just because we’re stuck at home doesn’t mean we can’t throw a dinner party for two or more. today, we’re talking how to host a virtual dinner party. it might take a bit of planning on your part to send the invites and get everyone on board as far as date and time. but just like at-home dinner parties, it’s worth the time and effort to galvanize your friends and family. these days, it’s so easy to feel alone and isolated, so we need to make every effort to stay connected. and i’ve always loved opening my home and breaking bread. today, i get to try a new way to do just that. remember, guests will make or break the party, so four to six is a good number to start with. it’s small enough to keep the banter rolling but not large enough to have everyone
shouting talking over one another.
if everyone on your invite list is tech-savvy, you may or may not want to have a trial run with Facetime, Google Hangouts, Zoom, Houseparty.app or Skype. just make certain each guest is familiar with your go-to platform. it’s sooooo frustrating when everyone’s gathered at the appointed time and date, but one person is struggling with the log-in. but all of the social platforms are easy to navigate; it’s just becoming familiar with which button to hit and when. the Houseparty.app adds extra features like games and quizzes. Quick Draw, Trivia, and Head’s Up are just a few. anyone remember Pictionary? mr. style, and i frequently pulled that game out at dinner parties, and our guests loved playing.
this post brought to you by Ann Taylor
pick a menu. it might be as easy picking out one dish for everyone to cook then compare notes. one of my favorite pastimes is plopping in a chair and scouring cookbooks. my most cherished possession is a cookbook from my Nana with handwritten notes scribbled next to recipes. or you might want everyone to fend for themselves whip up individual meals then swap recipes. or support your favorite local restaurant and order take-out. and they truly need our love and patronage to weather these stormy times. it’s up to you, so have fun and get creative.
set the scene. yes, set the table as if everyone is headed to your house for dinner. flowers – check. placemats – check. napkins – check. wine – check. don’t forget your computer will be seated at the table too. the temps are on the warm side today, so time to open my porch for an alfresco meal.
kick off the evening with a virtual happy hour. quarantini anyone?
steer the conversation towards happy and future events. come prepared with three or four icebreakers. and keep the conversation flowing.
dress the part. yes, ladies, it’s a dinner party, so let’s have fun and dress up. what says spring more than a pastel color palette? y’all know how much i love blazers. this time of year, they are a must-have as temps bounce from chilly to warm. this little number from Ann Taylor is a muted shade of purple called dreamy lilac. and it’s a dream to wear with piped trim and notched lapel. it’s made of linen, polyester, rayon, and spandex, and if you can believe it, it’s machine washable.
and what about a plaid skirt with a double flounce hem? it’s the perfect combination of fun and flirty. it comes with a self-tie belt if you want a little extra flair. i paired the plaid skirt with a simple winter white blouse with Nehru collar. it has a shirttail hem that you can tuck or untuck to your heart’s content.
a big thank you to Ann Taylor for this sponsored post. and thank you, lovely readers, for supporting the brands that allow me to bring fresh ideas.
many of us continue to self-quarantine or are experiencing shelter in-place orders. needless to say, most of us are at home for an extended period of time. yesterday, i asked you what you wanted to see over here on the blog to help you pass the time. i got a lot of feedback, and one of the requests i received most was to give you a tour of my home. in January, i published a series of posts showcasing my home office, closet, and living room. so, i thought i’d compile and edit those posts here for those of you who may have missed. today, we’re talking shelter in-place a tour of my home.
remember, we’re in this together. the team here at styleatacertainage is not only committed to bringing you content to help you through these uncertain times, but we’re also rethinking that content so that it’s applicable and relevant to your daily lives. keep sharing your suggestions in the comments below.
how to design your home office—or any room in your house—is a totally personal decision and a function of your own aesthetics. with the advent of Pinterest and other design boards, it’s easy to compile a gallery of inspiration that can serve and guide us on everything from a refresh to a full-blown remodel.
personally, i’m a fan of clean clines and simple design techniques—like contrasting classic and modern design patterns—to create a space i want to be in. and of course i’m not immune to applying my personal fashion sense to my design one. animal prints anyone? if you share similar aesthetics as i do, i’ve compiled several widgets throughout this post of similar home office items like desks and lamps.
it may come as a surprise (or it may not), that as a lifestyle blogger, i actually spend most of my day in front of my computer doing everything from scripting photo and video shoots to answering emails from you. so, most days, i prefer to be relaxed and comfy while i work. and what’s says “comfort” more than a pair of boyfriend jeans.
today, i’m featuring a pair of boyfriend jeans from J.Crew. i’ve been all about J.Crew this winter, and they’re having a great flash sale today. so head over and see if you can find a good deal and let me know in the comments.
i’ve paired the jeans with a turtleneck from Everlane. i’ve been totally obsessed with with turtlenecks this winter. i even posted a how to wear a sweater/turtleneck dress last week in case you missed it.
on any given day, my closet is where you will find me planning my next outfit for my next blogpost. this is what my custom closet looks like today. i love the antelope pattern we chose for the carpet installation. and an upholstered ottoman adds a touch of boutique style. but the custom cabinetry and special amenities are what help me most on a day-to-day basis considering I’m a lifestyle blogger. but guess who loves the closet more than me? Oscar and Ollie hang out here quite a bit.
both my dining and living room have been a work in progress since mr. style and i moved into this house, and i’m thrilled to share it with you now as it has finally come together in the hopes that this will give you some design inspiration for your living room. we spend a lot of time in the living room; it’s the main point of entry and welcomes people into my home. recently, i turned my formal dining room into my home office. because the living room has an open floor layout, i can include the dining area there. i like an open layout that naturally leads from one room to another. but whatever type of layout you have, your home is a reflection of you and should be a comfortable place for everyone to get together and enjoy spending time.
i lean toward mixing modern and classic design styles. my fashion sense comes through in my home decor – like the paint color in my closet (pink!), or the bold use of color and and animal print in my home office. in my living room, i mix modern fixtures with classic furniture shapes. i like the juxtaposition of styles. mixing styles is a forgiving way to decorate your home: it lets you choose pieces you like without having to strictly adhere to a specific style.
if you’ve been following the blog for any length of time, you know i love to read. in fact, i participate in two different book clubs. (and if you’re not already a member, make sure to join our Facebook group book club with style!) so, it was important to me to have ample space for my books. the dining room built-ins are a perfect spot for my book collection.