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To feel sad my house doesn't do dinner parties??

(96 Posts)
bordellosboheme Sun 29-Sep-13 18:08:37

When I was a girl I wanted to grow up and live in an elegant house and throw dinger parties.

However, I have ended up in a house without a dining room.... A small kitchen, and so I've not invited anyone round to dinner in 5 years.

My next door neighbours do this every weekend..... I feel sad.....

bordellosboheme Sun 29-Sep-13 18:09:12

Haha dinner not dinger!

WorldPeaceAndFreeProsecco Sun 29-Sep-13 18:09:43

Where do you eat your dinner?

nokidshere Sun 29-Sep-13 18:09:51

Have an outdoor one on a nice evening?

shoppingbagsundereyes Sun 29-Sep-13 18:10:59

Where do you eat usually? I have been to some lovely dinner parties where the food has been on a big coffee table in the middle of the room and we've all sat round, chatting and scoffing. Good friends and good food = dinner party IMO, don't let the lack of 'posh' stuff stop you enjoying dinner with friends in your home.

whatshallwedo Sun 29-Sep-13 18:11:28

Don't feel sad, I personally can't think of anything worse and now that dp has left I no longer have to worry about them.

Enjoy going to other peoples and be the perfect guest - win win good food and company, no cooking or clearing up!

yes I am aware I sound unsociable

itried Sun 29-Sep-13 18:11:39

A folding or gateleg table in the sitting room?

Inclusionist Sun 29-Sep-13 18:11:50

Put on a conservatory and have them there?

I know what you mean though, I don't live in the house I though I would have. This partly stems from living close to London and partly from having first bought in 2005 and therefore never having owned a property that appreciated. You are not alone!

Bowlersarm Sun 29-Sep-13 18:13:50

Put a table in your sitting room. Buy a fold up/small one you can push to the side when you're not using it.

In my experience, people are very happy to be invited to dinner. It doesn't have to be on a designated dining room.

Laquitar Sun 29-Sep-13 18:14:05

Yes you can do mexican, lebanesse, indian, you dont need dining table for these,

SkinnybitchWannabe Sun 29-Sep-13 18:17:22

Thats no excuse! I invite people to my house all the time. We use fold up tables.

harticus Sun 29-Sep-13 18:44:42

My dinner parties consist of mates squeezed on to sofas and chairs and balancing plates on their knees. They are legendarily good.
It is about the food and friendship not furniture and rooms.

kennyp Sun 29-Sep-13 18:46:05

food is an extra when we have people over. usually just wine and stuff that happens to be hot and edible. no-one's every complained to my face ;)

stillenacht Sun 29-Sep-13 18:48:44

I feel like this toohmm I remember my parents having raucous dinner partiessmile Our DS2 has low functioning autism. Its just not possible in this househmm Also feel like that about bbqs too in the Summer (if we left doors unlocked for guests he would run into road and many other reasons why its impossiblehmm)

Talkinpeace Sun 29-Sep-13 19:00:25

Do an "american picnic" as we did in my NCT days
if you have space in your garden, site it there otherwise read on

garden :
four people are asked to being starters
four people are asked to provide canapes
six people are asked to being main courses
three people are asked to bring puddings
have SHED LOADS of Lidl cava in, and a pile of paper plates and cups
go for it
top the whole thing with the drum from an old washing machine as the ultimate brazier to do the washing up wink

not garden :
exactly the same but bring a couple of tables and then troop back to yours for the bonfire

plastic garden chairs are £1 a time from the dump at this time of year - I buy them by the dozen, they last another 5 years

but be willing to be odd as then everybody has more fun

THE BEST BBQ I ever went to had a whole sirloin on the grill and people cut slices off it and turned them into fajitas at the next (teeny table) beer was in a muck bucket full of ice

whois Sun 29-Sep-13 20:43:43

Oh don't be so defeatist. Lebanese style with food on the coffee table and all sitting round on cushions. Sit on sofas with plates and trays. Folding tables. Garden.

