Easy 4th Of July Celebration Ideas

In the spirit of letting freedom ring in the good old summertime, let’s look at a sampling of easy 4th of July celebration ideas for your star-spangled spectacular.

flag on barn canvas art print

Kirkland’s

The 4th of July is a special holiday celebration bedecked in patriotic red, white, and blue commerating the Declaration of Independence and the beginning of the United States of America.  

Women's American Flag Snip Toe Boots

red white bbq shirt

Summer sets an anything goes good with fun, food and family background, and goes perfect with the 4th of July. 

4th-cocktails

It’s never too late in the party planning process to throw an indoor and outdoor party with a festive “pop” of festive seasonal color.

american-flag-pillows-mcdowell

House Beautiful

Outdoor celebrations around our house involve the double D rule (no, there is nothing going on that wild).

Dollar and discount store disposables and the convenient and affordable  first line of defense against wasting money and valuable party time cleaning up.

4th party supplies

Paper or plastic tablecloths, plates, napkins, and plastic cutlery packages serve the party purpose, and the red Solo cup is diposable party royalty.

Red Solo Cup

Red Solo cup

I fill you up

Let’s have a party!

summer tableware

Intermingle items in red, white, and blue in with principal tableware favorites.  I find I get more use out of items in either red, white, or blue vs. red, white, and blue.  

smores-fixins

Finding cute and clever ways to serve your guests is not that hard.  All things summer is an easy theme to work with. 

Mini terra cotta flower pots easily become a pot of s’mores fixings gold. 

Terra Cotta Flower Pots

Terra Cotta Flower Pots – Hobby Lobby

Clear jars, containers, and cansiters aren’t just for food storage.  These versatile and affordable entertaining musts prove a clear winner to house and serve anything from utensils to candies to salads. 

July 4th candy treats

Better Homes & Gardens

Cracker-Jack-twizzlers

anchor-heritage-glass-jar-gallon

Heritage Hill 64 oz. Glass Jar with Lid

jar salad serving ideas

Mosquitoes are an outdoor entertaing nuisance, a pest of a pest. 

Add the following items to your 4th Of July celebration ideas shopping list, watch the DIY Citronella candle how to make video from P. Allen Smith, and let’s project.

8 ounce Mason jars 

floating votive candles 

lemons and limes

citronella oil

fresh sweet mint and rosemary 

Place the citronella candle jars around the table and surrounding party area.

outdoor-lighting-ideas-summer-entertaining

Martha Stewart

Clear apothecary bottles in varying sizes and heights filled with lamp oil and wicks is a clear and chic light the summer night option. 

casual-picnic-tablescape

Country Living – Photo by John Kernick

Clear jars filled with fresh flowers and/or greenery from the yard come in make a simple and lovely display. corn-centerpiece

Small groupings-stacks-bundles of fresh fruit or summer vegetables such as corn, tomatoes, peaches, cherries, blueberries, or grapes dressed up with ribbon or in their natural state serve a colorful bounty of fresh and sweet summer style.  

red-white-blue-fabric

Red, white, and/or blue fabric is my suggestion for a table runner.  This works for dinner napkins, too. 

I can’t sew a stitch, but I can work a hot iron and a roll of hem tape like nobody’s business.   

Determine the width and length (add one inch to both the width and length), cut your fabric to desired size, fold over each side (fold in the corners to create a 45 degree angle), and either sew sides or apply hem table with iron. 

summer-fourth-of-July-ribbon

Don’t forget your Hobby Lobby 40% off coupon

If you’re going with the dinner napkin option, pair them with a patriotic palette ribbon natural and either a nautical rope ball or decorative tassels. 

red white blue tassels

Jo-Ann Stores

The finished result is a festive theme napkin ring and stylish dinner napkin presentation.

free printable anthem banner

I love this printable from HMH Designs.

red-white-blue-printable-cupcake-topper

And this one from Today’s Creative Life. 

Click HERE and HERE for the free patriotic food picks and place card ready printables. 

Oh, say can you say that three times real fast. 

red-craft-bag

Dressed up craft bags or plastic popcorn buckets make festive party favor containers.

popcorn-bucket

4th wrap

Pack your 4th of July swag bags full of dollar and party store finds for beach, lake or backyard fun sure to go over real big with kids of all ages.

wood block game

Tumbling Tower Game

4th-July-fan

Fan

playing cards

Playing Cards

Tootsie Roll Scented Bubbles 4ct

Tootsie Roll Scented Bubbles 4ct

Popsicle ice pops firecracker

Popsicle Ice Pops Firecracker 18 ct

red white blue glow wheel

Patriotic Red, White & Blue Glow Stick Flying Disc

Safety is a big part of the summer fun equation. 

Good Housekeeping features an informative piece 15 Safety Mistakes to Avoid This 4th of July detailing smart tips for staying safe while you celebrate the 4th.

4th of July celebration ideas

Sparklers

That about wraps up my 4th of July celebration ideas show and tell. 

These ideas are easy, affordable, crowd pleasing and party perfect for a 4th of July or any summer soiree. 

