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cheers! how to throw a wine party at keg party prices 
by Jenn Hulbert
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Unfortunately, when serving such a repast, the dirty chip bowl and dining hall plates left over from your dorm days just don't measure up. While at IKEA, we picked up a couple of matching serving trays, decorative napkins, and ceramic vases for flowers, all in warm, fall colors. Inspired by these colors, we bought two bunches of autumn flowers. Because it was the beginning of the autumn season, the bouquets were on sale. We arranged one bunch in an old vase and placed it in the center of the serving table. We separated the other into several empty wine bottles and arranged them all around the apartment. When decorating for a party, don't forget the bathroom -- in adulthood, it's not just for puking anymore.

Because our twenty-something apartment still houses much of the same furniture we had in college, we made sure to disguise this with the soft glamour of candle light. We arranged the candles and furniture so that there were several conversation-friendly locations. For added allure, we made sure each area had its own serving of treats. People tend to coagulate around the kitchen no matter what its size, so any attempt to circumvent this is a worthy one.

Of course, despite our best efforts, our guests flocked to the kitchen. After all, that was where the wine was. That aside, our minimal efforts and investment were more successful than we ever imagined. When all the guests have arrived and all the wine has been uncorked, you too will be amazed at the grown-up personas that your friends will adopt. When you replace a beer can with wine glass it automatically increases your sophistication by at least 90%. At the peak of the party, the roommate and I ran into each other at the brie station. We looked around at our success, cabernets in hand, and agreed that the last time we were at a party like this, we were in Paris.


Jenn Hulbert is an editorial assistant and struggling party girl living in Los Angeles.


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