Christmas party ideas: A group celebrates with sparklers and Christmas lights behind them

Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year. It’s a time to take magical sleigh rides, bake cookies for Santa’s, and spend time with loved ones underneath the glittering tree. Christmastime is a time for joy and gratitude, interspersed with fun holiday activities from lively ugly sweater events to company cocktail parties.

If you find yourself in the host or hostess chair this year, planning a magnificent holiday event can be both fun and easy. Here, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite Christmas party ideas. Plus, you’ll find some gorgeous holiday invitations to let everyone know about the big event. Get your guests to believe in the magic of Christmas with these inspired holiday party ideas.

13 Christmas Party Ideas for a Magical EventChristmas party ideas: Hands cheers over a Christmas dinner table

As sleigh bells ring and snow glistens of the mountaintops, we head indoors for some of the most magical parties of the year. With these Christmas party ideas, you’re guaranteed to have a beautiful evening. Whether you’re looking for a night of laughs under the mistletoe or dreaming of a white Christmas soiree, you’ll love these party themes, games, and decor ideas.

4 Christmas Party Themes

Don’t ask us why, but parties are more fun when there’s a theme involved. Once you choose a theme, think about food and decor elements that will play into the theme. For inspiration, see our Christmas decorating ideas.

1. Grinch Brunch

Mix things up with a festive brunch bash featuring the holiday season’s favorite villain-turned-hero. Decorate the table with mini-Grinch figures, and adorn the table with green-hued foods from veggies to green-frosted cupcakes. For an adult party, serve green mimosas. Don’t forget the green eggs and ham made famous by the character’s creator, Dr. Seuss. Ask guests to dress up as the Grinch or their favorite “Grinch” movie character.

2. Ugly Sweater Party

No holiday party idea list is complete without an ugly sweater party. A classic tradition, this holiday party theme allows everyone to let off some steam and be silly. Keep in mind ugly sweaters run the gamut — they can sport DIY snow globes or depictions of glitzy reindeer and silly Santas.

Buy an ugly holiday sweater from your favorite thrift store or boutique shop, or make your own using garland, glitter, and pom-poms. Take your outfit up a notch with funky holiday glasses featuring holiday trees, or add a headband with reindeer antlers.

3. Santa Potluck

Let there be peace on earth — and in your kitchen — by hosting a Santa potluck where everyone brings over their favorite holiday dish. You can set a menu and ask guests to bring a particular dish or just something holiday-inspired for a buffet-style event. For ideas, check out our list of the best Christmas party food ideas featuring everything from appetizers to desserts.

Decorate the table with Santa-themed items. Sprinkle red and white candy canes on the tablecloth, and use a different miniature Santa to hold the name cards for each seat. You can also make DIY candle holders. Wrap the candles in red velvet, add a black ribbon to the base, and trim the top with white fur to look like Santa’s boots.

4. Country Christmas

We’re not all fortunate enough to spend the holidays in the frosty atmosphere of the North Pole. That’s where country Christmas comes in. If you live on a farm or simply love rustic decor, plan a country-themed Christmas party. Make a Christmas tree by stacking hay bales on top of each other, or make a stick tree using driftwood by placing the individual boughs horizontally. Decorate with lights and ball ornaments.

9 Christmas Party Games and ActivitiesChristmas party ideas: Guests hold sparklers and champagne flutes at a holiday celebration

Make your event stand out from other holiday gatherings with fun activities everyone will enjoy. Christmas party games are a great way to break the ice if your guests don’t know each other as well. Besides Christmas games, there are loads of holiday-inspired activities you can use to keep guests entertained for hours. Here are some of our favorite things to do at holiday parties.

1. White Elephant Gift Exchange

A gift exchange is a great way to get into the spirit of giving — and the fun of snagging that coveted gift. At a white elephant gift exchange, all guests bring one wrapped present to the party. Participants choose who selects a gift first. Once the first gift is opened, the next person can choose to open a wrapped gift or steal one someone has already opened — the game continues with the next person.

It’s a game that invites lots of laughter and some playful tricks, making it entertaining for all ages. If you feel like incorporating a little trickery, use multiple layers of wrapping paper or place the item in a wacky-shaped box. It’s good fun to watch guests work through layers of gift wrap to find your cleverly hidden gift.

As the host, set a price limit so that no one feels like they need to spend a ton of money. Gifts around $20 or less are the most popular for this type of game, but choose a budget that works for you and your guests. Some great gift ideas include Elf on the Shelf figures, holiday socks, jewelry, and eggnog.

2. Gingerbread House Decorating Contest

Whether you’re a kid at heart or hosting a party for your child and their friends, a gingerbread house decorating contest makes a gathering merry and bright. For an adult party, make things harder by requiring everyone to bake their own gingerbread pieces. For kids, use gingerbread kits to make the event more about decorating and less about building. Don’t forget to stock the contest table with decorating items including frosting, sprinkles, candy pieces, and food dye.

