Holiday Do and Don'ts WE HAVE YOUR GUIDE FOR HOSTING AND ATTENDING THIS SEASON'S PARTIES ARTICLE KIRSTEN KUMAR | PHOTOGRAPHY CLEARLY CLASSY, GREEN FERN & LUNA PARK EVENTS
he holiday season has officially arrived, bringing with it an ava-
relieve stress from the hostess as simply as volunteering to direct
lanche of social events. Whether you intend to host a party or
parking for partygoers, or setting up tables and linens beforehand."
plan on attending as a guest, there are a few unspoken rules to abide
"Party-going etiquette also entails following what the invite in-
by. We interviewed three professional event planners in Austin for
structs—guests should arrive in a timely manner and dress accord-
their input on how to ace the hosting game. From your coworker’s
ingly," says Williams. Guests should contact the host or hostess any-
tacky holiday sweater party to your neighbor’s black tie affair, here’s a
where from two days to two hours before the event begins.
fail-safe guide to being the perfect hostess or guest.
“Nine out of 10 times, the day of the event, they’re frazzled,” says Williams. A quick phone call to see if the hostess needs any last-minute items can go a long way.
DO PLAN AHEAD
The number one rule of a successful party: do not leave everything for the last minute. “The second you know you want to have a par-
ty, start planning,” says Johnell Huebner, owner of Bee Caves-based
“Unless you’re an extremely crafty person and you have the time,
Clearly Classy Events. Careful planning up to six weeks in advance
avoid DIY,” says Kahn. It’s easy to believe you have enough time to
can minimize those inevitable last minute errands you’ll have to send
craft those hand-cut snowflake table settings, but DIY projects of-
your spouse out for.
ten become extremely time consuming. “You already have to get the house clean and your hair and makeup done,” says Huebner. “The last thing you want to be doing is taking on little projects.”
DON’T SHOW UP EMPTY HANDED
Tis the season of giving! The least a guest can do is bring a party gift for the host or hostess. Generally speaking, a bottle of wine will
DO ENJOY YOURSELF
do the trick. Hostess doesn't drink? No worries! "Bring some holiday
Some of the best advice Austin event planners have to offer: consid-
cookies or even an appetizer," says Richard Williams II, founder of
er hired help. “The stress can sometimes take away from being in the
Austin-based Luna Park Events.
moment, and that’s what an event is,” says Kahn. “You want to live that moment.” Consider bringing in help to organize and cater the party, serve drinks, or even clean up after. “Know your strengths,” says Williams. “Are you
DO BE MINDFUL
As a guest, it is important to be mindful of the needs of the hostess
a good cook? Then, cook! If not, think about getting a caterer.” Throughout
leading up to and during the event. According to Emily Kahn, founder
the event and at the end of the day, you should enjoy the company of fam-
of sustainable event planning firm, Green Fern Events, "Guests can
ily and friends, not worry yourself over refilling empty chip bowls.
Johnell Huebner, photo by Clearly Classy Events
Richard Williams, photo by Luna Park Events
Photo by Luna Park Events 26
Lake Austin Lifestyle | December 2015