This content is a few months old, but worth sharing nonetheless. It’s always a good time for a party!
In the last few years I have resonated deeply with the themes and story of Harry Potter. Those close to me will agree that I am, indeed, a super-fan. I have partaken of each form of each installment several times over. My most recent discovery has been the incredible audio book readings by Jim Dale.
I have found many friends along the way who love these stories just the same. It is common for my generation, though adults, to resonate with these stories that they grew up with. There is something pervasive and eternal in its themes, and I have always enjoyed sharing them with those close to me.
Since moving away from my fellow Potter-Lovers I decided to organize a Harry Potter Party over the holidays, and invite all those whom I knew shared a mutual love. We watched Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I & II. I have always wanted to host such a party and so my Best-Friend, Sister, Mom, and myself transformed our living room into Hogwarts, baked, cooked, and, of course, made Butterbeer. I had recently received this cookbook for Christmas, so we had no shortage of recipes and ideas.
I love planning events in general, and some of what I learned in planning a special themed evening can be applied to any type of soiree.
The first thing I learned was when to give up on the decor. We had the grand idea to use dry ice in containers around the room to create the look of steaming potions. This worked incredibly well at first, but 60 seconds later the small containers would stop smoking as the water got too cool. Dry ice works better in large containers, the pool, or better still: use a smoke machine.
I kept trying to make the dry ice work while guests were there and I neglected them a few times. I forgot one of the cardinal rules of party throwing-the guests are more important!
I did plan more decorations than smoke, however, and those turned out really cute. I took the time to download the classic Harry Potter Font and make signs for every dish, and label things around the room. I added the symbol of the Deathly Hallows for an extra touch. We also bought tons of white candles and put them everywhere.
The lanterns my parents own were another nice touch. We wanted guests to feel like they were walking into Hogwarts, and when someone told me that as they arrived I felt that we had achieved our goal.
One of the essential things to any Potter Party is Butterbeer. We used fine IBC Cream Soda as the base and butterscotch ice cream to create the head and served in a punch bowl. We included an optional alcoholic option with buterscotch schnapps. This last bit put it over the top. I would opt for a more neutral alcohol in the future.
One of the most time consuming, but cute things I did was make cake pops shaped like golden snitches. I had been wanting to attempt cake pops and this seemed like the perfect opportunity. Cutting all the wings was time consuming and I was glad I left most of that day to complete these. After everything was dipped and the wings were affixed I sprayed everything with edible gold glitter. I tried to write “I Open at the Close” on each one, but the edible pens we bought were a massive failure.
When doing cake pops again I would invest in a cake pop pan so that the insides wouldn’t have to be held together with icing. This made them extremely sweet. Alternatively I would use a chocolate based flavor with semi-sweet tones to balance out the amount of sweet.
The party was a rousing success. I highly suggest buying Alexandre Desplat’s soundtrack and having it play in the background. Watching these on Blu-Ray is also essential.
It was so fun to re-live these films with dear friends and family. Have you ever hosted a Potter Party? What did you do?