Making a space that usually fits four people functional for a huge dinner party is never easy, but it has to be done when Thanksgiving comes around and you find yourself playing hostess to 10 or more people. Although it can be a challenge to accommodate that many people, it can certainly be done with the right plan in mind.
Unorganization equals chaos, which you can’t have during such an important holiday event. When you have a large amount of people depending on you to deliver a fun, functional Thanksgiving dinner, you’ll want to get as organized as possible for the event.
First off, evaluate your space and your current assets. Think about how many chairs you have and how much table space. If you don’t have enough chairs for everyone, make a plan to borrow or buy more for the occasion. If you don’t have enough table or bar space, add that to your list of things to figure out.
Next, make a plan for the actual dining experience. Know exactly where your food is going to be served and how much space you’ll need for it. It might be a good idea to pull out as many serving dishes and platters as you will be using on the big day and organize them on the table to make sure they will all fit. Make sure no dish gets left in the kitchen due to lack of space on this special day.
With more people than you are used to serving in a room, it might be tempting to separate your guests into different rooms with different tables. However, everyone will likely want to eat together and there are plenty of other ways to manage it.
If your living room is larger than your dining room, set up your tables and chairs there.
If your dining room table isn’t big enough to fit everyone, move it out to the largest room in the house and arrange tables and chairs to accommodate everyone. Move any existing furniture in the room to another room if necessary and make sure the room doesn’t feel too crowded once the tables and chairs are set up.
If you have the seating arrangements figured out, but serving food at the table is a problem, set up the food on a sideboard or buffet table along the wall of your dining room.
Eat outside on picnic tables or blankets if the weather permits.
Set up a separate small table in the kitchen for the kids.
Use end tables, coffee tables, or your bar to hold drinks and hors d’oeuvres.
Finish off your space arrangements with classy Thanksgiving decorations. Set each table you use with a festive, fall table cloth, and don’t forget the centerpieces. Even if your space isn’t as large as it could be for your Thanksgiving dinner, you can use a little intuition and the right furnishings to make it perfect for your guests.