Throwing a winter-themed eco-friendly dinner party may seem a bit daunting. But, don’t let it frustrate you. It’s easier than you think. I can help you throw a “green” dinner party, that will leave your guests feeling inspired and a little more aware of their carbon footprint in 5 easy steps. From invites to dinnerware, I will turn your next winter-themed party into an eco-friendly event that will be the talk of the neighborhood for years to come. I like to build my party around snowflakes when I entertain in winter.
1. Invitations. Don’t use excess paper by sending out invitations through the mail. Instead, send out evites to your guests. They are eco-friendly, convenient, and there is no paper waste. I always use evites.com. There are many winter-themed invites to choose from, like snowflake patterns and winter scenery patterns, to name a few. I always choose the snowflake pattern. http://new.evite.com/#gallery/select_category:page=2&category=winter_holidays
2. Table Settings. I like to use linen table cloths and napkins for my guests. They can be washed and reused over and over again. For a winter-themed party, I use silver and gold pieces. They can be picked up over time, and are usually up to 70% off after the holidays. I use my placesettings and silverware. If you don’t own a set of winter-themed ware, borrow from a friend. White or clear pieces work well for a winter, snowflake themed party too. Bottom line, there’s nothing to throw away after your party is done.
3. Centerpieces and Decorations. I fill a crystal bowl up with pinecones, and evergreen pieces that I’ve collected from the yard, and place them in the center of my table for a winter-themed party. Next, I add a few drops of cinnamon oil. The fragrance is wonderful, and uplifting. If you don’t have these items in your yard, feel free to use other organic pieces like fresh oranges. I hang snowflakes from my chandelier that I’ve cut from recyclable paper. They can be thrown in the recycling bin when finished. Finally, I use soy candles or LED votive candles to set the mood. They are placed on either side of my centerpiece. This way, you cut down on electricity costs.
4. Menu. I make a hearty, vegetable stew from ingredients that I froze from my garden, like: carrots, potatoes, peppers, onions, and tomatos. I serve warm bread that I’ve made myself, and apple pie for dessert. The apples came from a neighbor’s tree, and the pies were made in fall and frozen. If this meal doesn’t suit you, try shopping for local, or organic ingredients. Whole Foods is a great place to start.
If there is any waste, it goes in a compost out back. If you don’t have a compost, send leftovers home with your guests in reusable containers.
5. Party Favors. I like to send my guests home with a small potted herb, like mint, basil, or oregano. They can use these herbs when they cook in their homes. I write their names on the pots, and they serve as place cards too. I decorate the pots with snowflakes that I’ve drawn on them in a silver or gold marker.
Throwing a winter-themed eco-friendly party is easy. I hope I’ve given you some simple ideas to use next time you want to entertain family and friends, by doing it a little greener.