How to Host a Global Gathering from Your Bedroom

How to Host a Global Gathering from Your Bedroom

Okay, the world might have ground to a halt, but there’s really no need to put your social life on pause. From on-screen dressing to virtual parlour games to mood lighting, here’s how to throw a global gathering in style.

the Gatsby of FaceTime with our step-by-step guide to
hosting an exquisite digital get together in the age of
. Don’t let government-enforced lockdown shut down
the party.

Nine hot tips for staying social in the age of

1. E-cards are back

You can hardly blame a guest for flaking on a half-hearted
WhatsApp invitation. Facebook chat is also unceremonious and
unlikely to pull a crowd. Use Canva or Adobe InDesign, instead.
Craft a narrative by paying close attention to the email subject
line, font, text and images – don’t shy away from being a GIF
maximalist (god knows we need the stimulation). Be clear about
times, skip on location and specify dress code.

2. Choose your domain wisely

Think of your app domain as your venue. It dictates the tone and
reflects your values as a webcam revivalist. Any discerning
isolator knows that Houseparty is the equivalent of a night on the
tiles at Popworld; an evening on screen-sharing app Squad will be
intimate (no French exits here); while web-conference app Zoom is
anathema to care-free carousers, though might suit a quiet dinner
party… FaceTime remains the place to see and be seen.


That’s Bring Your Own Booze Or Soft Drink. Remember, you might
be partying across time zones. Some guests might arrive fresh after
breakfast, half-cut from a previous party or hungover. Bloody Marys
are good all-rounders – suitable either as an evening tipple or a
breakfast juice – and, of course, it’s always champagne o’clock.
Prosecco will suffice. Drinking alcoholic hand-sanitiser can cause
alcohol poisoning, nervous system damage and/ or blindness.

4. Make an effort

Despite what Vogue might tell you, it’s not just about waist-up
dressing. Ironed clothes are a given. Toilet roll, disinfectant
spray and dried pasta are the status symbols du jour, but please,
dress the screen with taste. A toilet roll pyramid? Gauche. An
artfully dishevelled heap of triple-ply? Cultured and whimsical;
you probably read Rachel Cusk. Pasta jewellery is chic, unless
painted and therefore no longer edible. People will e-bitch in a
separate WhatsApp thread about your frivolity during a time of
crisis. You’ve been warned.

5. Dust off your best bits

Unless you yourself are that party guest – the loose-limbed type
constantly invoiced for shattered tableware – polish up your finest
glasses. Quarantine is an excuse to relish that collection. You’re
outsourcing your guests so there’s little chance of it being

6. Lighting is key

A downward-facing lamp will contour, while spotlights can be a
little harsh. Delve back into your Christmas arsenal of fairy
lights for a soft glow.

7. Anything but

Refer to point one: In your invitation, indicate which add-ons
guests should have installed before they tune in. JQBX
allows all users to listen to the same Spotify playlist in sync so
you can soundtrack the party remotely – a dream for e-hosts. Ensure
you have a wodge of online games lined up lest conversation turns
to c**********. Psych is a group quiz game with
guaranteed lols, while good old-fashioned charades translates
magnificently to the small screen and can be initiated faster than
you can say ‘stair shuffle challenge’. Cripes.

8. Fake it

Ultimately, the end result is a digitised image. ‘”The camera
doesn’t lie”? Pfft. The camera does lie – that’s one of its
greatest strengths. Burned through your Diptyque candle? Fill it
with a tealight instead. Running low on gin? A tastefully garnished
glass of water looks no different.

9. After-party

To ensure your global gathering is the stuff of legend, make
sure you’ve looped in a guest on a later time zone who’ll be able
to continue the party once you’re ready to hit the sack. After all,
a party’s only as good as its after-party. If you invite a truly
international set, you should be able to sustain one long video
party ad infinitum – or until whenever this dystopian bubble
decides to finally burst.

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