Party fun, stylish, and safely and I’ll see you all next week.  

Love your style!

One is Good, But Two is Even Better: Halloween Party Decorating Suggestions

One post is good, but two is even better when it comes to Halloween party decorating suggestions.

whatever-happened-to-baby-Jane

Classic themes, colors, textures and patterns provide inspiration for these Halloween party decorating suggestions.   It’s hauntingly amazing how something intended to be delightful can be so utterly frightful.

clown

clownCurious Portraits on Etsy 

Creepy?

clown-hat

clown-shoes

Perhaps, but I do love this vintage ventriloquist’s silent clown puppet mounted print paired with a clown hat and shoes for an elegantly creepy centerpiece.

clown-Halloween-decoration

Party City

Here’s a couple of Halloween party decorating suggestions in the creepier the clown the better category.

Scary Peeper Tapping Clown - Motion Sensor Scary Realistic Hooded Window PropScary Peeper Tapping Clown – Motion Sensor Scary Realistic Hooded Window Prop

If sending in the clowns is way too creepy for your Halloween party decorating taste, perhaps the throwback mystique of vintage Halloween decorations is right up your alley.

jointed-jack-o-lantern

Remember Halloween decorations like this?

vintage-cat Halloween-decoration

black-cat-candy-bowl

Black Cat Candy Bowl

I couldn’t wait to comb the one, maybe two aisles (if you were lucky) of Halloween merchandise at the local five-and-dime and discount stores of the day, looking for more innocent than scary door decorations, plastic jack-o-lantern window lanterns, honeycomb centerpieces, and jointed cutouts.

Kmart-vintage

A Halloween Holiday Haul

Halloween decorations have come a long way in both design and detail since the Halloweens of the late 60s and 70s, but I still love to decorate with at least two or three of these vintage or vintage style Halloween decorations.

witch-moon-centerpiece

Vintage black and white Victorian photos and framed portraits lend a certain amount of eerie charm while creating a haunted presence and ambiance.

Old-Photo-Image-Unibrow-ManFree Printable of Old Photo Image of Unibrow Man from The Graphics Fairy

vintage-victorian-photograph-in-original-ornate-wood-frame

Vintage Victorian Photograph in Original Ornate Wood Frame

witchy-woman-old-photo

Free Printable of Old Photo – Witchy Woman from The Graphics Fairy

black-baroque-picture-frame

baroque-orange-picture-frame

Expensive is not on the Halloween party guest list.  With deals, free printables, diy ingenuity, buy more save more promos, and online clearance sales starting sooner and sooner in the season, your Halloween bogeyman boogie down get together can be an affordable affair.

Halloween-fabric

Fabric remnants in traditional or transitional Halloween colors and patterns make great party tablecloths, napkins, and treat bags.

Susan Winget Halloween Jack O' Lanterns Eco Canvas Multi Fabric

Thrift stores are excellent haunts for fab-boo-lous fabrics and garments for party decorating and Halloween costume embellishments.

Faux Sequin Shiny Confetti Dot Knit Red Fabric

Drape a tabletop with several yards of faux sequin fabric in ruby red.

Phrenology the Science of the Brain Victorian Replica BustPhrenology the Science of the Brain Victorian Replica Bust

Now let’s play Halloween dress up.

tabletop-bust

Victorian Bust Tabletop Decor

Place a red feather boa around the neck of a decorative bust and place in the center of the table for a dressed to the nines focal point wow factor effect.

red-feather-boa

Follow up with a trio of clear glass candle holders from the dollar store filled with decorative black sand.

glass-vase-trio

 

decorative-black-sand

Drop in a battery operated votive or pillar candle and drape Spanish moss from the sides, and poof!

red-LED-pillar-candle

Halloween party decorating suggestions magic.

spanish-moss-gray

You know what else would look especially spooky, creepy, and crawly good juxtaposed against Victorian elegance?

plastic-spiders

black-rubber-snake

Note to self:

Add Jim Stafford’s “Spiders and Snakes” to the Let’s Halloween playlist.

rubber-rats

Yes, I went there, and now I’m probably going to have nightmares.

Some would argue that’s the point, and others, like myself, would argue plastic or real, the fear of things that go hiss and squeak in the night is the exact reason why we stick with a kinder, gentler Halloween theme.

LED Light-Up Crystal Ball Halloween Decor

LED Light-Up Crystal Ball Halloween Decor

A wide variety of printables in all levels of Halloween spook, scare and spirit for treats, potions, hang tags, place cards, invitations and tabletop decor are available on Etsy.

Halloween-hang-tag

What Do Witches Eat Halloween Hang Tags

I selected these hang tags to use as menu cards for two reasons:

They’re a little bit scary, a little bit vintage, and a whole lot of fun.

I like the idea of saying hang tag at a Halloween party.

