“I throw parties for a living. That's what I like to say,” says Rachel Snyder, who founded her eponymous hospitality business in New York City after turning away from a life of being a chef and restaurant publicist. “I hosted and cooked at dinner party pop-ups as a way for people to meet others in the city.” Now, Snyder curates small and large parties for companies, teams and private clients, as well as hosts natural wine parties, teaches wine tasting and cheese board-making workshops. She’s also a dreamy food stylist, as seen in her latest personal project on Instagram. 

How to Style a Magical Galentine's Day Party for the Besties

With Valentine’s Day and Galentine’s Day just around the corner, we had to ask the event curator how she’s planning to set her table this year.  “Growing up, my mom would surprise me with Valentine's gifts every year, like pajamas or pink-frosted donuts,” Snyder reminisces. “Today, Valentine’s Day is a day of celebrating love in all my relationships. I try to take it as an opportunity to do something special for my girlfriends, and celebrate our love and friendship in a meaningful way.”

Although she’s someone who likes to plan on the day of as she likes “ the creative-under-pressure aspect of it all,” Snyder did share some fail-proof tips on how to create a magical party for loved ones. Read on to take notes. 

How to Style a Magical Galentine's Day Party for the Besties

They’re classics for a reason.

“Candles, great flatware and cloth napkins are my staples for every day–that evening glow is a must.”

Fruits or produce can be centerpieces, too.

“Cut them open, drape them on a cake stand, or scatter them over greenery. Guests can pick grapes from the table, or take home a papaya if they'd like!”

 How to Style a Magical Galentine's Day Party for the Besties

Flowers never hurt. 

“I often have flowers leftover from events (like the ones pictured here), which makes every day a special occasion! A single flower or a fern frond can be beautiful on the plate as well.

How to Style a Magical Galentine's Day Party for the Besties

Make it personal.

“For Galentine's Day, I like to write notes of appreciation to all my gal pals, and use them as place holders.

Don’t forget the cheese board.

“Aside from candles, finish off the tablescape with a beautiful cheese board as well, so guests can see it’s part of the table as soon as they walk in.”

February 11, 2023 — Renée Tse