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Three Top Tips for Hosting a Perfect Party at Home

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Entertaining can be a form of performance art when done well, and the team behind Gastro Non Grata has a way of bringing food, beer, and entertainment together to create events that are truly an experience. Get inspired by these creative party-planning tips and elegant entertaining ideas so you, too, can host a bash like a rock star.

Did you miss the episode? Watch it now: Rockers and top chefs unite to throw a bash

Do as much as possible ahead of time
With a little forethought and planning, you can avoid many of the snafus that come with last-minute, haphazard bashes. Spontaneity and improvisation are great, but doing as much prep as possible in advance can save you severe stress and headaches on the day of the party. Plan the menu carefully, whether you're inviting friends over for a full sit-down dinner or a casual evening of appetizers and cocktails. Choose a variety of foods to serve, with a mix of cooked dishes, including items for which much of the prep can be done ahead, plus items that don't need much work, like good cheeses, nuts, or a tasty dip with crudités.

Make your space conducive to mingling
The most important part of a successful party is ensuring that everyone has fun! All of your guests should have a good time, no matter if they are all old friends or just meeting for the first time. And though you can't force your guests to make conversation, you can set up your space to create an inviting, comforting atmosphere. When making the guest list, consider how many people your space can comfortably hold before sending out the invites. Pull furniture out or rearrange it so that there's enough space around tables and chairs for guests to get up and move freely when they feel the urge. Focus on making a few crucial pieces look nice and setting them up to function for the party, and move any miscellaneous furniture or knickknacks to another room until the event is over.

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Make it look effortless
Fabulous hosts know how to bring everything — from the décor and the music to the appetizers and the cocktails — together without breaking a sweat. It takes a lot of work to create a beautiful, engaging event for your guests. But no matter what might go wrong, serious hosts handle it with a smile. Even if you burn the dinner, accidentally destroy the place cards, or cover your kitchen in champagne, it doesn't have to be the end of the world — or the end of your party. Expect some minor (or even major) hiccups, and smile when things go a little off track. If you blow past the mistakes with grace, your guests will do the same.