10 Hostess Gifts That Get You Invited Back

With Thanksgiving tomorrow and a deluge of holiday parties just around the corner, it’s a perfect time of year to talk about hostess gifts! A hostess gift is a small token of appreciation that you give your hostess as a thank you for the hospitality. It doesn’t have to be anything extravagant and it’s the polite thing to do!

Below are 10 of our favorite hostess gift ideas that will get you invited back for another party!

Hostess Gift Ideas

  1. Set of party supplies — Put together a gift basket with some paper plates, cups, napkins, cutlery, and light decorations.
  2. Block Tritan Drink Ice Bucket — This ice bucket is perfect for the hostess who loves a good cocktail!
  3. Melamine serving tray — Choose a melamine serving from our collection that suits the hostess’ taste. The trays are nice for coffee tables and great for entertaining.
  4. Flowers – If you go with flowers, make sure they’re in a vase so you don’t bother the hostess with needing to find one.
  5. Personalized stationery — Our custom thank you notes make wonderful personalized stationery.
  6. Breakfast for the next morning — A night of entertaining is exhausting! Make tomorrow’s breakfast easy for the hostess with some donuts and coffee.
  7. Movie night essentials — Put together a gift basket containing a favorite movie, popcorn, candy, and drinks.
  8. A nice candle — Candles are always appreciated by hostesses!
  9. Dinner basket — Make a gift basket containing tomorrow night’s dinner ingredients! Include pasta, jarred sauce, a baguette, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil.
  10. Bottle of wine — A bottle of wine is a classic hostess gift. Go with the hostess’ favorite variety of red, white, or sparkling.

 

Thanksgiving Table Setting

Thanksgiving is a little over a week away and you’ve been planning the perfect menu for weeks. But have you planned the perfect tablescape?

Setting the scene on your tabletop will only enhance your delicious turkey and sides!  In the mood board below, we put together a perfect Thanksgiving table setting featuring disposable products from PartyPail.com. Not only do they create a stunning tablescape, but using disposable plates, cutlery, and cups will save you tons of clean-up time after the meal.  No one wants to be slammed with dirty dishes during a turkey coma!

Read on to see our perfect-for-Thanksgiving party supplies and snag some Thanksgiving entertaining tips!

Thanksgiving Table Setting

  1. Bittersweet Paper Tablecover – Bittersweet Orange is very pumpkin-esque!
  2. Clear Plastic Round 6 Compartment Tray – Perfect for pre-dinner veggies and dip!
  3. Glitz Gold Pom Pom Cocktail Picks – Stick these gold pom pom picks in appetizers and desserts.
  4. Fig Leaf Paper Banquet Plates – These plates from our MADHOUSE collection feature a seasonally perfect leaf design in brown and iridescent gold. Elegant, yet disposable!
  5. Translucent Black Twig 12-ct Cutlery  – This MADHOUSE plastic cutlery looks like the bare branches outside.
  6. Fig Leaf 24-ct Beverage Napkins – Woodgrain beverage napkins are ideal for serving alongside drinks and, appetizers, and desserts.
  7. Clear Plastic 10 Ounce Tumblers – Clear plastic tumblers are perfect for serving everything from wine to cocktails, soda, juice, and more.
  8. Orange and White Paper Straws – The kids will love sipping from these!
  9. Leaf Candy Dishes – Set these around filled with candy corn and other candies in Thanksgiving wrappers.
  10. Burst of Autumn Flower Arrangement — A gorgeous centerpiece for your table.

Happy Thanksgiving!

20 Winter Birthday Party Ideas

Having a birthday during the bitter-cold months of winter can put a damper on things if you let it. You may be tempted to skip throwing a birthday party simply because you don’t think guests will want to venture out into the cold, but giving everyone a reason to get out and celebrate could be just what your friends and family need to beat the winter blues!

