All of a sudden, here we are-
Summer’s arrived, Christmas Carols ring through the air of every store you visit, the decorations are up and people hastily make arrangements for the food and entertainment as we spring into the Festive Season. But no sooner has Christmas come and gone, then another milestone is upon us-
The completion of another year, straight to the archives, with a brand new one in its’ place. Some people are happy to bring in the New Year in the peace and quiet of their home, watch the fireworks on TV and get an early start to January 1st. But if you’d rather celebrate the final countdown and throw a New Years’ Eve party, we’ve got you covered!
As you know, in the past we’ve given you the run-down on how to celebrate other occasions without a hitch (Make Your Next Backyard Party A Hit With These 6 Steps). Throwing a New Years’ Eve bash has some similarities- but some differences, too. Here’s how to get your home ready as the perfect venue for your guests to celebrate the final countdown:
#1. Confetti Made Simple
Confetti is fun to throw when the moment comes, but a nightmare to clean up afterwards. If you really don’t want to find more pieces lying through your home weeks into the New Year, then consider a much easier (and eye-catching) alternative: confetti decals. Find metallic-coloured paper or card (think silver, gold, rose gold, bronze etc), cut it into bigger dots and stick them on your walls with blue-tac. Easy to create, easy to apply, easy to remove, they give the confetti effect and (most importantly)- free you from the hassles of confetti clean-up!
#2. Resolutions On Display
Making New Years’ resolutions is one thing- keeping them is usually a story in itself! But you can at least provide your guests with the initial spark of inspiration AND encourage people to hold them accountable for becoming a new them in the new year. You can do this one of two ways: either you can set up a resolutions tree for people to stick their written New Years’ resolutions on, or you can set up a corkboard with pins, and allow them to pin their plans upon it for all to see. Then all you need to provide are the pens and the notepaper- and voila!
#3. Photo Booth
Photo booths are a hit, no matter what event you’re talking- and New Years’ Eve parties are no exception. Whether it’s fancy dress or not, your guests are dressed up, they want memories of the night- and who doesn’t love getting to take Polaroid shots home with them?
A festive backdrop is a must- set it up with streamers, balloons and other glittery decorations hung on the wall or from the ceiling. For added effect, why not ad some props your guests can use as well- top hats, glasses, kissable lips, moustaches, masks- let them have some fun with it!
When it comes to taking the photos, there are plenty of instant camera options available for you that are available with or without film. Whatever your choice, set it up in a prominent spot and then let your guests take care of the rest!
#4. Drinks Station
Let your guests mix, shake, stir and pour their own drinks throughout the night (or morning). Before the party starts, check you’ve got enough of the main spirits and liqueurs such as vodka, gin, rum, whisky, Baileys and Kahlua. Make sure you’re also stocked up on the mixers (sodas, juices, cordials) for those who want to make cocktails- or mocktails for the ones who aren’t drinking.
#5. Highlights Collage
Has the year featured great parties, new adventures, personal milestones, promotions, victories, graduations, weddings, engagements or new arrivals? If ‘yes’, do you have photos from these occasions? If so, why not print them out and stick them up on a dedicated wall? Cut out the numerals of the year, stick them above the photos you put up and turn the section of wall into your own highlights collage for your guests to look at. Extra points for photos that feature your guests- they’ll love a reminder that the year just gone has been a shared experience.
#6. Your Guests’ Highlights
In addition to having a wall of photographic highlights, allow your guests to note their own best memories of the year, too. Similar to the resolutions tree (or board) include the same setup, but for your guests to write down their highlights of the year- fondest memories, proudest achievements, biggest milestones.
#7. Bring In The New Year With Balloons
A celebration of any kind just isn’t the same without balloons, and you have two options here. First of all, you can tie down a whole bunch of helium balloons in the main entertaining area (or wherever you plan the countdown to happen). Then, once the New Year has clicked over, set them adrift and let them fill your ceiling for added effect.
Your second option is to go for a DIY balloon drop. First of all, get two large pieces of lightweight fabric (like mesh or paper tablecloths) masking tape and plenty of balloons (the NON helium kind). Then to create the net, tape the two pieces of fabric together along one side and leave a tab of masking tape hanging down. This acts as your ripcord, allowing you to release the balloons when the clock strikes midnight. Use the tape to fix the four corners of your fabric net to the ceiling, and keep the material loose so that you can easily fill the net with balloons and confetti. Then, when the hour strikes- you have a visual display your guests will love!
In A Nutshell:
The Christmas period can be a difficult time to get together with your friends- family commitments and the typically busy preparations get in the way of this during the festive season. But once the Christmas rush is over, why not give everybody a chance to come together one last time for the year, unwind, reflect on the 12 months just gone- and have some fun. Follow the suggestions listed above, and yours will be a New Years’ bash your guests will recall fondly for a long time to come!