4 Tips for Hosting a Formal Function in Your Home


Putting together a semi-formal or formal dinner to be held at your home might sound stressful. However, don’t dismiss the idea as it’s a wonderful opportunity not only to showcase what you can do but to give your guest a night differnt from a casual get together.

Below are 4 suggestions to help you plan your night.

  1. Set the tone with bespoke invitations

Nowadays, it’s much more convenient to send a virtual invite or resort to Facebook events. If you’re aiming to organise a more lavish affair, however, inviting over social media might not set quite the right tone.

Sending customised paper invitations to guests is more fitting and will feel more special. It can properly set expectations on the kind of event guests will experience.

It’s up to you whether you hire the services of a professional or handwrite the invites yourself.

  1. Receive guests in style

Adorning the entrance with welcoming touches go a long way towards making sure guests enjoy themselves. This is an opportunity to make a good impression right from the beginning.

Placing a welcoming carpet is one way of elevating the feel of a receiving area. Whilst you don’t need to Red Carpet the entrance, a walkway designed for guests goes a long way in making them feel special.

A welcoming light drink is always well received.

  1. Proper table presentation and setting

Whether you’re going semi-formal or full-on formal, the table is where the main event takes place. So you have to make sure everything in this area is in order.

If you don’t have a traditional long table, an extendable dining table with the appropriate style will more than suffice. Exert effort into making the table a sight to behold, but don’t let decorations get in the way of functionality and guest interaction.

Then, ensure you’re setting the table properly. The minimum: dinner plate, small salad plate, matched with two forks (one for dinner and one for salad) on the left. Knife and spoon are on the right. Press cloth and linen napkins before laying them on the table.

If you’re serving different kinds of wine, make sure each guest has glasses for both red and white wine. Use a separate glass for water.

  1. Unveil an array of drinks to choose from

Dinner party

As with any special affair or event, conversations and stories run late into the night. For that you would need to have a sufficiently stocked bar, the more options, the better.

Wine, champagne, cocktails can kick things off rather nicely during the welcoming festivities. But by the time you finish dinner and socials take place, vodka or whiskey might be more appealing.

Beyond these 4 tips, you can find more resources online on how to properly organise a formal dinner.

It’s not about spending more

Hosting a formal dinner party takes more than just serving higher quality meals and throwing some napkins down. It’s more about creating a sense of elegance and fineness to be enjoyed by all, guests and hosts. There is a pleasure to be had in drinking good wine and eating fine food with the right company in the right setting. This is really what is at the heart of a more formal dinner party. Get it right and your party will be remembered long after the weekend get together has been forgotten.

About the Author

Scroll to Top