instant clean up: jelloware edible glassware

jelloware1

Planning a summer party? You may be able to save yourself some backyard clean up while saving the planet by using Jelloware! Created by the girls over at The Way We See The World, these cups are made of agar agar, a seaweed extract that actually promotes the growth of plants when discarded. Available in different flavors including ginger-mint, rosemary-beet and lemon-basil, the flavor of each cup can compliment your drink of choice and is designed to be cast to the ground after use. I love the intricate glass cut design and green-thinking, but tell me, would you put them into practice at home? — Sarah C.

From our partners

etsy find: hibiscus slip-on coasters

hibiscus coasters 1

hibiscus coasters 2

I cringe every time a glass touches my table without a coaster but I never want to be the fussy (read: lame) hostess nagging her guests to use one. Lucky for me, I just discovered these hibiscus slip-on coasters. Made by etsy seller Dimmalimm Home, the unique covers can be slipped on when you pour the drinks so everyone is already issued a coaster. A set of twelve is only $24 and makes a great hostess gift for any of the summer BBQs you’ll grace this season. Bonus: they also serve as drink tags! Since they’re all different colors, guests can easily distinguish their drink from others without the jangling, weird wine stem charms. — Katie D.

From our partners

post off: what’s in your picnic basket?

margaret.stranks picnic

Last week was the summer solstice which means it’s officially picnic season! From the extravagant wine-and-cheese variety to the ultra casual take-out-chili-dogs-on-the-beach, nothing beats the luxury of dining alfresco. Let’s hear it, readers: what are your picnic essentials? It is a ‘can’t miss’ potato salad recipe, a cooler you love more than your TV, or a picnic spot you swear by? Share the wealth and slather on the sunscreen. — Katie D

image by flickr member margaret.stranks

From our partners

post off: what are your favorite bridal shower traditions?

bridalcookies

Last weekend I attended a beautiful bridal shower for a childhood friend. Held at the home of one of the bridesmaids, the event was highlighted by a few personal touches that I really enjoyed. First, each guest brought a recipe (baked oatmeal from me!) that we wrote on printed cards that accompanied our invitations, as well as an assigned spice to round out the bride’s spice rack. We each also created scrapbook pages that were then compiled into a lookbook detailing the bride’s “single years”, and between each gift, the bride answered questions about her relationship and we compared her responses to those of the groom, who had been asked separately. A mix of common traditions and new twists, it was a wonderful few hours spent celebrating the bride-to-be. With many friends who have recently become engaged, I’m just starting my run of the wedding gauntlet and am looking for some inspiration, so tell me: what are your favorite bridal shower traditions? — Sarah C.

Pictured above: the wedding dress cookie favors made by the bride’s sister. Gorgeous!

From our partners

do you have a memorial day tradition?

memorial day

For some it’s the promise of summer. For others, it’s the extra day off with family and friends. And still for others, it’s the food, or the moment  spent in national reflection. It seems there are innumerable reasons to love Memorial Day, and all of these fall high on my list, but as I get older I’m realizing that much of the appeal is that for me, Memorial Day is always the same. Every year I go home to my parents house. We have  a casual garden buffet across the street with the neighborhood, and all walk down to the corner to watch the annual parade. It’s small town America at its best and while the faces change as children grow up and move away, the tradition of it has stuck, and the simple ritual makes it one of my favorite holidays. And this year, my Grammy’s in town! How about you readers? How will you be spending the weekend? — Sarah C.

Photo by Flickr user ginnerobot

From our partners