way to keep the conversation flowing, says event planner Ashlee Margolis-Fishman.
3. Dim all the lights.
If people are leaving early, treat the remaining guests like VIPs, not stragglers. "Say something like, 'Oh good, now that they're gone let's break out the hidden champagne," says party-planning expert Audrey Bernstein. It's also a good time to turn up the music, pour some shots, and have a good old fashioned dance party.
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