Recent Posts

Now that my home is finally finished and I am for the most part done decorating, I love hosting parties and having friends and ...


August 14, 2014

Now that my home is finally finished and I am for the most part done decorating, I love hosting parties and having friends and family for dinner. Last night James and I hosted a moules et frites night at our place and invited our good friends over to enjoy. And boy did we enjoy!

But with all the fun that comes with having friends over, I can sometimes feel overwhelmed hosting, cooking and entertaining guests. As well as trying to make sure the house looks styled and put together. So to avoid feeling stressed I have come up with a few tricks to make preparing for a dinner party a little easier.

1. Prep.

I do as much preparation as I can so I'm not running around when my guests arrive . There is nothing worse than guests arriving and you greeting them flustered and still amidst setting the table, laying out the apéro and getting dinner started. I prepare everything way in advance so by the time guests arrive I feel relaxed and organized. Chopping your ingredients up before also saves tons of time when you are ready to cook. Less time in the kitchen means more time with your guests.

2. Setting the mood.

The easiest, cheapest and my favourite way to add a bit of ambience to your space is with flowers and candles. I am lucky where I live because there are tons of local markets full of fresh flowers, so the morning of my party I nip down there and grab a couple bouquets. Then I make different arrangements and place them around the dining and living room to make my house a little prettier.

I also think music is super important to set the mood of your dinner and a great way to liven things up. I always make a playlist of crowd pleasing songs to play in the background. But if you happen to be short on time download the app Songza, they have awesome pre made playlists for any mood.

3. Details.

I have to say I am big on details. I love them. To me they are what pull your whole look together. I have collected many pretty little things over the years that I now use to create a beautiful look. Some include my Mum's vintage lace table cloth, antique crystal candle stick holders and fun graphic plates from Anthropologie that my sister gave me. With those and other things to add to your table, your guests will feel like you really took the time to make your home beautiful for them.

4. The Food.I really love to cook but I get a bit nervous when cooking for more than just James and I. To ensure I cook a delicious and easy meal I always pick a recipe I have cooked successfully before. Something I love to prepare and to eat and that's fairly fast to cook. I hate missing out on the fun my guests are having when I am cooking, so now I make dishes that cook quickly or that can be popped in the oven and left alone. Always ask guests beforehand if there is anything they can't eat or don't like. This will help you narrow down your choices and make sure all your guests will enjoy the meal. FYI: Mussels are incredible and are so fun to eat with your hands. They are also very easy to cook and can be done in under 30 minutes (including prep). Serve with french fries and beer, and bon appétit!

But if all else fails you will still have good wine and good friends, and really nothing else matters.

You Might Also Like


  1. I can testify that Jules is the most perfect host ! But I recommend adding a 5th section in this article : ending the night with a Jenga drinking game for lots of fun ! :-)

  2. Merci Aurélie! Jenga was definitely the best part :)

  3. Simply lovely, Julia! You are clearly an amazing host. I have to ask - where is the Queen Bee plate from? I love it and the zebra plate too :)

    1. Thank you so much! Those plates are great eh? I love them! My sister gave them to me, and they are from Anthropologie. You might be able to get them online :)