Condo holiday entertaining with Janette Ewen

As the weather starts to cool down, it’s a sign that the entertaining season is upon us. While throwing your first holiday party can be stressful, doing it in a small space offers even more challenges. Of course, it’s important to have a space you love, but don’t shy away from inviting guests over just because you have a bachelor apartment, a tiny kitchen or a space that isn’t as lavish as you’d like. With a little help from the second-hand economy, you too, can get your home party ready and feel confident in hosting your first holiday get together.

Now more than ever, the trend of eclectic decor is in! From bold colours, mixed metals and one of a kind pieces, more is more when it comes to this unique design trend. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good minimalistic space as much as the next person but lately, I feel it’s become a little tired. Everywhere you look people are doing white walls, white kitchens and white bathrooms. It’s all starting to feel so clinical. In today’s world, we need spaces that inspire us, lift our mood and give us energy. Plus, with the housing market these days, our spaces are getting smaller and smaller, which is why I think it’s so important to really embrace this more lively trend. Don’t feel pressured to live in a blank canvas. Your shoebox apartment, is going to feel like a shoe box if you don’t give it the amazing design and décor it so deserves.

For my upcoming fall parties, I knew I wanted to take advantage of this trend for my own décor, and have long known that the best way to source eclectic items, was by shopping second-hand.

Décor is one of the top five categories that Canadians prefer to shop second-hand over new, and I certainly am one of them!

Did you know Canadians saved an average of $825 annually when using the second-hand economy? Crazy, right?! I personally have always been a big fan of shopping second hand. I thoroughly enjoy the treasure hunting aspect and giving new life to old pieces. It’s fun to imagine who owned it before, where it lived, and what it saw….oh to be a fly on the wall! Some of my favourite pieces that I’ve picked up include my vintage Underwood typewriter (which still works by the way) and an amazing oversized art deco zebra lamp. I love to have pieces in my home that are a little out there; “conversation starters” if you will.

The first thing I needed for my upcoming get-togethers, was some kind of centerpiece. Sure, flowers are beautiful but they can get expensive and often overwhelm a small table like mine. Instead, I immediately thought of Kijiji to look for a variety of different candle holders, in varying heights and designs. I easily found these mismatched candle holders for only $15, and simply spray painted them gold for a more cohesive look. I then added some moss, a burlap runner and a few adornments and suddenly, had a chic centerpiece that is sure to impress my guests and cost much less than buying brand new!

I also recently found my favourite cocktail shaker and bar accessories on Kijiji. I turned to the second-hand economy when looking for these kinds of entertaining pieces because I just wasn’t happy with anything that I had seen in stores. I wanted something with a vintage feel. Something that was unique, that I wouldn’t find at my friends’ houses, and I was thrilled with the results! There are always so many amazing items available.

My other favourite hosting items to shop second hand for are vintage glasses. My secret? Look for glassware with a similar aesthetic or colour to your own and don’t worry about matching it perfectly. The same can be said for mix and match dishware as well! All of these items add to the eclectic feel of my parties and will be heavily relied on during the holiday season.

Finally, my most important tip for hosting a holiday party is always “be a host or hostess that expects to have a good time.” This means that you need to feel confident in not only the food and drink you provide, but also your space. So don’t hesitate to turn to the second-hand economy this holiday season, for a few special items that will really get your guests talking. Trust your gut when it comes to shopping and most importantly have fun. I always say, “if it feels right, it is right.”

Learn How to Get Involved in the Second-Hand Economy!

Learn How to Get Involved in the Second-Hand Economy!

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