HOW TO MAKE IT FRUGAL ALONG WITH RECIPES-
A cheese plate can be done inexpensively. You can offer as few as 2 or three cheeses and some crackers alongside. Some fruit such as sliced pears or grapes are always a nice touch as well. To make this frugal, the cheeses can be purchased from Aldis grocery store. They have a particularly good white cheddar with cranberries cheese for about $3 as well as other gourmet but frugal cheeses to try. Add some nice crackers and a bit of fruit and you have an elegant appetizer that is easy to reuse it's leftovers. Some great articles to check out on the subject:
That is pretty much it for the elegant dinner - pickup a loaf of french bread (usually only about $1-2 dollars at our local grocery store) and get a stick of real butter to lather the bread with. Inexpensive sparkling wine or champagne can be procured at places like Aldi's or Trader Joes really cheaply and looks festive or you can get a bottle of sparkling juice if you are a non-drinker. Lastly add a pretty platter of whatever you decided to bake or buy this year in terms of cookies and chocolates and voila - a fancy feast for a non-fancy price tag!