Miss Manners: I’m annoyed my party guests didn’t use coasters

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Expensive Miss Manners: My husband and I hosted an open-house-style celebration. We supplied a buffet with a wide range of hors d’oeuvres, plus white and crimson wines. Earlier than the celebration, we arrange quite a few small tables round our front room to make sure that friends would have a spot to set their plates and wine glasses. On all these little tables, plus on the espresso desk, I set out quite a few coasters to guard the furnishings end. The coasters had been generously sized, straightforward to make use of and, I believed, fairly apparent.

Our friends had been principally from my husband’s chess membership. A lot as I get pleasure from my husband’s buddies, not a single one in all them made use of the coasters. They nearly gave the impression to be making an attempt to AVOID utilizing the coasters. My husband additionally ignored (or averted) the coaster close to his personal seat, so he wasn’t very useful in setting an instance.

All of the friends gave the impression to be having a superb time, which allowed me to sneak round placing wine glasses on coasters whereas the friends had been distracted by dialog, wine and good meals. Not ideally suited, plus this technique required loads of monitoring and repetition.

Subsequent time, I’ll ask my husband to please attempt to set a greater instance for his buddies, however assuming the disregard of coasters persists, is there any well mannered technique to get our friends to make use of them?

The aim of a superb hostess is to make friends really feel welcome, which is tough to do whereas implicitly suggesting they’re ruining your furnishings. Onerous, however not unimaginable. You can be circulating to take care of your friends’ wants anyway, so insert the coaster when asking whether or not they want a refill.

However Miss Manners wonders whether or not there’s not a technique to keep away from the issue solely, as you’re answerable for the furnishings (if not your husband). Wouldn’t it not be doable to relocate the espresso desk for the size of the celebration and canopy the momentary tables?

Expensive Miss Manners: Is it thought-about cheesy to present an acquaintance a hand-crafted reward? My daughter and I are each crafters, and we gave a hand-thrown mug and a quilted “mug rug” to a mutual acquaintance whose enterprise we each patronize.

We assumed she would use the gadgets. However the subsequent time I went into her retailer, our presents had been on a shelf, obtainable on the market. Am I off base to suppose this was an insult? It appears unsuitable to just accept a present, then be so apparent about eliminating it. Or had been we within the unsuitable for assuming an individual would love handcrafted gadgets?

Handmade presents are extra considerate than store-bought ones, however that isn’t the query you ought to be asking, as no well-intentioned reward would justify an insulting response.

Do you have to take offense? Miss Manners is inclined to suppose not — that the insult was unintended fairly than intentional. However she would suppose twice earlier than bestowing presents on this entrepreneur once more.

New Miss Manners columns are posted Monday via Saturday on washingtonpost.com/recommendation. You may ship inquiries to Miss Manners at her web site, missmanners.com. You can too comply with her @RealMissManners.

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