Bring the lush greenery of the 50th state to your own backyard: Party snacks plain or exotic get an upgrade when served in cones fashioned from banana leaves (which are available at Asian and Latin food markets). Cut them into six-inch squares, roll each into a cone, and fasten at the seam with a bamboo skewer.
More Bright Ideas
Welcome your guests with flights of fancy. Line tiny wicker baskets with plastic wrap, fill with clump moss, and adorn with bright butterflies (or dried or silk flowers).
SourceMartha Stewart Living, April 2010
A basic white platter (this one's from cb2.com) just might be the most versatile item in your cupboard. We've used it here to corral cocktail garnishes; try it at your next party!
Offer accompaniments to cocktails: citrus wedges (for gin and vodka tonics), olives and caper berries (martinis, Bloody Marys), and cocktail onions (Gibsons).
SourceMartha Stewart Living, July 2009
For a splash of style, adorn your table with autumn's brightest accessories: vivid fall leaves. Simply clip sprays of young leaves from a tree in your yard (ours are from a maple). Arrange the clippings at each place setting, and top with transparent glass plates. Come dinnertime, you'll be basking in the oohs and aahs of your guests.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, October 2007
Here's a fresh idea for the season's abundant Forelles and Anjous: Use them to make a friendly, fragrant greeting.
Line up seven pears (in the same color or a mix) on a mantel. Then, with a fine-tipped washable marker, write letters on the front of each pear. Press whole cloves into the flesh along the lines; using a pushpin or a tack first can ease their entry. Make the letters no earlier than the day your guests arrive -- the sweet and spicy aroma will be as welcoming as the message itself.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, November 2010
You're not the type to have a closet full of neutrals. Wouldn't it be great if your engagement ring reflected your penchant for color? Candy-hued diamonds have figured heavily in famous engagements of late (think Mariah Carey's rose-tinted rock and Heidi Klum's canary-yellow beauty), but they hold a prehistoric appeal. Long before the stones were ready to grace your finger, they blushed pink or glowed gold far beneath the earth's surface, as elements like nitrogen worked their magic. The stunning results, courtesy of Father Time and Mother Nature.
SourceMartha Stewart Weddings
More Entertaining Ideas