No-Fail Party Prep

Your summer soirees are about to heat up because party planner to the stars Marcy Blum is revealing all the latest party trends!

Guest Marcy Blum shows our hosts how to prepare and style the perfect table setting, as seen on Food Network's The Kitchen.

Trend 1: Food-Inspired Escort Cards and Tables

  • When throwing an outdoor wedding, instead of labeling your table escort cards with numbers, try labeling them with drawings of food. For example, put an elegant drawing of a lemon (or any fruit/veggies you like) on escort cards for a table.
  • Place a large clear vase full of the corresponding food--in this case lemons--in the center of a table so it matches the escort cards. This way, guests can easily find their seats.
  • Surround the table centerpieces with various greenery, which just so happens to be the Pantone color of the year!

Trend 2: Edible Table Arrangements

  • Nothing is worse than sitting down at a table for a party and finding there's nothing to munch on. Why not add an edible table arrangement!
  • Take advantage of fresh summer flavors by having tomatoes on the vine set down the center of your table (or use any seasonal fruit/veggie you like).
  • Intersperse them with a simple, rustic, charcuterie board full of nuts, meat and breadsticks. Try displaying them in various ways: Place the nuts and meats on a wooden slab and put the long breadsticks in a pot similar to those used for the greenery.

Trend 3: Hanging Lanterns

What you'll need:

  • Paper lanterns in various sizes and colors
  • String (or twine)
  • White holiday lights (optional)
    • To add an easy and beautiful "wow factor" to any party, make a hanging paper lantern display. Paper lanterns are usually available in bulk for little cost!
    • Try getting lanterns that play off the colors of your tables, in 3 different sizes (small, medium and large).
    • Clump them into groups of 3: 3 different colors and 3 different sizes per grouping. Make enough to cover the length of your table.
    • Thread a long strip of string through the groupings of 3, binding them all together.
    • Tie each end to a secure pole or tree. If hanging inside, make sure to secure the center of the lantern cluster to the ceiling, as well as the ends.
    • OPTIONAL: Thread white holiday lights throughout the lantern display to create soft lighting. This is great if hosting an outdoor party.  
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