Host a Dinner Party Without a Dining Room
It’s a lot easier to host a big dinner party when you have a dining room, sure - but you can still have guests over even without the extra space. Roll up your sleeves, and get ready to DIY your way to a perfect dinner party even if you haven’t got an easy place to put all of your guests.
Everyone would like to have a dining room with a long table and matching chairs for everybody, but most people don’t. Instead of waiting to throw that party, just DIY your dinner party.
Use the Living Room
Have a small kitchen? Rearrange your living room furniture to open up the space. When you don’t have a dining room, any room can become the dining room.
Eat on Trays
If you don’t have a table for everyone to sit at, give them trays. And if you don’t have trays, just make them. Get a sheet of plywood, cut it into rectangles, and attach molding around the edges with wood glue and short carpentry nails. Spray paint it, cover it in polyurethane, and now you’ve got dinner trays. Or if you don't want to build trays, use 12x12 or 6x12 slate tiles.
Serve the food from your coffee table or small kitchen table, and your guests will find their own most comfortable spot. Have a simple meal that's easy to eat (and easy to balance) to turn the dinner party into an indoor picnic.
If You Build It, They Will Eat
If you bust have a sit-down meal, and don’t have a dining room table, build a temporary one. This can be done pretty simply with four items: two sawhorses, a sheet of plywood, and a tablecloth. You can get "project" sized sheets that are 2 feet x 4 feet, so you don't even have to cut them. Get more than one sheet if you need a longer table. Just screw the sheet down to the sawhorses, one at each end. If you go with two sheets, add a sawhorse in the middle. Cover it with a tablecloth and it's suitable for formal dining.
You can make this DIY project much fancier, however, if you use half-size bookcases. Place them facing out, near either end and secure them to the plywood with L brackets. The bookshelves become storage space for napkins, plates, silverware or other items you may need for the party. Sand and paint the plywood to make it look a little more finished.
If you don't have a buffet table, make a temporary one for the night. Turn a bookcase or mantle into a buffet by clearing off a shelf or emptying the mantle. Lay out placemats or a folded tablecloth, and place food here to make a DIY buffet.
Who Needs a Dining Room?
When you have the right DIY skills, you don’t need a dining room to throw a great dinner party.