Keeping a few must-have party supplies on hand will keep costs (and stress levels) lower when you're prepping for your next gathering. Here's our list of essentials for party decorating, planning, and serving.
A few patterned plates mixed in with your regular servingware is an easy way to keep your buffet table looking fun and modern. Troll sales and vintage shops for pretty, inexpensive finds.
Editor's Tip: Keep full sets of 6-inch salad plates and 12-inch dinner plates as a go-to, and mix in fun found plates when you can.
To make magazine-worthy floral arrangements and centerpieces, floral foam is a must-have. After a quick soak in water, the foam is ready for your flowers and greens.
Editor's Tip: To make your arrangement last beyond the celebration, place it in the sink and gently soak with water every three to four days. Fruit may need to be removed earlier.
If all else fails, a brimming bar cart will keep your party afloat. Not sure what to buy? We keep our bar padded with vodka, gin, whiskey, and rum, for starters. Soda water, tonic, and citrus fruits are good mixers to have on hand.
Keeping a few nonperishable snacks in the pantry will save you time and money when building your party menu. We love a mix of salty and sweet: chocolate candies, microwaveable popcorn, mixed nuts, and dried fruit.
Editor's Tip: When displaying food, consider a color scheme. We love the way the chartreuse bowls and olives shown here play off the cranberry-color tray.
Keep a running playlist of new songs as you find them, so you're not scrambling for a party soundtrack hours before the event begins. Even better, have a couple playlists prepared for different types of parties. Rat Pack-era standards are great for formal parties, while pop favorites are perfect for a cocktail hour.