and then the party

July 26, 2014

And so our summer party is done and gone.  It was a great success and now we've put everything back in it's place, it's nice to look out at a clean garden through clean windows.  All the work the week before will be enjoyed by us for at least a few more weeks!

I know I said I'd come back and share my day by day party preps but as you can imagine there was little time for blogging.  Thursday was our big day of grocery shopping, window washing, furniture washing and arranging, baking and cooking.  Friday morning I arranged the flowers and chilled the wine and beer then spent the afternoon knitting and trying to stay cool.  It was the hottest day of the year, 90 F, ugh.  Thank heavens it cooled off by party time, but still I was melting.  I absolutely hate hot weather.  At 4 we started to feel the promise of a cool breeze so I set the tables, showered, painted my nails and poured us each a glass of wine and waited for the first guests to arrive.  Belle fete!


Veggies and chips with dip
 Crabby Bites



Over-sized burgundy Canna leaves make a long lasting dramatic dash to the dining room.

My husband singled out the biggest and best tomatoes for slicing.  The others were handed out as party favors.
In late spring I planted  Chianti, a pollenless burgundy sunflower, just in case we would have a summer party.

Over the years I've collected a good supply of Le Jacquard linens.  They are so easy care and I never tire of them.

I made this bunting last spring.  I meant to hang it outdoors for the party but couldn't, for the life of me, find it anywhere.  I was able to find a few odd pieces stuffed in a drawer so I draped them around a few of the chairs. 

The bar is mostly serve yourself.  We try to serve the first drinks, but thankfully our guests aren't shy about refilling.  My glasses are these from Cost Plus.  I have 12 of the Chardonnay and 12 of the Bordeaux.  They are an excellent entertaining investment.  They are well priced, sturdy and beautiful and dishwasher safe.  Save the boxes they come in for storage.

Four friends and I each purchased a set of these porcelain plates from Cost Plus a few years ago.  They are borrowed back and forth and are perfect for entertaining.  At $25 for the set of 12 and holder, they are a bargain.  I have the dessert set too.

A party gives me a good excuse to wash down the greenhouse.

After all is said and done, I have a few post party helpful hints.  

~ Count your silverware before you take out the trash.  Don't ask me how I know to do this.

~ Put at least one load in the dishwasher before you go to bed.

~ If you can't wash the platters and pots and pans before you go to bed, like if you are absolutely too pooped, then at least start them soaking.

~ Don't let the stains set!  Pre-spot your linens, give them a shake for crumbs and put them in the washing machine.  They'll be fine until morning when you can pop them in the dryer.  Then mine go right into the ironing basket where they can wait until I'm in the mood, and yes, sometimes I am in the mood to iron!  I actually don't mind it.

~ Get rid of all the evidence.  Put the booze bottles in the recycling right away.  It's horrible to wake up to an army of empty wine bottles.

~ View the party preparations here.

Coming up next are knitting posts and a nice giveaway.
I'm off to knit and maybe take a wee nap.


Linked to Creative Country Mom

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  1. Sounds like a successful event. I really love how you make life easy for yourself too in terms of having a variety of simpler desserts instead of baking cakes and pies. Good stuff. And a very clean green house! :)

  2. Sounds (and looks) like a very successful party!
    By the way, those burgundy sunflowers are amazing!!!

  3. Those tomatoes are so big and so pretty! They look like a perfectly painted still life! I can only imagine the sweet taste! Your burgundy sunflowers are pretty, too. I don't see those a lot, and they're a welcome switch up from the yellow kind.

    You put an awful lot into this party, and it paid off. Everything looked fantastic, and I have no doubt the food was good. I'm not a hot weather person AT ALL either, and I just wilt at the thought of having to try to enjoy myself in anything over 83. Living here in the KC area, though, it's a given that if it's summer, it's gonna be h-o-t! I'm glad things cooled down a bit before your guests arrived. That makes for a much more pleasant evening all around...and a much more agreeable hostess! :-)

    That was a great idea to just drop pieces of that bunting over chairs. It added flair!

    Your drink table looked amazing with that bright pink tablecloth! What a great color to draw people over...although I suppose you could put wine on a dirt road and people would still be drawn to it! :-) :-) :-)

    Your yard, the walkway, the greenhouse...everything was beautiful and sparkling!!! Congratulations on a party well done!!!

  4. Love your party tips! What a wonderful idea to share plates with 3 other friends. Your outdoor tables and chairs are so elegant, what a perfect setting for your lovely linens and things. Looks like you had an amazing event!


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