If last year was all about the virtual Christmas party then Christmas 2021 is set to be all about the face-to-face celebration.

Pretty much as soon as the measures to end lockdown where announced we started receiving Christmas party enquiries.

Partly because companies felt more confident about hosting events nearer to the end of the year but also as everyone is desperate to get their staff together and bring some joy into work. After all, we all know that a team who have bonded socially enjoy their work and are more productive as a team and creating that kind of camaraderie whilst working remotely is a real struggle. And that’s why we’re predicting Christmas parties 2021 to be big.

So what are the Christmas party trends for 2021 likely to be?

Well firstly there’s unlikely to be any clear trend as such. With some much uncertainty over the year lots of companies are at different stages and though live events will be back with a bang, there’s still room for virtual. Whilst we might not love the zoom style get-togethers, there have been enormous development in virtual platforms which get more creative and engaging all the time, plus of course there’s the advantage of being able to bring a wider audience together.  Top tip: look for packages with interactive activities.

Christmas party trends 2021: Going green

It doesn’t matter how old we are, there’s always something we can learn from Kermit the Frog. Like while it might not be easy being green, it’s still important. Back in March Adidas chose Kermit the Frog as their brand ambassador to highlight their commitment to lower their carbon footprint and eliminate plastic waste by 2024.

And Adidas aren’t the only ones putting sustainability to the fore. Nearly 1 in 3 consumers claimed to have stopped purchasing certain brands or products because they had ethical or sustainability-related concerns about them.

The perceived futility of battling climate change by yourself is changing as individuals are taking onboard the view that small changes can make a difference. And this goes for events too. More and more we’re going to see corporates requesting green credentials when designing their events and choosing their venue and suppliers.

A few of my favourites include Cavendish Venues who have now planted over 600 trees to help offset their events as well as Lime Venue Portfolio who have just announced their commitment to the UN’s Race to Zero campaign as part of their ambition to create a sustainable food system

Here are three ways to make a start at going green:

  • Select a venue with an environmental policy
  • Go plastic free (from straws to badges) and use smart tech & apps to reduce paper
  • Pick a caterer who sources local food & drink

Christmas party trends 2021: new skills

In 2020, nearly half (43%) of the UK population chose to learn a new skill. Initially this was down to the additional spare time but even as we’ve got busier, many have continued with their new-found love for creativity, citing the benefits that it brings to mental wellbeing.

Team building activities were the most popular virtual offerings during the pandemic and many companies are looking to incorporate them as they return to live events as they help workmates reconnect – and enable new members of staff to form a bond with others quickly.

“There is a real drive for companies to thank their staff and to celebrate getting through what has been an extremely challenging year.”

Jodie Guilford, Science Museum

Of course, the focus of a Christmas party should be on the fun not on education; though let’s face it, this year of all years no-one is going to be able to stop the MD from making a speech. We love the idea of super quick workshops that last for no more than 30 minutes – something like a Laughter Therapy session that guarantees everyone has a good time by incorporating elements of playfulness, elation, brain training and other laughter inducing activities.

Or how about an exciting alternative to a photo booth; provide guests with lightsabers, torches and more to create a unique work of art as guests play with the tools to make colourful creations. Will they have created a rainbow of light, written their name in the air or opted to conjure up shapes from their surroundings? Each image can be printed if requested and stored digitally and sent along at a later date.

Christmas party trends 2021: plenty of entertainment

The Christmas party might be the first time all staff have mingled together for a looooong time, so help break down any awkward moments and get them in the mood by welcoming them to the party by hiring Meet & Greet characters to give them a taste of the excitement to follow.

Look for Christmas parties that include plenty of plenty of entertainment options. At Kent House Knightsbridge we’re offering nearly 50 different entertainment choices for our luxurious Bond inspired Christmas party. We like wandering entertainers that impress guests with their skills such as Silhouette artists or illustrators that also create mementos to take home as well as providing those Instagrammable moments that everyone loves at an event.

Surprise and delight

Entertainment acts that surprise and delight, such as spoken word performers, silhouette artists, caricaturists, strongmen or fortune tellers, could be discovered throughout both floors. Some performers would be interactive walkabout acts whilst others could be ‘hidden’ in different spaces for guests to discover, along with mini quick-fire creative workshops.

