Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Tuesday's Tablescape-A Family Fiesta

Arriba!!!! What could be more fun than winding down summer or winding up Fall with a Mexican fiesta with family and friends? It's casual, it's easy and tell me one adult or child who doesn't love a pinata! 
MENU
Chips and guacamole
Self serve taco bar
Enchiladas 
Salad
Chocolate Chip Cookies
The starting point for the table scape was the hot pink tablecloth I had picked up on a girls' trip to Puerta Vallarta. It wasn't large enough to cover the table, so I folded it and used it as a runner.

I had hot pink napkins with orange trim, so I used orange as the accent color. Orange candles from Creative Candles, white Juliska plates on rattan chargers, a white bowl filled with oranges and hot pink glasses from Eddie Ross rounded it all out. 
For the adults we served homemade margaritas. 
16 oz. Tequila 
16 oz. Triple Sec
16 oz. Water
8 oz. fresh lime juice
8 oz. fresh lemon juice
Mix together and chill. With or without salt. Garnish with a slice of lime. Refill!
Monogrammed napkins in hot pink.
If you're wondering if you need a kitchen bar sink....I say "yes"! It doubles as a cooler!
For the younger set, Strawberry Lemonade was served from my cold drink dispenser from Costco.
Whatever the ages of your guests, I think it's important that they feel special, too. For easy clean up, I covered the table with brown craft paper and used melamine plates that coordinated with the adults' table.
My 8 year old helped with the place cards for this table.
I used a pinata as the centerpiece for the children's table. After dinner, we went outside where Grant was waiting with a baseball bat and another pinata, filled with sweets and treats, hanging from a tree!

After we settled the children down with a movie, the adults sat down and finished off the pitcher of margaritas with dinner!

How do you spice up family-friendly entertaining?




Monday, August 30, 2010

The Last Hurrah

Here's a sneak peek at where we are this week...our last summer hurrah!

Are you making the most of these last few days before September?

Friday, August 27, 2010

Friday Flowers-Window Dressing

No matter the size of your home, window boxes always fit.

Above are my window boxes from the Spring, but I found a number of inspiring "window dressings" out there...from Parisian apartments, brownstones in Brooklyn to homes on a hill.
I also love that they are not a long-term commitment....I'll soon be adding pumpkins, gourds and berry branches to give mine a quick change for Fall.

Do you dress your windows?

images: me, country living, freefoto.com, deborah silver, althouse

Thursday, August 26, 2010

I Love My Hermes Scarves!!

There. I've admitted it. I love my Hermes scarves. 

From the 1st one (perfume bottle motif) that my husband bought me in London on a business trip to the  Zodiac print given to me on my birthday by my parents...I love each one.
But, sometimes they can feel a little stodgy. Not so on these beautiful fashionistas.

Hermes, in collaboration with the famed avant garde Paris boutique, Collette, is bringing new life to these scarves with limited editions which will go on sale at Collette from Sept 27- October 16th. Anyone going to Paris then??!!

Since July, Hermes has been traveling the globe (New York, Paris, London and Tokyo) with 4 girls wearing their scarves in new and bold ways and chronicling it in the website, www.jaimemoncarre.com. Translated it means...I Love My Scarf!
And, while I'm not giving away one of my Hermes scarves....I am giving away some fashionable elements. The Satorialist book by Scott Schuman is chock full of great style. Think of it is an idea book - not every look is for you, but it can be aspirational.
And, somehow, I always enjoy getting dressed more when there are some good tunes playing in the background. So, while I was in Paris this summer, I picked up an extra copy of Collette's own in-house mix...for you!

Just leave me a comment by September 1st and make sure you're a "follower"...1 winner (of both items) will be announced the following day!

What are you wearing for fall? 
ps: For the record, I usually wear my Hermes scarves rolled up and tied as a belt through the belt loops on my pants!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Author's Note

Today, I'll be guest posting on Providence Ltd to share what I'll do with the antique books I won in their give away!! Thank you to sisters, Mona and Talena, for this wonderful opportunity to add to my decor!

So stop on by and I'll show you where I plan on using them!

What's on your bookshelves?
xo, Elizabeth

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My Kitchen Crush - Michael S. Smith


When we bought our current house, we loved the bones. But, we knew that we wanted to update the kitchen. I'm not an interior designer, but after having bought and sold 4 homes, I knew I could handle this remodel.
BEFORE:
Hmmm...... small space, no room for an island....what was this going to look like? Then, I saw Michael's kitchen in House Beautiful. I knew this was the inspiration I was looking for. Galley kitchen, neutral colors, stainless appliance and an open doorway at one end, just like I had.

I enlisted the help of Jennifer Howard of JWH Design and Cabinetry. Jen understood exactly what I needed and came up with the actual design and custom cabinetry. We simply moved the doorway going into the hallway...and that simple shift made all the difference. 
AFTER:



Glass front cabinets are on one side of the kitchen, giving me an area to update with each holiday season.

To update the adjacent family room, we simply took the cabinet doors off, allowing for bookshelves. Then we painted the backs of the bookshelves with Benjamin Moore's Jackson Tan (which reads chocolate brown) to give some depth. Finally, I added library lights from Circa Lighting that bring in soft illumination.
Around the corner from the bar sink (a wine frig is below), we updated my desk area with dark wood to compliment the stone in the kitchen. The steel magnetic board allows me to change out children's artwork and invitations.
I splurged on some things: ie. hand glazed tiles from Country Floors (Michael's source), Viking appliances and the "Julia" faucets from Waterworks. I saved by keeping my hardwood floors and buying inexpensive pulls and knobs from Restoration Hardware.

Ultimately, I got a high functioning kitchen that I enjoy using, even if it doesn't have the big center island everyone loves.  

Here's to cooking up your own designs!
xo, Elizabeth

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