Atlanta, GA, December 13, 2008 --(PR.com
)-- As the holidays approach, many have turned their thoughts to celebrating with friends and family. Yet—in light of the harsh economic realities the country is facing, which experts predict will continue well into 2009—they are also looking for ways to scale back, while continuing to make merry. Parties and social gatherings don’t have to be fancy, grand affairs; it is possible to throw a fabulous soiree on the cheap. To provide some guidance for those unsure of how to get started, eInvite.com—a leading online retailer of invitations, announcements and stationery products—offers their Top Tips for Entertaining in a Tight Economy:
1. It’s All About the Planning: First and foremost, set the budget and stick with it. Let that guide all other decisions, including the size of the guest list and the timing of the party. Plan a small, intimate dinner party, schedule cocktails and appetizers or dessert at a post-dinner hour, or host a brunch or afternoon tea.
2. Order Inexpensive—Yet High Quality—Invitations: In the age of email, printed invitations set the tone for a standout celebration. Add a special touch at very little cost by ordering invitations quickly and easily at eInvite.com.
Choose from hundreds of inspired options, from flirty and fun to elegant and classic at shockingly affordable prices. eInvite.com also offers dozens of print at home options for those who prefer to do it themselves.
3. Keep Food Costs Under Control: Serve hearty dishes like homemade pastas and soups that can be easily made in bulk. Plan meals around in-season fruits and vegetables and use coupons when possible. Check out AllRecipes.com’s section dedicated to budget-friendly recipes for ideas and inspiration when planning the menu.
4. Don’t Let Drinks Break the Budget: A full bar can be prohibitively expensive—consider offering a signature drink instead. Creating a spiked punch or batch of sangria can be even more cost-effective than providing beer and wine. Visit About.com: Cocktails for A to Z recipes and other helpful information.
5. Go BYOB, or Host a Potluck: The host/hostess doesn’t have to do it all these days. People love chipping in, and often ask what they can bring, so suggest they bring their favorite party beverage, or host a potluck meal where everyone comes with a side dish or dessert.
6. Think Outside the (Flower) Box: Instead of fresh flowers, which can add up quickly, load up on candles, which create a lovely atmosphere at a low price, or fill up bowls with unique objects, like ornaments during the holidays. Look around the home to see what can be repurposed for party decorations.
7. Look for Items that Cost Little But Look Elegant: Local dollar stores or big box retailers like Target or IKEA often have good deals on inexpensive glassware, serving pieces and linens. For cocktail napkin needs, eInvite.com offers a Holiday Entertaining Pack, a set of 100 personalized beverage napkins, priced at only $32 and available in either green and red with a stylized tree motif or in a muted pink and green for use all year round. As a bonus, these napkin sets also make great hostess gifts.
8. Plan a Game, Movie, Sports or Awards Show Night: Having people over to play board games, watch a movie, sporting event or awards show is a great way to entertain for less. Plan the food and drink menu around the theme, and visit stores like Oriental Trading Company and Party City for inexpensive plates, cutlery, cups, serveware, decorations and other accessories that fit the theme.
9. Send Guests Home With a Gift: For the holidays, plan a cookie baking party where guests take home some of what they make. Or snap photos with a digital camera during the event, print them out and send them home as mementos of the evening.
10. And Finally, for both the Hostess and the Guests, Make a Statement: How to make a statement at a party, whether it’s your own party or someone else’s? Hand out customized calling cards. Retro chic, calling cards are more personal than business cards, and eInvite.com offers dozens of reasonably priced options in variety of styles and designs.
Founded in 1997 and based in West Boylston, Massachusetts, eInvite.com is a leading online retailer of invitations, announcements and personalized stationery. The company offers a wide selection of high quality products at a variety of price points, all customizable through its patented online proofing technology. In addition to its own website, eInvite.com operates the fully-outsourced fine stationery website for Costco Wholesale Clubs, the fine stationery site for Caesar’s Palace Wedding Chapels, the stationery website for Babies R' Us (toysrus.com), OutVite.com—the leading fine stationery site for the gay and lesbian community—and over 200 other co-branded stationery sites for various partners. For more information, please visit einvite.com.