Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Cindy's Christmas Party Tips: Part 1 | Yes, Carol...It's Christmas! Blog Tour

The blog tour for Yes, Carol...It's Christmas! continues with the first of three posts featuring Cindy's Christmas party tips. Since the heroine of her novella is a former party host, it's a perfect topic for the tour—and so timely for this season!

Today, discover some delightful decorating tips...

Cindy’s Christmas Party Tips
Part 1: Decorating

Ah, Christmas . . . Just the mere mention of the name can bring back all kinds of wonderful memories for those who celebrate the season. In fact, many of us take a wonderful trip down memory lane every year when we decorate our trees, with each ornament bringing back thoughts of old friends and parties and times gone by.

Needless to say, Christmas is steeped in tradition, so it’s important to keep that in mind when hosting your own Christmas party. And while holiday decorating styles come and go, there are some things that are so iconic and so completely associated with Christmas that they will immediately make partygoers feel the joy and warmth of the season.

A Christmas tree, of course, is just one of those items, and I’d suggest having at least some kind of tree in your home for a party. Thankfully, you have tons of options to choose from—big, small, wide, narrow, real, artificial, tinsel, and on and on. Whatever you like, you’ll pretty much find it’s available. It’s a good idea to display your tree where all the party guests can see it and maybe even have their moment of basking in the beauty and lights of a decorated tree.

Considering you’ll have guests who really take the time to look at your tree, be careful about the kinds of lights you use for decorating it. LED lights are the modern thing, but frankly, most of those lights are just too bright for comfortable viewing. Especially if you have the room lights down low during your party. Instead, it’s better to stick with the old-fashioned incandescent lights, which aren’t so vivid and are more comfortable to look at. To add interest to your tree, don’t forget to add a strand or two of blinking or running lights, which will typically appear to keep time to any music you might have playing.

Here’s a photo of a dress-form tree that I made, and not only is it a great conversation starter, but it’s also much easier to create than it looks.

I simply took the top section of an old mannequin and put it on the bottom half of an old Christmas tree. (I believe I found both items at a thrift store.) Then I sewed a bustier for the mannequin top, though you could easily just pull a piece of fabric around for a top, and either glue, pin, or staple it in place. I added marabou (fake feathers) and other sparkly trim that can be found at a craft store. Once I had that in place, I plumped out the branches of the tree bottom, to create the skirt. I wound two strands of lights—one red and one white—through the branches. Finally, I used a glue gun to attach varying sizes of fake poinsettias to the outer branches. If you want more of a “tree” look, you can glue on fewer flowers. But I wanted a more concentrated look, so I actually glued 200 flowers onto my tree.

Twinkle lights are also one of those iconic items that practically scream . . . or rather, blink . . . Christmas. Because let’s face it, what other time of year would you put strands of lights around your home? And the best part is, you’ll actually get more bang for your buck with a strand of lights than most other decorating items.

This year, I’ve especially enjoyed these little micro-lights that I found at Costco. You can get a pack of four for around $10, and they’re battery operated, so you don’t need a plug-in nearby. These little lights really do pack a punch and light up a nice area for their size. They also come with a multi-function feature, so they can blink, fade, and even change colors. They’re especially beautiful when placed around clear glass.

Using lights to decorate are also wonderful symbols of the season, as it evokes the concept of light out of darkness. It also exemplifies that most beautiful sight of all—the star in the night sky over Bethlehem, on that very first Christmas of all!

And now, be sure to join us tomorrow (November 29th) for my second post on Christmas party entertaining at another wonderful blog, My Favorite Pastime. See you there!

Let the Party Continue!

We'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments section. How do you like to decorate for Christmas? What do you enjoy seeing at a Christmas party?

Don't forget to enter the giveaway below for a chance to win your very own "party in a box"! (See the introduction post for more details.)

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Julie said...

I usually love to decorate. I usually get everything out the day after Thanksgiving. But this year I may have to do a modified version of decorating. We get home the 4th or 5th of December after being away for almost a month. My first party is on the 10th. Sooo, we'll see how much I can do. But the tree is definitely coming out. I downsized to a tabletop tree 2 years ago and I love it, so I'm looking forward to seeing it this year. Lights! I love lights in the house! They make the rooms warm and cozy on a cold winter night. Snowmen seem to be my theme so I have a lot! Thanks for the tips, now I'm excited to get home and decorate!

Amber Holcomb said...


I think it's great to find ways to decorate without overwhelming yourself, like using a tabletop tree! And how fun to have a theme like adorable snowmen! Safe travels home in a week, friend, and happy decorating! :)


Amber Holcomb said...


This is an awesome post full of gorgeous pictures and great ideas! I LOVE your dress-form tree! And I love your reminder that lights are a simple way to add cheer while having rich symbolic meaning. :) This is a wonderful series, and I'm excited for the next two posts to be shared!


Cindy Vincent said...


You sound like a true creative decorator, and I'll bet you'll get plenty accomplished when you get home! Love the snowman theme -- I have a friend who collects snowmen (and women and pets), and I'm always amazed at how each one seems to have a personality of their own! And yes, I couldn't agree more -- Christmas lights really do make a place feel warm, cozy, and happy.

Thanks again for being part of our blog tour. It's always so much fun to have you join us!

Cindy Vincent said...

Thanks so much, Amber! I had fun putting these posts together, though I feel like I could've written a book on the subject . . . Ha! If I ever did, I'd give it a real title, unlike the one that Carol named her book. ;)

And let's give credit where credit is due . . . you were the one who came up with the amazing ideas for this tour! You really did a terrific job capturing the spirit of this book!