Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Having a dog party is one of the greatest ways that I can think of to celebrate the unique bond shared between dogs and their owners. It is also a great way to celebrate your pet passions with your friends who share them! Decorating for a dog party is a blast. Check out my Dog Parties: Entertaining Your Party Animals book (Gibbs-Smith, $19.99) for more ideas but find inspiration in this simple centerpiece as well. Before you fill your favorite glass vase with flowers in your party's color scheme, use a glue gun to fasten a wide ribbon around it and then to adhere simple milk bone treats. Add your favorite chic flowers and you are all set to celebrate. You can use any flowers and any ribbon bu I love the contrast of the black velbet ribbon and the cheerful colors in the arrangement pictured above. Send me photos of your dog party!
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
I am thrilled to tell you about my next book, Tablescapes: Setting the Table with Style (Gibbs-Smith Publisher, $39.99). The book will be available in bookstores near you on the 20th of September but you can pre-order your copy today! Take a look at my website to find out how. This highly-photographic book includes chapters and images of tabletop settings from a breakfast-in-bed tray to a seated dinner for 100. I hope you like it! Please write to me and let me know what you think. I would love to hear your ideas and see photos of tables that you have set. Keep yourself posted on my book-signings and speaking engagements by signing up for my newsletter.
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Looking for something Savory or Sweet? Look no further than Culinary Kate! Katie Lee Joel's new cookbook, The Comfort Table, is filled with fantastic southern recipes inspired by her grandmother's cooking. You will not believe how delicious every single recipe is! We have already tried tons of them at home but my favorite is the asparagus and green bean salad with pine nuts...yum yum.
Brian Bolke of Forty Five Ten introduced me to Katie and we are pictured here at the luncheon he so graciously hosted to honor my charity, The Lola Fund, and introduce Katie to Dallas. After feasting on a delicious lunch made from
Katie's recipes at the T room, our thirty guests walked across the street to the Viking showroom and Katie did a fantastic cooking demonstration for us. My mouth is watering just thinking about it! Thanks Brian and Katie!
Saturday, August 2, 2008
Not in the mood to make a floral arrangement? This simple stack of single blooms is a no-fail quick and easy way to have the life, color and aroma of flowers with out the time consuming task of arranging them. Invest in a odd number of square glass containers and fill each of them with a single bloom from your garden or floral supply. Large blooms like peonies or hydrangea work best. Simply stack them up like this or lay them out in a strait line down the middle of a long rectangular table. You really can't mess this up and it works well in any kind of setting, from contemporary to country!
Friday, August 1, 2008
Summer house guests on their way? You should do something nice to make their stay a little bit more memorable. Little things go a long way with a guest who is staying over and the easiest way to come up with ideas is to think back to your favorite hotel stay and recall the tiny touches that made it so special. Maybe it was just a chocolate on the pillow or a sewing kit in the closet. Whatever it was, do what you can to make your home like a hotel.
There is a difference between necessities and niceties. Fresh soap in the shower is a necessity but flowers beside the bed are a nicety. Co-ordinating hangers in the closet and a bottle of water beside the bed are necessities but a cd player with a few of your favorite cds and a detailed street map of your area are niceties. See my list below for more suggestions:
Fresh and Clean Sheets Lavendar sachets
inside the pillows
Bottle of water Fill a carafe with
beside the bed water and lemon
Food and snacks A basket of local
in the kitchen delicacies in the guest room
A few books in the room Your favorite new books
wrapped as a gift
Lamp beside the bed Candles beside the bed
with a monogrammed
box of matches
A set of clean towels A robe behind the door
A friendly greeting A welcome basket with
upon arrival a map & camera
A warm goodbye A send off gift
(framed photo, photo
album or memento)
Memories of a good time A travel kit with
a Sudoku book, pencil &
Most importantly: Enjoy your guests and have fun! Play together, cook together, dine together but also give your guest some alone time too.