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If youíre planning to do mixed drinks at all, forget about the DIY school of beverage dispersal: it just doesnít work. Unless you happen to hang with a crowd of professional cocktail-slingers, the majority of your friends wonít have a clue how to mix their own margaritas. While itís very hospitable indeed to encourage your guests to make free use of your liquor cabinet, the only sure way to make sure that the gin actually gets good use is to make and serve those martinis yourself. Offering a specific drink, by the way, is also an excellent way to get people drinking Ė "Iím making Lemon Drops Ė can I get you one?" generally meets with far more enthusiastic response than the vague "Is there anything I can get you to drink?"

6 Remember to make introductions. This, of course, isnít an issue when youíre throwing one of those gatherings where everyone invited happens to already know each other. But when youíre trying to mix crowds, itís way too easy for each sub-group to segregate into their separate little corners of the party pad. Never assume that your friends will take it upon themselves to make the appropriate introductions themselves Ė because in most situations, they wonít.

7 Get rid of all clocks. Tuck that cute little Japanese clock that normally sits on your fireplace mantle into a cabinet for the evening; remove the wall clock or at the very least, take out its battery (if youíre feeling really sly, you might even set the clock back a couple of hours). Seriously, itís an amazingly lame but 100 percent proven fact that people have a tendency to rather suddenly get tired as soon as they realize that itís past their normal bedtime.

8 Have fun, be cool. The host sets the mood for the entire party. If someone shatters a glass, spills red wine all over your white sofa, projectile vomits in the hallway a mere two steps from the bathroom towards which they were no doubt heading, resist all urges to scream and throw a hissyfit, and squelch the impulse to hyperventilate over whether the stains will ever come out of your prized furnishings. 

9 Entertain often. Throw big parties and small parties, elaborate themed events and spontaneous get-togethers and learn your style. As the old clichť goes, practice makes perfect.


check out these related articles:
get into the groove | prep a perfect part pad | floorplan for a fab fete | easy party foods

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