April 14th, 2009 |

Dinner Party with Friends

Looking for a quick, but delicious dinner to serve at your next dinner party?!

Dinner Party with Friends (small)

As the days get longer this Spring, you will find that your life gets busier!  More activities, the kid’s sports start up….your evenings may be getting longer, but you feel like there is less time to entertain.  With a little prep work, and a simple menu and table setting….you can still play the part of soccer mom and hostess with the mostess!

Here is a great menu (perfect for Spring!) to try at your next party:

Images: recipes via Williams Sonoma, dining room (potterybarn.com)

April 14th, 2009 |

Napkin of the Week: Tied with a Flower

zinnia-napkin-nwat

I love, love, love this week’s Napkin of the Week.  Found in one of my favorite party planning books, Napkins with a Twist, this napkin would bring springtime cheer to any table.  You could really adapt this idea to any color palette or use different types of flowers.  I think this particular combination is so striking because of the use of one color, just different hues.

Solid color napkins are readily available – I found a few at Pottery Barn and Amazon.com.  The construction of this is simple – simply lay the napkin out in a flat square, pinch the center of the napkin and pull up.  Gather together about 3 inches down from the top of the point, and tie with a ribbon.  After you tie your bow, insert a flower.  Voila!

April 13th, 2009 |

Bridal Fashion Week: Spring 2010

 

Before I show you today’s Wedding inspiration board, I thought I would show you a recap of the Spring 2010 Bridal Fashion Week that just took place in New York.  Beautiful gowns….for a complete gallery of images, check out Martha Stewart Weddings or The Knot….but these are a few of my favorites!

There is just something magical about your wedding gown.  Nothing can make you feel quite as special or beautiful.  I loved my gown….in fact, I think the ONLY part of my entire wedding that made me sad was the fact that I will never wear it again.  It’s hanging in a closet at my parent’s house.  I visit it occassionally….even contemplate putting it on again!  I often joke around with my husband that some day he will come home from work, and I’ll be sitting in the living room watching TV in my gown….I think he realizes that I am only half kidding….

 

April 13th, 2009 |

A Modern Twist on a Black & White Wedding

 

There are so many options when it comes to planning a wedding with a black & white color palette….an elegant black tie affair, a modern event in a lounge with all white furniture….or you could go this route:

Clean polka dots and stripes, happy flowers and a ruffle here or there – creates a modern, somewhat preppy event.

The gerber daisy centerpiece is an idea that you could do for any special occassion – and would be darling in any color.

Images: couple watching fireworks, gerber daisy centerpiece and favor boxes (brides.com),

ruffled wedding gown (jcrew.com), wedding cake (instyleweddings.com),

placecards (theknot.com)

April 12th, 2009 |

Happy Easter!

happy-easter

April 11th, 2009 |

Party Dresses {for Day or Night!}

A few of my new favorite party dresses for day….Day Dresses (small)

and for night….
Evening dresses (small)

Images: melon short sleeve dress by Nanette Lapore (bergdorf goodman),

print halter dress by Milly (bergdorf goodman), blue short sleeve tunic dress by DVF (bloomingdales),

yellow one-shoulder dress by BCBG (bloomingdales), paisley dress by Kay Unger (nordstrom),

navy halter dress by Vera Wang Lavendar Label (bergdorf goodman)

April 10th, 2009 |

9 Indulgent Strawberry Treats

Strawberry Treats (small)

In my opinion, one of the best parts of Spring are the irrestibable strawberries that are in season.  I found 9 new strawberry treats that are sure to make your stomach start to growl!

1. Lemon Pound Cake with Mint Berries and Cream (Southern Living)

2. Strawberry Daiquiris (Williams Sonoma)

3. Strawberry Genoise with Whipped Cream (Williams Sonoma)

4. Pink Grapefruit, Strawberry and Champagne Granita with Sugared Strawberries (Epicurious)

5. Strawberry-Buttermilk Sherbet (Southern Living)

6. Mini Strawberry Cheesecakes (Williams Sonoma)

7. Mixed Berry Tart (Williams Sonoma)

8. Strawberry Tart with Orange Cream (Williams Sonoma)

9. Balsamic Strawberries (Southern Living)

Happy Baking!

