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Discussion Forums

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On Housewarmings
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Ask your questions of The Party Girl now!
You may even see your question and answer posted in the space below.

ea asked:

Occasion: house warming
Could you please tell me if there is a time frame on when a > >house warming party should be planned. I have been in my home 3 months and I > >think it is too late to have one now, what do you think? >

The Party Girl's advice is:

I think it's never too late for a party. Lots of people wait until they are completely settled before having a party. The time frame is flexible.

Judy asked:

Occasion: Housewarming Party
What games do you play for a housewarming party or do you >play anything?

The Party Girl's advice is:

Look at at the housewarming area.

Tabatha asked:

Occasion: my first home
Please Help. My girlfriend is planing a house warming party for me.But she don't know what to do...Do you have door prizes or game's and if so, what kind? Can you please help. I don't want to feel like a fool!!! >

The Party Girl's advice is:

There are many sorts of housewarming parties. There are Open huses with no set plans and finger food. There is an organized party either during the day or evening. If you call it a housewarming, you are sort of asking for gifts. If you call it a party, that's what it is. No door prizes are necessary and you can have some games if you want to. Look at for some ideas.

Judy asked:

Occasion: House warming party
I want to plan a house warming party for our new house. I need advice on planning, what food/beverages to serve, should I make it a "come & go" party, and it is proper to give yourself a house warming party?

The Party Girl's advice is:

It is just fine to give the party. First decide if you want it to be an evening or a daytime party. Daytime is a drop-in sort of thing that is casual, cocktail/snacky food. Evening could be buffet, cocktail party, or sitdown. I don't suggest the last one. I like the idea of stations in different rooms to show off the house. For example, drinks in living room, pasta/salad/bread/etc. station in dining room, dessert of do-it-yourself sundaes in the kitchen. Have a good time.

jnitti asked:

Occasion: Housewarming
What is the history or tradition behind having housewarming parties >

The Party Girl's advice is:

The original reason for a housewarming was that after the house was built, the first thing to do was build a fire in the hearth to warm the house enough to live and cook. It later became a nice tradition to bring things to someone moving to a new place to help "warm" their entry by bringing things the person will need to make a house a home.

Robin Riha asked:

Occasion: housewarming
We are having a housewarming and are not sure on how much bottled water and pop to buy for our guests. There will be about 60 people attending and the majority of the time will be spent outside. How many beverages per guest should I acount for?

The Party Girl's advice is:

A lot depends upon how long the party lasts. For the average 3-5 hour party on a hot day, folks could have as much as 6-7 drinks. Remember not to open early, only as needed. Better to have some left and keep for later. Have plenty of ice and water.

Back To School asked:

Occasion: Housewarming
I am having my first housewarming party with around 40 guests. time frame 4 pm until when ever. Should I serve a main dish or would it be ok to serve hot meatballs, ham slices for sandwiches, chicken wings and that type along with the ususal veggies and the such??

The Party Girl's advice is:

I like the ideas of lots of small food. That way the party keeps going and no one needs to sit and eat. Have some salads and fresh fruit and maybe a cake (see new products on the home page and edible photos.

Denishia Jones asked:

Occasion: House Warming
I am having a House Warming Party for my cousin. I have no idea how to plan it. Should I have a theme?It is in the fall so I definitly want to incorporate that.Also, Angie(the house warmee) feels a little guilty taking gifts from us. >How can we make her feel confortable with the gift giving?

The Party Girl's advice is:

You have a theme, a housewarming. Be sue to use the colorful leaves for decor. If you want to have some games, do that. Why not set up a station party with a different thing in each room to show off the house. Put cheese, crqackers, veggies and dip in one room, main food in another, the bar in another and in the kitchen you could do do-it-yourself sundaes. As for the gift thing, some people will bring them and some won't and tell your cousin not to feel guilty. Giving a gift makes the giver feel good.

