How To Entertain Guests When Your Space Is Limited
It is a lot of fun entertaining people in your home. It gives you a chance to show off your culinary skills and how hospitable you are. It can give you quite a thrill. Until you remember that your house is way too small and cramped.
You’re afraid that entertaining at your house may have the opposite effect than you had intended. You certainly don’t want people to leave your house wishing that they hadn’t attended.
Luckily, there are ways to entertain in your home even if the size of your home is not ideal.
In this article, I will give you a few ideas on how to pull this party off.
1 – Use the outside as well as inside
If you have a balcony, small yard or even just a patio, then take advantage of this extra space and make sure that people can spread out between being inside and out. Be strategic about where you put things so that you can make sure that people are not congregating in just one place.
This way you can encourage people to be moving between areas with the outdoors being one of them. Even if it is cold out, you can use outdoor gas fire pit kits to keep things toasty. In fact, this could be the hit of the party and nobody will even realize just how small the space is that you have.
Your outdoor area can be the sort of smokers’ lounge if your friends are smokers. Or, it can be the area where the cold hors d’oeuvres are. With hot food served inside it will make sure that not everybody is outside where the only food would have been.
2 – Use fixtures wisely
One table in the center of the dining room or kitchen is not going to be enough space for you to put down a food buffet or for people to put their own drinks or plates to free up their hands. Which means that you’ll need to create extra space for that.
Surely, you have some book shelves, dressers or other furniture that can be used. Take some books down and either place small plates of food there, or invite your guests to use them to put their food and drinks down.
This way you can essentially spread out the area with treats to entice people to not congregate in one spot.
Your kitchen sink can be transformed into an ice bucket for beers, wine or soft drinks. And your coffee table can become a bench for people to sit on by placing some pillows on it. Hopefully you have fold up tables and chairs to use to free up space, but if you don’t already then try to buy some ahead of time.
3 – Prep your food ahead
Not only should you be preparing your food ahead of time to make sure that you aren’t in the kitchen when guests are milling about, but to also plan the best food to serve in a small setting.
What this means is to think about the menu in a way that is going to provide the most convenience. Will guests be able to sit down with a bowl of chili? Where will they all sit? These are the questions that you need answers to while planning your menu.
Your best option is to prepare finger food that can be eaten while standing up and then placed throughout your apartment so that you don’t need to set up a big dining table that crams everybody in.
Cold appetizers are generally a great way to go so you don’t have to keep food hot and in the kitchen.
Full sized dinner plates are not going to leave much space so food that can be put on small plates and then refreshed throughout the party is the best way to go. So, think things like mini tea sandwiches or crackers topped with things like ham or cheese.
4 – Don’t have a set time
Try to avoid a timeline in which everybody comes over at roughly the same time and then leaves at the same time. Instead treat the party like a sort of open house. Give your guests a staggered timeline. Invite some over at one time and others over at other times.
This way ones that come early will have more space to enjoy and then they will likely be the first ones to leave to then give some space to the guests that come later.
It also adds to the excitement when the doorbell rings and new guests come in and greet the ones already there.
5 – Be realistic
Of course, you would love to show off your cooking skills and offer up a huge buffet of various foods. And having all of your friends and family over for a rip roaring party would be a lot of fun. But, you have to be realistic about how this is going to go. If you have different circles of friends, for instance, only invite the ones from the same circle to make it a more intimate affair for all invited.
If you are trying to pull this off on your own then the more guests you have the less chance you have of actually enjoying the party anyway. Make sure that the guests can basically take care of themselves so you don’t have to serve them hand and foot.
Maybe keep the food to a minimum or order some pizza to make things easy on yourself and to make sure that your friends are taken care of so you don’t get stretched too thin.
Conclusion on how to entertain guests when your space is limited
A small space may be a challenge when you are entertaining people, but it does also provide some advantages. The atmosphere is certainly more intimate when you have a small space. And, you are not running around as much since everything you need is usually close at hand.
As long as you plant things well, you can enjoy a lovely time with your guests and leave them with an event to remember.