20 Festive Christmas Party Ideas for a Holly Jolly Holiday Gathering

'Tis the season to celebrate!

image
BRIAN WOODCOCK

Have yourself a merry little Christmas with our best ideas for the ultimate holiday party. Settle in for an evening filled with delicious treats, festive drinks, and maybe even a some gift giving with these cheerful activities.

1 of 20
christmas party ideas candy
Dinner at the Zoo
Christmas Candy Making

Nothing says Christmastime like a batch of toffee, truffles, or fudge. Have your friends bring their kids along for an afternoon whipping up some easy-to-make holiday favorites—such as these chocolate-filled candy cane hearts from .

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
2 of 20
christmas party ideas pampering
So Nalicious
Pampering Party

The most wonderful time of the year can also be one of the most stressful. Take a break from the holiday hustle and bustle and invite the girls over for an afternoon of pampering. Treat yourself to professional services or get inspired to do your own nails, hair, makeup. You could even recreate this stunning manicure from

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
3 of 20
christmas party ideas white elephant
Getty Images
White Elephant Gift Exchange

White elephant exchanges always lead to an evening filled with laughter. Be sure to invite a group of at least six or more people and set a cap for how much each present should cost, so no one is going over their budget. Need some affordable gift ideas? We have just what you need with our favorite Christmas presents that cost $50 or less.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
4 of 20
christmas party ideas baking
Cooking Classy
Holiday Bake-Off

Oh the weather outside is frightful, but the smells in the kitchen are so delightful! Whip up your own crowd-pleasing treat—like these unbelievably good —and have each guest bring their favorite Christmas dessert for a delicious December get-together.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
5 of 20
christmas party ideas cocktails
A House in the Hills
Christmas Cocktail Party

For an adults-only soiree, host a holiday happy hour. Even if you're not an expert bartender, you can still make gorgeous seasonal drinks—like this —with our easy Christmas cocktails recipes .

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
6 of 20
christmas party ideas ice skating
Getty Images
Ice Skating Adventure

Lace up the skates and get ready to hit the ice! Skaters of all levels will have a blast gliding around and around. If you live in a winter wonderland, you can or go out to a pond or lake—just make sure it's safe beforehand. If your winter months are on the warmer side, book some time at a local rink.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
7 of 20
christmas party ideas donating
Getty Images
Toy Drive

'Tis the season of giving back. Spread the holiday cheer by donating unwrapped toys to children in need through charities such as . Nothing will fill you will more joy than ensuring others have a very merry Christmas.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
8 of 20
christmas party ideas caroling
Getty Imagesjenjen42
Christmas Caroling

Go Christmas caroling! Your neighbors will be delighted to hear , and you'll have so much fun singing with your friends. After all, the best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear!

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
9 of 20
image
Rebecca Luigart-Stayner
Après Ski Party

If you don't make it out to the slopes this season, bring the warmth of a ski lodge to your own home by hosting an après ski-themed party. Make sure your guests can cuddle up with a , and decorate with vintage ski decor and anything wood-finished. Don't forget to have that fireplace burning!


Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
10 of 20
image
Courtesy of The Bearfoot Baker
Reverse Christmas In July Party

You've heard about Christmas in July parties, but now it's time to bring the tropical temperatures to December. Tell your guests to wear their best beach-themed attire (Hawaiian shirts and flip flops required) while they sip on piña coladas and eat .

Get the tutorial at .


Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
11 of 20
christmas party ideas gingerbread
Getty ImagesTom Merton
Gingerbread House Decorating Contest

Add a nostalgic element to your party by setting out supplies to make gingerbread houses and hosting an all-in-good-fun competition to see who can construct the sweetest abode. (Award an oven mitt to the winner!) Keep it simple by stocking up on that come ready to assemble—and be sure to choose an official judge!

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
12 of 20
image
Getty Images
Gift Wrapping Extravaganza

Do you always find yourself wrapping your little one's presents an hour before Santa is scheduled to deliver them? This year, make gift wrapping more fun by inviting your friends over for a gift-wrapping party. Set up a table with wrapping paper, ribbons, stamps and tags galore and go to town. Afterwards, everyone can decompress with a nice mug of hot cocoa.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
13 of 20
image
Getty Images
Cookie Exchange

Invite your pals to swing by with a dozen cookies in tow. Crank up the holiday tunes, nosh on cookies, and then send everyone packing with a bag full of treats. Set out cute recipe cards so guests can share how-tos for their new favorite desserts.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
14 of 20
image
Getty Images
Crafternoon Bash

Corral your most Pinterest-obsessed friends for an afternoon of crafting holiday cards, wreaths, ornaments and mantel décor. Ask each guest to bring her favorite craft supplies so you can draw from a large collection. Don't forget to set out snacks and cocktails—crafting can really work up an appetite!

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
15 of 20
image
Getty Images
Holiday Game Night

Kick off the holiday season right with some friendly competition. Create a lineup of classic games with fun holiday twists like . A fun idea: Instead of the usual place-markers, blogger uses popcorn to cover her board. If Bingo isn't up your alley, gather everyone for a round of . The winner takes home a basket full of Christmas DVDs!

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
16 of 20
image
Getty Images
Christmas Carol Karaoke Night

Invest in a , and load it up with your favorite holiday tunes. Have your guests sign a holiday record as a guest book before they take their turn at the microphone. As a token of your appreciation to the brave singers who volunteer, make trophies out of .

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
17 of 20
image
Getty Images
Christmas Movie Marathon

Build a fire, curl up with your family and friends, and get in the spirit of Christmas with your favorite holiday classics, like The Polar Express, Home Alone, and Miracle on 34th Street. Serve fresh popcorn with melted white chocolate drizzled on top for a holiday treat. To make things extra fun, ask guest to dress up as their favorite Christmas movie characters for an interesting evening.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
18 of 20
image
Courtesy of Hello Glow
Photo Booth Party

Encourage guests to dress up in their holiday finest, turn up the festive music, have some holiday punch and holiday hors d'oeuvres at the ready, and set up a cute photo backdrop for you and your friends to ham it up in front of. Have a few Christmas props and holiday face masks on hand—put your DIY skills to good use and or go on .

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
19 of 20
image
John Dolan
Winter Sledding Party

Gather up your pals and their kiddos for a rollicking sledding party. After everyone's done running around in the snow, they can warm up inside with warm mugs of cocoa. Set out a garnish table with an assortment of cherries, caramel syrup, whipped cream, crushed candy canes, and sprinkles. It's the perfect way to toast to the season!

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
20 of 20
image
Getty Images
Pancakes and Pajamas Party

Put on your favorite holiday onesie and sink your teeth into soft, fluffy pancakes for one of the most laid-back parties you'll ever host. Encourage your family and friends to wear their wackiest Christmas pajamas and see who can outdo each other. The winner gets a fresh stack of pancakes with their favorite toppings (okay, fine, everyone's a winner at this party!).

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below