The host of ‘At Home With Amy Sedaris’ shares her dinner party secrets with ET.
Actress and comedian Amy Sedaris is no stranger to crafts, entertaining and homemaking, as she’s demonstrated with her two books, I Like You: Hospitality Under the Influence and Simple Times: Crafts for Poor People. Plus, we can never forget her one-time cheese balls and cupcakes catering business, Dusty Food Cupcakes. Now, the former Strangers With Candy star is showcasing her diverse but necessary homemaking skills on the new truTV series, At Home With Amy Sedaris, co-created by her and Paul Dinello.
On the 10-episode comedy, her quirky tidbits are bought to life in lessons on creating Popsicle stick buddies, with kids dipping their glue-covered figurines into bags of hair, and how to gut a fish. And there will be plenty of celebrity guests, from Jane Krakowski and Stephen Colbert, to get a firsthand demonstration.
While there’s an earnest humor written into each segment, everything is ultimately derived from her years of crafting and entertaining. “It’s something I have a lot of experience with, which made me think that when it came time for the show, at least I do know what I’m talking about,” Sedaris tells ET. “I might not execute it properly, but I do feel like I have the right to do the show because I have the experience.”
With Sedaris demonstrating many of her skills onscreen, ET wanted to know what exactly goes into being a proper guest at a dinner party, like the elaborate ones she’s hosted at her New York home.
And the key, she says, to being invited back is knowing your role. “If I invite you over and I know you're a really funny person, then I know that you're going to help keep the ball in the air. I might invite you for your energy,” says Sedaris, who explains the party essentially has to be cast. “A good guest would know, ‘That's pretty much why I'm coming, so I better be in a good mood.’”
It’s also about understanding proper party etiquette, like showing up on time or knowing what to (or not to) bring. “You don't want to show up early or want to show up with anything that takes up counter space,” Sedaris says, adding: “I hate when people show up with raw vegetables and they ask you if you have a cutting board and they ask you if you have a sharp knife and you're like, ‘No one's going to eat your f**king raw vegetables and your stupid spinach dip.’ Or they come over with flowers that they got at the bodega without second thought because then you got to acknowledge the flowers, then you have to hide your disappointment in the flowers, then you have to cut them down and then you have to get your vase and then you have to find counter space for them. It's a pain in the a**. It's like send them before or after. I'm just talking about larger events. If this is party of five, then it’s different, but you know, it’s like, ‘Put some thought into it.’’”
When asked if anyone has violated these simple rules, Sedaris recalls one such guest who showed up with her grandparents and a chocolate cake, “that needed to be refrigerated -- and it was for a Greek party,” she says. “I'm like A, chocolate doesn't go with Greek food; and B, I don't have room in my refrigerator. And now with your old folks, there goes the pot smoking -- right out the window. You ruined my party. They're not coming back. I hope those old people die! [Laughs] No, I'm just kidding.” Needless to say, this girl wasn’t invited a second time.
As for the flip side? Being a proper host, Sedaris says it’s a matter of preparation: “That’s all you can do. Then once that doorbell rings or there's a knock at the door, it's all up for grabs. You can't control it after that. You have to be ready for it -- and I'm good that way.”
Fans can get more lessons on homemaking and entertaining when At Home With Amy Sedaris premieres Tuesday, Oct. 24 at 10:30 p.m. ET on truTV.