April 28th, 2009 |

Modern Stationery from a Hip Prepster

I absolutely fell in love with this modern stationery line called Dabney Lee.   A self-proclaimed prepster living in a hip world – she not only has adorable stationery, invitations and monogramed gifts – but she also just started up a blog!

Love the color…love the patterns…a new excuse to throw a party!

dl-orange

dl-green

dl-yellow

April 27th, 2009 |

Cinco de Mayo Cocktails

Cinco de Mayo Cocktails (small)

What better cause for celebration than Cinco de Mayo?!

Try serving up these festive drinks at your next fiesta:

1. Scarlet Margarita

2. Mango Margarita

3. Classic Margarita

4. Sangria Blanco

5. Beer ‘Garitas

6. Sangria

April 27th, 2009 |

It’s all in the Presentation…

Give an old favorite recipe a new look…

mexican-layer-dipI love, love, love this idea from Food Network….everyone has their own version of a Mexican layer dip….but wow your guests by updating the presentation.

Use small glasses as the vessel to create these individual dips.  Use a white, rectangular plate – place the dip and a stack of tortilla chips on it – and you have an instant update to one of my favorite snacks!

April 26th, 2009 |

Cinco de Mayo Celebration

Cinco de Mayo Party (small)

Cinco de Mayo (otherwise known as the 5th of May) is a day to party and to celebrate, and also a good time to get a taste of Mexican culture.  If you can gather some festive drinks, colorful decorations and try your hand at some traditional Mexican food….you can throw a Cinco de Mayo Fiesta!

If you’re going to throw a fabulous party, you’ll need to decorate. Colored paper flowers, paper lanterns, and strings of white lights in the trees are a great way to liven up any party in a hurry. Pinatas are a traditional decoration and are a fun activity for kids at the party.  The most important thing when decorating for Cinco de Mayo?!  Use color! There is nothing mild about the Mexican culture – many homes and businesses in Mexico are filled with vibrant colors such as turquoise, fuchsia, yellow, red, purple and lime green.

Here are a couple of tips for decorating:

  • Buy solid color paper plates, napkins and cups using a combination of the Fiesta colors.
  • Hang Sombreros on walls, and use them during the party for a Cinco de Mayo Mexican Hat Dance.
  • Buy piñatas to hang from tree branches or to use as a centerpiece for tables.
  • Burn chunky, vibrant candles all night.
  • Drape white lights in trees surrounding the party area.
  • Have colorful, wood maracas at each place setting – tie them together with raffia and attach a placecard.

On to the south-of-the-border menu – begin with icy cold margaritas and quacamole, a warm bowl of chicken-tortilla soup. For the main course, set up a taco bar with colorful bowl of toppings – cheese, lettuce, avocado, tomatoes, and peppers.  Serve up some grilled corn with cheese and lime on the side – yum!  And for dessert – try mixing a little margarita mix into white cupcake batter.  Decorate with a slice of lime on top – very festive!

Images: party (detailsdetails.com), margarita (williams-sonoma.com)

April 25th, 2009 |

Cocktails on the Patio

Now that the days are getting longer, and the weather is getting nicer – people are starting to socialize out on their driveways watching their kids ride their bikes and draw with sidewalk chalk.   These nice days are still few and far between….so when you have a good one – enjoy it!  Extend your day by inviting the neighbors back to your patio and serve up Patio Lemonade (via Hostess with the Mostess) and Shrimp Shooters.

Cocktails on the Patio (small)

April 24th, 2009 |

Kentucky Derby: Day in the Garden

Kentucky Derby Party (small)

For 135 years, the Kentucky Derby has been everyone’s race – from the dapper men and beautiful women, all in hats and sipping on frosty mint juleps, to the laid-back crowd who picnic on the in-field on fried chicken.

The Kentucky Derby is more than just a race — it’s an annual society event. Since the first Derby in 1875, the race has become steeped in traditions ranging from specific food and drink to proper Derby attire.

