Tis the season! Chances are, over the next two fun-filled months, you are hosting some type of gathering in your home. Whether you’re just having a few friends over for drinks or it’s your turn to host the entire family for Thanksgiving dinner, we all know that throwing a memorable holiday party of any size takes some planning. We asked three Louisville tastemakers — Gretchen Black, co-owner of Lulubelle’s Boutique; Amy Streeter, owner of Susan’s Florist; and Fran Murphy, owner of Fran Murphy Design and founder of Green Street blog — for their tips on throwing a terrific holiday party. These talented ladies share some ideas you’ll definitely want to use. Read on to learn how to throw a memorable party in your home without blowing your budget.
ENTERTAINING EXPERT: Gretchen Black, Co-owner of Lulubelle’s Boutique
TIP #1: Wrapping paper isn’t just for gifts.
Hosting a dinner party means more than just preparing your grandma’s famous sweet potatoes — the table sets the scene! Talented interior stylist Gretchen Black, co-owner of Lulubelle’s Boutique in Norton Commons, suggests using wrapping paper as a placemat. Pick a thick, quality wrapping paper that coordinates with your tableware (like this beautiful Rifle Paper Co. gift wrap, available at Lulubelle’s), and cut each sheet in half. Gretchen was able to get six placemats from one roll of paper. So clever!
TIP #2: Shop your house.
If you’re trying to stay within a budget and would rather save your money for your holiday gifts, try shopping your house for table decor. Gretchen says to reinvent what you already have — pull those brass candlesticks off your bookshelves and borrow candle holders or lanterns from your mantle to make your table shine.
TIP #3: Don’t forget the finishing touches.
To complete her tablescape, Gretchen opts for simple ribbon and greenery to adorn her napkins and highlight her place cards. Again, this isn’t an expensive idea — simply use a roll of ribbon you already have on hand (surely you’ll be wrapping lots of presents this season!), or buy a coordinating color at the local craft store. (We spied some lovely Christmas ribbons at Digs Home and Garden; you could coordinate your entire tablescape around these beauties!) Cut some greenery from the evergreen bushes in your yard, arrange them casually around the table, and voila! Your table is holiday ready! (Now you better hope that Grandma’s sweet potatoes are on point this year!)
Gretchen’s last tip for throwing a terrific holiday party may be the most important one yet: “When a friend asks if they can bring something, say yes!” Truer words were never spoken. For more interior decor inspiration, be sure to check out Lulubelle’s Instagram and more eye candy on Gretchen’s Instagram.