"Auld Lang Syne" and merry antics aside, New Year's Eve is often the occasion of the year that everyone wants to go all out for. It's also one which can take a serious toll on the wallet. So, rather than worry about having to scrimp and save for the night, read our 5 tips to hosting the perfect party at home without breaking the bank.
1. Swap red for gold Forget "Ho, ho, ho"... it's all about the "How much did that cost?!" this New Year's eve. Leave the primary shade of Santa's red behind, and vamp it up with tones of gold for a truly luxurious look. If you're feeling crafty, paint over small trinkets and figurines which you've fallen out of love with (or never really loved at all). A simple, and cheap wooden bowl looks stunning when painted on the outside but left natural on the inside. It's time to get out the brushes...
Opt for matte gold for a more modern look that looks great with industrial style interiors, or go for a high-shine version for a touch of urban glamour.
2. Don’t feel the need to overload
When laying out nibbles or a buffet, don’t be tempted to fill plates and bowls right to the top. No one will notice, and you’re far better off by letting people graze before refilling. You’ll also avoid wastage, meaning that your food can be saved (and eaten) later rather than left out to be spoiled. There’s always that one person who will knock a glass of wine into the crisp bowl...
Use smaller bowls and dinnerware to balance things out. A stylish copper bowl will cause a stir, and be right on trend for 2016.
3. Luxury really can be for less.
Break out of a foodie rut, and wow your guests with dining and drinking options that will look like they’ve cost a fortune. They’ll be asking whether you’ve had a promotion in no time.
- Decant wine into a stylish carafe to create a sophisticated talking point. We say, make the most of a boxing day sale and invest in a beautiful glass design that will leave people in awe (you can pick up designs for less than £30 if not). This way you’ll be able to buy cheap and cheerful bottles of wine and no one will be any wiser.
- Pop to a local market and stock up on figs, walnuts and anything that makes you think “opulence”. You’ll be surprised at how cheap they can be.
Make your food and drink look extra special by placing in ornate bowls and adding sprigs of mistletoe, wintery flowers and mint nearby or on top.
4. Don’t forget to shine.
For various reasons, the toasty fires and snug candles of Christmas never seem to be the right option for New Year's Eve (let's forget the year you nearly set fire to Grandma's vintage voile after a few glasses too many). New Year's eve is all about glamour and being in the "now", so lighting leans towards the more modern spectrum.
- Drape fairy-lights across trees and shrubbery in your garden, for a stunning look. There's something magical about twinkling lights in a garden, and they're the perfect excuse for people to mingle outside and free up space in the house. They also create a delightful backdrop to fireworks.
- Cut sprigs from a wilting Christmas tree and create striking modern decorations which will look beautiful when hung on a pale wall. Silver and gold baubles can be tied to pieces of string and hung around the house, showing that the Christmas spirit is still here... but you're ready for a New Year.
Dip the ends of a few fairy lights in P.V.A glue, and then glitter for some glamour and sparkle. Everyone will want to know where you bought them from...
5. Be inventive
Following the "make do and mend" mentality, be as inventive as you dare for New Year's Eve, and recycle your Christmas fares to really make your night stand out.
- Perhaps relocate your Christmas tree to a new location and strip it back to fairy lights and a few sparkling bows or trinkets to keep it simple and modern. Or, take a tip from #4, and place it in the garden to make a striking, sparkling centrepiece.
- If you're still looking at Christmas dinner leftovers when you open the fridge or freezer, use them up! Your guests will love your creativity and it will create an interesting talking-point. Cranberry sauce and chocolate traybake or turkey madras anyone?
- Take all the christmas cracker gifts that you don't want and throw them into a bowl. Play a game and whoever loses... goes home with one!
Tinsel and metallic ribbon can make rather fabulous head-gear when you want it to. Wrap a long strip around cheap headbands and add a cluster of flowers on top for your guests.
If you're looking for a little New Year T.L.C in the home, check out our home furnishings range, for a speedy update.