I was at my son's pre-school the other day and I was talking to a group of other Mom's who were all sharing the great books they have read over the years. It was really fun to hear all of the different opinions about some of the most popular books and the not so popular. When I arrived home I was flipping through a Woman's World magazine that my Mom had given me and lo and behold there was a suggestion for hosting a book swap party. I think this is just the best idea and a really fun one and of course always a great excuse to get a group of friend's together. So, I thought I would share their ideas with you.
- Clear Space for books
- Make signs for book categories and collect items for vignettes
- Prepare swapping bags or boxes
- make or buy cookies
- set out finger foods
- decide on games or trivia
1. Invite guests - invite as many women as your space can comfortably fit. Don't worry about having a seat for everyone: book swaps are so interactive, everyone will be mingling and shopping for most of the party. TIP: Ask each person to bring at least 5 books - Guests will take about as many books as they contribute and the rest you can donate to charity.
2. Turn your living room into a bookshop! Clear off a long table and make small signs that say "Mystery," "Fiction," "Romance," "Advice," "Cooking," and "Nonfiction" so guests know to place their books in the appropriate pile. You can also use a bookshelf and designate one shelf per genre. For extra flair (decoration), create vignettes for each category, placing a rolling pin near the cookbooks for example, or a locket near the romances. You get it.
3. Make personalized "swapping" bags or boxes. Provide cute paper totes or decorated small cardboard boxes to make it feel like a real shopping trip.
4. Offer a special treat! Prepare your favorite easy to eat fare like a cheese plate or pita chips and hummus, and then add a fun thematic dessert. Try book shaped cookies or treats shaped like the letters of the alphabet.
5. Swap 'til you drop. Set aside the first 20 minutes for mingling and arranging the books. Then, as the hostess, you can officially open your store for business and let the fun begin. If you want to take a break in between use this time to play some literally-themed trivia, like this "Middle Name Game" from Richard Lederer's Literary Trivia: Fun and Games for Book Lovers.
6. Finish with a gorgeous favor! Bookmarks are a great favor for this party - they are fun and useful. Buy them at your local book store or make your own at ImpressiveInscriptions.com.
Thanks to Woman's World Magazine for all of the great tips on hosting this party.