Resin Women's Shoes Decor

Resin Women’s Shoes Decor

mmmmmwwwwahahahahahahaha!

pumpkin-with-witch

Pumpkin With A Witch

skull-print-Victorian-gothic-steampunk

Skeleton Print Victorian, Steampunk

skull-table-top-figurineSkull Table Top Figurine

Better Homes & Gardens offers a free printable skeleton image to use for framing, window displays, diy wreaths, gift bags, scatter decorations, etc…

Get the Free Skeleton Pattern

sequin-skull-table-runner

Reverse Sequin Skull Table Runner

Spooky Goat Cheese FingersSpooky Goat Cheese Fingers Recipe From HGTV

talking-tables-Halloween-napkins-skeleton-hands

Talking Tables Halloween Napkins Paper

Crazy Bonez Pose-N-Stay Skeleton

Crazy Bonez Pose-N-Stay Skeleton

Dress to thrill, a skeleton should always strike a stylish skeleton pose.

black-velour-derby

bow tie

cigar

Eyeball Orbs

Eyeball Orbs

eyeball-print-eyeball-portrait

Eyeball Print – 6 X 7.5 inches

Bloodshot Peanut Butter Eyeballs

Bloodshot Peanut Butter Eyeballs Recipe from Better Homes & Gardens

Martha Stewart Poison Cocktail Napkins

Martha Stewart Poison Cocktail Napkins

modern oval glass bowlModern Oval Glass Bowl with Golden Stand

 

reindeer-green-moss

Reindeer Moss

When I was a kid, our house was Halloween central due to the gargantuan bodark tree and the green horse apples (hedge apple or Osage orange) it produced.  The neighborhood kids loved to throw them and then screech yuck at the sight and the smell.

hedge-horse-apples-Osage-orange

Hedge/Horse Apples-Osage Orange

The horse apple, hedge apple or Osage orange is a choice decorative item vis-à-vis vase or bowl filler, and makes an excellent color, texture and pattern Halloween accent decoration.

Green Honeydew Mottled Pillar Candle

Green Honeydew Mottled Pillar Candle

Pillar candles dripping in color, texture, and pattern cast a wicked chic spell.

Bark LED Pillar Candle

Bark LED Pillar Candle

patterned-decorative-owl

Patterned Decorative Owl

I hope one or more of these Halloween party decorating suggestions offers inspiration for tricking out your Halloween monster mash bash.

Love your style!

Festive Halloween Decorating Ideas

Invited guests and ghouls alike will gasp with delight as they cast their eyes upon these festive Halloween decorating ideas.

Traditional colors, vintage style accents, and newly discovered decorative treasures conjure up visual treats of Halloween party pageantry.

Please join Places In The Home for our post Festive Halloween Decorating Ideas with just the right amount of fright, fog, and festive style.

festive halloween decorating ideas

Paperless Post

I’m a sucker for vintage style throwback Halloween decorations.

Dark and eerie rules the night for adults, but may prove to be frightening for younger attendees.

Vintage style decorations make an excellent choice of theme for a family-friendly soiree.

Cat Resin Container By Ashland

Cat Resin Container By Ashland

vintage-style-Halloween-decor

Trick or Treat Vintage Wood Decor
Happy Halloween Pumpkin
Boy Figurine with Candle
Black Cat With Hat
Jack-O-Lantern In Witch Hat

labra candle holderLabra Candelabra

Set a mood of stylish intrigue by illuminating your fright night soiree with distinctive lighting options.  

Tangled Antler Metal CandelabraTangled Antler Metal Candelabra

These hauntingly elegant candelabras are guaranteed to garner attention. 

The holiday season is right around the corner, and both of these choices make the transition from Halloween to Thanksgiving to Christmas dining table or sideboard.

cast-iron-cauldron

A cast iron cauldron pot fits right in with the trick and treat taste of Halloween.

Conjure up a pot of Chef Isacc Toups dirty rice chock-a-block with fright night feast seasonings.

dirty-rice

Chef Isaac Toups Dirty Rice Recipe

Devilish delicious drinks, anyone?

Apple-red-stem

Red Apple

Serving ideas for party potions of the leaded and unleaded varieties include a bewitching large black cauldron, copper ladle, diy beverage dispenser, holder, and punch bowl made from a pumpkin, and of course, dry ice to create a foggy good look.

witches-cauldron-plastic

Large Black Cauldron

Alchemade Pure Copper LadleAlchemade Pure Copper Ladle

Special effects cast a spell of delight for the eye at a Halloween happening.

Dry ice punch bowl recipe

The dry ice punch bowl recipe from SheKnows spells how simple and safe instructions on how to boil over the Halloween punch bowl or cauldron.

pumpkin

Love the Creepy Twisted Stem!

black-spigotBlack Spigot for Beverage Dispensers

Halloween-pumpkin-beverage-holderSouthern Living

Halloween Candy Bowl Options

apple-candy-covered-dish

Apple Small Canister

 

skeleton-candy-bowl-1

Skeleton Candy Bowl

I’ve suggested this recipe for Caramel Peanut Popcorn Snack Mix in a previous Halloween party ideas post, and because it is that good I think a second time around is warranted.

