Planning a Christmas party at home? Here’s how to make it an amazing one – even if you have a limited budget or time frame to work with.
1. There should always be one quality main.
The best way to stay on a budget is to have at least one quality dish on the menu, and supplement it with other homemade sides. So for instance, splurge a little and order a gourmet roast, but make your own mashed potatoes, spaghetti and fried rice (in case some of your guests don’t like ang moh jiak aka Western food).
Need some options? Check out these guides below.
(Source: Simply Recipes)
2. If you can’t be bothered to cook or bake, order some party packs.
Not all of us are domestic goddesses, so it’s a good thing you can order ready-made party packs from caterers like Delifrance and TCC. The dessert party packs from Delifrance are actually quite good (who doesn’t love fruit tarts?!) and you can opt to pick them up at any Delifrance outlet, or have them delivered to you for a fee.
Ordering party packs are also more economical for smaller group gatherings, because you can order as many as you need, as opposed to paying a per person charge (which is usually the case when catering food).
Need some options? Check out this guide to ordering party food in Singapore.
3. No need to splurge on non-alcoholic drinks.
You’ll probably need a fair amount of drinks for a party, so get them from places like Giant Hypermart or Warehouse Club, which tend to be a bit cheaper than your average supermarket. Besides, no one will be any wiser as long as you serve your drinks in classy jugs and glasses. If you’re feeling especially creative, try making your own party punch with ginger ale. Check out this guide to the Best Supermarket Drinks in Singapore for some ideas.
4. Desserts maketh the dinner.
What’s a Christmas dinner without a table full of desserts? Here are some of our favourite places to pick up sweet treats from.
For Cakes: Lady M Confections
This Christmas, Lady M Confections has a limited edition chocolate cake that is to die for. The Couronne du Chocolat (which means “crown of chocolate”) is a moist chocolate sponge cake sandwiched between dark chocolate mousse, and topped off with white chocolate shavings. Sounds decadent? You bet. (But it’s Christmas yo – live a little.)
Need more options? Check out the guides below.
The Couronne du Chocolat (Source: Lady M Singapore)
For Pastries: Asanoya Bakery
You know what we love most about Christmas (besides the presents, of course)? The festive treats you only get during that time of the year. From Panettone to Stollen (fruit cake), Asanoya Bakery has got you covered with their seasonal range of traditional Christmas delights. If you’re not one for sweets (gasp), the Japanese bakery cafe also has a wide selection of savoury bread and salads to plump up your dinner table with.
Need more options? Check out the guides below.
Christmas Panettone (Source: Asanoya Bakery Singapore)
Need more options? Check out the guides below for more tasty snacks.
Torres Black Truffle Premium Potato Chips
1. When in doubt, use flowers.
Flowers add a pretty touch to any boring table setting, and as an added bonus, are fairly easy to put together too (yes, even if you’re no Martha Stewart). You can buy fresh flowers from wholesale florists like Far East Flora (go to the Fresh Flowers Centre at the Thomson outlet), or cheat a little and buy fake flowers from IKEA or Taobao.
For nice and inexpensive vases, IKEA is always a safe bet.
2. Napkin origami
As frivolous as it sounds, napkin origami will make your table setting look infinitely more atas than it actually is. Trust me, no one will think that your dinnerware is from Daiso when you have a napkin swan sitting on it. #grand
3. Cake stands make everything look better.
If you want to make your appetisers and desserts look tai tai-worthy, invest in a classy cake stand. Seriously. That’s all you need to do.
Local stores like ToTT and IKEA stock quite a few different types of cake stands, but Taobao also has a surprisingly nice (and cheap) selection of tai tai-esque tableware.
Oh and while you’re at it, here’s how to style your home cooked food like a pro. Just in case you really want to impress your guests.
Extras & Entertainment
1. Make cute props for photos ops.
People at a party are going to take lots of photos, so kick things up a notch by making your own photo props. Download some templates (this site has some nice ones), print them on thick paper to cut out and attach sticks to each of them. If you’re new to making photo booth props, I would avoid picking the templates with curly/intricate shapes (like a moustache). I know this because I tried cutting one once and it ended up uh, a lot more jagged than I thought it would be.
(Source: Catch My Party)
2. Get people to sing.
Not that you want to be the emo loner party guest warbling away to Celine Dion while everyone else is mingling, but karaoke is a fun way to get your guests to loosen up a little.
If you don’t have a karaoke system at home, download the Sing! Karaoke App on your iPad instead.
(Source: Sing! Karaoke App)
3. Polaroid Camera
Polaroid photos make for a good party memento, especially since the photos somehow always make you look better than usual (yessss overexposure you are my friend). If you want to go the extra mile, set some markers and stickers out on a table so your guests can decorate their Polaroid pictures with childlike glee.
4. Create your own dessert table.
It’s not impossible to create your own dessert table, but you’ll definitely need some nice jars, bowls and stands – most of which can be found at IKEA, ToTT or yes, the almighty Taobao. The key thing to note when planning a dessert table is to have a consistent colour theme – so if you go with a pink and red colour scheme, buy sweets and chocolates that fit the theme. If in doubt, explore Pinterest for ideas you can emulate.