Gotta love Urban Outfitters – hip, funky style at an affordable price! Check out this cool Graphic Plates Set and wrapped cocktail shaker from their Kitchen & Barware collection. Vintage vibe + sleek shapes = perfect vintage mod! To play up the modern factor, pair the plates with solid table linens in extra-bright hues like lime or aqua. Wrapped shaker ($24) and Graphic Plates ($24/set of 4) – both available at urbanoutfitters.com.
“unfed loves you” is their tagline…and guess what? we love them back! How could we not when they have such cool stuff – like these funky linen table runners and matching napkins. The dark olive cotton twill runner (aptly named “oh they are a runnin”) has funky printed deer in vivid orange and bright aqua, accented by subtle embroidered green mountains in the background. Comes in 2 sizes to best fit your table ($89 – $111). Coordinating “Fancy” dark olive cotton twill napkins with hand-stiched orange trim. ($28/pair)
Now here are some blues I’d love to have! These delicious blue & white porcelain dessert plates each come in sets of 4 mix & match designs! The porcelain Sausalito Dessert Plates from uncommongoods.com boast mod floral designs inspired by pop art ($35/set). Or check out Crate & Barrel’s Blue and White Plates – inspired by antique Japanese linen handkerchiefs, updated with a modern, crisp feel ($29.95/set). CB’s plates also come packaged in a fun round box – perfect for gift-giving!
Impress your guests even before the party starts with gorgeous, modern imprintable letterpress invites from Elum Designs. The luxurious look of letterpress at an affordable price! I’m loving “Le Belly” for baby showers, “Good Food” for dinner parties and “Groovy Celebration” or “Party Horn” for any special occasion!
Also – be sure check out their great selection of letterpress thank you cards and everyday notes – great gift ideas!
When I get an email from West Elm that boasts “up to 75%” off, it’s a great start to the day! Check out the great deals at their Summer Sale – like this brilliant turquoise Capiz Serveware crafted from colorful capiz shells. Both the round platter and the serving bowl dropped from $29 each to only $7 each! Makes a great gift for a wedding/bridal shower (something blue!), birthday or housewarming.
And if you have a few dollars more to spare, pair the serveware with turquoise striped decal glasses – $10 for a set of 6 – also from West Elm. Happy Shopping!
Designer Stefano Giovanni really knows how to shake things up with his line of modern, playful objects for your kitchen and table! This “lilliput salt & pepper set” is a guaranteed conversation starter – cute little characters with magnetic feet that stick to their metal base in a variety of configurations. Go ahead…play with your food! (Available in blue, green, yellow, and orange; $29/set at hivemodern.com).
Who could resist Stefano’s mandarin citrus squeezer either? This clever invention is a one-stop-juicing-shop! Just flip the hat over and you have a citrus juicer which juices directly into the goblet base….so cute! ($39 each, also at hivemodern.com)
A BIG THANKS to my sister-in-law Kris for introducing me to this great website! rockscissorpaper.com has funky & adorable cards, invitations, paper party supplies & more! I absolutely adore their mod pin collections (as shown above) – which are sold in sets of 4/$6. They currently have 16 sets to choose from in a variety of themes. Glue them onto napkin rings for adorable place settings or give them out as a unique shower favor!
Be sure to check out their “crafty card” collection too – a great way to say thank you to any hostess with the mostess! Or use one of their adorable notebooks and notepads to organize your next get-together – sure to keep your notes in order and yourself in the party mood!
When everyone is setting their drinks down on the same coffee tables, kitchen counters, or patio tables, drink mix-ups and abandoned “still-practically-full” bottles are sure to follow. Never fear – help is finally hear – in the form of 2 great “drink claimer” gadgets!
“Mine” beer bands are stretchy, molded rings sized to fit your Corona bottle OR your Coke can! Each band comes in a bright hue and simply reads “mine”. Short, sweet, and to the point! Sold in sets of 12 for $10/each at plumparty.com.
Princess? Daredevil? Rockstar? Flirt? Pick your favorite personality, hang it on your bottle, and make sure no one takes your drink! “Claim Your Drink” bottle tags from wrapables.com are sold in sets of 6 for $9.95/ea. Two sets of “personalities” to choose from!
Orange and black is such a great color combo – why should it’s only appearance be at Halloween?! Add some bold splashes of yummy orange to a sleek black and white palette and you’ve got the perfect setting for your next Asian-themed dinner party! For an affordable and very appropriate centerpiece, simply fill a large black or white ceramic bowl with lots of fresh, bright oranges. Here are some other great pieces to adorn your tabletop with:
At some point in time, you will inevitably encounter those moments at dinner parties or casual get-togethers that the conversation starts to lull – or maybe it never really got off the ground in the first place. Well, awkward silences be gone! This conversation-starter game is such a great invention. Funny and thought-provoking topics to keep your guests laughing and help them get to know each other better….which is, of course, the point of any great party! The Table Topics Game is packaged in a cool acrylic box that fits neatly on your table and comes in 5 different versions: Original, Family, Teen, Girls Night Out, and Couples – all of which are available at www.wrapables.com for $26.95 each.
P.S. Great hostess gift idea too!
Move aside, plastic wrap and boring food containers – these French Bull serveware/food storage containers are SO much more fun! With their heat-resistant, shatter-proof melamine structure and bold, splashy patterns like striped Cabana and funky Mosaic, fashion and function are in perfect synch! $32 for a set of 3 (Large, Medium, & Small) at plumparty.com.
