Amy Sedaris' At Home With Amy Sedaris is a loopy new showcase for the avid crafter and hostess—like someone threw Martha Stewart and Pee-wee Herman in a blender. With the truTV series, out this week, expect handmade projects, bizarro recipes, and guests like Stephen Colbert and Jane Krakowski offering both laughs and legit advice. Says the former Strangers With Candy star, “You want people to play it straight and hope that comedy comes out.”
OUT: It seems you were destined to do this show.
Amy Sedaris: I’ve always been into crafting, and I like to keep my house nice. Growing up, we had two terrible homemaking shows—crazy women in their “homes,” which were actually sets. They’d have locals on, and it was unbelievably boring. But I always said, “I’m going to do that someday.”
What’s your favorite vintage recipe name?
I always liked my brother’s Chicken Snatchiatore, instead of chicken cacciatore.
How is that made?
Oh, it’s the same recipe. You can just call it Chicken Snatchiatore.
How do you compare to Martha Stewart?
My references were more The Galloping Gourmet, The Frugal Gourmet, Two Fat Ladies, and Julia Child—that quiet PBS feel. But what was good about Martha is that she broke her show into segments: “Here’s cooking! Here’s crafting!”
What was your biggest dinner-party disaster?
Once I had a party, and 20 minutes before people were due to arrive, my super came up and said he had to remove my toilet. He put it in my bathtub, so if anyone had to use the bathroom, they couldn’t. And one night before Thanksgiving I was trying to defrost my freezer and I punctured something and the Freon went in my face. But luckily it was Chicago in November, so I just put everything on my back porch.
The key is keeping calm.
You can only control so much. That’s why it’s important who you invite. I got some good advice once: Take a picture of the disaster and laugh about it later.
What’s your least favorite homemaking trend?
I don’t like “DIY” or “quick fixes”—like “Print this out and tack this up!” Or shows with any kind of “challenge.”
Well, you make things look really easy.
I always say, “Surround yourself with what you like.” People say, “I’m not going to paint this wall because I’m renting and not going to be here for 20 years.” Just fuckin’ paint the wall! You’re not going to get your deposit back anyway.