With summer finally upon us, and undoubtedly much summer entertaining in our futures, now is as good a time as any to invest in a quality picnic blanket, and strive to eat as many meals as possible in the great outdoors. To help you get started, we rounded up some of our absolute summer picnic favorites for you to peruse — as well as some real life picnic inspiration — below, so take a peek!
With a soft hued color palette in mind and the perfect venue snagged at Perch Los Angeles, this elegant bistro shower came to fruition. It marries the beauty of a ladies lunch with the happy celebration of an impending arrival and comes complete with a table full of blooms by Wild Vase plus the tastiest dessert spread ever. See even more shot by Lauren Bauer in the full gallery.
When I got pregnant after years of trying, my best friend, Sheena Yaitanes, immediately started planning my baby shower to celebrate this momentous occasion. Rather than going with a typical theme, we developed a color story that would be both elegant but playful enough to celebrate my baby boy. Traces of pale peach, mint green, white, yellow, pink and pops of bright orange were showcased in the flowers, cookies, cakes, invites and favors.
Venue: The intimate shower was held at Perch in Los Angeles, a French inspired venue in Los Angeles, complete with art deco furniture, vintage mirrors and gorgeous views of Downtown. Guests were greeted with welcome mimosas and bellinis and passed hors d’oeuvres before sitting down to brunch with choices between two salads, steak frites and smoked salmon benedict.
Flowers: The flowers, designed by Wild Vase, were the highlight of the shower. Bunches of peonies, ranunculus and wild greens were artfully designed in white ceramic vases and scattered on burlap runners on each table.
Cake: Christal’s Cakes lovingly baked two cakes for the baby shower. One, a naked vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream frosting topped with orange florals. The other was a coconut cake topped with gorgeous white orchids. Guests got a slice of each with black English Tea or coffee during the gift opening.
Cookies: Oh Sugar Events baked the cookies in various styles that matched the color palette of the event. They were so perfect: from the round fox cookies and baby onsies, to the leaf shaped ones with the date of the shower and those welcoming our baby boy into the world.
Favors: Sheena, the host, handmade the favors with a variety of candy from Sockerbit, a Swedish candy store in LA. Colorful sweets were wrapped in cellophane and tied with DIY tags introducing our baby boy.
Style expert, TV personality and author of the new book ‘The Cheap Chica’s Guide to Style: Secrets to Shopping Cheap and Looking Chic‘ Lilliana Vazquez knows a thing or two about style & beauty. The stunning fashionista known for her frugal style and chic beauty finds shared exclusively with SMP her favorite summer must-haves including a lux face mask and must have blush stick! Click through the gallery below to see all 10!
Lilliana Vazquez’s 10 Summer Must-Haves
This pool house is a study in chic; taking the essence of modern and Palm Beach and marrying them into an ultra cool, summer ready space. And would you believe that the fab designer behind this pretty little spot is still in high school? We’re thoroughly convinced that Kevin O’Gara is a design genius. See even more including the before pictures for this fun project on his blog, Though Swell.
In a classic Neil Reid home in Atlanta, GA, high school student Kevin O’Gara transformed a gracious pool house from beige and wood trim to bright and modern, channeling the laid-back elegance of Palm Beach. With a mix of traditional and mid-century furniture, and a cool palette that balanced the terracotta floors, the space went from drab to fab, and became the perfect hangout spot by the pool!
Last weekend, I went camping in the Catskills with new friends, where we bonded over conversations about the perfect toasted marshmallow and whether s’more counts as a verb (we unanimously decided it did). I miss those campfire mallows with their smoky char and creamy centers, but until the next trip this toasted marshmallow ice cream recipe from Jessica of A Happy Food Dance might help tide me over!
“It reminds me of camping, summer nights, the smell of tents and sticky fingers,” says Jessica. “This toasted marshmallow ice cream brings all those wonderful memories back. Plus you can slide it in between graham crackers and some Hershey’s chocolate squares and totally have a new twist on a s’more.” Now that’s some genius s’moring.
For the full post and more mouthwatering recipes, check out A Happy Food Dance!
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- 1 pint (16 ounces) heavy whipping cream
- 1-14oz can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- marshmallows, roasted
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, add one pint of heavy whipping cream. Start beating slowly, and then once it starts to foam, increase speed whipping until soft peaks form.
- Carefully add the sweetened condensed milk, gently as to not to deflate the whipped cream. Add in vanilla in the same manner. I used a rubber spatula to fold in.
- Add toasted marshmallows. I toasted mine in the broiler, but you could easily do them on the stovetop of a gas oven or with a kitchen torch. You want to toast until there are a few charred edges, just like over the campfire.
- Pour toasted vanilla ice cream mixture into a 9x5-inch loaf pan and cover with aluminum foil.
- Place in freezer until hard.