3. Christmas Cookie Decorating

For smaller children, gingerbread decorating may be a bit too hard. That’s where cookie decorating comes in. The flat surface of cookies makes decorating less messy. Best of all, adults also enjoy cookie decorating, making this activity fun for every event. Whip up your grandma’s secret cookie recipe, or go for a classic such as sugar cookies that are easy to decorate.

4. Go Caroling

Take it from Christmas expert Buddy the Elf, “the best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear.” Gather your guests and hit the streets to bring joy to the world with your holiday song renditions. You can keep things simple with traditional or pop Christmas songs, including your favorite tracks from holiday movies.

5. DIY Christmas Ornaments

Crafting is fun no matter what time of year it is. With a holiday ornament decorating get-together, create your own stunning ornaments to help the treetops glisten. Try making cross-stitch or crochet ornaments with your favorite knitting friends, or go for glitz and glamour with shimmering glass ornaments. Use glitter glue, beads, ribbons, and sparkly touches to dress up a classic ornament ball.

6. Holiday Trivia

Add a touch of intellect to the evening with a trivia Christmas party. Make trivia questions focused around holiday themes such as the original artists of popular holiday songs. If you need more ideas for trivia questions, Parade has a fabulous list of options.

7. Make Holiday Wreaths

Gather your friends and family together and make your own holiday wreaths to line the entryways or hang on the banister. Use wire circles or styrofoam hoops to serve as the base of the wreath. Have everyone bring their favorite decorating items — glitter, holiday ornaments, holly berries, and gold pinecones work great. Share the materials, and make your dream wreath while sipping on Christmas cocktails or spiced apple cider.

8. Go Ice Skating

Twirl amid glittering snowflakes and glistening snowmen with an outing at your local ice skating rink. For a big event, look into renting an ice rink and photo booth to document the night’s memories. Alternatively, you can use a polaroid camera to capture the evening and place the photos within a goodie bag at the end of the night. Many ice rinks will also allow you to add your own holiday music or lights.

9. Host a Hot Chocolate Bar

Baby, it’s cold outside! Warm things up with a hot cocoa bar. Set up a table with all the fixings — nutmeg, cinnamon, peppermint sticks, marshmallows, sprinkles, and whipped cream — and a jug of hot milk or hot water. Have guests pour themselves mugs of hot cocoa topped with their favorite sweets.

Gorgeous Christmas Party Invitation Ideas

Stationery and holiday cards are an essential part of the holiday season. While you may focus on throwing an exquisite holiday party, don’t forget about adding style to your invitations. At Greenvelope, we make it easy to send digital holiday invites so you don’t have to schlep to the post office in snowdrifts. Plus, we make tracking RSVPs easier than ever.

With hundreds of different designs, you’ll find the perfect fit for everything from a fancy corporate event to a fun shindig with friends and family. Celebrate a Merry Christmas from start to finish with these holiday invitation ideas.

1. Vintage Christmas Invitation

A Christmas party invitation with illustrated ornaments on a black background

Design: Robinson Creative House

This festive invitation is perfect for inviting guests for a cookie or gingerbread decorating party or a holiday crafting event. The hand-drawn vintage ornaments feature vibes from the 1960s, helping to spread holiday cheer in a refined way.

2. Cozy Elephants Invitation

A White Elephant Christmas party invitation

Design: Lana’s Shop

Hosting a white elephant gift exchange and looking for the perfect invitation? Look no further than this cheeky and cute holiday invite. In their knitted caps, these hand-drawn elephants are ready to meet Jack Frost. The vibrant touches of color add a festive hint for your upcoming event.

3. Sparkling Bubbles Invitation

A Christmas party invitation with rose gold accents

Design: Stacey Day

This elegant invite will help you invite guests to a glitzy and glittering evening of holiday cheer. The metallic foil adds a sophisticated air, while the delicate text adds a touch of whimsy. Hint: Design the card in green for a Grinch brunch event.

4. Gold Confetti Wreath Invitation

A Christmas party invitation with text surrounded by a gold wreath

Design: Stacey Meacham Design, LLC

When you need to invite guests to a romantic and fancy evening, this holiday invite will get the job done with rich jewel tones and shimmering foil accents. It’s also modern and subtle enough to be used for laid-back events and glitter-infused decorating parties.

Send Holiday Cheer With GreenvelopeChristmas party ideas: A group wears reindeer antlers and holds up their glasses

Have yourself a merry little Christmas by inviting your friends and family to your event. At Greenvelope, we offer a wide range of stunning holiday invitations to fit everything from a company Christmas party to a holiday party with friends. You’ll also discover a wide range of Christmas cards and Christmas invites design for business events.

Enjoy a jolly evening with friends and family with these Christmas party ideas. Don’t forget to send stunning invites to get everyone in the holiday spirit.