The winter holidays are coming quickly now. It’s a wonderful time of the year, but with so much to do it can be stressful at times. To keep the joy alive and eliminate as much stress as possible, we discovered some expert holiday entertaining tips to make your job a little easier and much more enjoyable! Here are just a few we thought you would find easy to implement.

Create atmosphere with lighting

"I cannot tell you how many parties with great food have been ruined by operating-room lighting. Atmosphere is half the battle. A low-lit atmosphere with candles can even give pizza old-movie glamour."

—Mary McDonald, designer via House Beautiful

Create a magical reveal

“Create floral arrangements on top of small boxes by pinning fresh flowers to ribbons or hot-gluing silk flowers, pine cones and faux berries in advance. Then, line the inside with edible leaves, add a cold appetizer inside, and place at each setting. Guests will sit down to their first ‘present’ of the season and discover their first course inside of it!” —Preston Bailey, event planner to the stars via Elle Decor

Go with your what you do well

“My big secret for throwing a successful holiday gathering is to know what you're good at and go with it. I can't cook. So, that gets outsourced immediately. But, setting the table and the ambiance, I own that.  Maybe yours is that one AMAZING dish your known for...make that, even if it's not fancy. Good trumps pretense every time. Play to your strengths. It eliminates the stress.” —Nate Berkus, designer and author via Elle Decor

Mix "mocktails" just in case

"Not everyone drinks alcohol. Have fresh-squeezed juices and other delicious choices so you can mix a 'mocktail' or two." —Preston Bailey, event designer via House Beautiful

Go for balance in food

"If you are having an elaborate dinner, then keep your hors d'oeuvres simple. And if you are planning an easy dinner, make your hors d'oeuvres a little fancier." —Madeline Weinrib, textile designer via House Beautiful

Linger at the dinner table

"Don't tidy up the table too soon. Once the plates are cleared away, often so is the mood." —Lisa Borgnes Giramonti, blogger at A Bloomsbury Life via House Beautiful

Stay tuned for more holiday entertaining and decorating ideas on 212Concept Modern Design Blog. 


Image credit:;;;MarthaStewart,com; Pinterest,com;


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