Caramel Peanut Popcorn Snack Mix

Caramel Peanut Popcorn Snack Mix

This popcorn snack mix reminds me of Halloween night trick-or-treating back in the late 1960s-early 1970s when Halloween night trick-or-treating seemed to last for hours, no one was concerned with real creeps or danger in the form of poisoned candy, and me and my costumed friends lived for the homemade popcorn balls handed out by a neighborhood lady.

copper-pot-handle

Vintage Copper Pot – EBTH

A tea cart packed with individually wrapped homemade popcorn balls greeted hordes of bedazzled trick or treaters.

orange-bandana-1

Miss Phyllis continued this neighborhood tradition for many harvest moons, and there’s never a Halloween since that I don’t think back to her homemade popcorn balls.

caramel corn

paper cone

A captivating centerpiece is an essential tablescape feature.

glitter-jack-o-lanterns-orange-black

Centerpiece ideas include classic orange and black Halloween decorating accouterments, fresh or faux festive flowers, and creepy and crawly spiders and snakes in hauntingly beautiful form with a hint of chilling chic.

Carved Jack 'O Lantern Gourds

Party possibilities range from pumpkin luminaries with clear cylinders to clear cylinders and pillar candles filled with Spanish moss, plastic creatures and decorative mini pumpkins.

Halloween-pumpkin-luminariesSouthern Living

Halloween-pumpkin-table-display

You local dollar store is an excellent starting point for party needs or party decoration fillers.  If you’re anything like me, you favor festive Halloween decorating ideas big on Halloween style, not Halloween prices.

Booyah!

Spanish-moss-decorative

Spanish moss.

Glass cylinders.

Glitter pumpkins.

Faux flowers.

grapevine-branches-ribbon

Bundles of grapevine branches.

Spirited tablewares.

 

Victorian-style-felt-top-hat

I love the Victorian Black Top Hat Deluxe from Party City for a focal point piece.   The top hat tips its hat to decoration triple duty.

red-feathers

Primp it out in feathers for Halloween, tidy it up with a gold band for the perfect Pilgrim piece at Thanksgiving, and top it off with glitter and bows as a Christmas tree topper.

Tablewares and Serving Pieces

Halloween-owl-treat-plate

Twisted Treats Plate

Halloween-cat-plate

Beware Plate

The Midnight Masquerade 

Queen Elizabeth fabric

Queen Elizabeth I Fabric

Fabric is a tablecloth in waiting.

black-card-holder

Black Baroque Place Card Holder

Raised Ribbon Roses Table OverlayRaised Ribbon Roses Table Overlay

dark-hydrangea-rose-centerpiece

Swooned – Sweet Blooms Photography –  MFG Floral Designs and Events

 

gold-compote-vaseKoyal Wholesale Compote Mercury Glass Burnt Gold Pedestal Vase

 

Victorian-collarVictorian Collar

grapes-pears-2

Dark Blue Hydrangea SprayDark Blue Hydrangea Spray

black-rose-flower-heads

Black Glitter Twig Candle Ring Black Glitter Twig Candle Ring

copper-plate-charger

Copper Embossed Polypropylene Charger Plate

copper-black-plate-charger

Copper Plate Charger

orange-dinner-plate

Royal Norfolk Orange Stoneware Plate

masquerade-black-mask

black-dinner-plate

Royal Norfolk Black Stoneware Plate

 smoking blackberry sage margarita

Smoking Blackberry Sage Margarita

 

skull-decanter

Fairly Odd Novelties Glass Skull Decanter

chemistry-glass-flaskChemistry Collection Erlenmeyer Flask

creepy-eyeball-MartiniCreepy Eyeball Martini 

eye-ball-Halloween-beverage-napkinFun Express Vintage Halloween Napkins – 16 Pieces

Red Wavy Crackle Plate

Red Wavy Crackle Plate 

cat-green-eyes

flickr

With eyes of green and whiskers of six, this black cat beverage napkin will lend a frighteningly furocious look and be a big hit.

black-cat-face-cocktail-napkin

Ideal Home Range Black Cat Face Cocktail Napkins

It’s not a Halloween party until something is wrapped in tulle. Take table tops and dining chairs to the next level with tulle skirting and sashes.

tulle

To cover and sash a chair, drape enough tulle over the chair to reach floor length.

Gather the tulle around the back of the chair at the base of the seat and tie with decorative ribbon.

spider-pin

 

Tie tulle in bow or loose knot and place your choice of embellishment in the center.

owl-pin

Scatter about your haunted mansion volumes of mystery and intrigue.

alfred-hitchcock-book

antique-vintage-style-mirror

Spanish-moss-decorative

Nancy-Drew-Mysteries

magnifying-glass

black-oil-lantern

Pathfinder Brass Trim Oil Lantern, Black

Mystery, intrigue, and magnifying glass cookies await rave reviews.

nancy-drew-magnifying-cookies

Magnifying Glass Cookies Recipe from Country Living Magazine

It’s not too early to begin gathering festive Halloween decorating ideas and devilishly delightful goodies for your Halloween extravaganza.

I hope one or more of these festive Halloween decorating ideas tricks and treats your Halloween spooktacular.

The Celebration Countdown to 4th of July Party Ideas

The celebration countdown to 4th of July party ideas is on.

