This post has been sponsored by Huhtamaki, Inc. makers of the Chinet® brand. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Last year, you guys showed so much love for our fun, festive winter and holiday season DIY bucket list board, making epic winter/holiday bucket lists of your own, full of all kinds of fun activity and adventure. It was such a blast to watch that idea catch on with friends far and wide! So this year, we thought it would be so much fun to partner with the experts in holiday entertaining, the Chinet® brand, to kick the seasonal bucket list concept up a notch by hosting and sharing an unforgettable “Holiday Bucket List” party with friends and family at my sister’s adorable abode! So just what is a bucket list party, you ask? Essentially, it’s a holiday party where each guest submits their own winter/holiday season bucket list activity ideas to assemble an even more inspired list this year—full of holiday adventure and excitement of all kinds. The best part? It creates this magical, memorable shared experience when you all go off and tackle the same seasonal bucket list you created together. Maybe it’ll even prompt you to try new holiday and winter activities and traditions you’ve never considered before. This season is all about celebrating the good in life and gathering and connecting with the ones you love, so we couldn’t think of a better way to go bigger with the seasonal bucket list concept than to rope your friends and family into the process and use it as an excuse to get together!
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It also serves as the perfect excuse to bring all of the people you love together this season in a casual, festive, fun-for-all-ages setting for a purpose that every guest can connect with and participate in. It’s such an easy holiday party concept to execute as a host, too! You can compile your guests’ bucket list activity suggestions however you like: hang a stocking, let guests write them on a piece of paper, and throw them in at their leisure; have guests call them out while they’re snacking and write them on a board for everyone to see; or use any other collection method that makes it easy (and most importantly, fun) for you! When it’s all over, you’ll have the most creative, exciting winter/holiday season bucket list that you can share with all of your guests post-party via email (snail mail would be fun, too). That way, every guest or family member that attended can make their way through the same list, check in one each other’s progress, or coordinate activities as a group and savor the season together. How fun is that?
How To Throw a Winter/Holiday Season Bucket List Party
And in a ploy to inspire you guys to host your own holiday/winter season bucket list parties, we thought that it would be fun to take you through how we effortlessly executed our own party prep by creating an easy, tasty holiday snack buffet with the help of my personal favorite, the Chinet® Classic White™ line, to make setup and cleanup a total breeze! I think because the focus of this little holiday party is on crafting an unforgettable, crowdsourced winter/holiday season bucket list, you can keep snacks and sips simple and self-serve. The spread doesn’t have to be complicated or fussy, and the setup should be approachable and promote casual, cozy mingling. Stress free and easy to execute as a host is what we’re all about when it comes to holiday entertaining, and this approach totally fits that bill!
I’ve always loved the Chinet Classic White line because it pairs so effortlessly with any occasion or party theme that pops up, but I think it’s especially perfect for holiday parties like this one because it allows me to really play around with the rest of my festive decor and still stay grounded, clean, and polished with the overall setup. I also just love integrating winter white home and party decor during the holidays as much as possible because it’s so fresh and versatile and helps me effortlessly integrate all of the other dreamy colors of the season, providing this totally fuss-free backdrop that sets me up for greatness. Not to mention that it saves me from doing dishes for hours post party, which is always a win in my book!
The Snack Station
Because of the range of ages of our guests, I wanted to keep the party and snack buffet setup simple and accessible so everyone could snack and sip at their leisure. The Chinet Classic White line was perfect for helping me accomplish that mission because it includes so many useful pieces, all with their own purpose. I used the Chinet® Classic White™ platters to house the tasty treats at the self-serve snack station displayed on top of the buffet. Then, I decided to set Chinet® Classic White™ napkins, plates of all sizes, bowls, and the Chinet® Cut Crystal® collection cutlery and 14 oz. cups at the end of the long dining table to create an easy assembly line that would flow through to the buffet and back to the table without blocking traffic. As is always the case, you can recreate this concept in so many ways—no matter what kind of space you’re working with. You can utilize a kitchen counter for your dinnerware and utensils, a kitchen island for your snack and drink station, a living area with a sofa table and coffee table, or even an outdoor space for our friends in warmer winter climates. It all works!
