Football season is upon us, folks, and that means it’s time to start party planning. The idea of hosting may seem daunting for those of us who don’t have stadium-sized kitchens or jumbo-screen TVs, but fear not—we’ve picked five of our favorite small-space hosting tips to help you score major party points.
It might go without saying, but you’ll probably have to shift your furniture around if you want to maximize party space. Move furniture to the outer edges of the room, but keep couches and chairs facing the TV so everyone can catch the game. Feel free to move chairs and benches in from other rooms, or go the cozy route with blankets and cushions spread across the floor. Keep coffee tables and end tables close at hand so guests can rest plates and cups.
Every other day of the year, your 30-inch flat screen is just the right size for your space. But when it comes to your favorite team, you want to treat your guests to a big-screen experience. The solution? Project the game onto a blank wall or hanging sheet for an instant in-home Jumbotron. Try renting a projector for a short-term AV upgrade, or invest in one of your own to wow your guests for years to come.
Shelves, hooks, and bookcases are great ways to boost your storage options without sacrificing floor or counter space—but we bet you already knew that. Consider hanging guests’ coats from a space-saving wall organizer, or use temporary adhesive hooks to store coats and purses without damaging your walls. To decorate for the party without creating extra clutter, use string lights, garlands, streamers, and wall decals to create a festive mood using only wall space.
If you’re worried about guests swarming the snack table and causing a traffic jam, consider splitting up the appetizers and creating multiple stations throughout the party. Forgoing a bulky snack table in favor of strategically placed bowls and platters will keep guests comfortably spread out, and might even encourage a little extra mixing and mingling among sports rivals.
Instead of stocking the bar with space-wasting cans and bottles, try swapping out the beer and spirits for big-batch cocktails in stylish beverage dispensers. Guests get to indulge in the libations they crave, and you won’t be left with a mountain of empties in your recycling bin. Winning!