Rosie’s RoundUp - the Christmas party special

 
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You may have been eating mince pies since early October (Liz and Rin -  I’m looking at you!) but I think we can finally say that we are fast approaching ‘the most wonderful time of the year’. By which I mean the time of year when it’s totally acceptable to be wearing busy knits adorned with flashing lights and drinking mulled wine at any sort of event from mid-morning onwards, be it a networking meeting or a children’s carol performance.

Yes, it’s Christmaaaaaasss (don’t worry that’s my only appropriation from Christmas music) and this month’s roundup features advice on how to max out the party season without any inappropriate behaviour!

Noël networking

“Working the room” is a really bad 80s expression in my mind, but it’s worth thinking about how Christmas get togethers can be a way of meeting new people and potentially making some useful contacts. Jack Horner knows how to get a party started: super friendly and approachable, he’s made making connections his business as Joiner of Dots (@mrjackster).

Jack says networking when it comes to parties makes him cringe; it’s much better to be “friendly and open, ask lots of questions and draw other people into the conversation”. He also suggests using your notes app to jot down useful details just in case the festive punch does it’s job! Another very interesting insight from someone who in previous ventures was ‘The Boss’, is not to spend time trying to chat with the most important person in the room. Instead focus on the team who, in Jack’s experience, often have “far more insightful and revealing things to say about a business.”

Build the buzz

Now when I comes to getting a party started there’s one woman I knew would nail it. She’s Bath’s hostess with the most-ess, @sarahfrombath and one half of Trouble Lounge event organisers. Sarah says that social media is a great way to create buzz around your event. Why not run a competition on the night, with a covetable prize on offer for the most liked IG post or funniest story?

Sarah’s advice on making introductions is fabulous: “Sharing peoples handles before events allows guests to chat to each other before turning up. We often get messages from people telling us that they'd really love to come to an event but are nervous of coming on their own. We tell them we will look after them and make sure they get introduced to someone on their arrival. We are very proud of the fact that we've had someone new at every event we have done; many have come told us that they arrived and knew no one but left knowing lots!”

Want to party with Sarah? Check out the Christmas event they’re hosting with the Scummy Mummies at Komedia.

Dress for success

Nothing creates panic like the ‘what to wear’ question and dress codes are so awkward (smart casual anyone?). Now before you rush off into town or start panic buying online, hear what Bristol style coach Becky Barnes has to say on key pieces for right here right now.

If you don’t covet the Strictly sequinned style then Becky says to look for items that are embellished with pearls to elevate your look. “There are some gorgeous pieces out there ranging from luxury knits and scarves to classy party dresses and fun footwear,” she says.

For men, this season’s trend is corduroy. Now if that conjures up a vision of your fifth form geography teacher, think again. As Becky says, “It adds a subtle hit of texture and looks great styled with a beautifully cut winter coat.”

Bottoms up!

No party is complete without a festive tipple. Alex and Drew, aka Griffiths Brother’s Gin, work with evaporators (which they call Roberta and Aretha!) to create a cold-distilled gin. Apparently this process draws out the botanical flavours.

They’ve created a special festive cocktail with their limited edition autumn special, which features local honey and rosehip as well as cardamon and allspice. Perfect for warming up party guests and adding a festive flavour:

Take 50ml Autumn Special gin, add 20ml sloe gin, then 20ml apricot liqueur (Lejay-Lagoute Crème de Apricot is perfect). Finish with a dash of lime (about 10 ml) and a raspberry. Serve in a coupé glass for maximum effect!

Something for the drivers

There’s no need to serve endless Diet Coke for drivers and non-drinkers (well, unless our Liz is at your do, in which case you’d better stock double). Check out the newly launched Stryyk - they offer not-vodka, not-rum and not-gin. These zero proof alternatives are perfect with mixers or create your usual cocktails full of umbrellas and maraschino cherries but none of the booze. Don’t say Rin Hamburgh & Co doesn’t advocate drinking responsibly!

Hangover cures - just in case

If it’s too late and you’re reading this with your sunglasses on, your tongue stuck to the roof of your mouth and something unidentifiable from a fast food outlet on your bedside table, don’t panic. We asked wellbeing expert Sara Anderson of Wellbeing Studio for her ‘morning after the night before’ tips.

The bad news is you need to step away from the coffee machine to avoid making a thumping head worse. Also, no fry ups! A light breakfast with minerals and proteins is ideal. If you can’t stomach that then a banana and ginger tea for nausea are also good.

Flush out toxins with a gentle stroll and then the best bit (because it involves lying down): “a reclining spinal twist to help wring out the internal organs; it is great for supporting digestion and organ health - and can be done in bed! Add some calming essential oils and something to cover your eyes to make your recovery practice even more calming.” Sara’s last bit of advice which is simply napping - we can definitely get on board with that!

So there you have it - the festive party roundup is complete. I’ll be back with one last round up of 2018 for you to read whilst lying on the sofa and shovelling Quality Street into your mouths. Until then eat, drink and be merry!

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