My friend Navya, from the little flower cottage, is back posting her second installment in our flower series:

My husband and I throw an annual party and I like to make sure the house is feeling patriotic as soon as guest walk through the door — but you won’t find any store bought banners or dyed flowers here! To me, the Fourth of July is all about celebrating our American roots, so I think it’s a perfect time to break out a few of my vintage pieces to set the tone.  Since our party is pretty casual I’m often out back with friends (ice cold drink in hand) while guests continue to arrive — so this year these pretty flowers and vintage books will be greeting all our latecomers!

I kicked off the July 4th celebrations a little early this weekend, taking in some local fireworks, bbq-ing with friends (how cute are my friend’s mason jar drink dispensers?) and spent some time by the waterfront looking at the tall ships. I’m ready to take on the week, mostly because it’s a short one — here’s to making it to the mid-week holiday!

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Last weekend my sister and I put together an Americana-inspired tablescape for a family BBQ. We incorporated lots of patriotic essentials like red and white striped straws for our lemonade and tiny American flags tucked into all white floral arrangements. It was a ton of fun and got me very excited for the holiday this coming week!

Now, ready for the best part? One lucky reader will win a party kit so you can host a patriotic BBQ too! Just leave a comment below letting me know how you’re celebrating the 4th of July, and I’ll pick one winner on Saturday to receive a package with striped straws, cupcake liners, American flags, and a few other surprises!

Want an extra entry? Follow me on Twitter @domestikateblog and tweet about the giveaway. Leave an extra comment below letting me know you’ve done so. Best of luck!

Update: Contest closed, congrats to the winner, Jess of Curating Style! 

Some of my favorite bloggers are sharing their summer entertaining essentials for being a savvy hostess this season, up next in the series is the lovely Liz of Sequins & Stripes… 

Hi there! It’s Liz from the fashion and style blog, Sequins & Stripes, and I am thrilled to be here today sharing some of my go-to’s for easy summer entertaining. Because the summer months tend to be crazy busy, impromptu parties are usually the easiest to throw together and the most fun to create. I like to keep a few pieces constantly stocked in my kitchen {like these pretty paper napkins, a book of cocktail recipes, and easy decor} and add a few details to make the party feel special. This summer I dream of bringing a Palm Springs inspired girls brunch to my patio in Chicago…

Design Darling mini vases  //  Macaroons and Sweets from my favorite local bakery  //  Bottomless glasses of champagne  //  Mrs. Lilien’s Cocktail Swatchbook  //  Pretty patterned napkins  //  Kate Spade Market Street Plates  //  Bamboo Flatware  //  Pretty Design Darling topiaries for additional decor  //  Society Social Fifi Chairs for seating  //  Colorful bistro tables  //  A striped umbrella to shade my guests from the summer sun

I would request that all of my guests dress in their favorite sunnies and biggest and brightest baubles, wouldn’t that be lovely? A huge thank you to Kate for having me today! Happy summertime to everyone!

I had a perfect little Sunday visiting my parents at home in NY. We had a family BBQ and I broke out paper straws for our cocktails and put together an Americana inspired table with mini-flags and red gingham plates. I took a bunch of pictures and I’ll share them later in the week!

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I took a vacation day and kicked off the weekend a little early with some beach-time, such a treat! Hope you’re finding ways to stay cool during this heat wave too!

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Some of my favorite bloggers are sharing their summer entertaining essentials for being a savvy hostess this season, up next in the series is Shannon, from the adorable blog, I Love Your Crazy:
Hi! It’s Shannon Darrough from the blog I Love Your Crazy! I’m ridiculously excited to share my idea of summer entertaining on Kate’s blog today. I live on the coast of North Carolina where oyster roasts and seafood boils are tradition. You can host larger groups without the dish duty at the end of the night, and if you’re lucky you’ll see a few fireflies. The best part? It doesn’t take a lot to pull a seafood boil together.
A few twinkle lights, cold drinks, and some newspaper for the tabletop make for a cozy time. Guests are always excited for the big moment when you empty all the seafood on the table. That’s right, no plates or silverware besides your crab crackers. When I’m going all out for a seafood boil, I love to play up the nautical vibe with pops of red and navy blue. I rounded up a few items I would use (or have used a time or two) when hosting an intimate seafood boil. Thanks for having me over!

 

I’m getting a case of interior boredom. We’re just re-signing the lease on our apartment for another year and lately I’ve been taking a look around and wondering “hmm, maybe I want to paint that” or “gosh, I’m over those curtains.” My biggest areas for interior daydreams are always the things I can’t change though — like the kitchen and bathroom. In the meantime I’ll just have to live vicariously through my Pinterest boards and dream of a bright white kitchen like this one for ‘someday.’

via House Beautiful