Tips for a Fabulous Holiday Soiree

Stressing over those last-minute details for your upcoming holiday soiree?  Have no fear; the SA events team is here! Here, we provide you with expert entertaining advice to guarantee your guests will be singing your praises this holiday season!

{Print Products}

Don’t skimp on the print!  Flawless print materials allow you to show off the event’s personal brand and touch {and show your guests that you went the extra mile to make your event sparkle}. A unique and personalized invite will get guests excited as well as give them a glimpse of what to expect at your party. Why not go the extra mile and impress your family and friends and create printed cocktail menus and creative signage for the evening?  Be sure to check out our Holiday Pinterest board for inspiration to help you achieve the overall look.  You can even send your guests home with a swag bag full of your own holiday favorites {with cute branded tags, of course}!

{Hors d’oeuvres}

Figuring out how much food to prepare is often one of the most stressful planning roadblocks for you hosts/hostesses – so let us clear this up.  If the start time begins around the dinner hour, guests will expect heavy hors d’oeuvres.  Depending on the food selections, plan on eight to 12 pieces per person.  If your event begins later in the evening, plan on 5 pieces per person.  Remember to consider any dietary restrictions and include a wide variety of choices including protein, vegetarian, and gluten-free options.  Also, be sure to represent all the food groups so you don’t end up too carb or protein heavy!


We recommend providing a variety of beverages for your guests that pair well with your food selections.  Plan on a minimum of one beverage per person per hour.  Our team recommends a signature cocktail for the evening and a branded drink menu card to add that personal touch.  My holiday favorite this year is the Pumpkin Spice Martini. This flavorful and tasty cocktail, shown above, is sure to be a hit at your soiree!

Pumpkin Spice Martini

1½ oz. Vodka

½ oz. Orange Juice

¾ oz. Knutsen Pure Cranberry Juice

½ oz. Cinnamon-Infused Simple Syrup*

1 dash Pumpkin Spice Powder

Shake ingredients with ice, then strain into a chilled martini glass.  Garnish with orange peel.

* Heat 1 cup hot water with 1 cup raw sugar until dissolved.  Add 2 cinnamon sticks and infuse for a few hours.


Sip champagne out of plastic glassware? No way! If you are hesitant to use your own glassware or you don’t have enough, save yourself the trouble and rent.  Be sure to rent one-and-a-half times the number of guests for each type of serving piece.  Don’t make your guests juggle their plates and beverages. Consider renting high cocktail tables with floor length linens. Companies like Linen Effects, Apres, and Ultimate Events have exactly what you need at a fraction of the cost of purchasing.


The music selection can dictate the overall vibe of the evening.  If you choose a playlist on Spotify or Pandora, buy the membership to avoid commercials {it can really put a damper on the party’s energy}!  Start out your playlist with mellow songs and progress to music selections with more energy throughout the evening.


Do you and your guests a favor by hiring extra hands to make it all happen.  Hiring a bartender, a caterer, or a couple of servers will help alleviate some of the pressure off of your shoulders.  After all, it is your party, you should focus your energy on mingling with guests and enjoying the fabulous event – not doing dishes or restocking platters!

Now that you have our favorite holiday party planning tips, you and your guests are sure to have a memorable evening!  Still unsure of your soiree vision? Consult our events team for assistance with design + coordination of your next event! Happy Holidays!

Photo: Eliesa Johnson