Friday, April 22, 2011

14 people for dinner!

Monday night I hosted a Passover seder at my house.  My dad's side of the family is Jewish, but I was raised Unitarian Universalist so we never had a seder at our house.  I have, however, been to plenty and it's always been one of my favorite holidays.  So when a friend mentioned that she had never been to one, I decided it was time for me to hold my own.  I invited friends and family and ended up with 14 people saying yes.  Fourteen!  In my teeny tiny house.  But I made it work.

First up was clearing out my living room by moving the brown chest and the coffee table upstairs.  I also took my TV upstairs so I could use the bookcase as a sideboard.

Then I moved in a folding table borrowed from my mom and 5 of her folding chairs to add to my 2 folding chairs, my 4 Ikea chairs, 1 random straight chair and the wicker and orange chairs.  I considered just using my couch as seating, but it's too low.  The two tables were perpendicular to each other, which was mandated by the space but also added a fun dynamic.  At least I like to think so :)

Sorry for the blurry pictures - they were the best I had. 

As people arrived with bottles of wine, I told them to just plop them on the table and head outside for cocktails.  As I continued to prep, I rearranged the stuff on the tables and the wine ended up on the bookcase-turned-sideboard.

Next was gathering dishes.  I have 5 Apilco Tradition dinner plates from Williams Sonoma that I adore.  Adore!  But they're kinda pricey.  And I really don't need a dozen of them.  So I started researching and turns out that Pottery Barn's Caterer set is the best value.  A dozen white plates for $49 + a 10% off coupon.  Can't beat that with a bat (believe me, I tried), so I bought them. 

Harder to find were decent soup bowls.  Matzoh ball soup is pretty much a requirement at Passover, but then I've often thought about serving soups or pasta for a dinner party, but don't have enough bowls.  Again, I have 2 from Apilco (the Tres Grande style this time), but again, they're too pricey to buy by the dozen.  At least for my lifestyle.  So I supplemented with 6 from Target.  They're an inch narrower and kinda shallow, but they were cheap and they were just fine.  The others were some that I've had forever - also from Williams Sonoma, but they have this raised pattern that I kinda hate because food gets trapped in the crevices.  Replacing those with Apilco is pretty high on my wishlist, but I had lots more to buy so not happening right now.

Target really did make up most of my purchases.  Oneida flatware, sold in sets of 6.  Champagne and water glasses bought online where they were having a sale.  Seder and matzoh plates.  Tablecloths.  Napkins.  Napkin rings.  A runner to go on top of the bookcase.  A new platter and serving bowl.  All are items that were perfect for this dinner, will be perfect for future dinner parties and that are useful to just have in general. 

I also hit up Salvation Army.  I went there looking for brass candlesticks and came home with 5 - plus a really pretty porcelain bowl decorated with blue, green and yellow flowers.  I adore this bowl and can't believe someone gave it away.  I also borrowed two candlesticks from my sister and brought two down from the bookcase in the spare bedroom.

Everything else I already had and I'm pretty excited that the next time I have a big dinner party, I shouldn't have to buy anything at all!




Nicole said...

Hey lady. Love your blog. It's amazing how well you accommodated that many people in your house. But you always make it work and manage to make everything look fabulous in the process.

jolly said...

The food looks good and I bet it was fun.Conference Venues