Allow me to take this opportunity to express a very big thank you in patriotic colors to the Earth, sun, moon and calendar year 2020 for the three-day weekend we have to celebrate Independence Day.

thank-you-noteZazzle

The big blogging plan to share with you pops of 4th of July party ideas for your copying, ordering, and/or purchasing consideration fizzled out like a firecracker with no pizzazz.

An area wide internet outage hit the Places In The Home neighborhood last week, and with it went my connection to the world wide web.

That’s two internet outages in one month, but’s who’s counting?

internet-outage

Meet Jeremy, the AT&T man with the get you back online ASAP plan.

Jeremy, your good deeds and expert skills are greatly appreciated.

You’ve got a well deserved three-day weekend coming your way.

thom-filicia-fire-pit

Now comes the disclosure portion of this post.

Disclosure:  As it in life and disclosure policy compliance with FTC rules, honesty is the best policy. This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one of the product links and make a purchase from the retailer, I receive a commission from the sale. To read the entire policy in full (fun, fun) please read my disclosure page. 

Our 4th of July three-day holiday weekend plans are set to serene with an emphasis on slow and easy.

Outdoor living spaces furnished to the hilt in summer style and let’s get the patriotic party started creature comforts in mind deliver just that.

Let’s take a look at some, shall we?

Best Choice Products Hanging Macrame Rope Swing Chair with Fringe Tassels - Black

Best Choice Products Hanging Macrame Rope Swing Chair w/ Fringe Tassels 

These macrame swing chair is a stylish throwback to the hanging chair glory days of the swingin’ 60s & 70s.

outdoor-pillows-from-Walmart-1Just add a decorative pillow, refreshing beverage or summertime treat, a good read and you’ve got yourself a rest and relaxation haven for the 4th of July three-day weekend.

loop-siclesPopsicles and champagne come together to make Summer’s Sweetest Sparkling Sipper.

How to Make Rainbow Sangria from Country Living Magazine

lemon-icebox-pie-ice-cream

Lemon Icebox Pie Ice Cream 

Ingredients

3 to 4 lemons

2 cups half-and-half

1 (14-oz.) can sweetened condensed milk

3/4 cup coarsely crushed graham crackers

Directions

Grate zest from lemons to equal 1 Tbsp. Cut lemons in half; squeeze juice from lemons into a measuring cup to equal 1/2 cup.

Whisk together half-and-half, sweetened condensed milk, and lemon juice. Pour mixture into freezer container of a 1 1/2-qt. electric ice-cream maker, and freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions. (Instructions and times may vary.) Stir in graham cracker crumbs and lemon zest; transfer to an airtight container.  Freeze 2 hours before serving.

~Southern Living via My Recipes

 

okl-historical-documentsA good and patriotic read ~ American Historical Documents

A star spangled theme is instantly recognizable as the traditional theme of 4th of July celebrations.

Eagle-glasses

In keeping with tradition, the American flag meets and greets neighbors and friends, but I opt to decorate with items such as fabric and serveware in a broader range of holiday patterns and colors.

flying-the-flag

The activities, food, sports, colors and celebrations generally associated with the summer months give great inspiration.

Pick a favorite as your 4th of July party ideas theme foundation and go 4th from there.

summer-fabrics

OnlineFabricStore

Wallpaper and fabric closeouts can be a great source for affordable and stylish patterns to use as tablecloths, table runners, napkins, basket and serving dish liners.

4th-of-July-party-ideas

Handbag charms as napkin rings?

Absolutely!

I picked up six of these long fringe handbag charms on clearance to use as napkins rings and parting party favors.

Love the look, the price and the dual purpose.

Blooming blue hydrangeas from the yard of a very generous and giving neighbor will star in the centerpiece arrangement along with a trio of small American flags.

Simple.

Affordable.

Appropriate.

Lincoln_Square_Farmers_MarketLincoln Square Farmers Market

Our star spangled celebration menu takes a celebratory cue from the best part of the summertime bounty- fresh from the farmers market fruits and vegetables.

I am entertaining the thought of developing a recipe for s’mores cake to debut over the 4th of July holiday weekend.

Fresh beans, roasting marshmallows, and bursts of color on the table and in the sky.

That’s how we snap, crackle and pop a 4th of July party in the USA at Places In The Home.

fresh-squash

These 4th of July party ideas place an emphasis on fun, easy, delicious, stylish, and affordability.

Celebrate smart, safe and stylish this 4th of July holiday weekend.

Love your style!

***Post contains affiliate links***

Halloween Happenings

October is an eventful month at the Places In The Home corral however, the corral is anything but ok these days when it comes to the business of all things house that make a home.  Let me ‘splain.  In the grand scheme of blogging things, one (me) simply can’t get the job done, posts written and images photoshopped unless the desktop computer and monitor work, and work they don’t.  This recent development is not my idea of frighteningly fun Halloween happenings, and trying to undo this sinister snafu without losing my mind and my religion is the trick.

monitor-brokenEvil!