We've not got a table at the mo so have friends round and eat round the coffee table. Not as elegant as a nicely laid out table but just as fun.

CoffeeTea103 Sun 29-Sep-13 20:56:09

As much as it is about the setting, the most important parts of a dinner party is the food and hospitality. If you want a dinner party just have it! Don't let your situation stop you.

YoureBeingADick Sun 29-Sep-13 21:00:55

good thread!!

I have the same problem- tiny kitchen and no dining room so don't have people over but thanks to this thread I think I will now!! great suggestions.

thank you all smile

bordellosboheme Mon 30-Sep-13 14:21:15

Thank you for these fan suggestions!!! My dp acquired a washing machine inner but I got rid... Oops. Anyway, love them. Part of is also I've lost confidence that people might want to spend time with me so I want the house to do the talking! Oh that sounds moany doesn't it? I will definitely note the ideas on this thread!

Lj8893 Mon 30-Sep-13 14:28:00

I would love to go to a dinner party on cushions around a coffee table. Our local indian restaurant has an upstairs room just like that and we always choose to sit up there if there's a few of us!

My mil has a large coffee table that has mini stools that slot in underneath, i love it!

MaxPepsi Mon 30-Sep-13 14:35:10

I have a problem with entertaining too, in the fact I do it to much!

Do you have room for a table full stop?
Get a plastic garden table with removable legs and some fold down chairs. A nice fancy tablecloth over it with some tea lights/confetti/decoration of choice (or a plain white/coloured sheet)

Food on the table, try tapas? Easier than you think and very impressive. Bowls of nibbly food dotted around and chairs in any haphazard way in the room.

Bucket in the kitchen with ice for beers/wine - a gazebo just outside your back door if you are able with some battery fairy lights for the smokers etc with another bucket for beer

And most of all - have fun!

Have a fireworks party for your first one? Gives you time to get organised and you can just do big vats of chilli/curry/rice/jkt spuds for everyone

Deliaskis Mon 30-Sep-13 14:37:27

I honestly don't think it's just your house. I think dinner parties have in any case become less formal these days. People don't want to fret so much about using the right cutlery, and it really is more about good food and good company than it is about the proportions of the room. Even watching the smug marrieds dinner party in Bridget Jones felt a bit old-fashioned and that was years ago.

It's all a bit more relaxed these days, size of house aside. Jamie and Nigella et al are always talking about having food on big wooden boards and everyone eating with their hands etc.

There's lots you can do without a dining room, as people have suggested above, and when you really need a table to sit at (e.g. roast dinner), then just put a folding or patio table up in the living room.

People really do want to just have a nice time.

LRDMaguliYaPomochTebeSRaboti Mon 30-Sep-13 14:41:26

If you're not confident about people having enough to talk about, why not start low-key and invite people round to watch a good spooky film for Halloween or something? You can do cosy food like a big autumn soup that's easy to eat without a table, and light lots of candles, and it'll be all atmospheric but you won't need to worry about keeping the conversation going.

That's easier than a dinner party if you're not very confident about the chat - but then the next time it will feel easier, too.

hellsbellsmelons Mon 30-Sep-13 14:42:41

Sounds like my sisters situation.
She still has people round for dinner.
Usually a take away on knees and some people on the floor.
Always great fun and everyone leaves very well fed and lubricated!

GinAndIt Mon 30-Sep-13 15:03:36

Yep, takeaway on knees or big bowls of chili etc with people sitting on the floor, plenty of booze, no problems grin

I remember my parents having dinner parties, every weekend it seemed. But my mum would get terribly stressed about them and I'm not sure she ever had that much fun. It is nice to make a proper effort now and again but tbh I think most people just want booze, chat and something yummy in a bowl.

I'd love to have a garden to barbecue in but since I live in on the third floor that's not really an option. As for 'putting on a conservatory'...

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