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“Inspire Me” Holiday Entertaining Contest Finalists – VOTE for Your Favorite!

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holiday entertaining contest

First things first – I’d like to sincerely thank every single person that entered the Inspire Me! Holiday Entertaining Contest or passed the word on to friends and family – your efforts are truly appreciated!

Narrowing the entries down proved to be extremely difficult, so thank goodness for the talented & creative minds that graciously signed on to help with the process: Robyn Bomar from Mix Mingle Glow, Amy Belle Isle from Stem Parties, and Jen Berson from Jeneration PR. The 10 finalists are based on which entries had the most overlap from amongst the judges – but I’ll also be featuring the individual lists soon so that you can see who everyone picked…as there was definitely a great mix in the overall group!

For now, though – let’s focus on just the TOP 10 FINALISTS, which are listed below in no particular order.You can vote for YOUR favorites at the bottom of this post! (More details on the entries be found over in the flickr gallery


holiday entertaining contest

Girls Night Cocoa Party
Submitted by: TDL (Rexburg, ID)
Judges’ comments included: “Really cute party and wonderful DIY invitation. Looks like a fun party!” / “Love the or concept, details, invitations, adorable chocolate dipped marshmallows, and favors.”


holiday entertaining contest

Retro Christmas Favor / Place Card
Submitted by: Erin Godbey (Greenville, SC)
Judges’ comments included: “I just adore these place card favors. I love that they are so unique and go so perfectly with the retro feel of the entire table. Very well done!” / “love this idea!”


holiday entertaining contest

Whimsical Christmas Party
by: Kendall Shiffler (Dallas, TX)
Judges’ comments included: “cute & colorful” / “creative & affordable” / “true HWTM vibe” / “I’d love to sit at this table – looks like a fun party! ”


holiday entertaining contest

Swanky Snowflake Soiree
Submitted by: Celeste B. (Portland, OR)
Judges’ comments included: “Love this party b/c it’s simple and elegant.” / “Amazingly simple idea to use scrapbook stickers for glass “identifiers”!  Why didn’t I think of that??”


holiday entertaining contest

“Time to Party” New Year’s Eve Bash
Submitted by: Tammy Mitchell (Southern California)
Judges’ comments included: “…the clock invitation is just a fantastic idea!” / “makes a fabulous statement” / “bold and elegant – just like New Year’s Eve should be!”


holiday entertaining contest

“Joy” Digital Inspiration Board
Submitted by: gardenpartynyc (New York, NY)
Judges’ comments included: “festive and fun with a great use of color” / “I feel happy just looking at this – it makes me want to bring the concept to life!” / and “love all the reindeer elements – especially those adorable cookies!”


holiday entertaining contest

Modern Chanukah Tablescape
Submitted by: Laura Gross (Milwaukee, WI)
Judges’ comments included: “…I think her novel version of a menorah is not only beautiful and sleek, but just all around fabulous and so creative!” / “a wonderfully modern take on a Chanukah table”


holiday entertaining contest

Naughty or Nice Holiday Party
Submitted by: Chris Nease (Raleigh, NC)
Judges’ comments included:
“…clever theme for a Holiday party. Love the idea of keeping everything from food & drinks to decor in two distinct categories.” / “Witty and so much fun, with impressive attention to detail”


holiday entertaining contest

Festive Red Cocktail Party
Submitted by: head of the table (St. Louis, MO)
Judges’ comments included: “I LOVE this party.” / “Great DIY treat favors!” / “The white feathers and metallic ornaments give this party a fun, swanky vibe…like being at a cool bar, only without the $15 martinis.”


holiday entertaining contest

Gingerbread House Decorating Party
Submitted by: moggiegreen
Judges’ comments included: “Creative place settings!” / “LOVE the set up for each guest (prefilled pastry bag, cookie cutter place cards, individual pieces for different types of houses(!), and cake board ‘plates’.”/ “The cookie cutter place cards are genius!”


And now… it’s up to YOU to decide which entries will win the 3 Inspire Me! Contest Prizes – generously sponsored by VIVA® Diva Café and worth over $2500 total! You can select up to 3 favorites below.

holiday entertaining contest

Post a comment here telling us which entries are your favorite (you can mention up to 3).
Please use or include the corresponding letter to the left of the entry titles below.

A. Girls’ Night Cocoa Party
B. Retro Christmas Favor / Place Card
C. Whimsical Christmas Party
D. Swanky Snowflake Soiree
E. Time To Party New Year’s Eve Bash
F. “Joy” Inspiration Board
G. Modern Chanukah Tablescape
H. Naughty or Nice Cocktail Party
I. Festive Red Cocktail Party
J. Gingerbread House Decorating Party

Voting closes Friday, December 19th at 11:59pm PST. Winners will be announced Monday, December 23rd. Thanks so much for participating!

UPDATE: 12/20:
Contest voting is now closed. You can still leave comments on the finalists here, but votes cast later than midnight December 19th won’t be included in the final tally. Check back Monday for the winners!