April 10th, 2009 |

COLOR: Ocean Blues & Green

color-intro3Today’s COLOR inspiration comes from the ocean blues and green that I pulled out of a selection of fabrics from Calico Corners.  This modern combination will have sun seekers dreaming of the ocean!

Not only do I love the combination of colors – but also the playfulness of these patterns together.  It’s great inspiration not only for a party, but also for your home.  This would be a beautiful palette for a porch, patio or bathroom.

Seascape Intro (small)

I recently had a reader write in looking for inspiration for a bridal shower for a bride that is getting married in the Caribbean this year.

Your guest of honor has made this easy for you…

Beach wedding, beach-theme shower!

I always focus on the table setting – creating something that will leave your guests saying “ooh” and “ahh”.  But, I think with showers it’s important to remember to make sure you have two different areas for your guests to socialize.  Your tables (where you will be seating them for the meal), but also a comfortable area with multiple seating options for your guests to relax during the rest of the party (especially as the bride opens her gifts).

For your table, start by pulling in shades of blue in your linens.  Use different shells to create a centerpiece – and this is my favorite part – hang starfish and sand dollars at different heights from your light fixture (or ceiling) to create a seascape chandelier.  Use a gauzy, white tulle ribbon to hang them – it will create a nice light and airy effect.  If your shower is at night, go ahead and hang some votive candles too – the effect will be dream-like!  Tie placecards onto star fish – it will add a decorative element to your table, and make a great favor for your guests to bring home.

To create a relaxing, beach-like environment for your guests to relax and mingle in when they aren’t sitting at your beautiful table – set up a white tent outside.  Fill the tent with patterned floor pillows, beach chairs, and small tables for people to put their drinks on.  Hang some blue and green lanterns from the top of the tent to get a few more “ooh’s” and “ahh’s”.  Seascape Party (small)

Just one more accessory to complete your beach-theme bridal shower: seashell picks for appetizers or desserts!  You could make these yourself if you got crafty with some small shells, toothpicks and a glue gun.  BUT – to save on time, you can order these and other shell accessories from Wedding Things.

seashell-picks1

Images:  fabrics (calicocorners.com), drinks, seashell table setting and tent(brides.com), starfish placecards (theknot.com), starfish (potterybarn.com), green hydregnas (stylemepretty.com)

April 9th, 2009 |

New Tabletop from Jonathan Adler

I was so excited to get an e-mail from Jonathan Adler this morning announcing their new line of melamine plates.

ja-2

Plates, bowls and trays are offered in two patterns and colors – and are priced incredibly well.  Perfect for your summer backyard parties – this fresh-looking collection is sure to make paper plates a thing of the past!

ja-1

April 9th, 2009 |

COLOR: Sassy Sherbet

color-intro1

For my first post on COLOR, I decided to use a piece of Trina Turk for Schumacher fabric.  This new Collection is launching this Spring – and makes me dream of decorating a fabulous vacation home in Palm Beach!  Can’t you just picture the bold, vibrant colors….the clean, modern, white furniture….the pool in the backyard where I could host FABULOUS pool parties?!  Sorry….I’m getting distracted!  Back to the post….

Gorgeous shades of melon, pink and sunshine yellow – you can feel the energy come out of this color palette!

POY Color Palette (small)

I think these colors lend themselves to a cheery brunch – birthday, Mother’s Day, or just a friendly get together.  Use these colors as your guide to create a cohesive, vibrant party.

POY Party (small)

Joyous bursts of color above your table creates an instant celebration.

These dahlia-like pom-poms appear to float in the air; in reality they are hung from the ceiling with clear fishing wire. See Martha Stewart for instructions on how to make these darling pom-poms.  You can either carry the pom-pom theme throughout the table by making pom-pom napkin rings in citrus shades to adorn each place setting…..or you could simply tie a brightly colored napkin with a patterned ribbon.

These sherbet colors can easily be incorporated into your food – a lovely pink lemonade, a salad full of citrus fruits, and cupcakes adorned with flowers for dessert.  Looking for a cute favor for your guests to bring home with them?  I love this idea of planting small, bright colored pots with either herbs or flowers.  Dress the pot up with a ribbon and their name….and it will be a darling reminder of your Sassy Sherbet party!

Images: chairs (marthastewartweddings.com), fabric (trina turk for schumacher),

orange napkins, citrus colored pots (hostessblog.com),

flower cupcakes (theworkingdapur via flickr.com)

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