Easter Traditions | 2015

The Easter traditions in my home revolve around the table.  Baking (or buying more often now) hot cross buns, serving lamb with mint jelly.  Oh, and the eggs...  deviled, chopped for salads, cracked, peeled and dipped in sea salt and pepper.  My grandmother's asparagus aspic.  Don't ask, it is as questionable in taste as the name suggests.  My cousin, Walker, called recently to see if I had a copy of the asparagus aspic recipe.  We waxed nostalgic over Easter egg hunts in my backyard, cracking open a creme egg just right, and going to Church dressed as China dolls with little white gloves, frilly socks and a hair ribbon to match a brand new dress.  Walker has my grandmother's China and she loves to use it at Easter.  It has a sweet little floral pattern.  I suggested she update the whole affair with some new linens.  She loved the idea and added her own touch, a simple monogram.   I love the notion of adding a new layer of tradition at the holidays that is especially poignant during Easter.  A nod to what has come before and a fresh start for what is to be.  

Life is Too Short for Ugly Kitchen Towels

It's kind of our mantra.  Make it your new year's resolution to dispense with the crunchy, crusty, hole-y potholders, oven mitts and kitchen towels lurking beneath your sparkling counter tops.  

You asked for it, you got it!  kitchen towels!  Brand new this spring in a host of fresh colors.  Pick some up and get cooking!

Elevate the Everyday | The Pillow Studio


Prop, plop, fluff, fouf, toss or stack.  Our pillows make a stunning arrangement.  And this spring, we are pleased to be offering even more to rest your little head (or tootsies) on.  

Piped, patterned, solid, flanged...in the freshest colors for spring.  Elevate your everyday!

Introducing the Evans Guest House Collection | New Linens for Spring

The namesake for our new collection is an amazing caterer, hostess, and inside scooper of all things fabulous.   Since we daydream about being a permanent guest in her kitschy little Cape Cod,  we have created a line inspired by her sensibility.   A little fun, a bit funky, but always ready to throw a party.  Just right for entertaining as effortlessly as our girl herself.

Dinner napkins, placemats and table runners featured in our signature evans guest house pattern, lantern.  Light your way with this funky, fresh palette for spring.  hmmm...  makes you feel like throwing a party doesn't it?

So why not?  Whip out a set of our fun coasters and burn a candle.  Mix in a great cocktail and chill with some jazzy music.  Fold in the people and you have a dishy little party.

After the last guests depart, you won't mind clean up with our fabulously cute dish towels.  Then, lay your sweet head down on a pillow and dream a little dream about your next get together!

A Grown Up Thanksgiving

My neighbor Emily is finally settling into her new house and new role as mother of two very young children.  She and her friends are in that stage of life where rushed meals between bottles, naps, and toddler wrangling translate to lukewarm stewed green beans and something resembling chicken.  She wants to throw a Thanksgiving dinner for friends that is more "grown up" this year and sought my help.  I understand exactly what she means and knew just what to do. Emily invited me over for a little tea and sympathy so we could chart out how to put this gathering together.  Since she is short on time and brain space, I knew we had to approach it in manageable chunks.  One overly long to-do list can exhaust and overwhelm.

Thanksgiving Day planning
Thanksgiving Day planning
Thanksgiving prep with family
Thanksgiving prep with family
menu planning for Thanksgiving
menu planning for Thanksgiving
menu planning with friends
menu planning with friends

First chunk, start with the fun stuff... dressing the table.  Just as a bride often selects her dress first, it allows all of the other decisions to fall into place.  Color palette, mood, theme, etc…  Consider the china, silverware and serving pieces you want to use.  For practical reasons, Emily needed to use her everyday china. (She is still collecting place settings in the fancy stuff!) She also had a great collection of creamware serving platters and trays.  So, with simple white tableware, we could give the linens some flair.  Emily was drawn to our pattern Garden Gate Ochre.  We paired it with a solid napkin in the same color and the ruffled edge nicely set off the shape of her plates.

gold and white table linens
gold and white table linens
silver for Thanksgiving
silver for Thanksgiving

Next, find that inspiration piece that will add a personal touch to the table.  Your grandmother’s kitsch-y turkey shaped gravy boat, a beautiful basket bought on your honeymoon, acorns and pine cones the kids’ collected on a recent hike.  Emily and I quickly honed in on an assortment of antique silver-plated spoons she recently acquired.  Click here to see what we ended up doing with them.  She also had a set of heirloom silver candle sticks.  It was all coming together.  A little rustic, a little contemporary.  All Emily.

Thanksgiving place setting
Thanksgiving place setting


caramel apples

Every fall, we gather together to carve pumpkins, bob for apples and enjoy the treats of the season.

candy apples for party  candy apples

candy corn halloween tablecloth  pumpkins for carving

We cover the carving tables with brown paper and of course use our favorite linens for the catering table.

party for halloween     black and white tablecloth for halloween carving pumpkin

Feel boxes.  The children put their hands in the holes and try to guess what is inside.  We fill ours with peeled grapes for eyeballs, cauliflower smeared with oil for the brain, and spaghetti for intestines.

feel boxes

Treats are kept simple with candy and caramel apples, candy corn and ghoulish drinks.

phoulish drink halloween  halloween fun stuff

bobbing for apples

pumpkins  carved pumpkin on dock

eating caramel apples

The children create life size spiderwebs with balls of twine, tossing the ball around to friends.

life sized spider web

spider web game for halloween

And carved pumpkins and friends join together to display their masterpieces.

cotton cloth for hallow

coastal fall party


gold cotton solid ruffle table runner

The temperature dipped ever so slightly this week.  That was all the excuse I needed to pull on a comfy pair

of jeans and try out my new favorite boots.  (Still too early in the season to wear you my suede darlings!)

As I clomped around the house, I envisioned a warm fire, hibernating children under cozy blankets,

crisp cool breezes, and hearty soups.  Oh, soup weather!  How I need that soothing elixir for the soul.

I will be serving a harvest of soups, stews, chilis + other dishes of warm, filling goodness on a simply set table.

warm + inviting

This season, I am falling in love with comfort (and Ochre!)

 gold cotton dinner napkin claret and white cotton placemat

green cotton placemat gold and white cotton dinner napkin

Gold napkin on purple quilted placemat  Gold napkin on Graphite Gray placemat


team dinner blue cloth

Fall sports are upon us.  We like to load up our athletes the night before a match with a big dinner and a little time to relax together and just horse around.  These polite boys told me this was the best one so far this season.  (See? even rough and tumble boys appreciate sitting down to a nice table.)  We used school colors (of course!) and finished the meal with the traditional "Dirt Cake" ~ gross but credited with last year's winning streak.  (recipe follows) food for dinner on school colors Navy blue cotton tablecloth idea for used utensils


dirt cake

Oreo Dirt Cake

Thanks to COOKS.com for this lovely recipe 


1 bag Oreos, crushed

8oz. cream cheese

1/4 cup butter

1 cup powdered sugar

3 cups milk

2 small packages instant vanilla pudding

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

12oz. Cool Whip, thawed


Cream together cream cheese, butter and powdered sugar. In separate bowl mix together milk, pudding, vanilla, and Cool Whip. Add cream cheese mixture. Layer with Oreos. Chill. Oreo Dirt Cake Recipe

post dinner games


team dinner sports