At Easter my aunt-in-law hosted about 12 of us. She and her husband by far have the biggest home. Her kitchen counters had the drinks, ice bucket, cups/glasses and corkscrew, and 2 desserts (one in a box, one a cookie platter in a big cellophane poof on top of the box), 2 more desserts were in the fridge. The sideboard in the dining area had the snack/hos d'vourves (crudite & dip, hummus, pretzels, jellybeans, cheese crisps, etc) and the dining room table was pushed against a wall and was where dinner was served buffet style. Between the plates, cutlery, napkins, roast, salad, potatoes, cooked veggie and ham the table had no extra room.
There was no convenient place to pre-serve dessert had someone asked for it.
And while it was certainly a casual party, when the dining room table was switched over to dessert, it was still an "oooh and ahh" situation because - hey that platter of cookies was beautiful as well as tasty looking, and the box opened to reveal a truffle cake, and out of the fridge came a home made rabbit-shaped cake (which we all wondered about the flavor of and then felt silly - of course it was carrot cake