Janet asked:

Occasion: Housewarming
This is an outdoors barbecue type of housewarming and I >need some ideas on decorating or whateve

The Party Girl's advice is:

Pick a theme. For some suggestions, you can check Once you do that, then plan the details. Don't make it too elaborate because you want to show off your home. Maybe set out dessert in the kitchen and have do-it-yourself sundaes. If you need more help, write back. also check for decorations ideas.

hannah asked:

Occasion: housewarming party
My husband and I will be moving into our first home in about a month. >We want to have an open house (from 1pm to 4pm) to show our family and >friends our new home. Neither my husband nor I drink alcoholic >beverages and do not want to ask our guests to bring their own >beverages. Would it be rude or weird not to provide alcoholic beverages >to our guests and instead have sodas, a punch and maybe some other >non-alcoholic beverages. Thanks for your time. Hannah in Miami

The Party Girl's advice is:

Because of the time of day of your party, you don't need alcohol. You might want to make a punch with non-alcoholic champagne or some sparkling beverage. Be sure to keep it cool with an ice ring made of juice and fresh fruit.

heather johnson1 asked:

Occasion: housewarming party
I am having a housewarming party and have no idea what a hostess is suppossed to do at one of these? Could youn please let>me know all of the details of a party like this. There will be about >45 guests. >Thanks, >Heather

The Party Girl's advice is:

First of all, the entire purpose of such a party is to welcome your friends to your new home and show it to them. After that, there are no rules. Usually you set up some sort of food and beverage buffet. You could do different stuff in different rooms and that keeps people moving throughout the house. You can make it as elaborate or as simple as you want from just finger food to an entire meal. The time could be anything, afternoon, evening, whatever you like. You can say adults only if you want. Be sure to have a place near the front door because some people will bring a gift. You don't open these until after the party and the guests have gone.

Scott "SLakker" Ledford asked:

Occasion: housewarming shower
> > We have been married for 7 years and have just moved into our >We have been married for 7 years and have just moved into our "new house". My family want to give >me a housewarming shower. Is this appropriate although we were >living in trailer before? Will this be tacky??

The Party Girl's advice is:

Of course it's proper - you are in a new home and it needs warming no matter where you lived before. Go for it!

kimberly asked:

Occasion: housewarming/ b-day party
my fiance & I ar having a housewarming >party for our new home. but as well it is a surprise b-day party for him. it's >at 4:00 p.m- unitil. I want everyone to have a great time. how can I focus >on both wtihou taken away from both of them?. it's more of a socializing >affair >eating, drinking e.t.c tks for your help >

The Party Girl's advice is:

Well, first of all, since he thinks it is a housewarming, you get lots of free help from him. Once everyone is there, you can surprise him. You may run into a problem with gifts. Some people will want to bring a housewarming gift, others a birthday present, and still others, both. You need to figure out how to handle this part. Remember, a party is just that, an opportunity to have a good time with friends and family. So enjoy. You might want to set stations in different rooms so that the guests can see all of the house and have do-it-yourself sundaes set up in the kitchen.

michele asked:

Occasion: housewarming party
My husband and I are renting with the option to buy a great >house. We have never had a housewarming before. Is it too tacky for this >situation? I would love for our family and friends to see the beatuiful >house. Do you have any suggestions? >

The Party Girl's advice is:

If you live somewhere, it is your home. Of course a housewarming is OK. It's your house, so go for it!

Deb asked:

Occasion: House Warming Party
If you really have everything for a first >house, how would you put on the invitations >that money would be welcomed versus gifts? >Is a money tree a good idea and how can you >tackfully state this? >

The Party Girl's advice is:

You can't ask for money. People don't usually give that for a housewarming. A money tree is tacky, tacky, tacky. The whole point of a housewarming is to show friends and relatives your new home and to welcome them to visit. The only way you can discuss presents is to ask them to make a donation to your favorite charity in lieu of a gift.

