PULLING IT TOGETHER
For the perfect combination of making and mingling—as well as no-stress hosting—opt for fuss-free finger foods and a project you have pretested for doability and completion time.
FOOD AND BEV
Fashion a buffet that conveys an inviting, helpyourself approach, top left and top right. Focus on snackable, single-serving eats and a few volume beverages you don’t have to individually mix. Our tempting cranberry “craftini” consists of 1 part vodka, 1 part club soda, 2 parts cranberry juice, and a splash of lime.
For crafting, always protect work surfaces and gather ample supplies so you don’t run out, above left. Figure one or more project per guest and anticipate possible do-overs if things go wrong. While some specialty tools can be shared, numerous supplies are a must to minimize wait times.
BEYOND THE THEATER Step this crunchy snack up a notch with gourmet popcorn flavors your guests will love, above middle. Grab flavored popcorn from the grocery store or make it yourself using recipes found online. Line wooden berry baskets with tissue paper. Print flavors on clear labels and adhere to crafts sticks.
CATER TO YOUR CROWD Homemade crustless sandwiches, above right, can be filled to accommodate a variety of dietary preferences. Place ingredients in the middle of a slice of fresh bread and top with another slice. Use a sandwich cutter to simultaneously cut off crusts and seal with a scalloped edge.