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Paper Source’s Note Cubes and Pads for Spring

note cubes with spring and summer patterns

note cubes with spring and summer patterns

I have a thing for note cubes and note pads with a magnet on the back. I used them all the time. I am always on the look up for great design. Although it snows all day, I began my search for Spring patterns.

magnets and notepad with spring patterns

I am in awe with the Bicycle  and the Daisy collection at Paper Source. I so wish that they operate a Canadian store at this moment. I am afraid of the delivery fees from US due to the weight of cubes.

SOURCING:
+ Bicycle Note Cube $16.95 USD at Paper Source
+ Daisy Note Cube $16.95 USD at Paper Source
+ Daisy Recipe Box $13.50 USD
+ Daisy Collection Magnets $15.95 USD for a set of 10
+ Bicycle Magnet Notepad $6.95 USD

ENTERTAINING PARTY ideas + decor

Evian Bottle by Issey Miyake

issey miyake evian bottles

issey miyake evian bottles

After Christian Lacroix, Jean-Paul Gaultier, and Paul Smith, it’s the turn of Japanese fashion designer Issey Miyake to design a beautiful, limited-edition bottle for Evian. His design is Sprung from Pleats Please and was inspired by Pleats Please, his innovative pleated cloth technique with multiple collections.

Where to Find the Bottle?

Aubut Alimentation in Montreal carried last year boxes of the Paul Smith’s Evian bottles. I do not know if they will have the Issey Miyake version this year. From their Web site, I know that it will be able in the United States at Issey Miyake’s stores.

If you wish to get those, know that the designer bottles cost more than the original bottles. Budget at least 5 times more, if my memory served me right. But I think the Issey Miyake’s Evian bottles would make a stunning table decor addition to a party. Just make sure that nobody puts them in the recycling bins since you probably want to keep them and reuse them over and over.

SOURCING:
+ Evian by Issey Miyake

ENTERTAINING PAPER goods

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms!

modern mother's day cards

modern mother\'s day cards

I wish all my readers to are moms, including my super mom and my mother-in-law, a wonderful time for Mother’s Day!

I learned a lot of things from my mother, who was a businesswoman at a time when married women were stay at home mothers. She taught me to follow my passion in what I do, to embrace life and that it is better to have tried to do something and failed than to do nothing. But most importantly, that we should not considered it a failure if we learned something. It is fair to say that I inherited my entrepreneur spirit from her. I love you, mom!

Here are two modern design cards for Mother’s Day:

+ Flower Garden Mother’s Day Die-Cut card $5 USD at Egg Press
+ Mother’s Day Letterpress Daises card $4.95 USD at Kate’s Paperie

ENTERTAINING OUTDOOR entertaining

A Bold Orange Theme for Eating on the Patio

orange tableware and lantern for eating on the patio

I am impatient about the return of the warmer weather when we can eat outside. The spring and summer collection are arriving in store.

I read on MoCo Loco that IKEA will carry amazing outside lighting fixtures, either solar or fit for a rechargeable battery, this summer. My favorite are the battery-operated mushroom shaped SOLIG lantern. They use a LED bulb.

Make a couple Japanese kusudama balls for your party décor. An elegant way to recycle old maps or fashion magazines. These were make by the girls behind Folding Trees, the collaborative blog of two women living miles away. There is Eve living in New Zealand and June who lives in Canada. You can plan an activity of origami with your girlfriends.

Revisiting Orla Kiely at Target

The Orla Kiely melamine collection at Target does not need more introduction. I will call my mother who lives in Florida during winter to bring me back several pieces. I gave up melamine years ago but I cannot resist the vibrant orange flower collection.

Orla kielyat mugs and tiered tray at target

I also wish for the Orla Kiely Mugs (which is currently unavailable online). I am leaning towards the Sky Abacus Flower and the Green Multi-Flowers Mugs. I also want the green Melamine 2-Tier Tray for BBQ entertaining.

March 16th, 2009 Update: Target discontinued this Orla Kiely line. No more new items.

