Is it Time for the Home Party Circuit – Again?

Posted on July 11, 2012


I have a revolving-door policy in my kitchen when it comes to food storage containers. The leftovers from our large family dinners get crammed into various containers, labelled for each appropriate household, and then shipped out with them as they leave to go home. Usually on their next visit, the empty tub is returned all clean and ready for the next reload – usually. Sometimes, my ol’ plastic food organizers seem to go for an extended “walkabout”, leaving me with a dwindling supply of them in the cupboard. It has made me consider whether I should revisit “the circuit” of home parties.

Tupperware is a kitchen staple

When I was a newly married, back in the Dark Ages, there seemed to be an invite to a Tupperware party at least twice a month. And then there were the other hostess/home plans too. Home parties were a rage for a while as the ratio of working mothers to stay-at-home moms grew, and if you wanted to fit in, you graciously accepted all the appeals to come over to your friend’s or neighbour’s place for “an evening of fun, no obligation to buy at all”.

Just like today’s pleas, you knew it was a line, and it might be wise to bring along your cheque book just in case the sales pitch became too much. The fellas simply stayed home, had a beer and watched TV, and (I think) prayed that we wouldn’t come home with more “miracle-in-a-jar” cosmetics, another lovely (?) crystal thingy for the mantlepiece, or who knows what. Don’t get me wrong, some of those home demos for educational toys and books, casual clothing and jewelry were pretty entertaining and good value, but other direct marketing ideas were doomed from the start. Consumerism and lack of good judgement, especially after a couple of glasses of “special punch”, prevailed far too often from what I observed. I usually felt satisfied enough if I simply won the token gift that was awarded after some silly group game. Spending an evening out with other crazy Mommies, minus toddlers, was a reward in itself.

Home sales parties are big business once again, the majority of those businesses being run by women. Today’s young moms who are juggling family with financial obligations quite often like the idea of being a part-time sales consultant either to make ends meet or to allow that precious at-home time with wee ones. The party plan trend has come full circle. If you’re a people-centered sales person, and you have good organizational skills, my advice would be to find the right “gig” – as long as you maintain a balance in your life and you are passionate about what you’re selling. If you don’t believe in the merit of whatever you’re promoting, it’ll show, believe me.

I do like to think, however, that I’m more selective now about which marketing ploy I give my time to. Novel products still tweak my curiosity, but I’m hesitant to jump on the bandwagon of some sensational item that mimics something that is already tried-and-true, even if mine is an older version. (I’m hearing a distant yet clear repetition of my mother’s voice in my head: “There’s still plenty of life left in it. …” What’s wrong with being content with what you have, when what you have is entirely fine, hmmm?

So the bottom line seems to be this: either show me a product that completely convinces me how my life will be vastly easier, or demonstrate how I will surpass Martha Stewart’s wildest dreams as a hostess/domestic diva on a budget. Or, you could simply invite me to your soiree where the real fun is in socializing and sharing views, knowing that I probably won’t add much to the evening’s hostess rewards package.  Fresh, clever ideas for home party plans are what’s really needed I suppose, not to mention a few of my food containers finding their way back home.

Posted in: Traditions