How is it already 5 days into the New Year? I feel like I was in a mad sprint at the end of the year with work, holidays, and getting tons of projects done for our annual New Year’s Eve party. This was the first time hosting it out at our house, so we made New Year’s Eve an official housewarming party since many of our friends hadn’t seen our new place yet (and plus, it guilted them to drive out to the ‘burbs for the night, #realtalk). It was a totally different experience throwing this party than our past 5 years of apartment hosting. For starters, it takes a lot more time to clean and prep a whole house than it did an apartment; we also had quite a few guests sleepover so we had lots to do to fix up guest bedrooms and freshen bedding. On top of all of that, I didn’t have my party flow down — you know: the spot you always put the bar, the place you always set out the food — all of that was trial and error this time around. Oh and one more thing: we had construction going on in our kitchen and wet paint in our dining room up until about 20 hours before the party started — can you hear my panicked laugh?!
It’s here! It’s here! My favorite holiday of the year! I know people get all grumpy about New Year’s Eve because it usually involves an overly expensive dinner or a crowded bar, but that’s why I decided a long time ago to throw my own New Years bash and give all my friends the perfect plan for sending out the year in style and kicking off the new one just right. Call me a sap, but I love the idea of starting the new year with my best friends, doing what I love most: entertaining. It’s also one of my favorite holidays because it involves all things glitter and sparkle and confetti-filled. So if you’re hosting your own soiree this year, or need to add a little pop of celebration to a night in watching the ball drop, I’ve got a few last minute DIY ideas you can craft up. I worked on these with Julie of Posh and Prep who lent her expert calligraphy skills to make them a little extra special! read more
Here’s the thing — those glitzy crowns and party horns that we all buy for New Year’s — they’re super corny, but so very necessary. I like the annual challenge of finding new ways to update these simple party-store finds into something a little bit more special. Last year I used glitter letter stickers to write out messages on simple paper party horns — and this year I took the same concept and revamped it. With some metallic Sharpie markers and a little bit of patience I carefully hand-wrote silly New Year’s resolutions on a set of big party horns. I plan to pop them all in a vase for some table-decor, and let my guests pick a resolution that matches their personality (and sense of humor!).
Every year at our annual New Year’s Eve celebration, I stock the bar with the usual suspects (champagne, wine, beer) and then add one signature drink to the mix that is festive and easily prepared in advance. This year my color scheme is revolving around mints and golds, so I thought a peachy colored drink would look great on the bar. After some brainstorming, I landed on a grapefruit juice based cocktail that I’m calling the ‘Grapefruit Sparkler.’ To make a batch for yourself start with a pitcher or carafe and mix together 3 cups of chilled grapefruit juice, 1 cup of white rum, and 1/4 cup of elderflower liquor — use this ratio to double or triple the recipe depending on how large your party is. To serve, pour the mixture 3/4 of the way full in a flute and top the remaining 1/4 of the glass with a bubbly prosecco and a sparkly drink stirrer — cheers!
Well guys, I’m certainly foodie and the party planner of my family — but I’m certainly not the fashionable one. I leave that job to my stylish sister Mara, and I’m super excited to announce that she’ll be joining the DomestiKatedLife team and contributing a monthly style column with tips and ideas for looking your best! To kick it off, she’s rounding up some last-minute accessory additions for the perfect New Year’s Eve look:
‘Tis the season to sparkle! With New Years Eve just around the corner (how did that happen so fast?), here a few ideas for accessories you can add to dress up a little black dress that’s already hanging in your closet (or consider buying a new one — this Old Navy version is under $20!). One accessory not pictured: copious amounts of champagne—cheers!
I thought I’d share a few snaps of our New Years Eve party before heading off for the weekend. I will be honest, I was a little frazzled getting ready for our annual party this year, I was nursing a cold, my balloons were deflating from the super-cold weather, and I forgot to bake a few of my appetizers! So when I realized guests would be arriving in just a few minutes, I zoomed around and snapped a few quick phone pictures and called it a day. But I don’t think anyone seemed to notice, we popped champagne, ate lots of snacks (I made homemade soft pretzels that were a hit), and even danced to a little Ke$ha in the living room after the ball dropped — a success in my book! Hope you had a fabulous New Year, can’t wait to see what 2014 has in store!
