Wednesday, August 17, 2011

I Wish My REAL Friends Were Here

I can't believe nobody's here yet!
. . . well, except for you guys.
Dear Bashionista,

Let's say that invitations have gone out for a party you're planning and people have started RSVPing. But then you find out that one of your favorite people on the guest list can't make it that night. Is it wrong to make up an excuse and switch the date?

Susan D

This is actually a pretty lousy thing to do and I'll tell you why: A host shouldn't play favorites. Nobody wants to think of themselves as party filler.

The people who are willing to carve time out of their busy schedules to show up at your house - these are the people to favor. Messaging your guests and saying, hey, it looks like this new date will work better for most people! is really pretty insulting to the people who can no longer make it. 

Ok, but what if we're talking about my favorite FAVORITE person? I really can't switch the date? 

Not ALL of your friends
will be this excited about
making Steampunk costumes -
plan accordingly.

The time to play favorites is *before* the invites go out. Throwing a party with the sole purpose of impressing that girl you've been crushing on? By all means, do a little recon work and find a date that works for her. Planning an event that you know half a dozen of your friends will totally geek out about? Sure - put out feelers ahead of time, and let them know you're going to be completely democratic about picking the date.

But if plans change, and your long-lost best friend had to change her flight and will be missing the social event of the century . . . well, that's a wicked shame, but the two of you can make amazing plans together to make up for it - and you won't have to alienate the rest of your friends by switching things on them.

Wait, what if I stick with the date and it looks like hardly anybody can make it??

Now we're having a party.

Here's the thing: All it takes to make it a party is you and one other person with smiles on your faces.

If you invited 50 and only 5 can make it, message your loyal followers and gently downgrade their expectations. Hey guys! Just wanted to let you know Saturday is looking impossible for a lot of people. But we'll still be here having a chill, fun time - I'm so glad you can make it! Sadie's still bringing her lemon squares and they're like crack. See you then!

There is not a party host alive who has not been disappointed by low turnout at some point. Don't take it personally, and don't take it out on your guests. Roll that disappointment into a little ball and smother it in buttercream - tell yourself this is for the best! You are now hosting an intimate gathering where you'll actually have time to enjoy yourself. And when in doubt, your party can always morph into a Game Night.

But what if something actually *does* come up and I have to change the date?

Here, timing is everything. More than once I have sent out an evite and immediately gotten a response from someone saying, Ack! I was about to send out MY evite for the same day!! Can you change it? In that case, I'd consider changing the date only if I hadn't heard back from anyone else. If I had heard back positively from even one person, I'd sooner changed the *time* - I'd hold a pre-party at my house, and then we'd all hop over to party #2.

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