Ikea Holiday Pop Up Party
Have you figured it out yet??? Where could you possibly host a PREP-FREE, COOK-FREE, MESS-FREE, STRESS-FREE holiday party? The answer will surprise you: IKEA! That's right, IKEA, your local Swedish mega store. If you're still confused, you aren't the only one. When our party guests entered the blind address into their phones only to find that IKEA was their destination, a collective, "WHA?!" could be heard echoing across the East Bay. But they are now believers, as you too soon shall be.
It all began downstairs in the IKEA Marketplace only 60 minutes before our guests arrived. And by "it all" we mean literally all prep began at 5:30 for a 6:30 party. Why the IKEA Marketplace? Because that was the source of all our party decorations! Amongst the sea of decorative goodies we found everything from the table runner to the ice buckets.
We then paid for our haul and took it upstairs to the second floor Cafe. There we pushed two tables together under a beautiful row of oversized pendants and quickly got to work setting our table.
Just as we finished we were cordially asked by one of the chefs what was going on. I replied with an equally cordial, "We are having people over for a dinner party at 6:30." He looked at us for a moment then murmured, "That's random," and walked away. That was the first and only time any employee engaged us.
As anyone with a mouth knows, IKEA sells meatballs. The best dang meatballs for under $5 anywhere on earth. But they also sell a number of other lesser-known but equally tasty items that are sure to appeal to any of your guests taste buds. At our table was everything from a Stuffed Chicken Breast and Corn Bread to an amazing Chocolate Almond Cake. The bounty was as plentiful as it was inexpensive. We paired the meal with a chilled Apple Cider from the Marketplace downstairs.
Clean up? What clean up? Once done, the clean up took no more than 4 minutes. The plates were piled onto trays that were place on the racks for washing. The decorations we bought were put back into their oversized blue IKEA bag to be taken home for reuse.
We then grabbed our Swedish Fish filled candy bags and made our way to the furniture floor for some after-dinner games.
We found three adjacent living rooms that had already been decorated for the holidays. How convenient! We then broke into groups, with each group playing a different game in a different living room. After 30 minutes the groups rotated. We could have had everyone in one room, but breaking into smaller groups made game playing a bit easier. You would think shoppers would have been constantly in and out of the rooms we were in, but not the case. They just walked on by with a big smile on their face, enjoying the scene.
The rest of the night was spent game playing, laughing, joking, story telling and Swedish fish eating. Truly the most stress-free holiday party we have ever thrown.