Winter Birthday Party Ideas

Here are 20 winter birthday party ideas:

  1. Hit the slopes for a day of skiing or snowboarding.
  2. Make it a winter sledding party.
  3. Go ice skating.
  4. Throw the party at the roller skating rink.
  5. Throw a party at the movie theater.
  6. Set up a movie “theater” in your home.
  7. Host a winter wreath-making party.
  8. Host a card night.
  9. It’s the perfect time of year to throw a Frozen birthday party!
  10. Throw a hot chocolate party featuring a cocoa bar with all the fixings. Don’t forget to use our hot-cold cups!
  11. Throw an indoor beach party with luau party supplies.
  12. Throw an ornament-making party.
  13. Throw a party inspired by the color white with all white party decorations and foods.
  14. Host a chili party with all the fixings.
  15. Throw an indoor picnic.
  16. If it’s a first birthday party, make it a “winter onederland” themed event.
  17. Throw a wine tasting party. You’ll need some of our plastic stemware!
  18. Host the party at a bowling alley.
  19. Throw a party at a local museum and spend the day exploring it.
  20. Go on a Christmas light and lawn ornament scavenger hunt.

2014 Photo Contest Details

PartyPail 2014 Photo Contest

We’re bubbling with excitement because our fourth-annual photo contest begins today! If you threw a party this year that you’re pretty proud of, be sure to submit a photo or two of your decorations, food, or favorite party moments for a chance to win! This year, the first prize winner will receive a $400 Apple gift card, the second prize winner will receive a $200 Amazon.com gift card, and the third prize winner will receive $100 to spend at PartyPail.com.

How do I enter?

Head to the contest on our Facebook page, Like us, and submit your photos. Not on Facebook? Email your photos to feedback@partypail.com, but please note that voting for the contest takes place only on Facebook.

We’re accepting photo submissions until 11:59 PM CDT on November 24. Voting will begin on Facebook on November 25 and end on December 12. Five finalists will be determined by the number of votes on Facebook, so rally your friends to vote for you! Once narrowed down to five, the PartyPail team will then choose the first and second-place winners, which will be announced on December 16.

For complete 2014 Photo Contest Rules, click here.

Looking for some inspiration? Check out some of our favorite entries from last year! Good luck!

Our 4th Annual Photo Contest is Almost Here!

It’s that time of year again … our annual photo contest is about to begin next Monday, November 10! This is our fourth year running the photo contest, and we couldn’t be more excited to see your fun and creative party photos! To gear up for the photo contest, we thought it would be fun to showcase some favorite entries from last year’s contest.

2013 1st Place Winner

Carnival Party Popcorn

This carnival party detail photo was submitted by Samantha, who won an iPad with this winning photo.

2013 2nd Place Winner

Ladybug Party

The runner-up photo was submitted by Natalia, who threw a lovely Ladybug Fancy First Birthday Party. She won an iPad Mini!

Some of Our Favorite Entries:

Bumble Bee Baby Shower Cake

An cake to match our Buzz BaBEE Shower.

Minnie Mouse Birthday Party

A frilly pink Minnie Mouse Birthday Party.

Pink Diaper Cake

A diaper cake for a Tiny Toes Pink Baby Shower.

Luau Party Tablescape

A bright luau party tablescape.

1st Birthday Smash Cake Photo

Who doesn’t love a good 1st birthday party smash cake photo?!

Sesame Street Birthday Party Cupcakes

Cupcakes for a Sesame Street Birthday Party.

Spa Party Cake

A beauty cake that’s perfect for Pink Zebra Boutique.

Wild Safari Blue Baby Shower

A lovely Wild Safari Blue dessert table.

Pink Ballerina Birthday Party

Lots of pink tulle for a Ballerina Birthday Party.

Check back on Monday for more contest details and rules, and start choosing what photos you want to submit to the 2014 photo contest!

Holiday Bash with a Touch of Dash

dashnig-prancer-reindeer-3The holidays give everyone a great excuse to throw a party. Whether you are throwing a family friendly bash or an adult only party, it is crucial to have a great theme with individualized elements. Throwing a special holiday party this year will be a breeze with these tips and tricks:

Let’s talk the essentials: invites, appetizers, drinks and games. A party is only as unforgettable as its food, drinks, games and of course people! Luckily we control all of those things including who we invite!

