The festive season brings so much joy—it's all about celebrating good food, great company and twinkling decor, besides surrounding yourself with loved ones. If you are anything like me and hosting people is your thing, it is time to start prepping for a Diwali party. I thought of creating a beginners’ guide for hosting large gatherings at home. The basics of throwing any soiree would be to plan your tablescaping, palette, seating, and dinner setup. With a little help from Amazon’s Great Indian Festival, I hand-picked some must-haves that helped me set up my home for my guests. Tap into my list of 8 ‘Dos and Don’ts’.

1. Pick a palette

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You want to choose three main colours to create a theme for the party, and then incorporate those shades throughout the space with accessories such as napkins, dinnerware, candle holders and flowers. I love Gold, Fuschia Pink and White for Diwali.

Shop now: PartyToko Gold Polka Dot Paper Napkin (20 Pcs)

2. Get creative with accessories

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I love varying heights of candles and glass lanterns. Time to unpack all those accessories and put them to work. You want to work on adding a subtle golden glow to your table setting. Intersperse small diyas and floating flowers with taller lanterns to create visual interest by varying heights. Don’t forget grouping in 3’s creates a more effortless look.

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3. DON’T procrastinate to clean your house

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It is tempting to deprioritise home cleaning by leaving it to the last day. Trust me, you will have a lot on your plate at the eleventh hour. So, my advice would be to get your vacuuming and cleaning done well in time. I absolutely love this product.

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4. Create conversation spaces

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Add some extra cushions to make that extra ledge window seating usable. By default, guests will gather together wherever they find comfortable furniture so whether you're hosting indoors or outdoors make sure to group furniture together to create conversation areas. Don’t forget that nest of tables for snacks and drinks. Try this.

Shop now: Priti-Modern Nesting Coffee Table Set of 2

5. Bring a festive vibe to snacks

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Skip the cheese board that you serve through the year. Make a ‘chaat’ board instead. It brings a very fusion festive vibe to the snacks and much more fun. Check this out.

Shop now: THEHEARTWILL Wooden Chopping Board

6. Have a buffet spread

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Serve a buffet-style dinner. In this set up your guests will be able to enjoy food and great company uninterrupted. It’s more laid back and lets your guests help themselves to second and third servings throughout a longer span of time. I recommend these for a buffet spread.

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7. Have a self-serve bar

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Set up a self-serve bar area. Leave out various glasses, spirits and ice-bucket so everyone can help themselves and refill as they wish. Before guests arrive, chill your drinks to the perfect temperature. If you want to speed up the chill time, here’s a hack- add ice and a handful of salt to your chilling bucket to cool your drinks even quicker. Here is my pick.

Shop now: Steren Impex | Stainless Steel 3 Piece Black & Copper Bar Set

8. DON’T forget to play music

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While nobody likes forced small talk, awkward silence is a real mood killer. Always keep background music on. You can even amp up the party and dance to some of your favourite tunes later in the night. Check out this speaker.

Shop now: Marshall Woburn II 130 Watt Wireless Bluetooth Portable Speaker (Black)

Be it party supplies or daily needs, has you covered. Even if you have last-minute needs such as an ice bucket, paper napkins or votives – you can get it delivered in a jiffy with Once all preparations are done, don't forget to let loose, relax, and enjoy yourself even though you are the host.

Happy holidays!