If you’re between the ages of 18 and 30, chances are that you were a part of the “Harry Potter Generation.” I was 8 when Sorcerer’s Stone came out and I got it as a gift that Christmas. Since then, I’ve been a little smitten with the series and by a little smitten I mean EXTREMELY OBSESSED. Full disclosure: I may or may not have dressed up for all of the movie releases, read every book more than 10 times each and started my own Hogwarts with my friends. (Nobody can prove that last part. Nobody, mom!)
Harry Potter has really meant a lot to me over the course of my life and Christmas and Harry Potter will always be linked in my eyes. This is both because it’s when I got the first book and because Christmas was such a magical time in the series. A continued love of Harry Potter isn’t something to be embarrassed about, but you might not feel the most mature admitting to your boss that you’re thinking about throwing a Harry Potter Christmas party — I’ve been there. Luckily, the series has never been restricted to one age group and there are lots of ways to celebrate your obsession while still feeling like a fully-fledge, adult human.
From the décor and the menu to the activities and outfits, here are a few suggestions for throwing the perfect Harry Potter-themed Christmas party while still keeping all that adult-cred you’ve amassed by paying taxes and eating kale.
Show Some House Pride
What would Hogwarts be without its Houses? All you need to make these easy banners is a color printer and a lighter. I suggest printing them on cream-colored paper, rather than the standard white printer paper — it’ll help with the vintage look. Once they’re printed, use the lighter to char the edges a bit before hanging them up!
Make Your Own Great Hall
You might not consider your living room or hosting space to be on the same level as Hogwarts’ amazing Great Hall, but some floating candles are a good start on the road to greatness. This tutorial is a bit art intensive if you want to make the starry ceiling too, but making the candles is easy enough. Pro tip: Instead of cutting foam to get that melted wax look, just use hot glue. It’s a lot easier, especially if you’re making a couple dozen candles.
Catch the DIY Snitch
Since it is Christmas time, you may have a Christmas tree somewhere in your place. Even if you don’t, these simple, DIY Snitch ornaments can easily be hung on lights or with the same fishing line you used to hang the floating candles. If you make enough for all of your guests, they can take them home as gifts to hang on their own trees!
Drink Up… If You Dare
Just leaving all the alcohol bottles out on the counter is so high school house party, am I right? I mean, not that I would know since I wasn’t invited to any parties in high school — I started my own Hogwarts, what did you expect? But the method is convenient, if not very Pinterest worthy. If you’re looking to class up your liquor supply for the party, pop into your local thrift store and grab a few interesting bottles and jars. You can also get these awesome, printable labels to replicate the look above. Pro tip: You may want to put additional labeling on the back just so everyone knows what they’re actually consuming.
Have a Mini-Christmas Feast
The Christmas Feast was always a highlight for any students and teachers who stayed behind at Hogwarts during the holidays and a Harry Potter party wouldn’t be complete without some HP-themed noms. But you’ll want to make something that’s easy to cook and eat. Try out this recipe for “Dobby’s Pies,” basically tasty little pot pies. You can also ask your guest to BYOS — Bring Your Our Snacks — to supplement.
Just Like the Three Broomsticks Used to Make…
…if the Three Broomsticks served jello shots. These little bad boys pack a punch and are definitely different than the flagons of Butterbeer that usually get served at Harry Potter parties. Not everyone will want sugar on top of a sugary shot, so it’s probably best to put the sugar topping in a little container so people can dip at their leisure.
Everyone Loves Honeydukes!
If you attempted to go into Honeydukes candy store in Hogsmeade during the holidays, you’d have a hell of a time moving around the store because it was so crowded. Your party guests will also be crowded around your killer Honeydukes candy bar. Snag some more printable labels and arrange the candy in easy-to-access containers. You could even get some cheap party bags from the DollarStore or Party City so your guests can really feel like kids in a candy store.
This Isn’t the First Year’s Beer Pong
Can you be too old to play beer pong? Maybe. But what about Quidditch beer pong? This takes actual skill! No bouncing up in this beezy. Of course, you’ll need a long table and an open space to play, but you could even make this work on a small table if you stood farther away. Time to figure out who the Chasers are among your friend group.
Extra Credit: Witch Wear
A lot of Harry Potter parties have guests and hosts dress up in Hogwarts garb or as characters from the series. But since it feels like Halloween was, like, yesterday and it’s hard to feel grown up wearing basically the same thing as a Catholic school girl, let’s stick with big girl clothes. For your consideration, I’ve put together four outfit ideas that reflect the four Houses’ attitudes, symbols, values and colors. Pick your favorite or show off that House pride we talked about (I’m a Slytherin, and don’t hate)!
If you weren’t already throwing a Harry Potter Christmas party, you are now right? Have a magical time!
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