If you want a really fun interactive element for your event, then we recommend including an incredible food installation; from liquid nitrogen to ice cream to zero calorie edible mists, bacon sandwich aftershave, 60mph candyfloss whirlwinds, everlasting chocolate taps, exploding caramel popcorn machines and logo printed lollipops made right in front of your eyes. There’s even an option to have the machines personalised with your branding. Fun, experimental and delicious.

Christmas party trends 2021: excursions

Let’s face it, hardly any of us have been able to get away for the last couple of years so how about hosting your Christmas party at a venue you’ve never explored. From historic venues, museums, iconic buildings, warehouses to underground vaults, London is bursting with unique venues. If your team is working remotely then you might want to think about a central location to make it easy to travel to and from the venue. We love the grandeur of 8 Northumberland Avenue who always host one of the most creative Christmas party packages. And of course you can always hire a blank canvas venue and then transform it to anywhere in the world with creative styling. After all who could resist the lure of a tropical Christmas party?

Christmas party trends 2021: nostalgia and tradition

After tough times, many of us feel nostalgic to what we perceive to be ‘better times’ so we expect to see traditional Christmas parties proving popular this year.  11 Carlton House is a great venue if you fancy going back to Christmas basics and focusing on all things traditional. Think silver and gold, red and green, candles and crackers and spectacular Christmas trees. Put down those deconstructed cranberry tartlets; homemade mince pies are back on the menu. It’s the most wonderful time of year after all, and if it isn’t broken? Don’t fix it!

Christmas party trends 2021: glamour

To make up for having to hold back these last 18 months, we can see more being the buzzword for organisers this Christmas. Many hosts will be out to impress with exclusive events leading the way. The feeling of being at an event, getting dressed up and the anticipation of the evening ahead is one that we can’t underestimate so expect many companies to want to go all out with their decorations and feasting with those starved of social interaction and celebrating giving vent to a pent-up desire to “go for it” with some wonderfully large scale and spectacular celebrations with plenty of upgrades to provide extra sparkle. Think of it as Christmas with all the trimmings.

“From the creative briefs we’re seeing, it looks like we’re about to dive head-first into the hedonistic, roaring twenties of the digital age.”

Joanna Moody, Zafferano

Christmas party trends 2021: part-time, flexi-time, anytime

Be warned: demand is set to be higher than usual this Christmas season as many companies want to make-up for missing out last year. So now is the time to be securing your venue. Pretty much all venues are being flexible on their bookings so it’s better to secure your date now rather than miss out later on. Of course some dates at certain venues may have already gone so expect to find midweek parties becoming the norm this year. As well as combination events that merge conferences or award shows with celebrations.

Key takeaways

Are there key themes or trends that resonate for you and your business? Focus on one or two that work best with you and speak to us for more ideas; we’re here to help you find the perfect solution for your long-awaited event.

  1. Sustainability: think about how you can you make your Christmas green
  2. Gifting a skill: incorporate team bonding into your celebrations
  3. Let me entertain you: make sure your party goes with a bang by including plenty of entertainment
  4. Explorations: take guests on a trip either at a new venue or transform a blank canvas venue into a dream destination
  5. Take me back: go back to basics. What traditions would you like to incorporate into your event and how can you update them to put a modern twist on them
  6. Don’t stop me now: when was the last time you got really dressed up? Bring on the bling by hosting a full on celebration with plenty of sparkle
  7. Wednesday’s the new Thursday: it’s been an extraordinary time so throw out the rule book and be flexible in your dates and even your times

With experience in producing award winning events, a string of happy clients and a team of individually talented professionals, Evolve Events is the perfect event agency for delivering high standards.  Our team have over twenty one years’ experience in producing events and team is headed up by Gary Peters who has been voted as one of the most influential people in the events industry. Our event services including venue finding, set design, styling and build, AV and lighting, stage management, sourcing entertainment &  quality catering – and of course, Christmas parties.

If you’d like to find out more about how we can help you produce and style your event then please get in touch and we can chat through your requirements.

To get more event ideas you can visit our blog here or follow us on social media at @evolveevents.

TEL : 020 7610 2808 – EMAIL : info@evolve-events.com