Don't put your guests in these uncomfortable positions.
Whether you’re having a large dinner party for the holidays or just a few friends over for a charcuterie snack, everyone wants to make their guests feel as comfortable as possible. But we all know how busy life can be and sometimes we end up overlooking a few things when planning these events. The problem is that these little things can feel like big things to our friends and family. Here are seven mistakes you’re making as a host that your houseguests are too afraid to tell you about.
You Didn’t Stock Your Bathroom With Toilet Paper
It’s easy to overlook this one because it feels like there are many more important things to think about when planning for guests. But there’s no way around this need. No one wants to ask you for more toilet paper when you’re in the middle of serving soup or chatting with another guest. So, put in a fresh roll and stash a few extras in a basket adjacent to the toilet so they can easily be found and replaced.
Lack Of Bathroom Handtowels
Event planner Amanda Orso of High Low Hostess tells me a lack of bathroom hand towels can be a hosting faux pas. “No one wants to use a dirty towel to dry their hands after using the restroom,” she explains. “I like to keep paper guest towels in my powder room, but at the very least, have a fresh hand towel that is put out just before guests arrive.”
Not Serving Enough Food
No one wants to go to a party hungry only to discover there’s not enough to eat. “I certainly never want a guest to leave hungry, so I am always mindful of my guests and the amount of food available," Orso says. "When in doubt, increase the amount of each item—you can either enjoy the leftovers yourself or even send them home with guests."
Not Considering Dietary Restrictions
Food or gluten allergies might not affect you, but these things can make your guests really uncomfortable if they’re ignored. So, ask if they have dietary restrictions after they RSVP. No one wants to go to a party and not be able to eat anything on the table.
Additionally, Orso recommends printing a menu—and not just because it’s a nice touch. “Your guests will appreciate knowing what is being served and can plan their meal accordingly,” she says.
There Aren't Options For People Who Don’t Drink
From non-alcoholic wines to beers and canned mocktails, there are so many amazing NA options available today that there's no excuse not to serve a delicious non-alcoholic beverage for your guests. Remember, there are lots of reasons why people abstain from drinking, including physical and mental health, pregnancy, and being the designated driver. If you don’t want to make mocktails or spend extra money on non-alcoholic beverages, get some flavored sparkling waters, which can also be used as mixers for those who are drinking.
Not Keeping Things Sanitary
Don’t forget to use serving utensils on each platter or serving piece. “Although this feels obvious, I have been to parties where the serving utensils were missing, which means guests were using their personal utensils to get food,” Orso explains.
Not Accounting For Comfort
Orso notes that an otherwise great party can be ruined if guests are too hot, cold, or being attacked by bugs. “For an alfresco event, think about the weather and be sure guests understand they’ll be outdoors, as it will likely dictate their attire," she says. "As a host, understand that a particularly sunny day will require shade, fans, ice-cold beverages, and maybe even some sunscreen,” she says.
For cooler days, the event planner recommends keeping a basket of blankets that guests can easily grab and a menu with warm cozy comfort food.
To prevent unwelcome guests (mosquitoes)—burn a citronella candle. While many have an unpleasant odor, Diptyque has one that emits a beautiful fragrance.
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