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Web resources to help you plan your next party

The Web's best entertaining tools

You can apply the old inspiration-perspiration equation to entertaining at home, but we think convenience should be factored in as well.

So we've trawled the Web for tools to ensure that your next party strikes the perfect balance of the three. Read, click and start planning!

Invite: Design and send your own gorgeous electronic invitations for pennies with Paperless Post, the stylish successor to the passé Evite.

Organize: The iPhone app Simple Soiree is like a party planner in your pocket; use it to keep guests, menus, shopping lists and to-dos straight.

Strategize: Download Sustainable Table's dinner party kit, which contains loads of ideas for throwing a sustainable soiree. Then use the Eat Well Guide to find sustainable products near you.

Cook: The Brooklyn-based blog A Dinner Party offers recipes and inspiration, plus interviews with enlightened entertaining gurus like Melissa Clark and Mollie Katzen.

Play: Search Rhapsody's Playlist Central by cuisine or party theme (Chinese, Southern, old-timey) to find a streaming soundtrack for the night. If money's not an issue, let the audiophiles at Audiostiles craft a soundtrack to your exact specifications ($50 for an hour of music).

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