Party All Year Long with these Post Holiday Deals
Numerous things are on sale this time of year in a massive retail effort to clear the shelves for the next season's inventory. If you love to party, you can stock up on items to take you well into the coming year. Do you like to entertain? Been dreaming of starting a catering business or opening an inn? Some of these surprising sale items might be just what you've been waiting for. Read on.
I covered this topic a while back in a post season sales post. And certainly Carrie's recent post had some slamming ideas as well. But as I was out on a rare trip to civilization this past week, I noticed several discounted items that just screamed "party". In addition to the standard gold and silver items which are perfect for weddings, anniversaries and seasonal dinner party accents, there were also some fun jewel tones suitable for Marti Gras, Valentines Day, Classy Fourth of July events and Saint Patrick's Day extravaganzas. As I reviewed the items, I was struck by business possibilities as well. Particularly in the fields of catering, event planning, facility rentals and innkeeping. Here are some of the items I found discounted, and why they caught my attention.
1. Charger plates. These things really add major punch to a dinner table setting. Great for a high end intimate dinner party or a special event. While all of the bold colors are fun, I think choosing either gold or silver is the way to go. You'll get the greatest diversity of accent options for the least financial investment. If you can afford a set of both colors and have the storage space for them, this is really a time to stock up.
2. Dining linens. For reasons I touched on in the green Christmas and going green with class posts, cloth linens are a great way to go. And picking them up on post holiday sale will not only keep the purchase affordable, it will definitely fall into the "fine dining" category as well. Napkins, runners, full length round, rectangle, oval and square table toppers, and formal dining room chair covers in various colors are things you may want to check out. Want to stock up, yet stretch your dollars as far as possible? My money's on keeping the chair covers, napkins and table cloths in something like a classy golden tone damask. Then use your napkin rings, runners and other fabric accents to set the scheme. Gold can take you from September through at least Valentines Day. Depending on your accent color, possibly even further.
3. Stemware. Barware is everywhere right now, and in all shapes, sizes and materials. Super deals are available for large quantity purchases of basic designs, and a bargain or two may still be available on the jewel tone specialty stems. I'm personally in love with the stainless steel martini glasses I found this season. I also took the suggestion of a Wise Bread reader from a previous post and picked up a case of generic looking champagne glasses from Libby.
4. Candles. Carrie touched on this as well. Tapers, tea lights, pillars, jar candles, and even votives in plain and accent colors are still available at a great prices.
5. Champagne. While most of us consume bubbly basically around New Years, consider the following times throughout the year you might want to have a bottle on hand: Valentines Day, engagement party, graduation, a new job, anniversary, wedding, marriage proposal, retirement and other special events. And if beachside brunches are your thing, a large supply can ensure you never run out of mimosa makings. The bargain stuff goes down to a buck or two a bottle just about now, which is a great way to stock up. Champagne jellies are great canned hostess gifts as well. And who wants to use an expensive bottle for that?
6. Specialty alcohols. All kinds of unique flavors go on sale this time of year. I've seen entire fifths get marked down to 5 bucks a bottle in an effort to clear the shelves Consider the following which not only make great winter coffee and hot chocolate cocktails, but are also fun drizzled over ice cream for an elegant dessert in the summer time: peppermint, cinnamon, butterscotch and Irish cream.
7. Serving dishes. Entertainers everywhere unite! Here are just a few of the items you'll find discounted this time of year: champagne buckets, wine coolers, platters, trays, 3-tiered tea sandwich towers, and various crystal accent pieces such as fruit bowls, cake plates / stands, and candle holders.
8. Small kitchen appliances and buffet infrastructure. Take a stroll through the aisles of your local overstock and department stores. You'll find an abundance of discounted crock pots, giant coffee urns, two burner buffet serving stoves, electric roasters with and without the serving inserts, chafing dishes . . . need I say more? If you've been dreaming of starting your own catering business, event service, or setting up a rental facility for DIY party throwers, this just might be the affordable chance you've been waiting for. Several other general kitchen items are great for large batch cooking or small food kiosk / cart operations. Heavy duty kitchen mixers, bread machines and toaster ovens come to mind immediately. Toaser ovens in particular are great for small space retail renters (several shops in Venice, Italy come to mind). Heat up some scones, bake some fresh cookies from a supply of frozen dough, or heat up paninis. All can bring in a few extra bucks as a small business or supplemental season "country fair" operation. Get creative and take control over your financial future as well as your party schedule.
9. Table accessories. Napkin rings, cracker spread servers, cheese slicers and ice tongs are a few things to think about.
10. Meat sales. Turkey, ham, lamb and other large meat items are stocked en mass by stores for the holidays. Getting them in bulk on liquidation is a great way to amp up your freezer savings and get a grip on your family's long term grocery budget.
That's party planning on a post holiday budget as I see it. Did I miss anything? Don't hesitate to post your additional ideas and suggestions. Have a great day!