Where there’s a will, there’s a way.  Although working on the notebook computer is no treat, the trick is to drink apply the principle of adjustment. Adjusting is the theme of this week.  Our city government announced this morning that local trick-or-treating will now take place on Friday evening.  The forecast is shaping up to be an ugly event making Halloween trick-or-treating on Saturday a washout.  Our Halloween celebration is still on, but with an adjustment or two of its own.  Call it a trick-or tweaking.

Halloween-happenings

No rain event will poison the party atmosphere at our Halloween at Places In The Home party.

poison-apple-Halloween

The welcome mat is out, the pumpkin is marked for carving, and in the words of Tom Bodett we’ll leave the light on for the trick-or-treaters.

we're-all-mad-hereBlame the madness on the Great Halloween Computer Crash, Charlie Brown!

I’ll redefine the term steaks are on the grill via a cast iron skillet on the stove, a liberal pat of butter, haunted house seasoning and a low and slow approach.  The food and drink will flow, and the Let’s Halloween playlist will rock the castle.

keep_of_Portchester_Castle,_2008-1The Keep of Portchester Castle, Hampshire, United Kingdom

For those of you who Halloween, have a safe and wickedly wonderful time. For those of you who do not Halloween, have a safe and wonderful weekend.

Love your style!

Kentucky Derby Days Are Here Again

Kentucky Derby days are here again.  The Most Exciting Two Minutes In Sports takes places on the first Saturday in May.  Louisville, Kentucky rolls out a Southern welcome to thousands of attendees while Churchill Downs takes the lead as Kentucky Derby festivities and finery celebration central.

churchill-downs-kentucky-derby-louisvilleArchitectural Digest

Iconic to sight and tradition, the landmark Twin Spires of Churchill Downs were designed by architect Joseph Dominic Baldez.

The twin hexagonal spires stand tall as the premier architectural feature so closely associated with Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby.

jockeyPinterest

Time-honored traditions and thoroughbred horse racing reigns supreme on Kentucky Derby Saturday. Red roses, mint juleps and fascinating choices of Derby Day finery fill the grandstands, box seats and infield of Churchill Downs as well as themed Kentucky Derby Days parties.

Derby Guys and Dolls Finery

Derby-mens-style

derby-finery

My parents and I attended the Kentucky Derby in the late 1970’s. Experiencing the Derby live and in person is a thrilling event, but once was enough for us.

Expensive?

Yes!

Crowded?

Oh, dear goodness, yes, and that was 30+ years ago!

I can only imagine the crowd control issues involved with the attendance numbers of today’s Kentucky Derby.

Are we glad we attended?

You betcha!

 Get Down and Derby Playlist

Kentucky Derby Tavern SignKentucky Derby Tavern Sign

Our current Kentucky Derby Days party is an at home affair.  We are not above breaking out the good stuff as in fashion jewelry, hats, tableware, get down and Derby tunes and Kentucky bourbon in My Old Kentucky Home fashion.

The Run for the Roses is a win, place and show tradition for this horse racing enthusiast family, and it’s a sure bet on the first Saturday in May the hats, the party, and the race will be on.

The Derby Day tablescape always includes red roses, a hat of top, feathered or derby style, a toast to jockey silks, and a creative spin on tablescape accessories.

Kentucky Derby days

I’m using the red rose bouquet paper cocktail napkins and 12 x 12 sheets of red roses scrapbook paper for placemats.

rose-boutique-paper-cocktail-napkins

Celebrate the Home Rose Boutique 3-Ply Paper Cocktail Napkins, Red, 20-Count

red-roses-scrapbook-paper

Red Roses Scrapbook Paper – 12″ x 12″

 Kentucky Derby Days Are Here Again Decor

 

Nickel Etched Trophy

Nickel Etched Trophy

Horse Head Hitching Post Reproduction BustHorse Head Hitching Post Reproduction Bust

Silver mint julep cups are the traditional favorite, but I’m taking the long shot odds the copper trophy cup will make a stylish showing.

Mint Julep Cup

Mint Julep Cup

 

Decorative Cast Iron Horse Head Tray

Decorative Cast Iron Horse Head Tray

 

Racing the Wind Horse and Jockey Wall Décor

Racing the Wind Horse and Jockey Wall Décor

 

red-velvet-top-hat

Red Velvet Top Hat

Mini award trophies make great Derby party favors, cocktail stirrer holders, vases, etc…

award trophies

Assorted Mini Award Trophies

horse-racing-jockey-fabric

Horse Racing Race Jockey Fabric

red-rose-tulle

Red Spiky Rose Trim-Tulle

 

jockey-toby-mug

Vintage Royal Doulton English Toby Jug, “The Jockey” model

 

vintage-red-and-white-jockey-cap-bottle-opener-8367 Vintage Red & White Jockey Cap Bottle Opener

 

"21" Club Jockey Lamp “21” Club Jockey Lamp

 

Diamond Plain Bronco Horseshoe, Size 0, Pack of 4

Diamond Plain Bronco Horseshoe, Size 0, Pack of 4

The Kentucky DerbyThe Kentucky Derby – 101 Reasons to Love America’s Favorite Horse Race

It isn’t a Derby Day party until traditional Kentucky Derby delicacies are served.

