Moving into a new home, especially if you own it, is a big deal. After all the packing, hauling, and unpacking, it’s time to throw yourself a party! What’s the purpose of a housewarming party, though? How does one even start, and how long after moving in?
A Brief History of Housewarming Parties
Housewarming parties have been around for centuries. In the medieval times, the tradition was to give new homeowners wood to warm the home, or hot soups, to warm bellies. Some believed that heating a home could ward off evil spirits.
Today, you’re far more likely to get a plant than wood, but food is still a common housewarming gift, as are other things designed to turn a house into a home.
When to Throw a Housewarming Party
If you’re waiting for your friends to throw you a housewarming party, you’ll probably wait a very long time. This is one party you have to throw yourself, which means you can make it exactly what you want. It’s usually best to throw the party after you are finished unpacking, and after pictures are hung on the walls. Waiting more than a year makes it seem more like just another party, which is fine, but don’t expect as many gifts.
How to Throw a Housewarming Party
Decide whether you want to throw a BYOB potluck or a more sophisticated party, where you provide the food and the alcohol. To make it both simple and sophisticated, have the party catered and serve a signature cocktail.
About three weeks before the party, email invitations to your friends. It’s a great idea to hand deliver some invitations to your neighbors. Ask everyone to RSVP, so you can plan accordingly.
Clean your house from top to bottom. Remember that people are there to get the grand tour. Keeping them out of your bedroom or bonus room just seems weird.
If your home is small, or if you have some friends who prefer day to night (or vice versa), consider an open house format. Let your friends and neighbors come and go as they please.
If you’re serious about gifts, you could consider registering at a department store, or even a home improvement store. Choose items at all price points, and if your friends don’t fulfill all your wishes, make some new friends. Kidding, of course, but at least it’s a list for your own benefit.
If you want to give your friends a bit more leeway, throw a theme party. Are you a cook, and want to stock your kitchen? Perhaps you’re a gardener; gardening tools, seeds, and seedlings, are always appropriate. Maybe you simply want to stock your bar. Ask your guests to bring liquor or bar glasses (who doesn’t need a set of Moscow mule mugs or martini glasses?)
Plan games and music. It is still a party, after all.