Galentines Day is right around the corner! Just in case you don’t know, it takes place on the day before Valentine’s Day because “chicks before ….!” My college girlfriends and I always did an unofficial Galentines Day party before the day was officially called that. It’s such a great excuse to get a group of friends together to eat, drink and chat. If you’re interested in hosting a Galentines Day celebration with your fav gals, read on for some easy event tips!
VENUE, DATE + GUEST LIST
First and foremost, you need a venue, a date and a guest list. For me those three things always go hand in hand. I chose a date a couple weeks before the official Galentines Day so that I had enough time to share this blog post with you all. Plus, Aaron happened to go out of town to visit some friends in LA, so it was the perfect excuse to have my gals over!
I knew that I wanted to have the party at my house because there are a couple specific activities that I wanted to do (keep reading to find out what they are) and it’s definitely easier to do those activities at home. I’ve been to Galentines Parties at restaurants, which makes it easier on the host in terms of preparation time and cost of throwing a party. If you want to host at your house, but can’t imagine prepping all of the food and drinks then you can always ask friends to chip in and bring something.
Guest list is easy… obviously it’s your Galentines! A couple different ways to invite your guest list is an old fashioned text message or phone call. I use Facebook events to create my events so that everyone on the guest list receives notifications. Not everyone is on Facebook, so I recommend texting your friends to follow-up if you don’t receive an RSVP. The best thing about using Facebook is that you can see if someone has seen the invite and you can manually move a guest from attending to not attending or to maybe. EventBrite is another software I like to use, but mostly for bigger events that are public. Facebook allows you to keep it private to your guest list only. I recommend giving your guests at least 2 weeks notice to RSVP or if you can offer them a whole month that is always nice too! If you’re not on Facebook, consider using Evite, Paperless Post or PunchBowl.
The menu is dependent on the time of the party and how many guests you’re having. This party was from 3-5pm, so it was after lunch, but before dinner. I kept it to light bites with crostini’s, meat and cheese, crackers and chips, hummus, brownies, funfetti cupcakes, wine, and greyhounds with fresh squeezed grapefruit juice. A couple different options is always nice in case not everyone loves the food you selected, but you don’t need to over do it either! I’ve found that I’m unable to eat off of shared platters at house parties, so I made sure to make everything gluten free and ask for any dietary restrictions. I didn’t receive any responses, but other allergies to be aware of besides gluten are dairy, nuts, vegan or vegetarian. The tricky part is contamination. I once got sick off of eating celery at a house gathering because of contamination with the platter it was on and/or the knife that was used to cut it. It seemed like a cruel joke the next day when I couldn’t get out of bed since celery is technically gluten free! Or if you’re not sure how to accommodate dietary restrictions, you can always let your guests know before hand that you’re unable to serve food they can eat. It might sound rude, but trust me I would rather know before hand that I should eat rather than wait and be starving during the party. I actually always plan to eat prior to a party or bring snacks, but the party I mentioned above went over and about an hour past the time I thought it ended I ended up leaving because I wasn’t feeling well.
If you want to see some of the items I picked up from the store, click here to view my Amazon list. The Udi’s French Baguettes were cut into crostini’s and I put a spread on them made out of butter, avocado oil, garlic powder, onion powder, and basil essential oil from Young Living. The five different types of cheese were purchased in one package from Costco as a “cheese taster” and the meat was a package of four different types also from Costco. I added two drops of peppermint essential oils from Young Living to the box of brownie mix to give it a faint taste of natural peppermint. I find that the gluten free brownies already have a denser and more dark chocolate taste, so in my opinion it goes nicely with a little peppermint taste. As for the bar, I added Ningxia to Pinot Noir, which is an antioxidant natural wolfberry supplement and I swear it helped with my hang over the next day. Only 2 ounces per bottle of wine is all you need. It doesn’t add much sweetness to the wine either. I offered a white wine and a fruit cocktail made of Tito’s Vodka and hand squeezed fresh grapefruit juice, which is a Fox household favorite especially during this time of year. My favorite find of all was Everything Bagel Hummus by Boar’s Head. I love Everything But The Bagel seasoning from Trader Joe’s, but never thought to put it in my hummus. Well done, Boar’s Head!
The most important thing to consider before purchasing decor is your theme! Throwing a Galentines party is easy to come up with a theme because it’s all about your gals and it’s so easy to use pinks and reds as the party colors. I knew that I wanted to stay away from a traditional red that we know and love for Valentines Day, plus I love pink! So, I went with “rose gold” colored decorations. I opted for a sequined table runner, pink roses, “Be My Galentine” banner, and Galentines themed photo booth props that also double as an activity for your guests. I purchased tissue flowers that you can make and sparkley circles that hang as decorations too, but I didn’t have time to construct those so I’m actually returning them to Amazon! One more thing to consider for decor is your plates, napkins, cups, and cutlery. Since I was having a more intimate gathering, I knew I had enough glassware and cutlery, so I opted for the rose gold plates, “Sip Sip Hooray” napkins and place cards that I used to label the different food and beverage items. Click here to see the full Amazon list of the items I ordered and other items that I considered ordering to match my theme.
Trust me, you can always plan a party around hanging out, drinking and eating, but if you feel like you need something to guide conversation or have something to entertain guests, then I highly suggest planning an activity beforehand and informing your guests. Here are some examples:
- DIY arts and crafts activity – we made sugar scrub and “love potion” out of Young Living essential oils. Click here for the full recipe and supplies for the Sugar Scrub. Click here for the full recipe for DIY Bath Bombs. Click here for the full recipe for the “Love Potion” Linen Spray.
- Games – similar to those you play at a bachelorette, like “nail polish or porn”, which is a hilarious game that makes you guess if the title is a name for a nail polish color or a pornography movie. I lose every time!
- Gift exchange – think white elephant gift exchange, but with items that people actually want. Make sure you explain to all guests what the price limit is and that it should be a new item already wrapped. The way I’ve always played is everyone draws a number out of the hat. The person who draws #1, goes first and is allowed to steal again at the end as long as the gift isn’t frozen. A gift is frozen after it’s been opened by one person, stolen by the second person, and is frozen when it’s stolen by the third person.
- Valentines Cards – if your guests know each other, ask them to bring Valentines for everyone. You could take it one step up and ask that everyone writes anonymous compliments for everyone attending and you as the facilitator helps to pass them out. Or you could assign one person to each guest and have them write the anonymous compliment for that person and then each read one aloud.
- Take home gifts – this really isn’t an activity, but if you want to really make your guests feel special, you can prepare a gift for them to take home with them. Courtney helped me plan the DIY activities and created home made bath bombs out of Young Living essential oils that are shaped as hearts! Aww! <3
- Dress on theme – depending on the theme and the guest list, it’s always fun to incorporate some type of dress code that is easy for everyone to adhere by. For this party, I asked for guests to dress in pink or red.
- Go to a show – after our party, three of us went and saw Chippendales, which was perfectly on theme! You could always go see a movie, a comedy show, a magic show, etc. – what ever you and your friends would want to do!
- Or maybe instead of doing anything at all, you could go out for drinks after or simply hang out at home!