There are some simple, easy options to hosting a wonderful dinner party without having to take out a personal loan to cover the cost of food, decorations and those little extra touches. With just a bit of advanced planning, you can create a memorable evening that will certainly stand out as a great dinner.
Plan the Menu
For most dinner parties, the menu is going to be the biggest expense. Planning in advance and choosing one luxury item, such as a cut of meat or fresh fish, allows you to create vegetables and side dishes that are lower cost and also a perfect match for the focus of the dinner.
You can choose cost-friendly meat options including chicken and turkey, pork chops, beef sirloin and ground meats. Local seasonal vegetables from a farmer’s market or your local supermarket are also very reasonably priced and taste amazing.
Dessert can include something prepared at home rather than a more expensive bakery item. Consider simple and elegant desserts that are easy to make. Another option is to offer fresh fruit plates as a way to wrap up a terrific meal.
Set the Table
A beautifully set table is always a must at a dinner party. In the summer months consider flowers from your own garden or a selection of in-season flowers from Trader Joe’s.
One or two larger flowers such as hydrangeas, brightly colored asters or even large dark colored roses surrounded by the smaller, lower cost flowers and lots of greenery add color and style at a very reasonable cost. Also, look around your house for unique styles of containers to use as vases.
Don’t be concerned about mixing and matching different patterns and styles of china, glassware and even cutlery. You can find great deals on lovely patterns at garage sales, thrift shops and consignment shops, especially if you are picking up individual pieces. Remember to shop online or at local party supply stores for the lowest prices on linens that will add that touch of elegance to any table.
Set the Mood
Candles and soft, diffused lighting are perfect for an indoor or outdoor dinner party in the evening. It not only sets the mood of relaxed comfort, it also gives an amazing glow to the entire table and presentation. Just remember, for a dinner party forgo the scented candles.
With these budget friendly ideas you are guaranteed to save money. Always remember that the key to a successful dinner party is great people.
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