The Hot Cocoa Bar
For this particular family-friendly get-together, I thought it would be so much fun for kids young and old to set up a little hot cocoa bar so guests can snuggle up with their fam and sip something warm while we fill that seasonal bucket list board up with all of our ideas. I’m a huge proponent of a festive hot cocoa bar at any holiday gathering because it’s just so easy to execute and always a crowd-pleaser, but one thing that can make it a little bit high maintenance, especially with kiddos in the mix, is having to use fragile, tough-to-clean mugs to serve it in. That’s why I was so excited when I saw the Chinet® Comfort Cup® insulated hot cups! How adorable are those? They totally solve my hot cocoa bar mug conundrum, and they have the most stylish little print on them that just so happened to fit right in with my fun red, white, green, and moody winter blue color scheme. It’s safe to say that everyone had a cocoa cup in their hand by the end of the night so…success! As a little cold drink complement to the hot cocoa bar, I brought out another all-ages crowd-pleaser: apple cider to serve in the Chinet Cut Crystal collection 14 oz. cups. It was a total hit, as you can see from the snaps. I love how high-quality the Chinet Cut Crystal cups feel and that they’re the most fuss-free and stylish alternative to real crystal or glass.
The Holiday Décor
As for the rest of my self-serve party setup, I wanted to really work with the rustic wood, beautiful blue printed wallpaper, and rich blue velvet drapes because they already felt perfect for a winter/holiday party backdrop. So, I kept the rest of the decs simple and slightly rustic so it all felt like it fit together for a sort of cottage-meets-traditional vibe. I added some wintery faux greenery, natural accents like seagrass, white wool and wood, and just the right amount of twinkle light sparkle to make it all shine. I’ve done so many different holiday setups in my day and played with some really fun, nontraditional color palettes, but this slightly traditional palette that integrates a beautifully rich navy might just be my new favorite holiday mix! All of the decorations I used were holiday decs I already had hanging around, and I think that because the snack station, drink offerings, and bucket list assembly were really the highlights of the gathering, I could keep the decs super simple yet festive and cozy to invite people in. A few fun frills on the buffet, just a couple of impactful touches on the tabletop, and cozy pillows and blankets to make sure guests were comfortable!
When all was said and done, the winter/holiday bucket list party was such a hit and just felt like a really fun, unique way to gather, connect, and inspire joy this season. I can’t wait to send the finished list to guests so they can get out there and start crossing activities off. I’ll be sharing our full winter/holiday season bucket list with you guys in the coming weeks, but make sure you drop us a comment and tell us what’s on your list this season so we can keep the inspiration going!
This sounds so fun!!! I would love to do something like this with my family! Your pictures were beautiful too!
Love and Specs says
Thank you so much, Monica! So happy it inspired you 🙂
Katie Frazier says
This post gave me a lot of ideas! I’m hosting my husbands family for the first time this year for Christmas so this sounds like a blast!
Love and Specs says
Yay! So happy it inspired you, Katie! Good luck with the hosting duties – that sounds like so much fun! Happy holidays!
This sounds like so much fun! I kinda want to set up a hot cocoa bar now…
Love and Specs says
You totally need to dive into a hot cocoa bar, Farrah! They’re the best 🙂
I love this idea! It makes me want to throw one. I know my friends and family would absolutely love it! I’d include a cute cookie decorating area so the guests can decorate their own snacks.
Love and Specs says
You totally should, Chelsea! Such a fun way to gather for the holidays. And I LOVE the idea of a cookie decorating area. Genius!
Such great tips!! I definitely need to re-read this one before my holiday party!
Love and Specs says
So pumped you liked it, Kasey!
such a unique idea for a holiday party! Thanks for sharing!
Love and Specs says
Thank you so much, Janna! Happy holidays!