Vicki asked:

Occasion: Hosewarming/open house
Who do you invite to a house warming/open house? I do not want >to offend anyone in my family, but I do have a large family. I also have >alot of friends. >

The Party Girl's advice is:

Well, the definition of open house is just that so you'll put yourself behind the 8 ball with any limits. One way to get off the hook is to break it up into 2 events. Have an open house for your friends and another party for your relatives. That way the crowd won't be overwhelming and you don't have to worry about offending anyone. Otherwise, one big open house includes everyone.

sjacobs asked:

Occasion: house warming
I would like some ideas for games to be played and some >refreshments that would be simple to serve. Thank You >

The Party Girl's advice is:

For game ideas, check Another good idea is for everyone to bring a baby picture and mount them on a board and let everyone guess who is who with a prize for the winner. The food depends upon whether it's dinner or after dinner. A Deli tray with all the sides is inexpensive and simple. You just need to add chips, pretzels, etc. Also dessert which could be do-it-yourself sundaes in the kitchen. Set up a bar in the dining room but keep it simple.

DENISE asked:

Occasion: come see our new house party
can we throw this party 4 ourselves? it's just a b-b que, out >>doors,kind of a come and see our new place get to- gether. i think a >>theme might be out of our buget,but i do like the food in different rooms >>idea! mabey,a pot luck thing? should we supply the beverages along with >>b-b-que meats? Besides a scavenger hunt, do you have any other ideas for >>moving people room to room? thanks for your time........ >> > >

The Party Girl's advice is:

It's just fine to have this party. Don't call it a housewarming, just a bbque. People will automatically move from room to room just to see your new place and you don't want food in every room. Set the bar in one room (you could have your friends bring all the beverages and cut the costs way down). Have appetizers in one room, main course in another and have a do-it-yourself-sundae set up in the kitchen. A barbecue is a theme in itself. You could make it western and use red and white checked tablecloths and red plates and utensels. Give each of your guests a bandana (you can probably get them cheaply from a dollar store or just get fabric and cut it. Play Pin-the-bandana-on-the-cowboy with a prize for the one who comes closest. If you have a dog, put steer horns on him/her and also a bandana. Go with western stuff. Look at for interesting stuff.

Chris asked:

Occasion: Housewarming Party/Open House
Dear Party Girl, Would it be all right for me to keep a guest >book on my entryway table so that my guests, especially my new neighbors >can sign in? Since I'm new to the neighborhood, I don't know everyone's >names and can't keep the ones I do know straight. This way I can match >the name with the face and the address. >

The Party Girl's advice is:

Absolutely. Why not have them write a little something along with their name and address.

Vallarie asked:

Occasion: Housewarming
I have been to your sights provided on housewarmings and do >plan on setting up buffets throughout the house with the menu items(great >idea). You mentioned to let your friends know how important they are--by >doing what? Like something to take home w/ them like @ a wedding >reception? Also, my husband wants me to send invites to family/friends >that live out of town w/ the card where we are registered @ to suggest >sending a gift. Is that tacky. This is the first house we bought and all >of our local friends keep asking us when we are having our housewarming-we >are planning it to be open house--do you put on the invites open house >between what time to what time?? Also if you have any other suggestions >that I may have missed, feel free to inform me. Thank you for your time. >

The Party Girl's advice is:

It is tacky to send out where you registered to anyone. If they ask, they ask, otherwise, just accept the gift graciously and if you don't like it, exchange it. Include the times of the open house. As for acknowledging the importance of a friendship, you might want to give each person who attends, a piece of paper that entitles them to visit again, any time they wish and however often. Write out something clever to that effect and put it on a smallish piece of paper. Roll the paper and tie with a ribbon like a diploma. If you inow that someone can't attend because they live too far away, I don't know if I would send an invite. It might look like you're asking for a present. tacky.

Brenda Yeager asked:

Occasion: Housewarmin
What is the proper etquitte? for a housewarmin. >

The Party Girl's advice is:

You invie people that you like and want to see your new home. They will probably bring you a gift unless you tell them not to. Don't open them at the party in case some don't bring anything. From then on, the pary is just a party like any other, with food and drink and possibly some games.

MM asked:

Occasion: housewarming
I've written to you before. Please accept my apologies if I'm repeating myself. I want to know if it's proper to throw a housewarming party for yourself. My husband thinks it's crass because he doesn't want it to look like we're asking for gifts (though they would be acceptable.)

