Celebrity party planner Colin Cowie has worked his magic for clients like Tom Cruise and Jerry Seinfeld. With his help, your party will leave a lasting impression on your admiring guests.

Set a Simple Party Table
  • A beautiful table setting is simple to put together if you just break it down, section by section.
  • A monochromatic grouping makes even an inexpensive flower look glamorous as a centerpiece.
  • Buying lots of flowers can get expensive. Fruit makes a cheaper, colorful substitute. Plus, adding different colors and shapes makes your table more interesting.
  • Use your good china—don't just hide it away in the closet for big holiday dinners.
  • There's no such thing as too many candles. Candlelight makes everyone look younger and more glamorous. Scatter votives across the table, or float candles in bowls of water to create a beautiful glow.
  • Don't be afraid to use place cards. They help eliminate the awkwardness of figuring out where to sit, and encourage mingling among people who might not chat otherwise.
  • A splash of color makes a big difference. Adding a colorful chair cover, some bright napkins, even a splash of ink in the water of your floating candles will take the table from blah to breathtaking!
Send an Elegant Invitation
  • Get colorful, creative and fun! The invitation will set the tone for your party.
  • Pick a color scheme, and match the invitation to your party decorations. This can be as simple as lining the envelope with the same color you'll be using in your table setting.
  • If you use a decorative element in your invitations, like ribbon, use it to tie the place card to the napkin, or work it into your centerpieces, carrying the theme throughout the party.
  • You may want to give your guests some attire instructions, like "Wear a splash of red." It gives everyone an excuse to shop for something new!
  • Instead of putting loose glitter in the envelope, spritz your invitations with hairspray, then sprinkle with glitter. It's less messy and much more elegant.
  • If you're really crafty, try an invitation booklet. Fill it with a poem or personal thoughts and add a photo to make it special.
  • It's easy to make your own invitations at home. Most card stock and vellum can be fed through home computers, allowing you the freedom to get creative.

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