Christmas House Party Ideas

It's that festive time of the year where families and friends gather together to feast and be merry. However, throwing a party at home is never easy. Often times, ordering food or a takeaway from a local favourite restaurant is the easiest way to save time and alleviate stress. For those with a bigger budget, a catering company or a chef is a popular go to.

But what makes a christmas house party memorable? We believe in the tiniest details. From the aesthetics to guests’ comfort, one must invest the time in planning these carefully.

 

When guests first come come through the door, setting the mood of the party is crucial. As they say, first impressions last. A little bit of organizing and decorating would go a long way. It lets your guests know that you appreciate them for coming. Whether it be table florals or pixie lights, they always go a long way! 

Second step is making sure one has enough food and drinks. The more the merrier. You don’t want to run out of food and drinks in the middle of the party. Besides, any left over food can always be served for tomorrow or you can offer to your guests to take home some if they give their complements. Nowadays, this is normal. In fact, relatives won’t even hesitate.

Set up a well curated food buffet if you want the laid back kind of gathering. Hire long tables and chairs to make sure people have somewhere to eat and sit. Add the bar hire if you really want them on the dance floor at some point.  

Third step is making sure you have some sort of entertainment to break the ice. Either a Dj or a playlist, hiring a sound system to ensure good music is a big YES. If you’re feeling a bit unique, getting a magician always tops the list. By the end of the evening, you’ll have everyone raving about your party until next year.

There’s a lot you can do in a party. We can help assist you in every way whatever your budget is. In the meantime, here’s a gallery full of inspiration to help you throw an amazing Christmas party this year. 

Christmas Corporate Parties in the UK means BIG spend

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December is the most wonderful and expensive time of the year for most of us. 

Eventbrite has compiled a Christmas Party Index by surveying senior decision makers and has found the UK’s companies are set to spend £955m on staff entertainment throughout the festive period. Indeed, some 72 per cent of firms plan on holding a party with an average spend of £42.48 per employee, which is up from just 40 per cent in 2009 following the recession.

This spikes to more than £100 for 11 per cent of businesses in the city. Below is an average spend per head by region:

1. Greater London – £56.49
2. East Midlands – £39.44
3. Yorkshire – £37.72
4. South East – £36.98
5. North East – £33.44
6. South West – £32.64
7. North West – £31.78
8. Scotland – £31.58
9. West Midlands – £26.40
10. East of England – £26.12
11. Wales – £19.79
12. Northern Ireland – £12.36

However, not all firms pay cover the Christmas expense for their staff! 10 per cent of firms expect staff members to pay out of their own money. So if your company is paying for it, then you are one of the lucky ones.

So what is your company doing this year?

Buffet or plated food? Open bar, live music, magician or fire dancers? However big or small the party is, we can help you with catering, entertainment, and equipment hire. Get in touch to get a quote!

 

Here's what you need to know when you hire a marquee

If you're looking to hire a marquee or tipi for your upcoming event there are several things you'll need to consider first. Here's a handy list so you can be prepared before enquiring for quotes.

1. How BIG should your marquee be?

There's a fine line between your pop-up venue being too cramped for your guests to comfortably move around, and it feeling cavernous and empty. The ideal size will give enough space for movement but cosy enough to create atmosphere. 

Also you must consider if your guests are seated (and if so, the size and shape of the tables), if it's for a reception how much space would additional furniture take up and is there to be a dance floor? When you speak to us, we'll make a recommendation on size based on these things.

From our experience a 9X12m marquee would work well for 40 people seated around large 6 foot round tables, along with a buffet and bar set up. A 9x15m marquee would be ideal for around 90 standing guests, leaving plenty of room for sofas, a large bar and a 16 foot dance floor. 

2. Do you need marquee flooring?

Most marquees will come with a basic carpet but will this suffice?

Consider the following:

  • Is the ground underneath flat?
  • Is it lawn or concrete?
  • Are guests wearing heals?
  • Is it likely to be raining?
  • Will heavy furniture or decoration sink into the ground?

Most often we would recommend including a solid wooden floor if you're on grass. This sits below the carpet insuring no hazardous dips in the lawn beneath or damp patches showing through. It also protects the grass much better. 

3. What is marquee lining? 

Basically, the lining is what makes the marquee look less like a big plastic shell and turns it into an inhabitable venue. Whilst there are several ways to decorate a marquee without lining to make it beautiful, it's a good starting point to include the draping across the ceiling and down the walls to give a softer and more elegant touch. 

4. Do you need heating?

Depending on the time of year and the size of the marquee, then it's always a good idea to consider marquee heaters. These are generally metal units (that look a bit like a small steam train) - which we would hide away behind the marquee - and feeds into the tent via a duct. When you're inside this is tidily hidden within the lining.

This gives you thermostatic control over the temperature in the marquee, so even if your party goes on late into the night your guests won't get chilly. 

A smaller marquee may suffice with a couple of convention heaters.

5. How long does it take to set up?

Depending on the size of the tent, it can take anywhere from 2 - 8 hours. Sometimes we would split the installation over a couple of days for larger projects, getting the structure up one day then completing carpeting and lining the next.

If you have any unanswered questions regarding marquee hire please do get in touch. 

3 Top Christmas Party Entertainment Ideas

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

And that means it's time for Christmas parties.

As well as providing catering and mobile bar hire for Christmas events we provide a variety of entertainment. Here are our top 5 suggestions along with how we suggest they would work best for your party.

1. LIVE JAZZ BAND

Live music adds a je ne sais quoi to any live event. A jazz quartet adds a classy, relaxed vibe at a corporate cocktail reception; or a chilled out focal point at a family house party.