Quick Tip: For a charming, unique gift idea, fill each container with goodies, stack them together like a wedding cake, and embellish with a wide fabric ribbon in a complimentary pattern or color. Perfect for a bridal shower, housewarming party, birthday, or “cheer-up-soon” well-wishes! No need to wrap this gift – yummy & adorable just as it is!
These mod candles by Skeem Product Design ($18 each at Plush Pod) will add some serious spark to your table whether they’re on or off! Arrange 3 or more down the center of your table in a straight line for a super easy but ultra-cool centerpiece.
The fun, lively Circledots collection is available in 3 styles: Champagne Bubbles (yellow), Ocean Air (blue), and Green Pineapple (green). The playful Stripes collection also comes in 3 styles: Cucumber & Grass (blues & greens), Yuzu & Wild Mint (pink & orange), and Kumquat & Fig (Earth Tones).
More and more black and white dinnerware sets seems to be popping up everywhere – and with their bold, sleek patterns, the black and white combo gives even the simplest patterns a striking appeal. You won’t miss the color on these fabulous dishes at all! Here are a few of my favorites:
1. Pinney’s Beach from Kate Spade
2. Elipse from Pier 1
2. Haiku from cb2 by Crate & Barrel
4. Mod Petal by Pier 1
Make a splash at your next get-together with creative carafes! The “JOY” Series from Boda Nova features sleek glass carafes in 4 colorful abstract patterns that coordinate with their original “Joy” glass sets. The names of each pattern say it all: (pictured above from left to right) FUN, HAPPY, PLAY, and SMILE. Both the carafes ($30 each) and the glasses ($30 for 4) come packaged in colorful tubes, perfect for gift-giving.
It was love at first site when I stumbled onto Luxe Paperie! Their gift wrap selection is truly amazing…gorgeous, fun, bold, elegant, unique…and always with a cool modern touch. Place a 12″ square of your favorite pattern under a cool vase or flower arrangement to dress up any table centerpiece, insert into photo coasters for a cocktail party, or embellish with a coordinating fabric ribbon for a gift that’s too pretty to open!
Think "tea-time" means dainty doilies and everything prim and proper? Think again! Every generation will love this funky-chic "Chandeliers" Tea Collection by Rosanna Bowles. Sleek white porcelain splashed with lively colors for lively conversation! Best of all, this high-design style comes without the designer price tag: Teapot – $25, Set of 4 Teacups/Saucers – $35, Set of 4 Dessert Plates – $35. Available at rosannainc.com .
The STAR Martini:
• Start with a classic Blue Curacao Martini:
– 3 oz vodka
– 1/2 oz Blue Curacao liqueur
– Dash of Angostura Bitters®
• Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker, add ice, and shake well.
• Strain the cocktail into a clear or blue martini glass rimmed with red cocktail rimming sugar.
• For the star garnish, take a red delicious apple, turn sideways, and slice into thin circular disks. Be sure to leave the skin on so you get the red color in your drink! Cut 5 triangles out of the apple disks to create a star shape. Strain the cocktail into the glass, the float the “star” on top. Adorable!
Ameri-Cran (can be made as a cocktail or “mocktail”)
• Cocktail version:Vodka Cranberry
– Mix 1 oz Vodka with 4 oz Cranberry and a splash of club soda
• Mocktail version: Cranberry Punch
– Mix one 4 oz Cranberry with 4 oz 7up® or Sprite®
• Garnish for both:
Take a bamoo skewer and trim down so it’s about 1.5″ taller than your cocktail glass. Thread cranberries and blueberries onto the skewer, alternating one of each color until you have a row of red and blue berries! Put the berry stick into the glass and voila! Another fun patriotic drink!
Independence Day Shooter:
– 1/3 oz Blue Curacao
– 1/3 oz Grenadine
– 1/3 oz Peach Schnapps
• Float each liquid one on top of the other into a chilled shot glass so they appear as red, white and blue “stripes”. Serve immediately to avoid mixing!
Looking for an easy and affordable away to create a great-looking tabletop? Then check out these great modern designs from Caspari™ and the French Bull™ Paper Collection ! Caspari’s green "Basketweave" design is perfect for a cool "preppy mod" summer dinner party…or throw a funky mod cocktail party with the "Delight" set from French Bull. Both available at…where else? Plum Party!
Quick tip: Be sure to mix solids in with patterns so you don’t end up with a "too busy!!" arrangement. For example, layer patterned salad plates on top of simple one-color dinner plates, or pair printed dinner plates with solid napkins…easy!
Who couldn’t fall in love with these adorably funky japanamation-inspired plates? Available at sparkability.com in both Monster and Superhero patterns that are too cute for words! Plus – sturdy melamine means stress-free entertaining.
A super-cool tabletop for “kids” of any age: Start with Monster and/or Superhero plates. For a cool centerpiece, mix 1 or more Ugly Dolls with framed postcards featuring mod japanamation illustrations, like this Takashi Murakami set. Tie everything together with solid table linens and bold splashes of color. Cool, easy, and anything but typical!
Aaah – the bachelorette party…the one chance other than Halloween that you and your girls get to dress like video stars, adorn yourself with body glitter and neon eyeshadow and don feather boas or hot pink cowboy hats in public without looking like complete idiots. Aside from the actual wedding day, the bachelorette party is often the most-looked-forward-to wedding celebration for both the bride AND her friends!
The past few years of my life could be dubbed "the wedding era" – and with so many people getting hitched – I’ve just celebrated the 10th bachelorette party with my friends. For those of you looking for some creative bachelorette party ideas, here are some of my favorites: