I don’t know about you, but July 4th always calls to mind for me a certain kind of nostalgia. A certain kind of festive simplicity. Maybe for you that celebration looked like hot dogs and hamburgers at a neighborhood block party, or a barbecue in your backyard gathered around the pool with friends and family. Maybe it involved parades and fireworks and melted red, white, and blue popsicles running down sticky, sun-tanned hands. It was all of those nostalgic images that came to me as I daydreamed about what a grown-up version of a July 4th celebration might look like. When planning the day, I knew I wanted to pay homage to all the things that make July 4th great – simplicity of celebration, time with friends, and tasty food and drinks, of course – but with a fresh and sophisticated twist. It was important to me to create a palette that recalled the bright, bold colors the holiday while remaining effortlessly chic and stylish. I was hoping to achieve a timeless look for a time-honored tradition, and I think we did just that with this grown-up July 4th-themed luncheon.
To start, the bold blue and white striped rug perfectly complimented the white stars of varying sizes I hung from the ceiling, immediately drawing the eye in our spacious DTLA loft and reminding guests of the reason for our gathering. Gorgeous, romantic white arrangements dotted the table in brass vases, while the blue and white detailed dishes and vintage smokey blue and clear glassware worked together to create a subtle patriotic place setting. I brought a bright pop of red in with individual vegan raspberry tarts from Bramble Bakery, adding a sweet, summery (and very tasty!) touch to each seat.
The menu itself was expertly crafted by Pace Webb from Taste of Pace, a renowned celebrity chef and TV host who is known for her monthly underground, invite-only Supper Club, and drew on summer themes in a new and super delicious way. Guests munched on aged grilled cheddar cheese sandwiches, cherry tomato confit, shrimp and grits, BLAT (bacon, lettuce, avocado and tomato) sandwiches, and tarts with tomato, eggplant, squash, and homemade ricotta. Talk about fireworks! As for the drinks, I left those up to the talented Brandyn Tepper from Cocktail Academy. Showing his true skill and mastery (cocktails are an art form!), he created the most fun and patriotic drinks — the Americano (Campari, sweet vermouth, and sparkling water, shown here bottled), Amber Waves (bourbon, lemon, strawberry, and honey, shown here in a mason jar), and From Sea to Shining Sea (bourbon, lime, blue curaçao, mint, and peychaud bitters).
This gorgeous event wouldn’t have been possible without the help of my friends at Taste of Pace, Cocktail Academy, Holly Flora, Dishwish, Found Rentals, Steve Steinhart Photography, and Hudson Loft. Thank you all for your amazing contributions! How has this event inspired you to style your July 4th celebration? Show me on Instagram with the hashtag #moderndame!