How Three Hit Authors Celebrate Summer
Decorate, cook, and travel in style this summer.
Hitting a summer slump? It can be so easy to slack on planning activities and updating your home, so we decided to help you add a burst of fun to the season. A cool collection of creatives just made their way to a soirée at Serena & Lily's Beach Market in Montauk, NY and dished on some tips to celebrate the rest of your summer in style.
If you don’t know how to decorate this season, interior designer Mark D. Sikes, who designed this incredible dinner party, has a few pieces of advice to amp up your tablescape. “Hurricanes are a must,” Nikes shares. “I love ones with a little wicker. It’s fun to cluster different sizes together on a dining table mixed with flowers and bowls of fruit.” You should also never hesitate to add some life to your table. "Potted plants are really fun too to sprinkle all around,” he says. “They can add color and a bit of whimsy. I especially love myrtle topiaries in a mossy terra cotta pot.”
While hosting a dinner may seem hectic, Alison Cayne, author of Haven’s Kitchen Cooking School, has a bit of advice to put you at ease and help you actually enjoy the party. "If you are all stressed out and flying around in panic or bickering with your partner, then there is little chance that your guests will enjoy their evening," says Cayne. "Set a simple, but inviting table (herbs in jars and candles work best), keep your menu super minimal, stick with a few dishes rather than going for the smorgasbord effect, and focus on the part of the meal that really matters: making people feel welcomed and comfortable in your home. That’s why you did this in the first place, right?"
When it comes to what meal to serve, consider going for a DIY. "One of my favorite summer meals is a massive bowl of gazpacho (sometimes straight tomato, sometimes I add honeydew, or make a green version or ajo blanco), surrounded with all the garnishes and finishes anyone could want to customize their meal," says Cayne. "It’s a great conversation starter and immediately guests start sharing ideas and spoonfuls with each other. Plus there’s something to be said about investing time and energy into your own bowl of soup: You definitely walk away from the meal thinking it was one of the best you’ve had. It’s called the IKEA effect."
While hosting at home is great, sometimes you just want to take a vacation. If you're looking for the perfect beach getaway, Nina Freudenberger is your lady. Author of Surf Shack, featuring some of the coolest beach houses around the world, this designer has the scoop. If you're looking for something you won't need a passport for, head over to the New York coastline.
"Whether its for a NY staycation or an unusual experience, book a stay at Truck-A-Float," recommends Freudenberger. "Andrew Field worked with architects to create eco-pods made from shipping containers. It is just a walk from the surf beach and from the super cool rising scene in the Rockaways." If waves are your priority, the Hamptons may be calling your name. "Montauk has some of the best surfing out east, so book a stay at the super cool Crow’s Nest. And if you aren’t looking for a place to stay, experience the vibe by stopping by around sunset for cocktails and dinner."