To start off your party planning, try customized invites and thank you cards like the Dashing Prancer design. This collection goes perfectly with any holiday party and has a huge selection of complimentary personalized party products to make your event unique and memorable. Customization will save you time and will help make your guests feel special. Everyone wants to come to a party where the invites were custom made!

For appetizers, try foods you can easily make ahead of time. This will cut down on the work you do during the party, so you have more time for socializing. You know, the fun stuff! Here are a few simple delicious holiday app ideas: meatballs, cheese balls, veggie skewers and who doesn’t love those mini pies?

Adult parties usually involve drinks… and let’s face it; they make parties much more FUN! The holidays are a perfect time to incorporate fun drinks! To cut down on cost and to have a variety of choices, try having everyone bring their favorite holiday inspired drink fixin’s. A drink buffet can be a creative way to incorporate everyone’s taste into your party. Plus guests will love tasting different drinks and sharing their favorite concoction.

ugly sweaterDepending on your theme, Ugly Christmas Sweater, Mr. and Mrs. Claus or whatever creative theme you come up with, incorporating games can be a fun addition. Games are great ice breakers to help your guests to get to know one other. Even if everyone is well-acquainted, who doesn’t love a little friendly competition? Here is a fun game that uses items you most likely already have at home:

Give your guests a paper plate and a marker and have them place it on their head. Then, give directions on things to draw, a Christmas tree, a snowman, etc. The results will be hilarious. Good laughs are sure to ensue and your holiday event is running smoothly!

 

Every party must sadly come to an end. Send you guests home with customized favors like personalized candles, mint tins or candy tubes to remind them of your fun holiday extravaganza!

Just remember, when planning any party, make things simple, fun and most importantly ENJOY yourself. Now go start planning what your Mr. and Mrs. Claus outfits will look like!

10 Halloween Recipes

Last week we shared 10 Halloween party ideas featuring decorating and entertaining inspiration. This week, we’re excited to add a new post to our Halloween series by sharing 10 Halloween recipes. Some are spooky, some are cute, some will leave your mouth watering, and others will have you wondering if they’re actually edible (they all are, we promise!).

Halloween Appetizers

1. Spider Web 7-Layer Taco Dip

Halloween Spider Web Taco DipSource.

We love this twist on 7-layer taco dip! Simply pipe sour cream on with a fine tip and use a plastic spider for added flair. Serve alongside white and dark blue corn chips.

2. “Band-Aid” Graham Crackers

Band-Aid Graham Crackers

These look positively disgusting, but are actually tasty! White and red icing are the “cotton” and “blood” on these graham cracker rectangles. This idea comes from our post last Halloween, 13 Spooky Halloween Food Ideas!

Halloween Entrees

3. Spooky Spaghetti

Halloween Spaghetti

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The kisd will love slurping up these orange and purple noodles, which are dyed using gel food coloring. The eyeballs are made from mozzarella and olives, and the pasta is flavored with olive oil, garlic, and Italian seasoning. Bon appetit!

4. Pizza Mummy Braid

Mummy Halloween PizzaSource.

This mummy pizza braid is really tasty and super simple to make! Fill the refrigerated pizza crust with sauce, cheese, and your favorite pizza toppings. Use olives for the eyes, and your whole family will be happy!

5. Mummy Dogs

Halloween Mummy Hot Dogs

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We love this Halloween twist on pigs in a blanket! Serve the mummy dogs alongside a variety of dipping sauces for a Halloween party hit!

Halloween Desserts

6. Ghost Bananas

White Chocolate Dipped Ghost Bananas for HalloweenSource.

Here’s a healthier take on Halloween sweets! To make these, dip bananas in vanilla or white chocolate candy coating. Use mini chocolate chips for the eyes and mouth.

7. Mini Chocolate-Dipped Apples

Chocolate Dipped Apples

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While caramel apples are a Halloween staple, your chocolate-loving guests will go crazy over this version. A whole candy-coated apple is sometimes too much, especially for kids, so we love the idea of making mini versions by peeling apples and using a melon baller.

8. Candy Corn + White Chocolate Chip Cookies

Candy Corn CookiesSource.

