Let’s start by talking about decorating for your Christmas party at the last minute.

At this festive time of year, Wouldn’t we all love to be a super host? You know the ones – their Christmas parties have been planned since April, the house is decirated right out of Martha Stewart Living and their dining table looks like the Lord Jesus has RSVP’d ‘attending’. Yes, they really seem to have it all together, which can be intimidating to the rest of us, leaving us with feelings of Yuletide Inadequacy.

Let’s face it, life gets in the way. One minute it’s September and you’re penning your guest list with a glass of wine, vowing this year will be different. The next minute it’s December 6th and you realize that between driving kids to soccer, winter colds and shoveling snow, two while months have slid away like a toboggan down a mountainside.

It happens to us all!

But that doesn’t mean you can’t still throw a fantastic holiday party and enjoy your family and friends. Here are some quick and easy last- minute Christmas party tips to help you throw a soiree worthy of rave reviews – on the fly!

At this time of year, everywhere you look it seems like Christmas has thrown up – stores of all kinds now sell decorations. If you have the time, finding your decorations can be a fun process, but if time is an issue, all you need are the following items:

A wreath and wreath hanger, preferably with some bells on it

While bells may not be everyone’s dcorating preference, for our last-minute purposes they are perfect, setting the festive mood immediately as your guests arrive.

Wired Ribbon

Because of its versatility, wired ribbon is a fantastic way to decorate at the last-minute. Pick your favourite colour or design and tie it into gigantic single or double bows with long trailing tails. Use it to tie back your drapery, tie it around candle holders or the napkins at your dinner table. Feed it through the posts in your banister in a variety of ways to add some quick Christmas colour to an other-wise drab space and festive cheer without the fuss. Trim your tree with ribbon and bows instead of those tacky ornaments you’ve always hated. Even better, when you’re short on ribbon for that perfect gift at 12:30am on Christmas Eve, a fabulous solution is only a trip across the house away.

Put the kids to work

Have kids AND a looming Christmas party? It’s time to put the kids to work. It’s arts and crafts time! Glitter, ribbon, bows and glue will not only keep your kids busy and distract them from their holiday cabin fever. Decorating certain areas of the house with your childrens’ home-made designs screams “quaint” as well as “trendy”. Mount their creations on beautiful scrapbooking sheets or frame them and line the stairwell with the family’s artwork. You might even get an hour of peace and quiet because of it.

Set the aroma of your atmosphere

The sense of smell is the strongest sense we have, so use this to your advantage. Burn scented candles, oil and incense to set the right aroma and ensure your guests feel “Christmas-y” the minute they step foot in your house. We recommend gingerbread, simply because not only is it festive, it also implies that you’re enough of a domestic goddess to be BAKING in your “spare time”, rather than running around at the last minute preparing for your party. Another quick fix: most air freshener companies have the “plug in” scents. These work perfectly and can be smelled throughout your house within minutes. Other holiday scents can include:



Rum (Am I right? Yup.)




Pine (careful to stay away from the car-air-freshener scent though! UGH!)



Turkey (just kidding. If you find a turkey-scented candle, you should report it to the authorities immediately.)

Tree Branches

Chances are there are still a few places around your house looking bare. Why not trim off some of those branches on your Christmas tree that are making it look lop-sided and enlist them to help in your holiday decorations. Perfect tree? Cut branches from the back – the side no one sees. Place the branches on mantles or combine with your ribbon to create some stunningly simple accent pieces. Scatter bits around your holiday table for a fantastic accent!

Why not add a fantastic Christmas mystery to your party?