- Christian Siriano recently hosted the Elegant White Elephant Exchange party in New York City.
- Speaking with Insider while there, he shared his top four rules for throwing a festive event.
- He also shared the two faux pas that guests often make: underdressing and not bringing a gift.
Insider spoke with the 37-year-old at his Elegant White Elephant Exchange, which he hosted at the PUBLIC Hotel in New York City on Tuesday. The party was full of white-and-gold decor, wrapped presents, crystal lamps, and white trees.
As Siriano told Insider, that “old school” aesthetic was intentional. His number one rule for throwing a great holiday party is having a theme.
“I think people get excited,” he said about themed events. “It’s kind of cool and interactive. I’ve been throwing a lot of little events and things, and for people who don’t know each other, it’s a nice way to interact.”
As Siriano noted, themes can be tricky. “Listen, there’s a fine line. It can go a little cheesy,” he told Insider.
But once you’ve nailed your party’s aesthetic, the rest should be easy.
Siriano’s next two rules — which he describes as “very important” — are to have “great cocktails and really good music.”
“You have to have a good vibe,” he said. “People can’t walk in and there’s nothing going on.”
Equally important, according to Siriano, is the dress code you set.
“I like to get everybody dressed up. It’s so fun,” he added. “You have to have a little glamour to your life.”
All four elements were present at Siriano’s 2022 holiday celebration. Pernod Ricard USA spirits were served, and a 23K gold Bespoke cocktail trunk from artist Johnathan Schultz was on display.
If you’re attending a party instead of throwing one this holiday season, Siriano says it’s equally important to avoid some of the faux pas that guests often make, like wearing inappropriate attire.
“I’d rather you be overdressed than the person underdressed at the party,” he said. “If everybody says, ‘Wow, she’s really overdressed.’ OK, that’s fine. I’d rather be that.”
According to Siriano, you also want to make sure to bring something for the host, even if it’s “a $5 gift.”
“All those etiquette things — especially around the holidays — make it feel like tradition,” he said.