As the evenings start to get longer and cooler, there’s nothing better than a movie night with friends and family. While a trip to the movie theater can be a lot of fun, a movie night at home can be tailored to your exact preferences — from the movie you watch to the snacks you eat.
Read on to find out how to create your own DIY movie night in a space that is comfortable and functional, whether it’s in the living room or a dedicated spare room.
Home Movie Night Essentials
No matter who you invite, what you watch, and where you watch it, some elements of a movie night just can’t be overlooked. Here are the home movie night essentials to organize before every viewing.
A Comfortable Setting
First things first, where are you going to watch your movie? Balmy summer nights may have been ideal for an outdoor DIY movie night, but as the temperatures drop, you’ll probably want to pick a movie spot indoors.
If you’re a huge movie buff with a spare bedroom, consider turning this under-utilized space into your own home theater. Store your movie collection on shelves and put up posters from your favorite movies. You can add a couple of recliners or a sofa depending on the size of the room. Southern Motion’s Front Row Recliner includes cupholders and optional add-ons like power headrest and massage for some serious cinematic luxury.
More likely you’ll be hosting your DIY movie night in the living room, which is a great place for setting the mood. The whole family can cozy up on a comfy sectional like Southern Motion’s Excel Sectional. Remember to dim the lights and draw the curtains to avoid any glare on the TV screen and to make a more authentic movie theater room.
The Right Technology
A decent-sized TV screen is definitely a home movie night essential when you’re trying to create a movie theater experience. But what if you like to take the movies into your backyard during the summer months or up to your kids’ bedrooms for their sleepovers? In this case, a projector could be the ideal choice for you and your family as it’s more versatile and lightweight. It can even be stored away easily in a smaller home theater setup.
Sound can also make a huge difference to your DIY movie night experience. If you don’t have the budget for a surround sound system, a sound bar is a more affordable option that can give you that movie theater feel.
Are DIY movie nights set to be a regular event at your house? Consider investing in a popcorn machine and a mini-fridge for your home theater space. For just a small investment, these appliances give you the look and excitement of a concession stand at home. That makes them home movie night essentials for the real cinephiles!
Memorable Movie Snacks
No DIY home movie night is complete without snacks. While popcorn is the go-to, that doesn’t mean you can’t spice it up a bit! Seasonings can add some variety to your bowl of popcorn and if you have a sweet tooth, you can even make your popcorn into a yummy marshmallow bar.
From red vines to milk duds, candy is also a classic choice at the movie theater. Stock up on your family’s favorite treats, but remember, not all your snacks need to be unhealthy! Look out for low-sugar candy, fruit and veggie mixes, and healthy dips made from spinach, avocado, and yogurt. Use coffee tables and stools to lay out all your snacks in front of the big screen and tuck in.
Warning: You may want to put table cloths underneath your snack selections as it’s easy to make a mess in the dark!
A Great Movie!
A list of home movie night essentials would be incomplete without mentioning the movie itself. Unless you’re hosting a bad movie night on purpose, the key to any DIY movie night is something fun to watch.
If you have a wide collection of DVDs, part of the fun can be choosing a movie. There are also many streaming services that offer classic movies and new releases. Of course, the movie you choose all depends on who’s on your movie night guest list.
Movie Night Ideas for Friends and Family
A DIY movie night with friends and family can be a fun way to get creative. Take it in turns to choose the theme of the evening. You can select a movie from a different decade or country and let that inspire your outfits and movie snacks! Watch Star Wars dressed as your favorite character, throw a Great Gatsby style movie night, or serve North African nibbles like hummus and baklava while you enjoy Aladdin.
Kids will love the chance to make a DIY movie night more special. If you don’t have a themed evening, have some traditions for movie night instead. The whole family can wear matching pajamas or onesies and smaller kids can have their own bean bag chairs.
Movie Night Ideas for Couples
Will your DIY movie night double as your date night? There are some great ways to maximize the romance at home with a fun twist on dinner and a movie.
Create the right atmosphere with candles, snuggly blankets, and throw pillows. Instead of serving bowls of chips, dips, and candies, make your movie snacks delicious tapas dishes. When it comes to deciding what to watch, choose a romantic movie, share your all-time favorites with one another, or re-watch the first movie you ever saw together.
Get your friends and family together for a DIY movie night you won’t forget, right from the comfort of your home! Find the perfect reclining furniture group for your movie theater experience and style in this infographic.