The holidays are usually kind of a big deal. But how can you celebrate big when the space you have at hand is small? It’s not impossible—if you do a little planning. Here are some tips and tricks to have a big time gathering in your small space.
Think Big When It Comes to the Table
If you’re meal is the center point of your celebration, make it a big one. Sure, it may dominate your space (and it might not even be in the kitchen or dining room). Put it in the living room if your need to. It’s a special occasion! You’re celebrating, not hosting a parade of homes! If possible, use armless chairs so you can get more friends and family around the table.
More Table Talk
You may want to purchase a table that can be expanded with leaves. It can be small for everyday use and then be expanded to accommodate larger groups. It’s also nice to have that capability if you ever have projects you need to work on at home that require more space. If you don’t care to take that route, even a folding card table can look nice with a pretty tablecloth. And if you need more space (and need to have guests seated at your sofa) cover your ottomans with tablecloths. Do what it take to make your guests feel comfortable!
Serve Buffet Style
Another option is to serve food buffet style if you don’t have room at the table to put out a big spread. If you don’t have an actual buffet, you can always substitute with a TV stand or desk (covered of course), or a folding table.
Consider the Kids
Sometimes we joke about someone having to eat at the kid’s table. But kids themselves often find it fun to be on their own. You can use a smaller space (and kids really don’t care if it’s not a “real” table). But make it fun for them by having name cards or hats with their names on them at their places.
Think Outside the (Apartment) Box
You may have to rearrange some things to make your entertaining space more fun and comfortable. It’s really not that big a deal to move some furniture for a few hours. If your bedroom gets a little crowded for a few hours, who cares? Use that space to store coats. People are there to celebrate with you not to do a write up of your interior design! Have fun!
Chances are good that you have more “vertical” space than “horizontal” space. Create centerpieces that are tall and dramatic (but thin) that won’t take up valuable table space. And don’t overdo the decorations. Keep things uncluttered. It accents the space you do have.
Take It Outside
If you’re fortunate enough to have a balcony, patio, or deck, make sure access to that space is available. If you have a crowd, it’s nice for guest to be able to step outside for a breath of fresh air—even if it’s cold. And keep in mind that some of your guests may be smokers who will want to step outside. Just having access to the outdoors makes your space feel larger.
Have a Space Devoted to Beverages
Running back and forth to the kitchen can be a problem in a smaller space. Have a place where guests can serve themselves without going into the kitchen. It will make things easier for them—and a lot less stressful for the cook.
Decorate For a Small Space
Use plenty of light and reflective surfaces to make the space you have feel more expansive. Mirrors and metallic fixtures can help. Also, turn on the lights! If you’re entertaining in a small space you don’t need to add intimacy. Light helps create a feeling of more space.
Having a smaller living space doesn’t mean your celebration has to be smaller. You just need to be smart about the way you use the space you have!