One of the best part’s of The Kentucky Derby is enjoying a lovely day outside.  Although you will be glued to the TV to watch the actual race – bring your party outside to enjoy the rest of the day in the garden.  Set up tables with bright linens, and centerpieces that are loose and colorful.  Serve a buffet of traditional southern food – fried green tomatoes, bourbon-marinated pork tenderloin, fried chicken, and blackberry & toasted pecan cobbler for dessert.

kentucky-derby-tickets-plumparty

No matter how you decide to celebrate the Derby this year – there is one tradition that everyone must do: you have to serve the official drink: Mint Julep. The cocktail consists of bourbon, mint and sugar syrup, and is traditionally served in a silver julep cup with a sprig of mint.

If you want to organize a friendly wager for the race – check out these tickets from Plum Party.

For those ladies lucky enough to actually attend the Derby, the biggest question leading up to the race isn’t in regards to who is going to win….it’s all about what outrageous hat they will be donning that day!  It’s about color, extravagance, and definitely a touch of drama!
Derby Hats (small)

Images: garden (fineartamerica.com), flowers (artfool.com), race (kentuckyderby.com), invitation (ashleybrookedesigns.com), mint juleps and food (southernliving.com), hats (latimes.com)

April 23rd, 2009 |

Creative Spring Centerpiece

I love this idea from Simply Stated…..what a great centerpiece idea for Mother’s Day, a baby shower or little girl’s birthday party!

flower-table-runner

What You’ll Need:

  • Sharp scissors
  • Drinking straws
  • 2 boxes of wheatgrass (sold in flats or boxes at health-food stores and flower shops)
  • 12 to 16 gerbera daisies
  • A pencil

For such a creative look – this is so simple to put together.  Cut the straws to match the height of the grass.  Then snip the daisy stems so they are slightly longer than the straws, and gently slide each stem into a straw.  If the straws are too narrow for the stems, slit the straws from top to bottom.  Poke holes in the soil with the pencil. Stick the straw-sheathed flowers into the holes.

Don’t forget to lightly water the soil to help the flowers stay fresh!

April 23rd, 2009 |

Trend Alert: Grey & Yellow

Trend Alert Grey & Yellow (small)

Yellow – one of my favorites!  By pairing it with different colors, it can take on so many different lives.

Pair it with pink, orange, turquoise – it becomes a bit of a fiesta!  Placed with black & white – it is bold.  Nestled between sky blue and pale green, it is the ideal palette for a baby shower.

This season – I am seeing a ton of yellow and pale grey mixed together.  It’s somewhat of an unlikely pairing, but is really attractive!  I like it especially in the home.  Grey is a great neutral backdrop that gives you the opportunity to change up your pop colors seasonally.  This season….I hope you will choose yellow!

Images: pillows (styleathome.com), little girl (ba-reps.com), yellow dress (jcrew.com), place setting (theknot.com), patio set (crateandbarrel.com), gift (carolynroehm.com)

April 22nd, 2009 |

May Day Celebration

May Day (small)

May Day is a celebrated tradition all over the world.  Celebrated on May 1st (half way between the spring equinox and the summer equinox) the traditions surrounding May Day vary by country. The common theme in most celebrations – the use of flowers!

May Day is a wonderful opportunity to gather your loved ones, your children’s friends or the neighborhood for an outdoor celebration.  The most popular activity on May Day is to decorate a tall pole with brightly colored ribbons or streamers.  The pole is usually carried in a parade and then placed in the ground at the center of a party.  People then dance around the May pole, holding the ends of the streamers or ribbon in their hands.

It’s a colorful day – and a great exuse to be outside!

Images: floral dress (bodenusa.com), cone favor (rebeccathuss.com), may day pictures (via flickr.com)

April 21st, 2009 |

Napkin of the Week: Roll it up!

roll-it-up

Simple and sophisticated, this rolled napkin will make a stunning companion to any placesetting.

You can accessorize your napkin roll with a ribbon tie, a napkin ring, or even a piece of twine with a placecard attached to it.

Perfect for a luncheon, bridal shower, or special dinner party….I hope you will try this napkin roll at your next party!

Image via The Knot

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