With the holiday season slowly approaching and the weather getting chillier, dinner parties will be transitioning indoors. And for some, throwing a dinner party might be too difficult because of the lack of space in their homes, but it is still possible!
We will go through how to set up a dinner party to maximize your space, while also going through everything you need to consider when throwing dinner parties indoors. So, your family and friends can have holiday dinners wherever and whenever!
The first thing to consider when throwing a dinner party is to know how many people are going to attend the party. This is the most important thing to know because it will be the deciding factor as to whether you have enough chairs, seating etc. We suggest having a group chat with everyone you would like in attendance and following up with them at least two days before to confirm the party size, because you know, some people might backout at the last minute.
Now, once you have considered the size of the group that will attend your dinner, the next item on your list would be to plan the food. The food is the most important item of a dinner party, but don’t worry too much because everyone loves free food!
We suggest planning the main dish first and then opting for some finger food as an appetizer, just in case your main takes a little longer, so your guests are not starving and waiting . . . No one wants to be hangry.
Now that we have got the guest list and the food planned, next is the fun stuff – decorating and planning! Here are our top tips for having a successful dinner party in a small space!
Utilize Your Couch for Extra Seating Photo: Elizabeth Felicella/Markatos Design
If your home has little to no space for a dining table, don’t fret, because a couch can work wonders! Take inspiration from the image above and place a table in front of the couch while using chairs on the other side to accommodate your guests. By using the couch as seating, you can add more people to the table, and it can also fit more people comfortably than trying to jam a bunch of chairs together. If you have an L-shaped couch, even better because you can add extra places for people to sit, and you will need fewer chairs to take up space!
Pro tip: If there are children in attendance, try seating them on the couch because they take up less room – so you can seat more people at the table!
Create a DIY Dining Table
We covered seating, but what about the table? There are many options when it comes to a dining table, but if you don’t have enough space to have a large dining table in your home, then things can get tricky. We suggest getting a fold-up table that people use outdoors or a camping table that can be stored in a closet seamlessly. Check out this one from Home Depot, or this one from Amazon.
Once you have secured your table, throw a tablecloth over it, and no one will know that it isn’t a dining table, because anything can really be a dining table – if it can hold food, it’s good to go!
Pro tip: If you want to get really creative, try looking for Tik-Tok DIY’s and ideas like this one.
Keep Table Décor Simple
The last thing you need on your plate is a spilled drink on your table. We suggest keeping the décor simple on the dining table, so people can maneuver with ease. All you really need on a dining table is the plate, utensils, napkins and maybe some condiments like salt and pepper, but keep the large items, like ketchup, in the same place you're serving the food.
But if you do want to create a tablescape, try just adding one centerpiece. This can be a larger bouquet of flowers or even a couple of small candles in the center – take inspiration from the image above!
Pro tip: Try making food that can go on one plate, so you can lower the number of items needed on the table, and, as a plus, there will be less dishes afterwards!
Use Countertops as Serving Space
Instead of serving all your food on the dining table, try serving your food on the kitchen countertops. This will allow you to serve your food in a buffet style and control the traffic in your house. By doing this, your guests won’t have to squeeze all their food onto a table and can get up and grab more items if needed.
Pro tip: Do the same with drinks! Find a surface where you can set up a drink bar, but make sure it is separated by the food, so you don’t have everyone in one space at a time.
Consider a Convertible Table
If you are going to be holding many dinners in your home, try to invest in a convertible table. These tables are great options for dinner parties because you can make the table larger if needed and can be placed in a small area when it isn’t being used. They can also serve as a desk, small dining table or even a coffee table!
Pro tip: Check out these options from Ikea, Amazon, or even this one from Walmart.
Vertical Displays Are Your Best Friend
Our last tip for throwing parties in a small space is to look for food display options that are vertical. This will save you so much counter space if you don’t have enough already, and it will look way more put together if you play with the sizes of displays. For instance, a ferris wheel cupcake holder will save you way more space than if you were to serve them on a platter.
Pro tip: Try using clear acrylic display risers. They will vertically display dessert items and will impress all your guests!
After you have planned a great dinner party, make sure to have fun, because that is what is most important!
If you find any of these tips helpful or are trying them yourself, make sure to follow us on Instagram or TikTok for some more helpful tips! And if you’d like to share them on Instagram, make sure to tag us or use the hashtag #tipswithavenue!