Host Your Own Craft Party
Something I’m learning in adulthood, is that it takes a bit of extra effort to make time for social interactions. I get it; life is really busy. We have our own families, careers, errands, to-do lists, laundry, hobbies and more. Social engagements can easily be pushed to the wayside, and suddenly 3 months have passed since the last time you saw your friend and said “let’s do something soon!” Trust me. I totally get it, because I do this.. a lot. So after rediscovering a love of arts and crafts as a spare time hobby, I asked myself: why not combine this love of crafts with the long standing intention to host a get together with some gal pals? I decided it was time to take action and make good on those “let’s hang out” promises; planning and hosting a craft party.
Many of us see the holiday season as a great time to make plans, and hosting a craft party is a unique way to celebrate festive cheer. But let me take a second and note: a craft party can fall anywhere on a very large spectrum of simple and inexpensive to extravagant and costly. Luckily, there are many things you can do and not do in order to fall somewhere in the middle of this range. So with this post I am bringing you some helpful tips and how-to’s on hosting your own craft party — without breaking the bank. For instance, inviting your guests to bring a snack to share helps you save on food costs. And picking through the supplies you already have can save you when purchasing project materials.
So lets dive in shall we?
Helpful Tips and How-To’s on Hosting a Craft Party
Make a Party Budget
Numerous trips to the craft store can add up quickly, so it’s important to price out different items and supplies ahead of time so you know what to expect. This can also help you determine what project you will be doing. For instance, minimalist greenery hoops/wreaths are beautiful and simple, but the artificial greenery can be $10+ per stem, so this may not be a good choice. While on the other hand, painting blank wooden signs can be less expensive and repurposing an item (such as wine bottles) can be very cheap.
Use Craft Store Coupons + Shop Sale.
This will save you SO MUCH money. I can’t encourage you enough to take advantage of the never ending craft store coupons. Also, pay attention to weekly ads. As the holidays approach, many festive crafts are available on sale. This will definitely help you maximize your supplies while minimizing costs.
Invite Guests to Bring a Snack to Share:
Save on food costs and preparation time by inviting your friends to bring a snack or dish to share. Usually people really want to be able to do something when attending a party, so this is a great way to have people participate in the planning and also ease some of your stress.
Make an Awesome Cheese/Antipasto Platter:
Why? Because why not? Who doesn’t love a good cheese plate with all the accoutrements?! This is a fun and simple way to make a centerpiece dish without much work. If you do want to add some extra pizzazz, try infusing your own olive oils and marinading the olives yourself (thanks for the idea Bon Appetit Mag!) Might I make an unsponsored suggestion for Rumiano’s Cheese.. grass fed, pasture-raised and full of bite!
Provide Aprons or Tell Your Guests to Bring Their Own:
This was something I only thought of on the morning of the party as I was getting dressed. Thank goodness I had an awesome Jo-Ann’s coupon. If you can’t find aprons for an affordable price, ask your guests to bring their own, or to bring a large t-shirt to wear over their clothes. The painting can get messier than you think, so it was a relief to not worry about getting it all over our clothes.
Cover The Tables With Kraft Paper:
Typically when I craft I just lay an old bed sheet on the ground, but for both aesthetics and the fact that I couldn’t find an inexpensive white sheet, I decided to just get a roll of kraft paper for the tables. This ended up working BEAUTIFULLY because it allowed people a surface to practice writing and painting while also protecting our table. Win!
Pick 1-3 Simple Craft Projects:
Crafting can be for everyone, but not all projects are going to speak to everyone. Pick one main craft (I used wooden slab signs) that everyone can execute rather simply and takes a decent amount of time. Then aim to have a few other options. I suggest picking things such as painted ornaments, painting wine bottles, beaded key chains or simple painted canvases.
Make A Festive Adult Beverage (But Have Non-Alc Options Too):
While it’s super fun to make a festive beverage and sip while you craft, remember that not everyone will want something with alcohol in it. So provide other options. For instance, I made a cider sangria, but I also put out plain cider with the option to mix in seltzer. You could also make a mixer that doubles as a mocktail and the base for a cocktail. Try this: in a carafe mix fresh apple cider with sliced apples, pomegranates, cinnamon sticks, star anise, ginger and whole cloves. Then this can be mixed with seltzer, vodka, champagne, or white wine!
Arrange Supplies Evenly Throughout the Table(s):
Prevent constant reaching our each other by scattering supplies around the table. Use old jars for easy organization of paint brushes, pens, scissors and more. I also had a separate table set up with fabrics and felts to keep them away from paint. Try and get a few bottles of the popular color choices!
Have Rubbing Alcohol and Q-tips On Hand
This is not entirely necessary unless someone makes a smell mess up with a paint pen and/or paint. If you act quickly you can correct with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. Additionally, have paper towels or wet cloths on hand for possible spills!
Relax and Have Fun!
This party is supposed to be as much fun for you as it is for your guests! Be a good host, but also don’t forget to relax and enjoy the crafting. Having everything completely set up before everyone arrives ensures that you have little party maintenance to worry about. I made sure to have extra cheese already sliced in the fridge in case I needed to revamp the plate, and had all the drinks/mixers located in the room we were crafting in for easy access.
So there it is friends! Feeling inspired to host your own craft party? I really hope so! It was such a fun way to get people together and engage in a festive activity. Remember that a party doesn’t need to have 20 people to be fun! Just get one, a few or 10 gal pals together and craft! The part that matters is that you’re making the time to unwind, interact with people you care about and just have fun!