The fresh rosemary in these Southern Living Roasted Brown-Butter Pecans is the perfect taste complement to the minty bite of a Southern strong Mint Julep.

If it doesn’t bite, it isn’t right.

Southern-Living-Roasted-Brown-Butter-Pecans-RosemarySouthern Living Roasted Brown-Butter Pecans  

 

stirrup-hors-d'oeuvre-forks

Stirrup Hors d’oeuvre Forks

Tea sandwiches spread thick with Benedictine spread and garnished with radishes, pimento, cucumber slices and bacon are bite sized samples of traditional deliciousness.

A  Kentucky Derby party ideas must.

benedictine-spreadBenedictine Spread

And they’re off!

Love your style!

From Coast to Coast: Seafood Cuisine of Summer

From sea to shining sea, crustaceans and seasonal fish are the seafood cuisine of summer and the palatable pride of both the East and West coasts.  Lobster, crab, gulf shrimp, clams, sea scallops, mussels cod, haddock are in East coast season.

New-England-Clambake

New England Clambake

Is anyone else thinking about the song, “Clambake” from the Elvis Presley movie of the same name?

Clambake, gonna have a clambake!

Good tunes frame a good time.

Seafood Cuisine of Summer

In keeping with the keep it summer simple rule of summer entertaining, I like the versatility a casual with an elegant twist style brings to the table or beach blanket.  Keep the look simple and keep the guests guessing what decorating and entertaining surprise you’ll pull out of your beach bag of tricks.  Building on a theme takes a lot of the guesswork out of decorating and tablescaping.  The summer season comes ready to go with a ski boat load of ideas for themed parties and get-togethers with a catch of the day menu .  A cool beverage and a hot night can be all the theme you need, but if you’re looking for other theme ideas here’s a list of suggestions:

Reelin’, Chillin’ & Grillin’ Summer Nights

Seafood Bake-n-Boil

Nautical and Nice

Tropical Tails

Shrimp on the Barbie Under the Stars

Driftwood-PlatterDriftwood Platter

Portuguese Palissy Majolica Wall Plate Lobster ~ Nicole Maleine Antiques, Inc

Crustacean Bib design by Sir/Madam

Crustacean Bib design by Sir/Madam

lobster-coastal living magazineCoastal Living

Ever wonder why lemon is the seafood plate accessory of choice?  Lemon wakes up the natural flavors in seafood and fish.  The bright bite of fresh meets citrus sweet and flavor balance is born.  Lemon wraps make a pretty plate presentation and keep the lemons seeds contained.

lemon-wraps

King crab, salmon, halibut, Pacific bay shrimp, sea scallops, swordfish, flounder, clams, oysters, calamari squid – Pacific perfection!

West-coast-cookout

Seasoned to taste and region.

Old-Bay-seasoning

Zatarains shrimp crab boil

Put a southern spin on the seafood spread with a pan of buttermilk cornbread.

From coast to coast and sea to shining sea, seafood lovers know the world is their oyster.

Love your style!

Summer Soiree Patriotic Party Ideas

These patriotic party ideas range from color rich decorations to delicious food and beverage recipes to beat the summer heat party essentials and a few home decor items for year round indoor and outdoor use thrown in for good measure.

Not only is the The 4th of July the quintessential summer celebration of freedom, this year it is the summer holiday that keeps on giving, complete with a three day weekend.

Talk about a host/hostess gift of the very best kind!

“Just another American Saturday night.”
— Brad Paisley 

red-white-blue-party-decorations

Are you ready to take the party outdoors with this summer outdoor fun with patriotic party ideas?

Well then, let’s get the summer soiree-outdoor living-patriotic party ideas party started.

screened porch by ocean

Southern Living  
Photo by Hector Manuel Sanchez – Styling by Frances Bailey 

I’ve gathered pretty, delicious, summer essential, and red, white and blue themed decorating, entertaining and tablescape goodies for your summer holiday and summer for the fun of it party ideas gotta have it list.

patriotic-table-setting

Southern Living – Photo by Laurey W. Glenn

This patriotic party ideas picnic basket is packed with color rich decorations to delicious food and beverage recipes to beat the summer heat party essentials to a few home decor items for year round use thrown in for good measure.

nicely-served-burgers

Foodiesfeed- Nicely Served Burgers

Keeping guests cool and comfortable is an essential element of outdoor living party in the USA.

The only thing you want hot is the look, the style, the music, the grill, and the decor.

Lasko Cool Colors 3-Speed Box FanLasko Cool Colors 3-Speed Box Fan

Don’t try to be a hot and humid hero.

Plug in and cool off.

red-extension-cord

A blue box fan and a red extension cord will do just that, and the color combination is patriotic party ideas smashing.

Porch Flag Canvas Art Print

Call me old-fashion, but it isn’t summer without a summer sittin’ session on the porch, deck, patio, balcony, or just out in the yard.

No pool?

No problem.

Connect a water hose to a fun summer themed sprinkler, and let the cool summer times roll, you crazy kids.