The bands that we work with are all the highest quality, experienced professional musicians. Most will play a couple of 45 minute sets throughout the evening.

Things to think about: What's the size of the space available and will the band require a PA system, or can they be acoustic? Would a singer be an addition or a distraction for your style of event? Is there a particular song you'd like to request in advance that would make someone's day?

Expect to pay between £500-£1000

PS. If jazz isn't your thing, consider a string quartet or perhaps a choir of carol signers!


 2. CLOSE UP MAGICIAN

Magic is certainly NOT just for kids parties. In fact, some of the greatest professional magicians in the UK work exclusively for corporate & private parties. A close up magician will mix and mingle with your guests and will create moments of mystery that will provide long lasting memories for your guests.

Our magicians are members of the world famous Magic Circle and be it walk around magic during a reception or table hopping in between courses of the meal. What would best suit your event? Get in touch and we'll make recommendations. 

Expect to pay between £400-£650


3. COSTUME PERFOMERS

Let's be honest, this is pretty much the only time of the year where this wouldn't be a little cliche. You can add some real WOW factor with  costumed performers creating an immersive experience for your guests.

  • Stilt Walkers
  • Circus Performers
  • Living Statues
  • Jugglers
  • Dancers
  • Acrobats

Consider the size of your venue and what would be required to make sure as many of your guests as possible can experience the entertainment. Will guests want to take photos? Will the lighting be adequate?

Expect to pay £400-£2000 depending on the scale of performance


If you're looking to book Christmas party entertainment or for further suggestions and quotes, get in touch today.

Halloween Party Decorations

One of our favourite times of year is fast approaching.

Halloween has become a huge celebration in the UK over the last few years and it's a time to get creative with creating decorations and visual effects.

Below are some examples of decorations we've produced for halloween parties.

When creating a styling and decoration plan for Halloween parties, we include the following:

  • Spooky Signage
  • Drapes & Linens
  • Grave Stones
  • Candles
  • Chandeliers
  • Cobwebs
  • LED lighting
  • Smoke Machine
  • High impact / large focal pieces 
  • Spider web photo backdrop & Props
  • UV lights
  • And much more!

We also create bespoke decorations, often built from scratch for create extra spooky surprises for your guests. Get in touch today for further details. 

Case Study: Festival Theme House Warming Summer Party in Ascot

Quirky food and drink trucks became a feature of this housewarming party with a Summer festival theme. Our team created a laid back, rustic look with lanterns, festoon lighting, fairy lights and pallet furniture and our live band and DJ kept our client's guests partying late into the night.

This party featured:

  • Food Truck
  • Cocktail & Prosecco Vans
  • Vintage Wine Bar
  • AV - sound & light design
  • Event Styling
  • Festoon Lighting, Fairy Lights & Lanterns
  • Furniture Hire
  • Toilet Hire
  • Live Band

Here are a few photos of what it looked like...

Cocktail Van Hire
Cocktail Bar Hire
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Live Band Garden Party
Event Party Fire Pit Hire
Festoon Light Hire
Garden Party Festival - Back Garden Events & Weddings

Case Study: "Help! We need an event planner, quick!"

We often get last minute calls to assist with the finishing touches of an event.

Common last minute requests come when a client, who initially thought they could do it all themselves, realises there's still too much to do and they won't meet the deadline alone. So we get the call to tie up the lose ends. Sometimes clients also need help because they've been let down by another supplier, in which case we can call on one of our professional supplier partners to complete the job.

This summer we had one of these requests. We had just two weeks (actually just 12 days!) to pull together the following:

  • Indoor Event Furniture Hire
  • Floral Displays
  • Lights & Sounds, including festoon lighting, wireless uplights, split-floor PA system
  • Stretch Tent Installation
  • DJ Hire
  • Door Security
  • On the day event coordination

To cut a long story short, the event was a great success!

Due to client confidentiality, we're unable to share many photos from this party, but here's just a few...

Last Minute Event Planner London [Back Garden Events]
Private Party Canape Catering

Case Study: Windsor Garden Party

Sometime a canvas is already beautiful before the artist raises her brush. That was certainly the case with one of the summer garden parties we planned this year, set before the stunning backdrop of the river Thames as it runs through Windsor. Back Garden Events were tasked with creating a rustic theme with a subtle Moroccan twist for a summer garden party.

  • marquee
  • event furniture
  • pop-up bar
  • Prosecco bar
  • welcome canapés
  • street food catering
  • DJ
  • lights, sounds & tech
  • generator power
  • florals
  • event decoration
  • luxury event toilets
  • silent disco

Here's what it looked like...

Welcome to Windsor [Back Garden Events]
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Barrel Bar Hire
Rustic Furniture Event Hire
Day Bed Heater Event Hire
Marquee Back Garden Event Party
Back Garden Party Disco

TIMELESS IN WHITE

TIMELESS IN WHITE

There's just something about white that makes a party nothing else but perfect. The elegance and simplicity is dynamic and flexible to work with.

Let these photos speak for itself. 

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White cushions and drapings on wood can turn any venue into way beyond simple.  

 

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Whether it's a wedding or a simple birthday party in your back garden, a long table with white linen, florals and some dangling ivy leaves can make an attractive focal point.  

 

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Gysophilia in jars can create wonders on a simple buffet table.  

 

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White balloons fill up a room.  

 

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Gold metallic accents on white give it a bit of spark.  

 

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Tall vases and lanterns next to each other create a dramatic entrance.  

 

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Chalkboard signage in white can look classy. Just throw in the ivy and flowers and you're good to go!

Inspired to throw a fun party or know anyone who wants to have a birthday party this year? Let us help you, click here or get in touch to get a quote