Entertaining in a Small Space — Picnic Style!

Host a holiday gathering picnic style around your coffee table

Host a holiday gathering picnic style around your coffee table

At Ballard Designs, we’re big believers that everyone should entertain, no matter how big or small your home is and no matter how many projects you’ve marked off your decorating To Do list. Entertaining isn’t about perfection, it’s about hospitality! If you have a studio apartment or a small home, consider hosting a holiday gathering picnic-style around your coffee table. Here’s how we did it.

Velvet floor cushions for hosting a small space holiday gathering

There’s something so romantic and nostalgic about sitting on the floor of your living room, laughing and telling stories with friends. It’s almost like a slumber party! We embraced the coziness of this space and brought in a stack of super soft velvet floor cushions. Your guests won’t mind crowding around the coffee table when they can sit on these plush pillows!

Treat your coffee table just like you would your dining table by adding a pretty flower arrangement and votive candles

We treated our round Bornova Coffee Table like we would a dining table by adding a pretty linen table runner, a floral centerpiece, and votive candles. It’s those special details that add charm and make your guests feel taken care of.

Turn your entry console into a bar or buffet

If your coffee table is on the small side, consider turning your entry console into a bar or buffet.Tuck away what might normally live here (your keys, a stack of books, a bowl for corralling things),  and add an ice bucket with a bottle of wine, some glasses, and maybe some light snacks. Voilà!

Turn your entry console into a bar or buffet

The key to small space entertaining is repurposing what you have to fit the function you need for your party. Then add special details like flowers and pretty glasses to give your repurposed drink or dessert station the gravitas it deserves!

Use a bar cart for desserts or appetizers

With that idea in mind, if you already have a bar cart, consider turning it into a dessert station or a spot for appetizers. This pretty little bar cart (our Jules Bar Cart) is serving up both drinks and desserts! Another easy idea for serving drinks? Plug up your kitchen sink, fill it with ice, and it becomes an beverage tub!

Hosting in a small space is all about rethinking what you have and using it in a new way. Bring in special details and you don’t have to worry about whether you have enough chairs!

Find more holiday entertaining ideas, or browse Holiday inspiration on our Pinterest boards.

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Caroline McDonald

Caroline lives for pairing together patterns, mixing furniture styles, and oogling over our newest furniture pieces. As you can imagine, her little 1920's craftsman is in a constant state of flux. Here on How to Decorate, it's her goal to help you turn your home into your own little slice of paradise.