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Our guide to a successful bonfire night!

3rd November 2016

There’s nothing that quite says autumn more than Guy Fawkes Night, when across the UK, communities gather to celebrate the foiling of the Gunpowder Plot in the 17th century, with dramatic firework displays, bonfires and bonhomie.

It’s hard not to love this time of year. A time for celebration and perhaps another excuse to make full use of your home and throw a Bonfire Night party! Here at Antler, we wanted to share with you our top tips for showcasing the very best of your home and hosting a great night of fun for your friends and loved ones.

1. Get creative with your decor

Throwing a big party is the best opportunity to showcase your creative talents and a fantastic excuse to beautify your home inside and out. In the spirit of autumn, stunning centrepieces and understated DIY touches are always a good way to go. Arranging white pumpkins with dried hydrangeas and beautiful golden leaves is a tasteful way to decorate your dining room or hallway table.

Even though the clocks go back at the end of October, it can still get dark pretty quickly, especially in more rural areas. For this reason, it’s a good idea to decorate the back of your house with fairy lights as a visual backdrop to your bonfire, and so that your guests can navigate around when it gets late. Our favourites are a mixture of whites and yellows in order to create a subtle summery feel to the cooler autumn eves.

2. Make sure your guests are comfortable

As the nights get chillier, it’s worth having lots of spare layers on hand in case your guests get cold. Saving your guests from getting too close to the fire is always a good idea.  Even better is to provide thick blankets to make sure your guests can sit by the fire until late as they perch outside ready for the celebrations. As it gets later, you could consider preparing a flask of hot chocolate for everyone. For the ultimate eco-friendly yet warm seating, we find hay bales go down a storm, and can always be used to bed pets down or feed the horses!

3. Go crazy on cuisine

There are so many warming flavours to tempt your guests with at this time of year. Aside from the classic marshmallows for guests to roast over the bonfire, there is a lot of potential for impressing in the kitchen. Slow-roast pork stew accompanied by root vegetables is a winning combination, in addition to traditional finger food to keep everyone happy. For your sweet-toothed guests, s’mores (marshmallows sandwiched between cookies) are irresistible, or pumpkin and apple cake can also be a popular dessert choice.

4. Safety first

Last but not least, safety is, of course, the most important element to a successful Bonfire Night party. If you’re having a bonfire, be sure to build it away from sheds, fences and trees, and keep a bucket of water nearby in case of emergency. Make sure children are supervised near the fire and keep pets indoors – watching a big display from the comfort of a conservatory can often prove to be a winner for the little ones. Remember, fireworks should be lit at arm’s length, using a taper, and make sure you have read the instructions before you begin.