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Max Hurd & Benedict Foley transform Christmas decoration for New Year’s Eve

Creative consultant Max Hurd is joined by interior decorator Benedict Foley, as they transform their festive interior ready for a New Year’s Eve party. As Max & Benedict prepare their interior, they discuss the importance of preparation ahead of hosting the big night: “Don’t change loads of glassware, don’t have lots of canapés that need assembling,” Benedict explains. “It’s thinking through stuff enough in advance, and having it anticipated so people’s needs are met. That’s fundamental to good English design and a good English party.” Rather than creating an entirely new scheme, the pair stage a separate games area, alongside refining their Christmas decoration by adding a variety of party trinkets to spruce up their festive interior. Watch the full episode of The Dinner Party with Max Hurd & Benedict Foley as they throw a NYE soirée.

Released on 12/28/2022


[gentle music]

Poker. Strip poker.

Strip poker?

Oh no, not in this suit.

You saw how long it took to get me into it.

[gentle music playing]

New Year's Eve's a funny one, isn't it, really?

It's very different from planning

for any other drinks party or dinner party.

It's really important.

So, to remember it's your New Year's too.

That's true.

And to actually remember to have fun.

The principle is keep it simple.

So, often, I don't do lots of complicated drinks.

I'm very much, you know me....

I love a bubbles.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Easy to pour.

It's normally our drink, easy to pour, easy to drink.

You are very good at that as well.

Yeah. It's just, you know,

don't change loads of glassware.

Don't kind of like,

have lots of canapes that need like assembling.

It's thinking through stuff enough

in advance and having it kind of,

anticipated so that people's needs are met.

And I think that actually is really,

the fundamental of kind of

both good English design and a good English party.

Yeah, exactly.

[upbeat music playing]

Christmas decorating is really fun.

But you know, if you try

and do a whole new scheme for New Years,

it gets a bit exhausting. So

Who has the energy post Christmas?

No. No, exactly.

No one has that energy, but

you still want to make that kind of moment.

So it is kind of judging really.

And kind of editing what you've got,

taking anything out that's a little bit tired or whatever.

And adding something a little bit more.

Maybe diving back into the Christmas decks box

and finding something that you didn't quite use.

Reusing what you already had.

Love this.

Love that.

I can't believe we didn't get that out for Christmas.

No, I know, I know what we were thinking.

I think it fiddled its way to the bottom.

But anyway, in the panic...

It's having its life day,

Exactly Having its moment.

[upbeat music playing]

I think using things for New Year that people can't help

but associate with fun times they've already had.

Yeah. Yeah.

So you can't look at a cocktail umbrella and not smile

and not be reminded of like a hilarious drink you

had somewhere funny.

Putting them everywhere around the house

I think is gonna make--

No, no, I'm very up for that.

Like in all the kind of old Christmas decorations

we've already still got up

lets just poke them in everywhere.

Also, I've been kind of loving, loving, loving, loving

a little streamer.

Yeah. I think is

Throw that around. Yeah.

I don't think anything should be too purposefully

placed. It should look a bit

like the party has already been in full swing.

Yeah. I think we want it to look jolly already.

Like people could just have a good time.

What about this little hat for you?

Oh yeah.

Tiny hat.

Can you put that on please?

Can you wear that?

Oh it's just the right size.

Ideal. Ideal.

[men laughing]

[upbeat music playing]

It's so nice seeing this room set up like this.

You're enjoying a party.

It's another kind of hangout space.

It's quite audacious to have a games room in

a London space.

I mean it also can be a guest bedroom also.


You know, people wanna sneak

off from the main party downstairs

and play a little game just themselves up here.

That's totally fine.

I think that's a very important thing

at New Year's is providing different sorts of activities.

'Cause no one hates anything more than enforced trollity.

Yeah. Yeah. So true.

Kind of being marshalled towards midnight

and I think it's one of the most terrifying things

that can happen.

I'll be in charge of teaching

Absolutely. You how to play backgammon.

Yeah. Yeah.

Love it, love it.

It don't, I can definitely do Snap.

Yeah. Snap or Uno.

I think that's gonna be we'll keep it simple.

Keep it simple.

Yeah. We'll keep it simple.


[gentle guitar music playing]

Tara, you and I have been friends since we were kids

and actually this is a quite a usual setup for us, isn't it?

You doing the cooking, me doing the drinking, but

having your hairs made the whole day so much less stressful.

As we all know

canapes are a very important part of the evening

and the right canape can kind of make or break a party.

Well obviously they don't wanna be too ginormous.

You don't wanna have that awkward thing

while you're trying to drink

and eat your food and it's, it's all going everywhere

but you do eat with your eyes so it's got to look colorful

and it's gotta look good.

Obviously it's gotta taste good but it has to look good.

So true.

Otherwise, now one's gonna pick it up in the first place.

And also people are quite, you know, daunted going over

to a big table of food.

Unless it looks so delicious they cannot go over and taste

it. So you want to make sure people eat it.

You're making it look absolutely amazing.

Love with all the colors, it looks fantastic.

Thank you.


[champagne popping]

For me, the day is part of my experience

when I'm doing it.

Setting up and just all that kind of thing.

Half the fun as they're getting ready.


It's a bit like getting ready for an event.

You kind of, half the fun is getting dressed.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, exactly.

Most parties you go to, it isn't all

about like one minute when you've got a countdown

and then it's kind of like, ooh.

You know, like Huzzah, New Year.

Whether you've got other people coming in to help you

whether you're doing it yourself.

Preparation is key.

You know? That's my first principle.

Give yourself enough time to remember to enjoy it.

'Cause I think often people get so stressed

by parties that they

Don't have them. [laughs]

No! Well they don't certainly enjoy them.

They're not actually at their own party

which I think is really sad.


Because you know the reason people come is

because they want to be with you.

[mellow music playing]

Starring: Benedict Foley, Max Hurd