Mega watermelon yard sprinkler

Withyditch Mega Watermelon Yard Sprinkler 

I like to celebrate in patriotic colors, but tablewares and serveware in classic summer colors and themes will stand up for use at other holiday and entertaining events.

Bradshaw Good Cook Corn Trays (Set of 4)Bradshaw Good Cook Corn Trays (Set of 4)

Totally Bamboo State Shaped Bamboo Cutting BoardTotally Bamboo State Shaped Bamboo Cutting Board

Baseball is a beloved summer sport, and even though there’s no live games this particular summer, you can still celebrate the game.

Baseball Ball Planter

“Baseball, hot dogs, apple pie and Chevrolet,
they go together in the good ol’ USA.”

Fill a baseball theme container with blooming flowers or greenery fresh from nature’s arts and crafts store (your yard).

corn-centerpiece

Ears of fresh corn with the husks slightly peeled back in order to expose the corn kernels grouped in threes and tied with woven ribbon of your color, pattern and texture choice or metallic twisted rope is another fresh centerpiece idea.

melons

Mini watermelons on a natural table runner of Pittosporum paired with Lemon Lime Nandina is yet another summer simple and summer chic centerpiece option.

Summer chic.

Affordable.

Eye catching.

Baseball Wood Wall DecorHit a charcuterie or cheese board home run with this Baseball Wood Wall Decor piece from Hobby Lobby.

Pop off the sawtooth hanger on the back so the piece will be lay even when flat.

The piece measures 13″ in diameter making it a good fit for a serving board.

fall-cheese-board

Using small bowls and platters to house your cheeses, nuts, fruits, and meats will keep the board base clean and eliminate any cross contamination to the food from the finish.

Ready to go summer favorites highlight the summer chillin’ & grillin’ menu.

lobster-ready-to-cookHow to Cook Lobster Instructions from Better Homes & Garden

classic-lobster-rollsClassic Lobster Rolls recipe from Country Living Magazine.

Brined, Oven-Roasted Corn on the Cob

This easy recipe for Brined, Oven-Roasted Corn on the Cob from Victoria Magazine sounds so summer good!

Click HERE for recipe.

rocket-jello-shots

 Delish- Photo by John Komar

Rocket Jello Shots with a pop of color and adult beverage kick.

Click on over for the recipe HERE.

cherry brown a la mode photo by Carson Downing

Midwest Living – Photo by Carson Downing

This Cherry Brownies a la Mode recipe from Midwest Living is chocolate cherry ice cream dessert perfection in a bowl.

stacked S'mores

I don’t have any proof of this other than the pounds gained over the season from eating these things, but I do believe it’s safe to say that S’mores are the official dessert of summer.

This recipe from Country Living Magazine for S’mores is stacked with variety, and that only add more yum to a classic.

Ignore the calorie count, add an extra couple of miles to your walk or run, and dive in.

Strawberry S’mores

Chips Ahoy! cookies

Toasted marshmallows

Sliced strawberries

Chocolate S’mores 2.0

Chocolate wafer cookies

Cinnamon-dusted toasted marshmallows

Milk chocolate squares

Peanut Butter S’mores

Graham crackers

Dark chocolate squares

Toasted marshmallows

Sliced bananas

Creamy peanut butter

Assemble your s’mores and enjoy.

-Country Living Magazine

cleansing strawberry detox water

Strawberry Detox Water recipe from Picked Plum is a simple to make and super refreshing summer beverage featuring strawberries, orange and fresh mint.

patriotic-party-ideas

Inexpensive fabric(s) with a good old summertime theme is a party go-to solution for tablecloths, napkins, basket and serving dish liners.

small-basket

red-blue-bandanas

red-white-blue-plastic-cutlery

Individual picnic baskets lined with a fabric or bandannas (take home face mask) make a great utensils holder.

citronella-candle-4

Adventures in Making shows us how to make super simple summer (say that 3 times fast) DIY Citronella candles.

Click HERE for DIY details.

This simple project results in casually elegant and much needed accessory to help combat mosquitoes- the party guest pest of summer outdoor living times.

flowers-floating-candle-in-bucketMidwest Living

Putting a pretty spin on a summer celebration decoration treats the eye to a visual party favor.

Seasonal flowers from the floral department at your local grocery store or nature’s arts and crafts store ( your yard), moss filler, a large galvanized bucket filled with water and topped off with a floating candle and prepare to light the night in an impressive and pretty way.

summer-entertaining-season-tip

It’s gets hotter than, well, you know on these summer days into evening.

Pack a beat the heat survival kit with cooling essentials.

red beach pail blue shovel

Fill plastic beach pails with his and hers flip-flops, battery operated plastic hand-held fans, individual aluminum spray bottles filled with chilled homemade rose water (the guys love this stuff almost as much as the gals), and a pack of facial cleansing towelettes.

hand held battery operated fan

flip flops red

flip flops blue

These always make a big splash.

wet cleansing towels 1

The whole idea of a summer soiree and these patriotic party ideas is KISS- Keep It Summer Simple.

Happy 4th of July!

Love your style!