Reader Question:
We just moved and I want to throw a housewarming party that is simple and that I can invite a large number of people to. I would like to provide simple foods, have some kind of theme, figure out a cute invite, and make it memorable and fun. Any insight you might have would be much appreciated. Thanks. — Colleen

Design Mom Answer:
First of all, Congratulations on the new digs! I’ve got a few ideas for your party, maybe just seeds of ideas, but hopefully they can get the conversation going. The first theme-ish thought that comes to mind is something along the lines of Real Estate.

Maybe a sign outside that looks like a For Sale sign or Open House sign but has more of a welcome-to-the-housewarming-party message. The invitation could look like one of those flyers that hang in the bins on the actual real estate signs. Maybe give out good looking or interesting or funny key chains as a party favor — as in for new house keys. Key lime pie?

Other ideas to think about:
-Definitely have a beautiful Guest Book. Use it at the party, but then keep it around for future events and houseguests. The gorgeous ones pictured above are by Kolo.
-Everyone will want a house tour. Since you’re thinking of lots of guests and may be busy hostessing, you could provide a do-it-yourself tour — a pretty card for each guest that includes the house plan and helpful or interesting notes about the rooms or the architecture.
-If you’ve done lots of home improvements to your new place, showcasing before and after shots would be awesome. You could have before and after photos in each room. Or maybe a corkboard collage with photos and fabrics swatches and paint samples and inspiration photos you’ve collected from magazines.
-Put home related coffee table books in key spots. Books about remodeling or decorating. Or books about the town you just moved to.
-A mini-size measuring tape (think handbag size) would be another good favor. Homeowners have to measure as they shop. Will this couch fit? Are these window shades long enough?
-Invites could have a blueprint feel, or be made with scans of actual blueprints in the background.
-I haven’t completely formed the idea yet but something with cardboard boxes and packing tape. . .

That’s a start. I hope the comments overflow with ideas.

P.S. — Housewarming gift ideas!