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How to throw an awesome networking party

My husband is a mortgage broker so networking is his middle name and he kicks butt at it, seriously people love him...then there's me.... awkward, and introverted ,small talk is just not natural for me , usually when he drags me to these events, I make a bee-line to the bar and then look to see if the home owner' s have any pets I can play with, if they don't have pets ... then I will look for children to hang out with and pets are safe.. they don't judge . If none of these are an option ..then I take out my phone and take photo's of the event. But for this event, my husband wasn't the only one networking.. now that I own a design business  ...well I needed to network too.. I hate .. absolutely hate to talk about myself and brag about myself.. I really sound awful .. because well it isn't easy for me.. If you compliment me I will tell you that I recently gained a bunch of weight or something .. so I really bombed at the event as far as my marketing went ( I will stick to word of mouth for now ) BUT I took some great photos to share with you . My friend Becca is a real estate agent and she put on the event, she is also an amazing designer so inspiration was EVERYWHERE.

First you want to start with a gorgeous invite like this one

Then you want to give a bunch away to business owners, tell them to invite at least 5 other business owners ..because..NETWORKING 
You want to pick a venue that has a lot of character and beauty, preferably outside, in this case the home owner ( Becca the agent) has a beautiful home and yard 

Next you want to enlist some sponsors to pay for stuff, unless you want to foot the bill yourself  ( it can get pricey ) If you do get sponsors you want to spotlight them at the party so your guests can see. This host printed out a pretty sheet that matched the invite and framed them in vintage frames, then she put them on a table near the entryway. This also served as a place for the guests to leave their business cards .

Let's talk about decorating for the event, which is my favorite part 

Candles everywhere! She used hurricane vases and mason jars
Candles look elegant even when they are not lit, so when the party started it was light out and the sun glistened on the glasses and then when the sunset. the lit candles looked romantic and it helped people see around the pool 

Instead of long tables she opted for round ones covered with white linen, not only do they look stunning, it offered a gathering space for small intimate conversations 
On the grassy area of the lawn she grouped seating areas for larger groups 

Here they are lit up at night 
Everywhere you looked there were candles tucked in every corner 

The Bar area is super important , because well people like to get their drink on and the area can be pretty too
Using natural elements like fresh flowers and fruit add color and texture and aroma 

Pineapples in a bucket next to the bar not only look beautiful they also mean Welcome 
 A tip jar for the hardworking bartender doesn't have to be an eyesore , this hurricane vase does the trick

Lavender is so beautiful and smells awesome but it's also edible , the bartender garnished the drinks with a branch .. God is in the Details !

I didn't get pictures of the food but it was small plates, shrimp cocktail , sandwiches, chips and dips, fruit and bacon wrapped scallops


And there was a Raw Bar, apparently people love if you can swing it , I highly advice 

 You want to have condiments and cut up lemons available for people , look at this presentation !

Vintage Crates borrowed from yours truly makes great serving trays , just line with plastic and add ice 

 oh you can't forget the entertainment 

a jazz band of course perfect for dancing 

So there it is, I hope you can use some of these ideas for your next party and happy networking! 

Thanks Becca for the inspiration !     Check her out  Becca Ewald Remax Realtor

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