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POSTED BY:jenn s.JENNIFER SBRANTI is the Founder and Creative Director of Hostess with the Mostess®, a hip and modern party planning resource.

961 responses to ““Inspire Me” Holiday Entertaining Contest Finalists – VOTE for Your Favorite!”

  1. MelissaF says:

    Wow, they are all so creative. I love A. Cocoa Party, D. Swanky Snowflake and I Festive Red. I love the way the ornaments appear to be just floating in the air in the Festive Red decorations. They are all beautiful.

  2. Sarah says:

    I love the:
    A. Girls Night Cocoa Party
    There were so many great entries! Thanks for the ideas!

    -Sarah from Create

  3. Kim says:

    A – Cocoa Party & C – Whimsical Christmas Party are my favorites! They looks fun and laid back during the stressful holiday season!

  4. Erin says:

    naughty and nice – great theme!

  5. Joanna says:

    B. the retro Christmas favor is so unique and I love that its retro and miniature!

  6. kira says:

    I LOVE the G. Modern Chanukah Tablescape. You rarley see such modern and unique chanukah themes. It is gorgeous, sophisticated and festive all at the same time.

  7. Allison Zachry says:

    C, D, J

  8. D.Ann Shiffler says:

    I like Whimsical Christmas! Simple inspiration with stuff you already have!

  9. So hard to choose just one! But if I must–my vote goes to I, the Festive Red party. So classic and clean looking! Love it!

  10. Melissa says:

    I love H. Naughty or Nice Cocktail Party
    What a great idea!

    They were all beautifully put together though – well done!

  11. Kirsten says:

    A and G are my favorites, but they’re all so festive!

  12. Meredith says:

    A, F, J…I need to have a party now! Love these ideas! Thanks!

  13. Janine says:

    A, C, and G have my votes! :) Congrats!

  14. Pam Nakamura says:

    G. Modern Chanukah Tablescape

  15. Jamie says:

    Loved C. Whimsical Christmas Party!

  16. Cindy says:

    Very beautifully done!

  17. Rachel G. says:

    G. Modern Chanukah Tablescape – elegant update on a longtime tradition.

  18. Jay says:

    I like Whimsical Christmas Party “C”.

  19. Melanie Renault says:

    I go for H naughty or nice-sounds like a fun time to me!

  20. Megan says:

    I like the Chaunakah table setting, very sleek and stylish.

  21. Bev O'Dell says:

    C. Whimsical Christmas is sparkly, cheerful and colorful. That is my vote.

  22. Donna M says:

    My favorite is the Whimsical Christmas. Entry C. Beautiful!

  23. Bea says:

    G has a very lovely setting. They all are nice, but G has my vote

  24. julie says:

    G is my favorite. I love the sleek and modern look!.

  25. margret says:

    B – Retro Christmas Placecard Favor! It’s definitely the most creative!

  26. Yvette says:

    Hands down, has to be H. Love it. I would love to attend a party like this.

  27. Caroline says:

    I think G is the most elegant and creative. It has my vote 100%. Good luck to all of the contestants.

  28. Catherine says:

    I love H , the Naughty or Nice theme was unique and fun! What a great idea, I may have to borrow this :-)

  29. Suzanne Robertson says:

    Kendall – I’d love to be at your party, girlfriend! You are good. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
    Suzanne Robertson (Mom’s friend in Dallas)

  30. Suzanne Robertson says:

    I’m voting for C

  31. erin godbey says:

    Well, I’m a little biased, but I’m going to go ahead and vote for myself anyways – B! Retro Christmas Favor/Placecard!

    Jen, thanks SO MUCH for all your hard work with this. I certainly have some stiff competition! I just submitted via email 2 additional photos for the gallery… I didn’t realize that multiple shots of the same entry would be helpful. If you decide to include them, fantastic.

  32. Sherry says:

    I love Naughty and Nice!!! That was a great idea :-)

  33. ljcadv says:

    D,G and H are wonderful!

  34. Amber says:

    Cocoa party is my favorite.
    Time to Party is a close second.

  35. Cory says:

    B. Retro Christmas Favor / Place Card

  36. Mansionmogul says:

    A, B and I are my favorites! So classic and well thought-out.

  37. Zach says:

    I’m digging the Whimsical. C

  38. Amanda says:

    They are all so cute!! My favs were
    C. Whimsical Christmas Party
    I. Festive Red Cocktail Party

  39. HollieBerrie says:

    H. Naughty or Nice by Chris Nease

    my favorite part was the writing on the wall!
    if I had to pick a second favorite, it would be J Gingerbread Decorating Party by moggiegreen.

  40. Jennifer says:

    The Gingerbread House Decorating Party, J, is my favorite. What great idea for a party! All the ideas are fun and cute, yet totally doable on a reasonable budget! I also like the Girls’ Night Cocoa Party, A for many of the same reasons.