Fresh Fête


Try new ideas on New Year’s Eve.

SpacesDesignDec2014Tired of passing out paper hats, noisemakers and glasses of Champagne every single New Year’s Eve? Steal a few of these suggestions to update your annual approach, and send friends and family into the New Year refreshed and inspired.

BUST OUT NEW BUBBLY While few New Orleanians will ever turn down a glass of chilled Veuve Clicquot or Dom Pérignon, there’s always room for variety. Along with Champagne, offer Prosecco, Lambrusco or Crémant — and consider setting out a bottle or two of non-alcoholic fizzy beverages.

MAKE RESOLUTION CARDS Here’s a dirty secret: New Year’s Eve isn’t the only time we have the option to change our lives. However, it certainly is an opportune time to reflect and set our intentions. Create a few dozen resolution cards for guests to fill out, featuring fun questions like “Where do you want to travel this year?” and “What good deeds will you do this year?”

TAKE CARE WITH CANDLES Tea lights add instant ambience to your party, whether you’re hosting at home or renting an event destination. To keep your space safe from fire, make sure every candle has a clear margin around it — and don’t place candles anywhere they could be jostled.

KEEP THE ROMANCE FRESH Want your guests to have a New Year’s Eve kiss to remember? Put out a few small bowls of mints, so they can freshen up before the clock strikes midnight.

SNAP PICTURES Pop-up photo booths are a fun way to mark the occasion and send your guests home with souvenir photo slips. Don’t be afraid to let guests get silly — place a bowl of props, like hats, boas and oversized sunglasses, near or inside the booth.

MIX UP THE MUSIC Create a party soundtrack with a range of upbeat music from a variety of decades and genres. You want guests to dance and to recognize songs they know — no matter their musical taste.

CIRCLE UP Looking for an easy, festive décor idea that’s easier to clean up than confetti? Just think bigger. Handmade giant confetti has the same party-boosting effect — minus the hungover hassle of sweeping up on New Year’s Day. Use a Mardi Gras cup or drinking glass to outline and cut circles of colorful construction paper, and tape them to walls in loose clusters.

GIVE FAREWELL GIFTS Send guests home with a bag of goodies and your good tidings for the New Year. Try packets of hot chocolate mix, cookies … and perhaps a few aspirin, depending on how successful your party has been.

Happy New Year!