Candy corn is a Halloween staple, but often goes uneaten. By mixing it into cookies with white chocolate chips, your candy corn stash will be devoured in no time!

Halloween Drinks

9.The Hearse Cocktail

Halloween Cocktail RecipeSource.

This cocktail is similar to a sidecar, but uses orange juice instead of lemon to match the holiday. The orange sugar rim is just for fun, but makes a perfect presentation for Halloween.

10. “Shrunken Heads” in Cider

Shrunken Heads Apple CiderSource.

When your guests dip into your pot of hot apple cider, they’ll be shocked (and then delighted) to see these baked apple shrunken heads. Add spiced rum to your apple cider for an adult gathering, or leave it out for a family-friendly affair.

Is your mouth watering? Or do these spooky recipes have you running for the hills?! Happy Halloween!

10 Halloween Party Ideas

Who’s excited about Halloween falling on a Friday this year?! (Raises hand.) There’s no excuse to not throw a party for your family, friends, and neighbors this year, especially with the 10 Halloween party ideas we rounded up for you below! The big day is a little over a week away, so Pin your favorite ideas and get busy making this your most spooktacular Halloween yet!

1. Candy Corn Mason Jars

DIY Candy Corn Mason Jars

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Use these DIY candy corn-painted mason jars to hold an arrangement of creepy black roses, or set a tea light candle inside for a cheery glow.

2. Pumpkin Lollipop Holder

Pumpkin Halloween Lollipop Holder

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This pumpkin lollipop holder would be great as a dessert table centerpiece, or you can set it on the front porch so trick-or-treaters can help themselves.

3. Pumpkin Spice Play Dough

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Scented Play Dough

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Make up a batch of this delicious-smelling play dough to hand out to the kiddos for favors. (But don’t be surprised if you see the adults taking some, too!)

4. Halloween Marquee Letters

DIY Halloween Marquee Letters

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Make these DIY marquee letters to spell out your Halloween phrase of choice. Set them on the front porch to welcome guests, or on the mantle as part of your spooky decor.

5. Halloween Playlist

Halloween Party Song Playlist

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This playlist mixes old and new tunes to keep all guests moving.

6. Harry Potter Floating Candles

Harry Potter Great Hall Floating Candles Party Decoration

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Use toilet paper tubes and LED lights to create a Hogwarts-inspired ceiling at your Halloween party. Dim the rest of the lights in the room for instant ambiance.

7. Toilet Paper Roll Bat

DIY Toilet Paper Bat Craft

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Make a bunch of these bats before the party and hang them from the front porch like a colony of bats. This could also be a simple craft project for little ones at your party.

8. The Ring Halloween Decoration

Scary Halloween Decoration Inspired by The Ring

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Want to actually give your guests a scare? This girl pulling herself out of the ground is inspired by The Ring and will send chills down spines.

9. Poison Bottles Decoration

Halloween Vignette Inspired by The Raven

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This table vignette is inspired by The Raven. Fill empty bottles with various liquids and mark them as “poison” for a unique centerpiece.

10. Mummy Candle Holders

DIY Mummy Candle Votive

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To make these mummy candles, simply wrap jars with white ribbon, glue on some googly eyes, and light a votive inside. Use them to line your driveway or sidewalk, or set them on tables as centerpieces.

Want more Halloween party ideas? Check back next week for a roundup of creative Halloween recipes!

5 Free Party Printables

A while back we shared several creative ways bloggers are using PartyPail solid color party supplies. Today, we’re back to highlight more creative bloggers who have created fabulous and free party printables to accompany our party supplies.

Check out the five printables below and visit the blogs highlighted to snag the free printables for your next celebration!

1. Free Bottle Printables

Printable Bottle Labels

Spark and Chemistry made these adorable beauty bash bottle printables. They paired the printables with our pink and white paper straws for beverages that made their guests feel like they were sipping pretty.

2. Free Cutlery Pouch Printables

Mother's Day Printable Cutlery Pouches

Shaken Together Life created Mother’s Day printables to adhere to cutlery pouches.  Tucked inside each cutlery pouch was PartyPail paper straws, cutlery, and napkins from our shop by color party supplies.

