7 Steps to Hosting a Perfect Movie Night
Fancy a night in with friends and a film? Here's how to prepare your pad
If you were going out to see a film, you’d probably go for dinner first, so rustle up something quick and easy for your guests. You’ll want to prepare this in advance, and opt for a recipe that will provide enough sustenance without going overboard – the last thing you want is your guests falling asleep mid-movie.
A hearty chicken salad, a wholesome soup or some help-yourself tacos are all good options that won’t leave your friends needing an after-dinner nap.
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It’s all about comfort when you’re watching a movie, so seating is crucial. Not many of us have a sofa large enough for more than three people, so it pays to employ some lateral thinking. Invest in some comfortable bean bags that can be pulled out from other parts of your home whenever you need them. If you don’t have the budget for bean bags, go for oversized floor cushions instead. A few strewn over the floor will provide enough comfortable seating for your guests, as long as they can rest their backs against a wall or some furniture.
Discover how to fit more seating in your living room without it feeling crowded
Keep your guests comfortable by providing plenty of blankets. You can pick up throws and blankets quite cheaply from many retailers – choose ones that aren’t too thick or itchy. A few simple cushions will also give your guests a soft place to rest their heads. If you’re watching a thriller with jump-up moments, they’ll thank you for giving them something to hide behind.
If there’s one thing you must not scrimp on during your movie night, it’s the popcorn. Pop it in advance, or make things easy by grabbing some pre-prepared bags from the supermarket. Not sure whether to go for salty or sweet? Cater for all palates by providing both.
Don’t make the mistake of serving up just one bowl of popcorn in the centre of the room, or your friends will be constantly up and down trying to grab a handful during the film. Instead, share out bowls between pairs of guests, or hunt around for some retro striped cardboard popcorn holders.
The trouble with salty popcorn is it can leave you thirsty, so make sure you and your guests can easily help yourselves to drinks. Install a drinks station on a trolley or a side table that everyone can access whenever they like. Provide plenty of water, as well as a selection of juices. If your friends aren’t driving home, add some beers and wine to the selection. You could even mix up some cocktails during the interval. How about designing ones to match the theme of your movie?
Think you haven’t got space for a drinks trolley? Think again
Plan ahead to ensure your lighting is movie-night ready. If you don’t have dimmers on your overhead lights, bring in table lamps and floor lamps to provide ambient illumination that’s dark enough to create an atmosphere without plunging the entire room into blackness.
As a long-term solution, it’s worth getting a dimmer switch fitted. It’s easy to add one to your existing lighting scheme, but make sure you hire a qualified electrician. Alternatively, fit a handy dimmable light bulb to your pendant lamp.
If there’s time after the credits roll, you’ll probably want to talk about the film, right? Set up an area around a table where you can sit comfortably and chat about the movie or just catch up with gossip! Keep things cosy with a few candles, ambient lighting and some hot refreshments.
What’s your favourite film to watch on a movie night? Do you have any great ideas for making the evening special? Share your thoughts in the Comments section.