SOURCING:
+ mushroom shaped SOLIG lantern $2.99, same prices in Canada and the United States
+ Kusudama Ball Tutorial part 1 and part 2 by Folding Trees

ENTERTAINING PARTY ideas + decor

Floret Collection and Centerpiece Ideas by Floral Art

floret chairs at floral art

The Floret chairs on the storefront window invited me in. Floral Art was launching the Floret collection but I did not know that fact at the time. I could had a scoop.

The chair structure is white lacquer wood finish with harmonizing silk velvet upholstery. Dahlia, daisy, orchid, peony, rosebud and succulent chair images float within each clear Lucite chair back.

Floral Arrangements

simple modern centerpieces by floral art

I spot these cute and simple centerpieces when I visited Floral Art in Venice, California. It was during one of my walking tours.

What a nice way to elevate the chartreuse mums. A simple leaf twisted inside a Blomus Doppio tea light holder elevate this modern tea light holder that can also be used as a single flower vase.

more floral creations by floral art

If you are looking for a fun and instructive activities for a birthday, a bridal shower or a baby shower, why not plan a private floral design class at their studio. Private classes require a minimum of 10 people. Rates begin at $125 per person, including all necessary materials.

SOURCING:
+ Blomus Doppio Vase and Tea light Holder – small $24.95 USD, medium $34.95
+ white ceramic egg vases filled with chartreuse green kermit mums – $115 USD for 3
+ zebra wood trough with horsetail – $450 USD embellished with black calla lilies, succulents and palm fronds
+ Floral Artget directions p 310.392.1633
1338 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice, CA, United States, 90291

FOOD + DRINK TABLEWARE

Wake Up with the Growing Season Breakfastware

growing season breakfastware at anthropologie

I really like the burst of sunny colors found on the latest breakfastware at Anthropologie. Having plates, bowls and mugs only for breakfast breaks the monotony. It may even encourage you to eat at home the most important meal of the day.

It makes sense to reuse things. You can punch a soft green dinnerware with adding the Growing Season bowl or plate to your place setting. Any patterns from the Franca table linen series will coordinate well with this scheme.

fleur de lys tumblers at anthropologie

Take a sip of your morning juice or serve water in the Fleur de Lys tumblers. The only con is that they have to be hand washed. These colorful tumblers stand next to the Strawberries-Au-Lait (I think) pitcher. I was not able to find the pitcher online.

+ Growing Season Bowl $16 USD
+ Growing Season Plate $14 USD
+ Franca Napkin in Two Tones $8 USD
+ Fleur de Lys Tumblers $32 for a set of 4

ENTERTAINING TABLETOP

Gerbera Daisies Tablescape for Showers and Girl Birthdays

gerberadaisies_bridalteaparAfter the sunflower bridal shower, it is the turn of the even more popular and accessible gerbera daisy to be the center of attention.

I imagine this tablescape for a teen girl birthday party. The tablescape was designed by the team at Bellenza as a showcase for their party favors, place card holders and votive holders. The concept fits a Sunday family brunch, a lady lunch, a bridal or a baby shower.

Décor Tips

Wrapping your napkins with a ribbon and a fresh flower is easy. You must delay the execution until the last minute since you cannot hide a phial. The gerbera should be sturdy enough to support the lack of water. If you wish to preserve the flowers longer, put instead a low height bud vase at each place setting.

The fish bowl centerpiece produces great visual impact with a minimal effort. The materials are easy to find, even at a Walmart store. But be kind to wildlife and make sure to find a good home for the red fishes after the party.

Read Cause a Stir With Gerbera Daisies at a Bridal Shower Tea Party for more details of activities, menu and décor about a tea party theme.

I want to thank a reader, Dahlia, for directing me to the gerbera-inspired table scene from the Wedding Bistro. If you know great tips or inspiring Web places like that, do not hesitate to submit your tips. I am always on the hunt for more inspirations.

