Tips for Hosting a Christmas Party in a Small Space

In this article: Find helpful tips for hosting a Christmas party in a small space.

After moving into our new townhouse just a few months previous, Christmas became the perfect time to practice hosting a Christmas party in a small space.

With a bit of planning ahead of time, it turned out to be a delightful Christmas memory.

Christmas party ideas when you live in a small apartment

Tips for Hosting a Christmas Party in a Small Space

I found with planning and working ahead on some strategic things, having extra people in a small space for a party can still be so much fun!

Here are my best tips for planning a small space party.

Plan and prepare food items in advance.

Nothing is worse than running around fiddling with food as dinner guests are arriving! Organizing and preparing food in advance will save so much stress.

This particular party was potluck style and each guest contributed to the meal. My contribution was a Chocolate Pumpkin Bundt Cake with butterscotch icing. I baked it the day before and only needed to add the icing the day of the party.

Tidy the spaces and remove extra decor.

Before the extra 11 guests arrived at my door, I wanted to make sure there was enough room for them and their things! I cleaned our small main room, made room in the entryway closet for their coats, and removed some of the decor off the end tables. I wanted to make sure there was room for coffee cups and gifts from the gift exchange we had planned.

Set the table – Create a simple Christmas tablescape

Noritake Nippon Toki Kaisha

Setting the table is my favorite part of hosting a party!

A simple table centerpiece was a few fresh roses and greenery from the grocery store.


The table was layered with a neutral tablecloth, alternating wicker & gold plate chargers, and the china set given to me from my mom.


Fostoria glasses added a little sparkle to the table.


Folding simple white cloth napkins into trees with a little glass ball tree topper was a fun element.

I was delighted to realize I had kept just enough cloth napkins for the occasion and found this simple and fun tutorial on how to fold them.

Christmas Tablescape

Prepare drink trays

Before all the guests arrived, I prepared the coffee to be ready at just a push of the button.

Christmas Tablescape

Then a silver tray held 2 sets of cream and sugars (to be put on each end of the table when ready to be served), and the teapot that would be filled with after dinner tea.

Clear off an area to set the food

Christmas Tablescape

The buffet directly behind the table was the perfect spot to hold all the food that arrived with the party guests.

Christmas Tablescape

Organize Activities/ Games

This particular party was a ladies’ night and we planned to do a Christmas craft together and a (hilarious) gift exchange game.

Christmas Tablescape

Once the meal was over, we cleared the table and I taught them how to make these simple paper star ornaments. It was quick, easy, and required little supplies.

Then, we moved into the Living Room area for our gift exchange. This one had the requirement that each gift needed to cost less than $5 and be the most bizarre  or strange thing we could find in a thrift store.

Oh mercy, it was hilarious!

In spite of the small space, we have great memories of a lovely evening together.

Want to plan a Christmas party? Here are some more ideas:

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Christmas Tablescape

This post was originally published December, 2016. It was updated with new information for readers in November, 2021

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  1. Hi, I’ve been trying to find a match to my Mother’s Noritake dishes and I think it matches yours. My Mom passed away in the early 1990’s and I became the owner of this set. I’ve never used them and would like to sell them, as I have no one to will them to. Do you know the pattern name? Is it “Sitting Pidgeon”? My Dad was a Marine and might have brought these back for my Mom in their early years of marriage.

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