Author: Jane Wilson
Hosting a party is an awesome experience, but it comes with the nasty aftermath of having to clean the entire place afterwards. The efficient after #party cleanup starts way before the party. Unfortunately, you cannot eliminate the cleaning completely, but you can do a lot to limit the damage and save some time and effort. Here is a list of tips, which will get you organized:
Have an emergency cleaning kit. Messes are inevitable when you gather many people in one place and you’re having fun. Broken glasses, spilled drinks and food, mud trails, they are all a part of a good party. This is why you need to have a cleaning kit stashed conveniently somewhere close. You should include a broom, a mop, a few rags, a floor cleaner, some all-purpose cleaner, and stain removers, of course. You can go for some commercial brands, or you can use some household items, like salt, lemons, soda or white vinegar. All these work miracles on stains, you can use them all separately with some water, or you can mix them together for even better results.
Provide enough trash options. Many parties end with piles of trash all over the place, mostly because people couldn’t find a trash can and just left their junk somewhere. It’s not their fault, if you want people to help you with the #cleaning, you need to provide them with enough options to do so. Place trash bins all around the premises, and make sure they are easy to find without being in the way. This way there will be less wraps and napkins to pick up once the party is over. It’s also a good idea to place two bags in every trash can, because people often throw away messy things, and two bags have a better chance of keeping the moisture content than only one bag. Once a bin fills, take it out immediately and replace the bags.
Secure the bar area. The placement of the bar is pivotal to how much you’ll have to clean afterwards. Avoid placing the drink station anywhere near a carpet, because things will spill, and the carpet is the most difficult to clean type of flooring. Instead, aim for an area with tiled or laminated surfaces, even if you stain them, you can fix the problem with some water and a rag. Also, pouring individual drinks for everyone is not a very smart idea. Instead, you can get a few drink dispensers, place some glasses near them, and let everyone choose what they would like to drink. Many party hosts even choose to place the bar outdoors, if the place and the weather allows it.
Messy food is a no-no. Every experienced party planner can tell you, that preparing fancy meals with dressings and special toppings is a pointless effort for a party. All these masterpieces are messy, which will make the cleaning after them more difficult, especially if you let the stains dry overnight. This is why it’s recommended to stick to foods, which are easy to prepare and eat, like sandwiches or finger food. They go from the platter straight to the mouth, no plates or utensils needed.
Have the dishwasher ready. The dishwasher is your best friend during a party. It will save you time on scrubbing, wiping and washing, so while it’s working you can concentrate on other tasks. You should make sure your dishwasher is empty and ready for use before the party. By preparing it upfront, you won’t have to waste time unloading it or waiting for it to finish later. This way, once you see an empty dish, you can just put it in there. It’s also a good idea to run a load before the dessert, this way it will be done by the time the party is over, and you can load the rest of the dishes more quickly.
Avoid potential messy situations. The less chances you give your guests to make messes, the better you will feel the next day, when you have to clean everything up. So, avoid messy decorations, like confetti, balloons or especially candles, because wax drips from them, and this is difficult to remove. Instead, you can aim for some flowers or other, more sustainable pieces of decoration. In addition, you should choose the dinnerware wisely. Bringing out your porcelain plates and crystal glasses is not a good choice. The best option here is to aim for disposable cutlery. Plastic is a bad option, but nowadays there are plenty of nature friendly options to explore.
Send food home with people. If you have too much food and it’s not going to be eaten, you should get some containers and give it to people who are leaving. This way you will get rid of food that would otherwise sit on the plates and spoil without being eaten. Your guests will get more delicious food for later, and you’ll have one less thing to worry about.
About the author: Jane Wilson is a mom, a blogger, and a manager from Melbourne. She is the head of marketing and social for a local cleaning company, called Fantastic Cleaners. They are very popular with their wide range of services, suitable for residential and commercial properties, as well as parties. Her passions include home improvement and organizing, gardening, and a lot more.