3. Free Tony Awards Printables

Tony Awards Party Printables

Elegance and Enchantment created some glitzy Tony Award printables, including a viewing party invitation and circles that can be used to adorn stemware and more. She used our gold foil plates and black plastic goblets for the glamorous occasion.

4. Free Spoon Pouch Printables

Spoon Pouch Printables

These spoon pouch printables by Design Eat Repeat are perfect for any number of occasions, including kids birthday parties and baby showers! They were created for use with our solid plastic spoons, but you could also slide in a straw and napkin for a complete set!

5. Free Picnic Party Printables

Picnic Party Printables

A Feteful Life created a bounty of picnic printables to match our black party supplies and white party supplies. Use the printables on our hot-cold paper cups, treat cups, paper straws, and cello sandwich bags for an on-trend picnic.

10 Fall Party Ideas

Fall just might be our favorite season to throw a party. (Okay, we say that every season…) But the the sights, scents, colors, and traditions of fall set the perfect backdrop for gathering with friends and family over a roaring bonfire with hot cider in one hand and a creamy pumpkin roll in the other.

We’ve been curating a collection of fall party ideas on Pinterest and are excited to share a few of our favorites with you today!

Coffee Bean and Pumpkin Candles

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This centerpiece is a treat for both your sight and scent! Orange pumpkin votive candles and dark coffee beans are the perfect color combo for a fall party, and when you light the candles, the combined scent of the coffee and pumpkin is mouthwatering! You could group the candles together like in the photo, or you could scatter them individually throughout the party tables.

Ghost Cupcakes

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 These Halloween ghost cupcakes are more cute than spooky and would be a fun addition to the spread of desserts at your fall party! Create the ghost icing toppers using a piping bag with vanilla icing and chocolate chips. From chocolate to spice, you could use any cake flavor you want for the cakes!

Pumpkin Rice Krispies

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Kids will love these Pumpkin Krispies Treats — and we’re betting the adults will, too. Some orange food coloring in your Rice Krispies Treats mixture is all you need to color these treats. These are great for a party dessert table or for handing out at trick or treat!

Candy Corn Drink

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Even though this drink separates perfectly to look like a candy corn, the combination of ingredients would actually have a citrus-sweet taste that kids will love! When you’re ready to drink, mix the layers together and enjoy!

Fall Leaf Placecards

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Aren’t these leaf placecards positively elegant and seasonal?! To make these, collect an assortment of leaves from your yard or the park, or get faux leaves from the craft store. Use a gold paint pen to write each of your guests’ names on the leaves and set them on plates so everyone knows where to sit.

DIY Pumpkin Candles

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How fun are these pumpkin candles?! Use soy wax flakes or even beeswax flakes for this project. Leave them unscented if using them for a dinner party, or use cinnamon fragrance oil to add a perfect-for-fall scent to your pumpkin candles. Make several small candles, or you could even clean out a large pumpkin and put several wicks in it for a large centerpiece.

Cincinnati Chili Recipe for Fall

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If you’re looking for a twist on your usual pot of chili, consider this Cincinnati chili recipe! Cincinnati chili has a unique blend of spices, including cinnamon, that is perfect for fall. Serve it on a bed of spaghetti noodles and provide onions, beans, and cheese for toppings. It’s a hearty dish your guests will love!

Orange-Pumpkin Bread Recipe

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Pumpkin rolls are the ultimate fall party dessert, and our mouths are watering over this moist bread recipe that has a cheesecake filling layer. Cut the sweetness by serving this bread with hot coffee coffee, a perfect combination!

Martha Stewart Pumpkin Cooler

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This is not your average drink cooler! To make this, cut a large pumpkin in half and clean it out. Line the pumpkin with a clear plastic bowl, fill it with ice, and set in your canned or bottled drinks.

Pumpkin Ring Toss

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 Will there be kids at your fall party? Keep them occupied with some seasonal games and activities, including a pumpkin ring toss! Set up a triangle of pumpkins and give each row a different point value, depending on difficulty. Don’t forget some prizes for winners!

What are your favorite party ideas for fall?

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