I am feeling so grateful that we’ve been able to have some small summer gatherings lately. There’s nothing I love more than a night full of friends, family, and a good excuse to make a festive grazing board! My friends at Christmas Tree Shops and That! asked me to share some of my best tips for crafting a wow-worthy summer charcuterie board and I had lots of fun putting this one together with all of the special pieces I found in their stores!My first step for planning a big snack board is to gather my plates, bowls, and other serving vessels. Christmas Tree Shops and That! is one of my favorite spots to hunt for these entertaining items, the prices are super affordable, and you can find a great variety of classic white pieces and seasonal, colorful options. All of the pieces I used for this spread are from Christmas Tree Shops and That! I got inspired for the theme with some summery nautical finds – a blue and white striped platter with a fish in the middle for my cheeseboard, some lobster ornaments that I thought would fun to scatter around the table, and a sweet crab print sheet set (I used the top sheet for a tablecloth!). Once I had a theme I brought in some additional blue and white pieces to round out the nautical vibe. The white dishes and bowls at Christmas Tree Shops and That! come in so many shapes and sizes! I found a few that made perfect vessels for holding olives, crackers, and snack mix. A selection of blue patterned bowls mixed and matched for some visual interest and held chips and dips. One of my favorite finds at Christmas Tree Shops and That! on this visit was a little fish dish that held toothpicks for grabbing bits of cheese and meat off the bigger board. I also grabbed some punchy red-orange napkins that pulled in the colors from my lobster and crab accents. When it comes time to build a board, I like to start by placing the cheeses as my “anchors” and then building around them with a variety of crackers and meats. Christmas Tree Shops and That! has an awesome selection of crackers, nuts, party mixes, jams, and chips at great prices, so I picked up almost all of my pantry supplies while I was there gathering the entertaining pieces. A tip I always share for building a grazing board with visual interest is to use a few different types of crackers in a variety of shapes and textures. It also helps to fill in any blank spaces on the board with charcuterie, nuts, dried fruit, and smaller snacks. I also gathered some pretty glass jars at Christmas Tree Shops and That! and used them to display a jam for a sweet balance to the salty cheeses and crackers. To finish it off, add on some fresh herbs and surround your board with extra crunchy snacks, veggies, crackers, and chips! Then it’s time to eat!PS: Take $10 off a $50 purchase when you sign up for Christmas Tree Shops and That! emails!

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