SIX STEPS FOR EFFORTLESS FALL ENTERTAINING
With the cooler weather outside, more people are choosing to entertain in the comfort of their homes. Set your space for a quick and stylish gathering with these easy steps.
1. Too Many Cooks. Keep your guests out of the kitchen by setting up a beverage station in another room. Go a la “Mad Men” and set up a barcart, or put bottles and glassware on a bookcase, or repurpose a breakfast bar.
2. Sitting Pretty. Having a large group over for dinner? No need to buy unsightly folding chairs. Bring in the benches from the outdoor picnic table and place them at the dining table. Each bench can seat 2 or 3. After the party, use one bench as a sofa table for displaying family photos.
3. Tucked Away. No one wants to surrender valuable closet space to table leaves. Instead, get a table with storage inside itself for the extensions. My personal favorite self-contained extension tables come from CB2 and West Elm.
4. Stylish Surfaces. TV trays are so passe. If you need additional surfaces on which people can eat, invest in nesting tables. These cute stackables come in groupings of two or three tables. They are large enough to accommodate a plate, and, once the guests have gone, re-nest them to make one adorable side table.
5. Textiles That Take a Beating. My favorite rugs and pillows for entertaining are indoor/outdoor ones. Their materials are durable, you can shake them out or hose them off, they come in variety of great patterns—plus, they are a fraction of the price of their indoor counterparts!
6. Light It Up. Nothing sets a festive mood like votives. Why sprinkle just a few when Ikea sells them by the hundred for less than $10? Place them all over for a special scene. If you are worried about the open flames with pets, kids, or rowdy friends, opt for battery-powered votives that can be found at your local hardware or garden store.