CHI’s Summer Entertaining Essentials

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This week’s blog focuses on summer gatherings.  As the weather warms up, we take the entertaining outside.  Here a few of our favorite things for partying on the patio!

• Find a comfy seat!  Fatboy’s “Buggle Up” outdoor bean bag chair is rain, stain and UV resistant and perfect for lounging in the backyard!  Available in a multitude of colours to suit everyone’s taste!

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• Think versatility! Outdoor Chinese stools (from Wisteria) on the patio are great for extra seating and table space.  When the weather turns cold, they work well as accent tables in a bedroom or living room.

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• Multi-purpose crate! This model (from Wisteria) features compartments that are great for glasses, cutlery, condiments and bottles. Garden chic and practical!

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• Tasty drinks!  Make sure you have all ingredients on hand to whip up a signature drink for your summer parties.  Check out this yummy recipe, a spin on the traditional pina colada, from the LCBO’s Food & Drink mag.  The “Banana Colada” is sure to get your taste buds watering!

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1 oz spiced rum
½ oz banana liqueur
1 banana, chopped
3 oz pineapple juice
¼ cup Piña Colada mix

1. To a blender, add 1 cup ice, 1 oz spiced rum, ½ oz banana liqueur, 1 banana, chopped, 3 oz pineapple juice and ¼ cup Piña Colada mix.
2. Blend thoroughly and pour into a tall glass.
3. Serve with a long straw.

•Easy appetizers!  Food that can be eaten with one hand; kabobs, shrimp skewers and bite size appetizers are great.  After all, you will have a “Banana Colada” in the other hand!

The key to a successful summer party is a laid back atmosphere, great music, tasty food and drinks and good friends!

What are you looking most forward to at your warm weather gatherings?
Tweet @CHIOttawa to share your favourite summer entertaining essential!

By Kiersten Lowden

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Trend Alert: Pretty passionate pinks are the thing for spring!

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In December, Pantone, “the world-renowned authority on color” announced the 2011 Colour of the Year…


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This bold, energetic hue can easily be incorporated into your wardrobe and home décor.  It is fresh and upbeat, reminding us of the sunny days of summer.  It is popping up on the runways, in stores and homes.  It is stimulating and intense, just the change we need after months of dull grey skies!

This uplifting hue, a reddish pink, can be sophisticated too!  Don’t automatically attach this colour to cupcakes and ponies.  See a few tips below on how to incorporate this fun, refreshing shade into your everyday life in a grown-up way!

• In the kitchen, add linens and small accessories in this fun shade

• Add throw pillows to your sofa and bed for a punch of colour

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[Madeline Weinrib Ikat “Pink & Orange Mor” Pillow]

• Paint nails or swipe the colour on lips for a fresh look

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[OPI “Pink Flamenco” Polish]

• Upholster an accent chair in elegant velvet, instant “notice me” effect!

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[Lady Luxe Pink Chair- Modern Chic Home]

• A bright pair of pink flats or clutch are the perfect summer accessories

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[Lanvin Pink Leather Ballet Flats]

• For men, try a fun honeysuckle coloured tie with a neutral grey suit

• Paint a wall in the living room this shade; it will pop against any neutral!

• Pink peonies add a cheery burst of colour without making an investment

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• Panel drapes will add whimsy and demand attention in this colour

Visit Custom Home Interiors to find fabrics, paint and wallpaper in this shade.  Embracing this bold hue will add liveliness and freshness to your space!

Kiersten Lowden

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