10 Tips For Throwing A Stress Free New Year’s Party




1. Only Invite People You Really Like

There is a temptation when throwing a party to invite everyone you know. After all who wants to look like Billy No Mates. Resist the temptation! How can you relax and enjoy yourself when you have no idea what to expect from your guests. The quiet guy from the office may be, Attila The Hun after a few drinks.

2. Think carefully before mixing friends and family

You may think your buddy with no filter is hysterical. When you see her sitting next to your 80-year-old granny.... not so much. Rushing across the room to intercept, while balancing a tray of canapes, always ends badly. I have a horrible memory from my early twenties of drunkenly trying to teach the family nippers to swing dance. I came within 5 inches of bashing their brains out. Enough said.

3. Serve Easy To Create Party Food

A dinner party for 8 is the perfect opportunity to display your culinary expertise. Once you expect 10 or more guests it is time for the easy to prepare, do it days ahead recipes . Getting steamed up in the kitchen, while your partner grumpily runs the vacuum cleaner does not create festive cheer.

Think about party food that is easy for people to nibble on while standing up holding a glass. Keep the baking soda ready to soak up spilt red wine. If the thought of red wine on your immaculate white rug gives you nightmares STOP RIGHT NOW and except that party throwing is not your thing.

4. Check out your supply of cutlery and small plates.

If it is not up to the task then disposable paper plates and reusable plastic cutlery are a little more eco-friendly than plastic plates and single-use plastic cutlery. If you can, use real glasses. Not only is this good for your environmental credibility but it keeps the drinks cooler and adds a touch of class.

5. Ask Your Guests To Bring Their Favourite Tipple

Most guests are polite enough to bring a bottle of wine. However, if you ask them to bring their favourite drink, thay may think twice about showing up with a cheap bottle of plonk and then steaming into your 10-year-old Scotch.

6. Don't Be A Martyr

When your guests offer to help, say yes. Clean up is a breeze when you have lots of hands. If they offer to bring food ask them what they enjoy making. Try not to micromanage, if you criticise your friends washing up skills, or the amount of sherry they add to the trifle, they may not offer again.

7. Play a few games.

Pick something simple that is sure to break the ice. Popular favourites are, Who's Most Likely To, Charades or Guess My New Year’s Resolution. Keep the Scrabble and Trivial Pursuit for less gala occasions. If you would like more ideas for Adult Party Games check out this blog from The Spruce.

8. Spill Out Into The Garden

Living in Britain we tend to forget the garden in the winter. However, there are a lot of advantages to moving the party outside. As the night progresses a bit of fresh air can slow the effects of alcohol and save your furniture from sloppy drunks.


There are some simple ways to make your winter garden inviting; line the edges of your lawn with slow-burning wax torches , scatter pillows and fluffy rugs on benches and chairs or turn your garden shed into a romantic folly. Your introvert guests, will appreciate finding a retreat for a quiet tête-à-têt. Guests who still smoke, quelle horreur, can indulge without feeling like outcasts.

9. Serve Bellini’s for the Midnight toast.

This is a super sophisticated way to save money on Champaign. Hopefully the vitamin C from the peaches will alleviate the ubiquitous New Year’s Day hangover. Not sure how to make them? The Food Network has a recipe for this fast and easy cocktail.

10. Add a firework "display in a box" to your countdown.

Some of our favourites are Blue Lagoon, Midtown Madness, Rampage and Lucifers Revenge.

With just one fuse to light, these fireworks are relatively safe and stress-free. They signal the end of the party and leave everybody with a warm glow and happy memories.