The Art of Living: Hosting Brunch

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Want to spoil Mom for Mother’s Day. Host a brunch. Brunch combines the best of all meals: You get to enjoy breakfast favorites like eggs and French toast and lunch favorites like savory breads and charcuterie. Toast her with a delicious “mom-osa,” and finish the meal with an indulgent dessert. What’s not to love?

Making brunch reservations at your favorite restaurant is easy and fun, but inviting your family to brunch at your home is an even better way to linger over conversation. Enjoy the Art of Living with these six tips for hosting brunch:

Ask For Help

Coordinate the meal by asking friends and family members to bring a dish. Those who love to cook can bring an entrée while others can pick up croissants or fresh fruit.

Keep The Brunch Menu Simple

Scrambled eggs are quicker and easier than individual omelets. Better yet, choose foods that can be made ahead of time and reheated, such as quiche or baked French toast.

Photo credit: Pinterest/FoodNetwork
Have One Main Course

While restaurant brunches have buffets that go on forever, at home limit the choices. The star of the show can be a spiral ham or tenderloin. (Here’s a great recipe from the Food Network.) Then add dishes by using a combination of savory and sweet, such as coffee cakes, fruit and herbed breads. Brunch is all about lingering over food, not being a slave to the kitchen.

Keep Place Settings Simple

If your garden has anything in bloom, cut springs and place one at each setting in a small bottle or glass. Brunch isn’t fussy; it’s casual and fun.

Set Up the Bar 

Mimosas and Bloody Marys are brunch favorites and guests can serve themselves. Set up pitchers of orange and tomato juice near chilled bottles of champagne and vodka. Add garnishes such as orange slices and olives, and you’re ready to go.

Don’t Forget Caffeine 

Get out your coffee maker and brew a pot before your guests arrive. Put out cream, sugar and mugs and let everyone help themselves. Prepare your coffee and filters ahead of time so you’re able to quickly replenish with another pot. Or you can always pick up a carryout container from your favorite coffee shop.

 

Mom is sure to feel special, especially when you do the cooking and clean up!

 

For Cinco de Mayo: Playful Color Palette

Cinco de Mayo is a festival of colors, and it can be an inspiration for your outdoor décor, as well. Young, colorful and inspiring, look for shades of yellow as well as colors such as Blue Atoll and Guacamole (of course!).

 

Take the rainbow even further by adding shades of sherbet. We think Pantone’s Teaberry, Lime Punch and Pink Icing are super sweet.

How about a blue outdoor sofa, with a yellow umbrella and guacamole ceramic stool?

Kick it up a notch by adding some pink and lime toss pillows. You’re ready for a party!

How To Set Your Table For Spring

Spring is filled with reasons to celebrate. From Easter to Passover and Mother’s Day, make it special by setting a table that welcomes friends and family. Here are five tips for creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere.

 

1. Choose your style

Before you start setting your table, consider your décor and design goals. Do you want your table to effortlessly reflect your design point of view? Or are you creating a special mood to reflect the season? This will help you choose the right pieces.

2. Select your dinnerware

Classic white is always in style and can be easily updated with colorful accessories. Or, mix and match to create a unique setting. If your plates are patterned, pair them with solid colored glasses and cutlery. Popular seasonal motifs include botanicals, flowers, butterflies and birds.

 

3. Consider your centerpiece

Spring is the perfect time to indulge in fresh flowers. Choose colors and shapes that complement your décor. You can also create individual bouquets at each place setting by choosing something small but meaningful. Get creative with containers, using a variety of vases, cups, mason jars or glasses.

4. Add colorful fabric

A spring table should filled with color of the season. Choose a bright tablecloth, runner, napkins or placemats. Or embrace pastels, with colors like pink, yellow, sky blue or mint green. If the fabrics on your table are bright, create balance by using neutral plates. Or if your dinnerware is the star of the show, keep your fabrics muted.

Spring Table 2

Photo credit: Preppy Empty Nester/Pinterest

5. Finally, accessorize

A dining table proves several opportunities to add your special touch. Include candles, napkin rings, place cards and utensils. Be sure to create depth and dimension by taking advantage of pedestals, pillars and trays.

The most important thing is to make your guests feel welcome in the way only you can do. Whatever you choose will reflect your personality and style.

 

President’s Day: First Lady Style

It may be President’s Day, but our First Ladies deserve some attention, too. In addition to working on issues that affect our country, they’re great role models for their strong sense of personal style. From our current administration to the past few leaders in office, we’ve seen a bold change in politics as well as design taste.

 

Here are the accent chairs we feel are fitting of some of our most recent First Ladies:

Melania Trump

First Lady Melania Trump is known for her striking sense of fashion. Chic and modern, she adds her own twist to a variety of looks to make them her own. Since the Trumps’ New York penthouse is adorned in gold, we felt our Gramercy Wing Chair would complement her style. A traditional wingback chair gets a modern twist with gold velvet upholstery finished in croc pattern. Adorned with hand-applied gold nail head trim, the chair also features stylish Lucite legs that give it an air of extravagance, which is signature Trump.

Michelle Obama

As First Lady, Michelle Obama led the effort to get kids moving. She wasn’t afraid to get her hands dirty in the garden or try something different. Her bright and bold personality would be a great fit for our Ethan Chair. Its glamorous green velvet upholstery highlights the curved silhouette, while the gold legs let you know it’s meant for someone unique.

Laura Bush

When Laura Bush was First Lady, she brought a sense of Southern elegance to the White House, looking as confident at important dinners as she did relaxing outdoors. Her Texas home is rich with traditional style as well as rustic touches. Our Palmer Wing Chair would suit her well, with its warm check plaid in gray and marigold, as well as its modified wing style that provides a relaxed twist to classic form.

Trends: More Holiday Color Palettes

The holiday season is the time for surprises, so why not extend the excitement to your décor? While red and green, and silver and gold are traditional color combinations, HGTV recently shared some unexpected holiday palettes that could shake up your festivities. Which is your favorite?

 

White + Gold

Give gold accents a contemporary twist when you pair them with white. “The juxtaposition of gold’s warm undertones and white’s coolness strikes the perfect balance,” says HGTV.

 

Hot Pink + Lime Green + White + Red

Bright colors make a big statement. Combine hot pink, lime green, white and a pop of red for a whimsical, playful twist to the holidays.

 

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Robin’s Egg Blue + Red + White

Give your holiday a retro twist by combining Robin’s egg blue, red and white. This color combo is a natural if you love midcentury modern style.