10 Cool Party Hacks for the Holidays

Lisa Fogarty | Nov 25, 2014 Home & Garden

Most of us have heard the expression work smarter, not harder, and there's no better time to put that idea into effect than during the hustling holiday season. With numerous festivities to plan and attend, people to shop for, and meals to whip up, we could all use a few good holiday party hacks to help make our lives a little easier. Prepare to dazzle your guests and save oodles of time when you use these 10 holiday party hacks that will save you time, money, and stress -- while making your party an affair to remember.

holiday party hacks

Click through our slideshow of cool holiday hacks! How gorgeous is #4?


Images via Guy/Flickr; Aleksandar Mijatovic/shutterstock

  • Cinnamon Stick Place Card Holders


    Help your guests find their seats at the holiday table while adding the sweet, alluring, and festive fragrance of cinnamon to your dining room by creating these cute cinnamon stick place card holders. Simply tie cinnamon sticks together with twine or rubber bands and slip a rustic brown place card in each. Added bonus: cinnamon is known as an appetite stimulant, so you'll help ensure there are fewer leftovers after your feast.

  • Pumpkin Snowmen


    Maybe you're the type of person who buys a dozen Halloween pumpkins and hates to throw them out. Or perhaps you live in a place that never sees snow -- lucky you! -- and you need to improvise when it comes to decorative snowmen. Either way, this pumpkin snowman is absolutely adorable. Just grab a can of white paint, coat your pumpkins with "snow," and give him a few dashing accessories.

  • Coffee Filter Snowflakes


    Know how no two snowflakes are alike? Well, store-bought snowflake decorations kind of miss that point, don't they? Make more realistic snowflakes -- while allowing your children to get in on the action -- by using your white coffee filters, a couple of scissors, and a hole punch to create dozens of sweet paper snowflakes you can hang on your windows to add pizzazz to your party.

  • LED Balloons


    Before you argue that balloons are for birthday parties and not holiday parties, these are no ordinary balloons -- these are glowing LED balloons that will be the talk of your party. This step-by-step tutorial tells you how to make use of your leftover LED lightbulbs by inserting them into balloons and creating magic.

  • Festive Pink Champagne


    After you ship the kiddies off to bed, make good use of their pink cotton candy at your adult party by using it to make a sexy, sparkly champagne cocktail. Simply pour chilled bubbly into a flute, add pieces of cotton candy, and pour Perrier or seltzer on top for a festive, gorgeous drink.

  • Chalkboard Serving Tray


    It's an inevitable fact: some of your guests are going to be picky eaters. Save them the embarrassment of asking what every single piece of cheese and hors d'oeuvre is and save yourself the time it takes to explain by serving up goodies on this adorable chalkboard serving tray.

  • Easy Cleanup Desserts


    Eliminate dessert cleanup -- which always happens at the end of the night when you're most tired -- by creating individualized dessert entrees served in plastic cups that you can make days before, serve, and then easily toss in the trash.

  • Tree Ornament Chandelier


    When you're decorating your tree, be sure to put aside a few of your prettiest Christmas ball ornaments because they make gorgeous decorations for your chandelier. And there's no need to stop there: really jazz up your lighting fixture by wrapping holly and garland around it.

  • Christmas Tree Plate Decoration


    People remember the little, thoughtful things you do at parties to make them feel warm and fuzzy inside. Instead of buying fancy, expensive plate decorations or napkin holders, snip a few small branches from your Christmas tree, wrap each in red ribbon, and place on their plate.

  • Natural Holiday Fragrances


    Of course, you could stock up on scented candles and place them in every corner of your room, but there are more natural, less expensive ways to fill your home with sweet holiday fragrances. Fill a small pot with water and add one sliced lemon, a few sprigs of rosemary, and two or three teaspoons of vanilla. Let the concoction simmer for hours before your party -- adding water as needed. Your guests will swoon over the amazing, inviting fragrance of your home.

holiday entertaining holiday decorating