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Erika C

tcufrog suggested markers for labeling drink glasses. I use a grease pencil. It doesn't come off if the glass sweats but it washes away easily.

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sdatex
We entertain fairly often. Once a month we have a Family Dinner with a minimum number of 11. We host a couple of holidays where the guests number about 25. And, then we have a couple of bigger events each year of about 40-50 guests. When you do that, you use disposal. It's just easier. I already spend lots of time planning, cooking, decorating, hostessing etc. I don't want to spend more hours than necessary cleaning up. And, even then we spend several hours cleaning. (We usually don't use disposable for Family Dinner.) Soooo, for larger events, I usually use nice clear plastic plates with theme napkins. Nice heavy plastic silverware. I have several baskets that I use for crackers, bread etc. Serving pieces are my bowls, dishes etc. We have 3 pop-up tables we can use also along with folding chairs. This year I invested in a nice large beverage dispenser for wine punch or a non-alcoholic beverage. And, for individual beverages in cans or bottles we have a couple of large metal containers and/or coolers we put ice and beverages in. Also, for decorations I re-use several large and small vases and place fresh flowers in them. We have found the larger the group the more disposable items are used. It's simply more practical. A dinner party for 6-10 is different creature than a party for 25-40. Thankfully, our family and friends are simply glad to be included. :)
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tcufrog

My cutoff for disposable vs. reusable is a dozen people total including my family. After that cleanup becomes too time consuming and I run out of dishes. My go tos for inexpensive reusable party ware are IKEA and World Market. I've picked up inexpensive trays and stackable glassware at IKEA pretty cheaply and wine and footed water glasses at World Market that come 12 to a box. The boxes they come in are sturdy and store well. Both places are also good sources for inexpensive table linens and table decorations. Corelle is a great source for durable, lightweight plain white dishes. They're thin as well so you can fit many in a small space.

   

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