Launch the year with a luxe gathering that extends the glimmer of the holidays one more day.
Everyone knows new year’s eve is amateur night. People who go out only once a year crowd into restaurants and bars to celebrate. This year, stay off the roads and count down to midnight while you prepare for your new tradition―a glittery, glam New Year’s Day party.
Use a discarded winged elm branch to create an eye-catching look along one wall. In this space with an industrial feel, the branch is secured to a pipe with pipe cleaners. You could use a Christmas tree stand to hold the branch upright. Wrapped in twinkle lights and small mirrored garland, the branch creates a light and lovely focal point.
Welcome friends with a Red Rooster―the toasting beverage of the day. Steer them toward the awesome Hot Roast Beef Party Sandwiches,
our Fruity Salad With Sugared Almonds and Sweet-Hot Vinaigrette, and a comfy seat to catch glimpses of the bowl games on your
big screen. Near party’s end, forget the diet plans, and indulge in Dressed-Up Cheesecake Bars. Cheers to this stylish party
and a great year to come.
Wrap glasses with short lengths of silk and velvet ribbon, and secure with double-sided foam tape. Use Glue Dots (available at crafts stores) to attach embellishments such as glitter-covered card stock circles or stars. Or use stick-on jewels. Choose materials that play up the theme of your party. For a more organic look, wrap glasses in twine.
Get ahead of holiday parties. Plan to stash a few batches of these casual, three-bite sandwiches in your freezer.
When preparing Hot Roast Beef Party Sandwiches, don’t separate the tray of rolls into individual buns when cutting in half. Once cut, place top and bottom pieces side by side, cut sides up, on a long sheet of aluminum foil on a jelly-roll pan. Use the foil to lift the top of buns over the beef and cheese on the bottom buns. Fold foil edges to seal.
Turn a flat-bottom glass bowl upside down to create a pedestal for serving dishes. Putting food at different levels on a buffet table gives a more interesting look to your setting. Jon found black-and-white print paper in the scrapbooking section of a crafts store and cut it into strips. He taped the pieces together and attached them to the inside of the clear bowl using double-sided tape. “The scrapbooking aisle is a great resource,” Jon says. “You can find all sorts of colorful paper for any occasion.”
Set up a serving area for the shrimp and sauces on your kitchen island or breakfast table, and let everyone help themselves. To shortcut prep, ask your seafood monger to steam shrimp for you.
Give guests an outlet for their wishful thinking with wish boxes. Provide scraps of paper for them to write their wishes. Make the boxes from leftover Christmas gift packages. Leave the box without a lid so there is an opening to put the paper slips into. Spray adhesive on the boxes, and sprinkle glitter over them. Cut two holes in the back of each box, and slip a ribbon through so the boxes can hang from the back of a chair. Glue silver glitter onto cardboard letters, and using a glue gun, attach them to the box, spelling out “wish.”
Here's to good luck for the year! For a more casual presentation, place black-eyed pea mixture in a bowl, garnish with sour cream, and serve with scoop-style tortilla chips.
Inexpensive cotton napkins become take-home treats for guests. Use foam stamps and a fabric pen to mark the napkin with the word “resolution.” Jon suggests going over the foam stamp several times with the marker until the stamp is saturated. Press it down on the napkin. (Be sure to lightly mark with a pencil where you want the letters to go before you start stamping.) Put out a few fabric pens so guests can write their resolutions on the napkins.
Depending on where you live in the South, it may be 85° on January 1 or chilly. If it's the latter, our team says to "bundle
up, and do it." The results are worth a brief shiver.
After you place the chicken on the grill, don’t move it until time to turn or the chicken will stick to the cooking grate.
Jazz up your windows and mirrors inside with juniper branches. Jon simply wired branches from a juniper bush together for a fast and easy embellishment. “I love juniper. It’s rarely used, but it has points on it that make it a very elegant material to use for a garland,” he says. Add glitz to the juniper with a shimmering garland. Tip: Shop the wedding section of your local crafts store for decorations. You’ll find a lot of white and clear items that add instant shine.
To make the dish spicier, offer guests several brands of hot sauce on the side.
Wrap the base of a ‘Carolina Sapphire’ cypress in burlap. This inexpensive material looks substantial without putting a burden on your wallet. It adds natural, organic appeal to any display. Tie it on with twine or ribbon. Enhance the look with twinkle lights.
We did not call for sugar in the crust―it's tasty without it―and the sauces add sweetness. Arrange a mini buffet so guests may customize their pieces of our cheesecake bars with sauces and sprinkles.