As I’m prepping for our annual New Year’s Eve party today, I thought I’d share the invites we sent out from Paperless Post. The kelly green striped envelopes reminded me of our wedding — perhaps the best moment of this year — and the festive confetti pattern just screams ‘let’s party!’ — am I right? Hope you have a wonderful New Year’s Eve filled with champagne toasts and midnight kisses!
Yesterday I shared a quick DIY for upgrading store-bought party horns for the countdown to midnight. I had similar feelings about the poor selection of New Year’s Eve crowns at the party store and decided to whip up a few of my own. Using a store-bought crown as a template, I traced the bottom portion of the paper crown and then drew my own message for each crown. Using a sharp knife, I cut out the message from glitter scrapbook paper. Then I simple attached the cardboard cut-out piece with the two tabs I left and a few staples to the original crown headband! I can’t wait to pass these out to guests at the party!
It’s party-prep time for our annual New Year’s Eve shindig, and I was out this weekend looking for pretty favors but was disappointed in so many of the options at my local party store. So I decided to grab some plain-jane party horns from Target and give them a 5-minute upgrade. Using sparkly gold alphabet stickers from the scrapbook section of the craft store, I customized the part horns with festive messages — a super simple DIY! I’m going to put them in a vase on our bar for decoration and then pass them out at midnight.
This year, instead of sharing a week of gift guides I decided to mix things up and think a little more local! I’m sharing interviews with local Boston business owners to get their tips for holiday gift giving, entertaining, and attire! Today we’re getting the dish on what to wear for the holidays from the stylish Jessika of Holiday Boutique:
K: The holiday season is upon us, and with party invitations piling up, I want to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe so I have something to wear! Any advice for how bring in new pieces that can update things you might already have in your closet?
HB: I suppose the most obvious answer is accessories! But think beyond jewelry… I love wearing colored opaque tights this time of year. Instead of basic black, try red or cream with a staple dress you already own. Try a vintage fur collars or scarves; a skinny scarf looks super chic folded and pinned — I like to wear one in place of a necklace with a cashmere sweater. I’m also mad for shoe clips — they can transform a boring pump into magic. Also something as simple as a fabulous manicure or professional blow-out can make you feel just as great (sometimes better) than buying a new dress.
K: In the age of email and text invites, it can often be less than clear what the attire recommendation is at different holiday events. What is your fail-proof outfit advice for holiday party dressing?
HB: Holiday party dressing should be festive and celebratory. I’d much rather show up to an event slightly over-dressed than under-dressed. I avoid leggings or denim for evening events and take full advantage of dresses and skirts. My go-to is generally black this time of year, but I also LOVE mixing in a statement color via a clutch, shoe or even a simple barrette. Red always pops on black, as does gold and leopard. Another go-to for me is cream — I’m a fan of winter whites– especially in lace. It’s classic and feminine. If you’re the hostess you’ll have even more freedom to experiment. Vintage pieces can make an incredible one-of-a-kind statement… try a vintage kimono and ballet flats! Soooo chic!
K: New Years Eve is my absolute favorite holiday, but I’m a little bored with the glittery cocktail dress look — what kind of looks do you recommend for counting down to midnight?
HB: New Years Eve is a fabulous excuse to do something slightly unexpected or even a little gutsy! Try a headpiece, hat or turban! If you want a little sparkle, a sequin beret is a darling choice — especially if the rest of your look is simple.
K: Any fun trends you’re excited about bringing into Holiday for, well, the holidays?
HB: My shop never gets too into “trend”– though this year we are embracing tartan and pom-poms! A classic plaid cashmere scarf and a knit hat with a giant pom-pom on top is both cute and cozy. We also love our re-worked vintage fur vests. For accessories, we’re all about a big, bold vintage inspired pin that can instantly make almost anything feel and look special. Our hand beaded monogram clutches are uber popular and a major (personal) statement piece.
Thanks to Jessikafor all of her great advice! Don’t forget to #shoplocal on this holiday season!