SOURCING:
+ Niña Kirei Rhinestone Candle Votive – price: $13 USD per set of 4
+ Soséya Rhinestone Daisy Place Card Holder – price: $11.94 USD per set of 6
+ La Dolce Vita Petite Silver Favor Basket – price: $9.95 USD per set of 5
Via Wedding Bistro and Dahlia’s Day

FOOD + DRINK TABLEWARE

Latest Napkins and Plates by Skinnylaminx | Etsy Finds

table linen by skinnylaminx on etsy :: napkins tea towels plates

Brighten your kitchen with a dash of yellow. You can start with a few accessories.

You can grab and nicely display the napkins and tea towels by Heather Moore of Skinnylaminx. This illustrator and designer from Cape Town, South Africa, makes beautiful table linens. Her gray and yellow look sophisticated when put together. The mix feels soft.

For a twist, use her 13.5 x 13.5 inch napkins as placemats for a dessert course or a simple breakfast. The plant and flower yellow pattern is printed on 100% cotton hopsack using water-based ink.

Heather owned cool plates and mugs. I would like to find similar, so keep me inform if you know a source in Canada or the USA.

The plates may lead to a new venture. Heather decorated these plates for the South Africa House! exhibit. She transferred 3 of her design on ceramic dinnerware. Each place setting is different and devised from one color palette. Check the rest on her collection on her blog. The patterns are all superb.

>>> Sourcing:
Buy online: Specimens yellow table napkin – starts at $6.50 USD each
Buy online: Specimens pale grey table napkin by skinnylaminx – starts at $6.50 USD each
Buy online: Mugs in gooseberry tea towel by shinnylaminx – price: $12 USD
Learn more: Mountain Garden [Skinny laMinx]

ENTERTAINING EVERYDAY entertaining PAPER goods

More Time Saving Ideas with Cecily Ink’s Fresh Style Card

cecily i nk florish fresh style card file

I am going to a BBQ this afternoon. I was invited a few weeks ago and I forgot this is a housewarming party.

As I woke up, I realized that I need a card and a gift. This happens to all of us. Luckily, I found a congratulation card that matches the personality of my friend in my stash. My husband will walk to a local merchant to buy the perfect item for our friend – I told him what to get.

This is why I like the concept behind the Fresh Style Card File collection by Cecily Ink. The set is organized by category:

  • 4 birthday cards
  • 4 thank-you cards
  • 4 sentiments: sorry, get well, with love, miss you

I think the multiple-occasion card boxes is a market that is under utilized in the stationery business. With so many unforeseen events we have to attend, having cards on hand save us time.

Expanding the Horizon

I suggest to stationers to include more cards about the typical life events. This is where we need more help as a consumer.

Every year, we used a few sympathy cards, general congratulation cards, congratulation on your new house card, new baby card and more. We need more announcement and greeting cards options for the small events and the milestone events that are making life so interesting.

>>> Sourcing:
Buy online: Fresh Style Card File by Cecily Ink – price: $25 USD
Learn more: Retailers that carry Cecily Ink products

FOOD + DRINK TABLEWARE

Add a Touch of Summer with Far Afield Dinnerware from Anthropologie

far afield dinnerware and table linens at anthropologie

The romantic feeling that you get when you visit an Anthropologie shop appeals even to a modernist like me. Once again, I felt under the charms of their lively dinnerware.

Fresh Floral Dinnerware

This Far Afield dinnerware pattern screams summer on the good way. It  is perfect for hosting a brunch and for casual family events. 

The plates, bowls and mugs are sold individually to suit your taste and budget. You can easily mix this bold floral pattern with solid color dinnerware than you already own.

Table Linens

If you prefer white china, go for the table linens. Bright, vintage-style floral patterns bedeck white poplin, trimmed with red stitching and dotted ruffles with the Rondelet table linens. Two sets of napkins complete the Rondelet collection.

You can also check out the Pavot Tablecloth with sunny yellow piping.  The crochet and crimson pompom border Scarlet Marigold Table Linens has a fresh Spanish vibe.

