Clear your diary on the eve of Saturday 13 May, dig out your spangliest outfit and stockpile the mini chicken Kievs. It’s time for the Eurovision Song Contest, live from the Ukraine.
We know that staying in is the new going out (and it’s way cheaper too), and it would be a sad waste of an evening to watch this glitter-tastic cheese-fest all on your own, so what better excuse to invite everyone around to yours? You can all eat, drink and be merry – all for the love of (ahem) great music. It’s not too late to organise a Eurovision-themed bash…
Start with the dress code
Eurovision is all about bringing together the European nations (and, erm, Australia). And just because we’re in the midst of Brexit uncertainty, it doesn’t mean we can’t all unite for the cheesiest music competition in Europe. So when you send out the invites you’ll need to give your guests a nationality to dress up as.
Getting a fabulously camp costume needn’t be expensive. For example, the lucky pal who’s been given Spain will have their pick of the colourful ruffled shirts and dresses in the shops at the moment. You can give Britain or Norway to that friend who always takes things to the extreme, and they’ll no doubt be delighted to dress up as a Beefeater or Viking. And your mates with a lack of imagination can just grow a beard or throw on a blonde wig and come dressed as a member of ABBA.
Now don’t forget about the family pet. Your dog, cat or hamster won’t want to miss out on all the fun, so treat them to a sparkly collar or a glittery bow for their cage.
Create an international smorgasbord
Make sure you have a few sausage rolls or sarnies for fussy eater types, but on the whole feel free to go as exotic as you like on the buffet spread. Stock up on Greek olives and feta, Spanish paella, French bread and cheese, Swedish meatballs, Italian pizza and pasta, German bratwurst – the fun food possibilities are endless.
Decorate to the max
Next, let’s create atmosphere in your lounge and get everyone into the Eurovision spirit. String some flag bunting up around the room and across the top of the key focal point – the TV set. Blow up balloons and brighten up the buffet table by placing mini flags into the dishes, or take it to the next level with some flag-covered paper plates and cups.
It’s all fun and games
Eurovision isn’t just about the winning – it’s about the taking part. That’s why you’ll want to make sure everyone gets into the spirit by filling in ‘scorecards’ with their ‘points’ for each of the acts. You can download these here so don’t forget to print them out and stock up on pens before the big night. Then you can enjoy listening to a raging debate on the merits of Armenia over Albania.
Go continental with the cocktails
You can ask guests to bring along a bottle of something from a European country of their choice and then get all experimental with the cocktail shaker. If that sounds like far too much work for one evening then just stock up on beer, wine and soft drinks, get some paper cups and let guests help themselves while you sit back, relax and enjoy the Euro-delights (or maybe just pop in some ear plugs).
Here’s our five Eurovision must-haves to snap up before the big night:
1. Château Roc de Cambes, £70, Harvey Nichols
2. BOSE SoundLink Colour Portable Wireless Speaker, £99.95, Currys PC World
3. Cocktail, £1, Flying Tiger
4. Party Phrases Paper Cups (set of 8), £4.50, Paperchase
5. 3 Pack Pink Unicorn Dust Face and Body Glitter, £8.99, New Look
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