Staying in is the new going out and we’re all trying to up the ante with our dinner parties. You’ve heard about tablescaping, now we’re bringing you ‘beautyscaping’ (cue the Caudalie crackers) and some handy hosting tips from former beauty journalist and award-winning restaurateur Ravinder Bhogal to ensure your guests leave impressed.
"Personalise your seating plan by putting a festive beauty gift in each guest’s place."
A Scents Of Occasion
Keep your guests happy by choosing clean and simple candles that don’t overpower or fight with all the delicious cooking smells emanating from the kitchen. Ravinder suggests avoiding anything too sweet, floral or powdery, “I tend to pick more earthy and natural aromas. My all-time favourite scented candles are Diptyque Feu de Bois Scented Candle, $38.00 and Diptyque Figuier Scented Candle, $38.00 and I always have these burning when entertaining.”
Set The Scene
A handful of thoughtful finishing flourishes will make your friends and family feel truly spoilt. Personalise your seating plan by putting a festive beauty gift in each guest’s place, we love , By Terry’s Baume de Rose Bauble, and Jo Loves Pomelo Bauble, $55.00.
Ravinder’s trademark table touch involves locally sourced vegetables. “I love weaving and working whole artichokes, radicchio lettuce leaves and bunches of grapes in rich and decadent jewel tones, into my flower displays,” says Ravinder. “You can use everything up afterwards too, so nothing goes to waste.”
The Main Event
When it comes to food, Ravinder suggests switching out overly formal sit-down dining with luxurious help-yourself sharing platters, grazing tables and DIY drinks stations. “The last thing you need at Christmas is to be missing out on chatting with your nearest and dearest, so make it easy for yourself by doing the hard work beforehand and adopt a more relaxed approach to wining and dining.” She suggests simple but delicious charcuterie, cheese and deli boards with plenty of rustic bread on the side. Instead of constantly topping up drinks, pop a bottle of bubbles in an ice bucket and leave the spirits and mixers on a drinks trolley for people to help themselves.
The Powder Room
Don’t forget to give your bathroom a quick once over before your guests arrive. Now that handwashing has become more important than ever, treat visitors to the ultimate luxury with Aesop Resurrection Aromatique Hand Wash, $39.00 and Aesop Resurrection Aromatique Hand Balm, $30.00.