Your Dinner Party Safety Net
One of the best ways to get to know a new friend or couple is to host a dinner party! Nearly everyone loves food, drinks and games so combining them together is an excellent way to quickly bond, with as little awkward tension as possible. Here a few tips to make sure your next dinner part is perfect:
Know Your Strengths
As mentioned above (and in the name), food tends to be the primary focus of a dinner party. Some are naturally good cooks, and others have picked up the skill over years of practice. Yet a great deal of people still have trouble boiling water and making instant potatoes, and that’s fine! The important thing is to know and admit your strengths and weaknesses. If you’re a terrible cook, your first dinner party is probably not the place to start experimenting. There’s no shame in picking up food from a nice restaurant, or asking your guests to bring a dish to share. It’s a better alternative than sitting through the awkward situation where everyone pretends to like your meal.
Plan for More Time Than You Have
It’s not likely that your guests will stay more than a few hours, but you should plan for more anyways. You never know how quickly or slowly everyone will eat, and you need to be ready for some unplanned catastrophe to take place. Buy more wine than you need, and plan a few more quick games that is probably necessary. Worst case scenario: you’ll have more for next time. What you don’t want to end up with is uncomfortable silence and nothing to do, because you’re not yet familiar with each others likes and dislikes.
Don’t Force a Schedule
I just got done telling you to plan for way more time than you’ll need, but that doesn’t mean you need to strictly follow that plan either. If there seems to be a lull in conversation, follow the next thing on your agenda. But if things are progressing naturally, and you all seem to be getting on pleasantly, the last thing you want to do is force your guests to play by some seemingly crazy house rules. The overbearing list is there as your safety net; in other words, “Break Glass in Case of Emergency.”
Avoid Obvious Awkward Situations
As the old saying goes, “no politics around the kitchen table.” Add sex and religion to that list of topics and you’ll be golden. Unless you met your new friends at a interest-specific function that would allow you to know, without a shadow of a doubt, their opinions on sensitive issues, don’t bring it up. Nothing ruins a dinner party quicker than arguing Democrats and Republicans. These are conversations that friends ease into as they get to know each other; definitely not ‘first date’ material.
Dinner parties can be extremely fun, and are usually rewarding. Whether you’re trying to meet the neighbors, find a new church community or just looking for friends, they are a great tool to show people just the right amount of your life. Hopefully these suggestions will make your next party a huge success!
Lindsey Ratcliff writes for furniture blogs where you can see the latest trends for coffee tables. If you’re preparing for a large dinner party, make sure you have the right furniture to accommodate the group.