The Party Girl's advice is:

Don't have a housewarming but a welcome to our new home. Lots of people have parties when they move to show their friends and relatives their new home. It's not asking if you call it a party. Should anyone bring a gift, put it aside and open after the party.

Albert Nault asked:

Occasion: House Warming
Hi! >I just recently purchased a home and going to have a house warming >party.There will be approx 20 to 30 people invited, as a rule is it the host >of such parties obligated to supply all foods and liquor. >This is my first time ever throwing such a party and have never been to a >housewarming.Any advice you can offer will be appreciated. >Thanks!

The Party Girl's advice is:

Well, that all depends. You could provide everything. You could have the guests bring their own beverages. You could arrange a "pot luck" and assign dishes to different people and provide some yourself. There are no rules. It's what you and your guests are going to be comfortable doing.

Diane asked:

Occasion: housewarming
\I'm having a housewarming party and requested that no one bring >gifts. I also know my oldest & closest will most likely disregard this. >How do I receive gifts without making those that didn't bring one (AS >REQUESTED) uncomfortable? Do I open them after all have left? >

The Party Girl's advice is:

Since you know this will happen be prepared with an uncluttered table top in an unconspicuous place (not the front hall) and put the gifts there. Since not all guests will bring something, open them after the party in private.

Michelle Exum asked:

Occasion: Housewarming
I need ideas for an evening housewarming party for adults.

The Party Girl's advice is:

First of all, check out the other parties on my q&a at also check out the themes at I am sure you'll find someething... I think you should stick to an open house. And as you will see in the forum, I suggest games where people move from room to room so you don't have to give those awful "tours."

Michelle asked:

Occasion: housewarming
My husband and I are hosting a housewarming in late March and want some new and interesting ideas to spark our guest. Any suggestions?

The Party Girl's advice is:

Check out my different themes at should be something there that sparks your interest (there is one specifically for housewarmings). As well, I usually suggest some kind of scavenger hunt to make sure they go see every room (and so you don't have to give those silly tours and leave your other guests staring into space. Any of the themes can be tailored to your needs.

Kirsty asked:

Occasion: housewarming
>> Hi this is Kristy and I was looking at your web page about >>housewarming party. Do you have any good games to play? I am hosting one in >>about a week. If you can give me any ideas of what to do that would be great >>or if you can lead me to a another web page that would be appreciated also. >>It's just about 10 of us getting together for a suprise. Thanks. >> >> >> >>Kristy :) >>

The Party Girl's advice is:

Oops. Kristy. I must have missed this e-mail. I am sorry. I hope all went well. In the future, a scavenger hunt is great when doing a housewarming--it sends people to all of the rooms. And there is a book by Penny Warner about Party Games you can get at a local party store or at the library. Sorry again.

Karla asked:

Occasion: House warming party ideas
Please send any ideas that you know of for house warming parties. There is not much information out there for these kind of parties.

The Party Girl's advice is:

Karla, did you check out our housewarming parties in our themes section??! are two. We even have the invitations to go with each. First you have to decide if this is an open house or a party party...then you would go from there. You might even want to include a scavenger hunt for fun that takes people through each room.

Monica asked:

Occasion: housewarming
Hello, I would like more information on the "housewarming" theme to parties. Knock, knock...who's there?

The Party Girl's advice is:

It's an open house, since that is a great way to entertain. There is a great invitation available ($1 each), that is a front door with a door SusanA. Probably available at your local stationery store. If you do find these invitations, put your last name in the space provided on the door knocker and use the bottom half to give the important details like time, place, host/hostess, date, etc. Set up buffets throughout the house to get people to move around and use fun "welcome" graphics to list the different menu items (using a mini-easel on the back to prop them up; available at local art stores for 49 each). For special touches, use votive candles in the shape of little houses (we can find these for you); buy (or make) "hello" tags that look like welcome mats (easily done on your computer); print "welcome to the [your name here]" on the cocktail napkins and guest towels; etc. For an extra added WOW...order mini-chocolate houses or the word "welcome" out of chocolate from your local chocolate store. As people enter, pass out a different "knock knock" joke to each...that way they can have fun with the other guests.

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