One of my floral mentors and friend is the former White House Chief Florist, Laura Dowling. She recently has published her first book called Floral Diplomacy at the White House. I wanted to share with you her talent and skills as a floral designer as well as my experience working as a volunteer with her at the White House. The following is a recent article that I had written for VIP SEEN Magazine May 2017 issue. All photos posted in this article are courtesy of Stichtung Kunstboek, Publisher of Floral Diplomacy at the White House.
Welcome your guests to the beauty of a Living Wreath on your garden wall or shaded front door. A heavy duty wreath frame is lined with a green jute-type fiber that holds potting mix and small openings can be cut in the fiber to insert fresh individual flowers, like pansies, ivy, petunias and other small leaf florals and plants.
Hosting a hot pink, black & white bridal shower will make your bride-to-be “tickled pink!” Pink & black cupcakes with bows, pink caramel corn and macrons, and a balloon arch that spans the room with hot pink, pink, white polka dot and even orange balloons make this shower pop with color. This party idea could also be for the brides court of honor… her bridesmaids and maid of honor. Everything this dessert table offers is pink,black or white even the desserts!
Nothing says Easter and Spring like birds nests and Robin Blue Eggs! Celebrate this Easter with a pretty turquoise and white with robin blue color scheme for your holiday table setting. A white ruffled cake stand provides the base for this one of a kind centerpiece with a moss filled grapevine wreath and white peonies are nested together for the hard boiled Robin blue eggs. The eggs were made with an old fashioned dye recipe using red cabbage and white vinegar for the intense blue egg color. I know I said red cabbage.. read more to see how these eggs turn blue and to know if you have a good egg or a bad egg in the stock pot.
Celebrate Easter with this lemon creme and marshmallow filled cake fashioned like a Spring time Straw Hat. The 12 inch round cake is layered with lemon pastry creme with a hollowed cake “crown ” filled with marshmallow, cream cheese and whipped cream . The cake is frosted with lemon frosting. A dot and drag icing technique decorates the sides of the “brim” of the cake while a few purple pansies sit pretty around the “crown” along the lavender ribbon band and bow. You can make this too and just in time for Easter Dinner.
While mingling and munching on these delicious bit Kentucky Derby Bars, sip on the frosty Cucumber Mint Julep. A twist on the traditional bourbon filled julep is the Cucumber Mint flavor. Seedless English cucumbers are mixed with mint simple syrup and pure vanilla extract. Lemon lime soda or Perrier is added and poured over frozen mint ice cubes making this julep refreshing on a hot day. In true Derby style, serve Mint Juleps in a silver cup with a skewered ruffled English Cucumber slice. Pretty and Delicious!
The Kentucky Derby Bars have a solid filling with toasted pecans and mini chocolate chips making this graham cracker crust dessert sweet and decadent. So rich and delicious you will want to eat these with a Cucumber Mint Julep Spritzer if you are hosting a Kentucky Derby Party.
Serve these Mini Hot Browns as an appetizer or main course. They are delicious warmed especially when served with melted cheddar cheese. For the appetizer you could serve the melted cheese separately in a small pitcher, so each bite is not overly messy to eat. Guests can add more cheese as desired.
Hold your horses, you don’t have to live in Kentucky to celebrate this festive southern tradition that takes place at Churchill Downs the first weekend in May. At the Derby spectators line the infield inside the track to enjoy finger foods and Mint Juleps at individual small parties and receptions. Celebrate in style in your own infield-backyard with an easy but elegant table spread that your guests will enjoy.
Creating food for teas, showers, or other important celebrations have two things in common guests like bite size pieces and a pretty presentation! Pleasing the eye and the palate are twin companions when serving sweets or savory menu items. Simple garnishes can add both flavor and beauty to each cup of soup or a tiny tea cake. Here are a few Sweet & Savory Ideas to make every plate a Perfect Presentation.
Planning a Spring Garden wedding party…consider Pansies! They are always blooming somewhere in the country and are readily available at your local garden center. They can be planted in numerous pots and containers even as a living wreath. For this wedding garden party, we have used purple and white pansies with yellow centers, some with center penciling and some with a pretty white face. Pansies are powerful punches of color and mean “thoughts of remembrance.” It’s Pansy Power time, time to create a stunning garden party for the bride-to- be and groom if he is so inclined to attend.
Want to create Bunny Ears Napkin Folds for your Easter or Spring table? This Bunny Ears napkin fold tutorial has several steps but I have made it simple for you. You will need a cloth napkin that is 20 x 20, an iron, and something to hold the napkin in like an egg cup. The bunny ears napkin fold tutorial is step by step pictorial guide that will help you create the cutest little bunny for your table place setting. Learn more here…