LuAnn de Lesseps says your party prep should have started yesterday.

on Nov 4, 2010 - The Dish

LuAnn de Lesseps of The Real Housewives of New York City
Think you have breathing time between now and the holidays? The Real Housewives of New York City star LuAnn de Lesseps encourages you to think again if you're planning to be the one serving the spiked eggnog this season.

"As there is always a lot going on during the holidays, the best tip I can give is to send a 'Save the Date' so that people can put your party on their calendars," the Countess advises OK! Magazine. "I suggest that you send invitations out at least a month to six weeks in advance."

Six months from mid-December? That would be... last week. Oops.

"For parties of more than 15 guests, sending out a written invitation is always chic," the etiquette queen dishes. "For smaller gatherings, an e-vite works just as well. For big parties, you should send the invitation through the mail. If you invite the right mix of people, your party will be vibrant and interesting. I suggest inviting a variety of people, young, old, rich, poor, artists and Wall Streeters, people from all walks of life."

So, what's the RHNYC star's secret to being the ultimate hostess?  "You can ensure that your party is a hit by being organized, creative and prepared. This way, when your guests arrive, you are relaxed and ready to be a great hostess." Simple, right? Right?