International shopping

I am also glad that Anthropologie is one of the friendly US retailers that ships to Canada. Their latest ecommerce system has been up for some time now. People from 34 countries can now shop in their currencies and received at home the marvelous products at Anthropologie.

I went to Anthropologie a couple of times with my husband and he does not get that vibe. Me, I enjoyed it! Anthropologie is definitely a girl thing.

Sourcing:
Buy online: Far Afield Dinnerware at Anthropologie – price: $10-$14 USD
Buy online: Rondelet Tablecloth at Anthropologie – price: $32-$98 USD
Buy online: Pavot Tablecloth at Anthropologie – price: $24-$108 USD
buy online: Scarlet Marigold Table Linens at Anthropologie – price: $32-$108 USD

ENTERTAINING TABLETOP

A hip floral tabletop theme for a family brunch

easterflorals

You do not need a design that screams Easter to look festive. Since the typical pastel Easter decorations are not my style, I created a series of hip and fun Easter tabletops. I will be presenting two tabletops today in two separate posts.

What is great for you is that my Easter tables featured tableware items that you can reuse for any occasions. In fact, the design comes from the shapes and the patterns of things you need to eat, not from a bunch of superficial accessories. It is simple and beautiful.

The birth of a concept

Thinking outside the box allows you to find fresh concepts. I usually start by analyzing the key elements of the celebration. The idea is to approach an event design from a different perspective. Basically, I look at at the Easter brunch party this way:

  • Easter is a festive, family gathering that occurs in Spring
  • Hosting an Easter party means planning several activities for kids and a table where the children will feel comfortable
  • The egg and the bunny are the more popular symbols associated with Easter.

Let’s review my floral Easter table. Every since, I saw the beautiful Atelier Lzc Party Napkins at Rose and Radish, I wanted to use it. My jumping point was this cute Black Floral Salt & Pepper Set by Sagaform. I selected this inexpensive salt and pepper set for the egg shape. When I put the napkins with the salt and pepper set, I found my theme. The rest is a matter of creating harmony and a focal point.

The cocoon-shaped soup tureen, the ice cream bowls and blue condiment bowl exhibit fun and comfort. Two terms associated with family life. The ice cream bowl by Miriam Mirri is huge so prepare one bowl per family or couple. Adding a communal course to your meal goes with the spirit of Easter.

The story goes that Miriam Mirri designed the spoon as a heart so that you can eat ice cream from one side of the spoon without touching to the other side. I am not convinced but it is a cute marketing story.

Finishing touches

The Coral Dinnerware shows that you do not need to go neutral to look organic. The style would harmonize well with any time of food. You can put it on your every day table, use it for casual entertaining or reserve it for special-event dining occasions. The choice is yours.

The Coral series has only a 7-inch bowl and a 9-inch plate. To complete your place setting, pair the Coral dishes with solid color dinnerware either in black, red or white. I would use a blue tablecloth to highlight the dinnerware. You want the Coral dinnerware to be the focal point of the tabletop.

The illustration of the Poppi Art invite links everything together. It is the theme that is fun yet sophisticated. I presented it as an Easter tabletop but really this tabletop design is fit for any occasions.

Sourcing:
Buy online: Poppi Art notecards at Whimsy – price: $12 for a pack of 10
Buy online: Atelier Lzc Party Napkins at Rose and Radish – price: $13 for a pack of 20
Buy online: Soup Tureen by Steffen Schmelling for Ego at Unica Home – price: 120 USD
Buy online: Coral Dinnerware Series by Jill Fenichell for Bongenre at Unica Home – price: bowl $8, plate: $10 USD
Buy online: Big Love Ice Cream Bowl and Spoon by Alessi at Unica Home – price: $45 USD
Buy online: Nio Blue Glass Condiment Bowl by Oliver Hemming at Unica Home – price: $45 USD
Buy online: Sagaform Black Floral Salt & Pepper Set at Wrapables – price: $9.95 USD