This is as much for me as it is for any of you. I just so happen to be my own worst enemy when it comes to stuff like this. I do this thing where I decide I want to host a little holiday shindig at our home, get all excited about it and then…don’t follow through and actually have the people over. I guess that’s the whole point, whoops.
My problem is this: I get too busy in my head, making lists, planning out perfect details (usually these grandiose ideas that I can never actually achieve in real life), and then I find myself getting so stressed over the party I am not even having yet that I end up quitting on the whole idea entirely. This is a very healthy way to do things, I know. (I’m working on it.) I know that I can’t be the only one, though…riiiight? You make the lists upon lists, take note of the stuff you still need to do (x,y & z), and then suddenly it dawns on you that the house will never be clean enough…and oooooh, the small mountains of dog hair. Okay, you know what? FORGET IT. There will be no party happening here!!!
It’s what I like to call the Self-Sabotaging Hostess, and it does not a pretty holiday party make (in fact, it makes no party at all).
Well, so funny enough…eBay reached out to us, and asked us to check out their Home & Garden page, as well as their refurbished Dyson vacuums (uh, amazing!), and then chat a bit about how we prepare our homes for holiday guests. At first I was all…this is 100% me and I am sooooo on this (that’s me talking to S). Fast forward one day, and I am having a slight emotional breakdown over the fact that I don’t have a “tablescape,” and I don’t understand andand waahhh (again, that’s me talking to S).
After that precious moment, I took a deep breath and decided to just stop. Stop. The. Nonsense. I could simply start with what I already have. Whoah. What a novel idea! I could then have a little fun with a few festive additions, and VOILA! Holiday Table achieved. Also, after finding my new BFF and magical pet hair zapper, this refurbished Dyson Vacuum…I was able to quickly tidy up just enough to make the space acceptable for guests. We can go ahead and forget about the rest of the house because 1). no one will even care 2). Mama’s trying to check herself and remain sane this time around.
How I Styled A Festive Holiday Table (& Kept My Sanity)
Table Details – The Bits That Made it Festive
TABLE RUNNER: I used a roll of wrapping paper to make a table runner, which is BRILLIANT if I do say so myself (I’m not the first to have figured this one out, but I’ll toot my own horn, nonetheless). It adds a layer to a table setting, giving it that dinner party vibe…without being a fancy shmancy tablecloth. Also, the best part? It doesn’t have to be cleaned. Ya just crumple it up, and toss it in the trash. I went with a printed brown paper, but think a plain brown kraft paper would also be lovely.
CENTERPIECE: Bottle Brush Christmas Trees are an effective way to get that drama in a holiday tablescape…without having to do much. The aim here is to do as little arranging as possible, at least for me and my sanity. I found three bottle brush trees in differing heights, and simply placed them in the middle of the table with tea lights placed around them. eBay has a similar option in an 8.5″, a 6.5″ and a little 4.5″.
PLACE SETTINGS: My white dinner plates and cloth napkins (the ones we use every day) were easily transformed with the simple addition of complimentary dipping plates and gift tags. The gift tags will now forever be my way of “dressing up” a place setting…they’re so pretty and charming!
DRINKWARE: I’ve found that a set of crystal whiskey glasses are great stand-ins as fancy water glasses. Hey, they’re great for whiskey, too! I figured that having cheery, throw-away paper cups for the kids was a good idea, too.
CHRISTMAS CRACKERS: These Christmas Crackers may just become my new favorite Christmas tradition. In fact, I’m bringing a few boxes of them to our Christmas Day dinner at the in-law’s. It’s such a fun addition to a special holiday meal, adding festivity and laughter. Guests can crack them open, don the paper crown, and be entertained by the joke and little trinket inside.
The Outfit Details – Hostess w/ the Mostess Style
top: Pretty Wrap Sweater – I find them to be really comfortable and with the wrap style, they can make a casual pair of jeans look more dressed up.
jeans: Levi’s 501 Denim – This is my favorite fit in Levi’s. My own pair is the skinny jean (Can’t Touch This wash), but there are several other fantastic options. I also like the Original Fit and Selvedge Distressed. eBay is a great place to score new Levi’s, ya’ll.
shoes: Fancy Party Heels – Always a fun and easy way to add festivity to an outfit. A little sparkle & shine or jewel blue color goes a long way.
earring: Statement Earring – Baublebar has been a go-to of mine for glitzy-type earrings that really pack a punch…and I love that you can find an array of their accessories on eBay!
lip: Urban Decay Vice Lipstick – My absolute favorite lip is Urban Decay Backtalk in matte. If I need a little something to make me feel done up…I put on this lip color. Done. I honestly had no idea I could buy it brand new off of eBay until now (for half the cost, too).
Shop Festive Additions For Your Holiday Dining Table on eBay
Invite those friends over. Eat, drink & be merry!
A massive thanks to eBay for sponsoring this post. Their Home & Garden selections helped me to rethink holiday hospitality…and it was so much fun! As usual, we thank you, dear readers, for supporting the brands that help to make this all possible.
Find me over on IG, for more #totallycasualmotherhood moments (@camilledipaola).
Photos by the wonderful Christina Hussey Photography.
Yes! This! I do this all the time. I have a little reel in my mind of all the glorious parties that could have been!
I am so glad I’m not alone in this sentiment. I’ve invited 5 girls and their moms over for a cookie decorating party this weekend and now I’m in panic mode over all the things I need to be doing. (Even though I know we will all have a great time regardless if I’ve wiped down the baseboards.) Great post, Cam. Love that wrap top!
Do you have real links to what you are wearing or just ebay link?