The Ultimate Hostess Guide: 10 Essentials to Make Entertaining Feel Effortless

When I first moved into my own place fresh of out college, the thing I was most excited about was hosting. Back then, “entertaining” consisted of pouring wine into whatever cups I had and serving snacks on a collection of hand-me-down dishes. But hey, every hostess starts somewhere. Over the years, I’ve slowly accumulated enough entertaining essentials that I can easily whip up a cheese board or set the table for eight without breaking a sweat (or making a panicked, last-minute trip to Williams Sonoma). With the right basics, you can truly be ready for any type of gathering at a moment’s notice.

Whether you’re hosting a dinner party, a holiday gathering, a special celebration, or a simple get-together with friends, there are a few items that’ll come in handy whenever you have guests over. These are the essentials every hostess should have on hand to make entertaining a breeze:

1. Good Quality Wine

No gathering would be complete without something for guests to sip on, and wine is one of the most crowd-pleasing options out there. If you plan to host regularly, be sure to keep a good selection of wine stocked so you’re always ready for an impromptu get-together. And if you really want to be the hostess with the mostess, it’s time to take your wine shopping seriously. Instead of aimlessly wandering the wine aisle and picking something on a whim, take the time to find a high-quality wine you love and keep a few bottles stocked.

Here at The Everygirl, we recommend La Crema as our go-to brand because each of their wines is elegant, naturally balanced, and always top-notch in quality. If you’re growing your collection, this set of La Crema’s Sonoma Coast Chardonnay and Pinot Noir is great to have in your arsenal for a trusty red and a crowd-favorite white. Their vibrant, rich Chardonnay pairs beautifully with seafood and mild cheese, while their bold, layered Pinot Noir boasts a smooth finish that’ll keep your guests coming back for more.

La Crema
Sonoma Coast Chardonnay and Pinot Noir Set

Use code LCEVERYGIRL and get 15% off + free shipping if you order 4+ bottles!

Shop now

2. A Set of Nice Wine Glasses

No matter what kind of gatherings you plan to host, a nice set of wine glasses is a must. Ditch the mismatched glassware and upgrade to a set of 6-8 matching wine glasses (the kind with stems, people!) for an easy way to elevate your hosting game. Now, if you’re serious about entertaining, you might want to invest in a set of both red wine glasses and white wine glasses. But if you don’t want to bother with buying and storing multiple styles of glassware, grab a set of universal wine glasses that work for all different types of wine.

Crate & Barrel
Hip Wine Glasses
Shop now

3. Candlesticks

Candles are the ultimate way to add ambiance to any tablescape, and long taper candles are especially chic. Keep a set of candlesticks on hand so you can easily spruce up your table with a more elegant feel. I love the antique look of these brass ones, but you could also choose a colored glass or matte black version for a more contemporary look.

Crate & Barrel
Antique Brass Taper Candle Holders

2 colors available

Shop now

4. A Charcuterie Board

Whether you’re serving just a small selection of cheeses or a whole array of meats, cheeses, and accouterments, charcuterie boards are always a good idea. Make sure you have a nice serving board on hand so you can easily throw one together before guests come over. You can’t go wrong with a classic wooden cutting board, or you could opt for one made from marble or slate for an elevated look. Bonus: These entertaining essentials can also work as kitchen decor when you’re not using them.

Crate & Barrel
Acacia Round Serving Board

4 colors available

Shop now

5. Cheese Knives

Hot tip: A regular old butter knife isn’t the best tool for cutting into a soft, sticky wheel of brie. To make everything on your cheese board easy to cut and serve, cheese knives are your best bet. Grab a set that includes a few different styles of knives so you’re set for any type of cheese you choose.

Pottery Barn
White Marble Cheese Knives
Shop now

6. A Large Serving Platter

For serving everything from appetizers to the main course, you’re going to need a serving platter. A classic porcelain platter makes a great investment because you can use it for any occasion and they’re typically dishwasher-safe. The angled corners on these platters add a little something special to an otherwise basic piece.

Williams Sonoma
Octagonal Porcelain Serving Platter
Shop now

7. A Glass Pitcher

Whether you use it for a pre-mixed cocktail, iced tea, or plain old water, a glass pitcher is an entertaining essential you’ll reach for again and again. Set out a pitcher full of your beverage of choice ahead of time, so your guests can easily refill their own drinks and you won’t have to keep dashing back and forth to the fridge.

Modern Glass Pitcher
Shop now

8. Linen Napkins

Your guests deserve something a little nicer than a paper napkin, so if you don’t have any linens to speak of, it’s time to invest in a set of cloth napkins. How many you need will depend on the size of gatherings you plan to host, but having 8-12 matching napkins on hand is generally enough. Napkins typically come in sets of four, six, or eight, so grab a couple of sets if you plan to host larger gatherings. These neutral linen napkins will go with any table decor and are versatile enough to take you from casual gatherings to fancy dinners. Plus, the off-white color makes them easy to keep clean.

European Linen Napkins

6 colors available

Shop now

9. An Ice Bucket

Ice is one of those things that guests are always going to ask for, so get ahead of the game by stocking an ice bucket before the party starts. Whether you stash it by the bar to use for cocktails or place it on the table to chill the wine, perfectly chilled drinks are an extra touch that your guests will definitely appreciate.

Stainless Steel Ice Bucket
Shop now

10. A Timeless Vase

Every good tablescape needs a centerpiece, but you don’t have to stock a bunch of different vases to suit every occasion. Instead, choose one timeless vessel you can use with all sorts of different flowers and fillers. This classic ceramic vase would look just as pretty filled with fluffy hydrangeas as it would with spindly fall branches.

Pottery Barn
Handcrafted Ceramic Vase
Shop now

8 Easy Hacks to Make Your Grocery Store Flowers Look Like an Expensive Arrangement

This post contains a sponsored inclusion of La Crema, but all of the opinions within are those of The Everygirl editorial board.


您的电子邮箱地址不会被公开。 必填项已用 * 标注