DIY Holiday Party Ideas

The holiday season is quickly approaching and for many of us, that means it’s time to start planning holiday get-togethers! If you haven’t planned a party in a while, it can be overwhelming trying to figure out where to start. Here are some easy holiday party ideas and activities that are sure to be a hit with friends and family.

Holiday Dinner Party

A classic dinner party is a great way to bring friends and family together to celebrate the holidays. If you are planning on hosting a holiday-themed dinner party, ask your guests to bring a side dish with them. By asking your guests to help with the food, this will allow you more time to decorate your table and figure out seating arrangements. For ideas on how to decorate your table, check out this list of 50 Christmas Table Decorations.

Tip: Create a Google Sheet and ask your guests to share what side dish they are planning to bring. This will allow you to keep track of what food you will have at the party and will help to prevent having too much of one food.

Check out our list of Easy Holiday Recipes for more ideas on what food to bring to your next holiday dinner party.

Ugly Sweater Party

What’s Christmas without a good ugly sweater? If you’re looking to have some classic holiday fun with your friends, consider hosting an ugly sweater party! Ask your guests to come wearing their best ugly sweater, the uglier the better. For even more fun, you can set up your own DIY photo booth so you and your guests can remember your ugly sweaters for years to come.

For instructions on how to put together your own DIY photo booth, head over to HGTV’s website.

Decorate Gingerbread Houses

Decorating gingerbread houses is arguably one of the most popular holiday traditions. Gather your family and friends and have everyone build/decorate their own gingerbread house. 

If your guests are the competitive type, make it into a contest! After everyone has finished with their gingerbread house creations, line them up and have your guests anonymously vote on which is their favorite.

Tip: Gingerbread house kits can be a little pricey. In order to save some money as the host, ask your guests to bring their own house kit. If you are planning on having a contest and want the houses to be somewhat similar, you can recommend that your guests purchase a certain brand/type of kit. Here is an example of a kit from Amazon that you can send to your guests.

As the host you can also provide extra icing and candy to make the decorating process even more fun!

Christmas Movie Marathon

This idea is as simple as it sounds! Have your friends over for a day filled with all your favorite Christmas movies. Cozy up on the couch with blankets, hot chocolate, and snacks. Ask your guests what movies they want to watch and build your viewing schedule based on which movies got the most votes.

To make this get together even more cozy and festive, try making your own hot chocolate bombs! If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, hot chocolate bombs are spheres made out of chocolate and filled with hot cocoa mix, marshmallows, and any other toppings you want! For more information on how to make your own hot chocolate bombs, check out this recipe and tutorial from

Gift Exchange

Another favorite Christmas tradition for many people is a classic White Elephant gift exchange. If you’re planning on having your own White Elephant gift exchange, here’s a brief refresher on the rules:

  1. Have each person bring a wrapped gift
    1. The organizer should provide information on what type of gift everyone should bring (gag gifts vs nice gifts)
  2. Players will draw a number to determine what order they will go in
  3. Players sit where they can see the gift pile
  4. The first players selects a gift from the pile and opens it
  5. The next player can select a gift from the pile or choose to steal the gift from the previous player.
    1. Anyone who has their gift stolen can either choose a new gift from the pile or choose to steal another person’s gift

When it comes to stealing gifts, the rules can get a little tricky. Head to for the official rules.

If you’re looking for party games to play at your next holiday party, check out this list of 17 fun party games

We hope you enjoy these easy, fast, cheap holiday party ideas! Regardless of how you choose to celebrate, we are wishing you a fun and memorable holiday gathering.
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