In the last 30 minutes before guests arrive, you may be running around like a chicken with its head cut off. Or you may be cool as a cucumber because you were ready days- no weeks – in advance for your party because you are just that awesome. Either way, Apartment Therapy has a few last minute things you may not have thought of.
First, make sure your thermostat is turned down. You're about to pack extra people into your apartment, which will naturally heat it up. So turn the a/c on and down to a comfortable temperature or at least turn the heat down. Also, get the music on so when guests show up, it's not to a deadly silent house. You'll want to keep the volume low when people first arrive, then crank it up as the party gets warmed up.
Make sure your lighting is soft, not operating room bright. You can accomplish this with dimmers, if you have them, or by using lamps rather than overhead lighting. Candlelight, whether accomplished by flame or LED, also makes everybody look good.
Place drinks and food where guests can easily find them and they won't get blocked by people later on. Make sure beers are the first thing one sees when they open your refrigerator, or better yet, put them in an ice chest or bucket. Also make sure ice is easy to get at in an ice bucket or ice chest located next to the drinks. And don't forget to have wine and bottle openers easily accessible.
Lastly, get a drink, or if you're not an imbiber, a soda, snack or whatever gets you into a laid-back party state of mind. It's time to throw off your stress and enjoy your party so your guests can enjoy it too.