Easy & Refreshing Margaritas

Easy Refreshing Margs_Main

These margaritas are the most delicious and easy margaritas you can make at home. I swear, if you are a fan of margs, then you need to get yourself to a store and buy these four ingredients. That’s it! Four things, three if you’re a pinch and can’t get a lime.

Recipe: Add three ounces of chilled Hornitos or other good quality agave tequila and one ounce of chilled Cointreau to your glass, next add ice and fill to top with sparkling Limeade. This Trader Joes Limeade makes mixing drinks at home the easiest thing ever, so you really need to keep a bottle in the fridge at all times. Slice a lime, and squeeze the juice of one slice into your glass, garnish with another, and enjoy.

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Try to savor it, this delicious beverage packs a punch!

5 on Friday|Ready for the Weekend!

Some weeks, the weekends are just more exciting than others.

JC Project Eats

1.This weekend, if you are in New Jersey, driving/train-ride distance to Jersey City, you should stop by! Right outside the town hall there will be LOADS of food, drinks and good times, for Project Eats Food Festival.

2. My Seattle Mariners are in town this weekend playing the Yankees, so P & I are headed out to the game on Sunday and will be clad in opposing teams’ gear. I love going to ballgames, it is always such a good time!

Also this weekend is the Nordstrom Anniversary sale. (I must’ve watched their Instagram post about it on repeat for 15 minutes yesterday.) Here are my picks:

3. Fashion Accessories: What woman doesn’t love a good handbag?! I was in a car accident back in early April, and ever since I’ve been looking for a small cross body-bag is stylish but that won’t weigh me down. These three are perfect. (Left to Right: Vince Camuto “Baily” in Roebuck, Kate Spade “Cedar Street-Monday” in Rose Jade, Rebecca Minkoff “Mini 5-Zip” in Latte.)

The second row is filled with over-sized scarves that look so cozy they’re making me itch for autumn. Classy enough to wear to work, cozy enough to nap in and perfect for jet-setting. What’s not to love? (L to R: Halogen Cashmere Travel Wrap, Halogen Brushed Floral Print Wrap, BP Geo Print Poncho.)

4. For the home, I’ve selected linens & entertaining pieces.

If you have been reading DBK for any length of time, you may already know that I am a bit of a linen snob. I love lush and decadent linens. Any of these would be great to update your master bedroom or refresh a guest bedroom. The bedding on the left is a reversible duvet set, solid either navy or grey on one side, patterned on the other, perfect to get you through the whole year! The sheet sets are simple, lux and cozy. The Creamsicle colored throw is the perfect way to add in a pop of color and texture to any bed or seating. Lastly, it’s always nice to have some decorative patterned towels to mix in with the solid ones, this option comes in a variety of colors to fit perfectly with any scheme.

In addition to my love for linens, I love to entertain. Hosting friends for anything from brunch to dinner, drinks to game night should be a treat, and with the right serving pieces, you can make prepping for any gathering less of a chore. I love these mason jar style serving pitchers, and they pair perfectly with monogrammed mason jars (with straws)! It doesn’t get much easier than topping off a pitcher and letting your guests help themselves! Copper Moscow Mule mugs make the perfect vessel for everything from it’s refreshing namesake to a hot buttered rum in the Fall, no bar cart should be without them!

5. When we aren’t busy shopping, eating, or rooting for the away team, I’m going to be perusing through our new travel books, purchased on Prime Day, they should be arriving today, and if there is one thing I love more than cozy linens and a scarf made for jet-setting, it’s layering on that scarf, crawling into that bed with a glass of wine and a travel book, dreaming about destinations afar.

What are your plans this weekend? Will you be shopping or heading out to any fairs or festivals? Or maybe just grabbing a book and heading to the beach? Whatever you are doing, I hope you get your fill and enjoy the weekend!

SMP Something Blue Event

Last night I had the pleasure of attending the Style Me Pretty x Tiffany & Co. event “Something Blue.” Needless to say it was a fabulous event filled with delicious passed hors d’oeuvres, plenty of bubbly and a whole lot of bling.

I wanted to do a little overview of the event. First off, I arrived there after the event had started, as I was coming straight from work, what I missed was a discussion about diamonds and rings and a round table of questions which I heard great things about. When I arrived, we walked off the elevator and were greeted with little blue envelopes filled with details on the Something Old, Something New traditions as well as a note explaining the basics on diamonds. When we entered the event, there were greeters with a choice of champagne, white wine or seltzer, and then holding some of the most spectacular rings I have ever seen.

Here’s my opinion on your engagement rings for any of you waiting for the proposal, or dreaming of your “one day,” you will have a good idea of what you want in your head and he (or she-thanks to today’s Supreme Court rulings!) will have a budget. The bottom line is, we like to have something with a little sparkly, some more than others, but at the end of the day, if you really love him, when he gets down on one knee and asks you for forever, it won’t matter how much the rock is worth, if you really love him, you will say yes and you will love the ring because it’s from him and because of what it symbolizes.

That said, if money is no object or you are budgeting on your wedding, I feel that your ring which you will wear forever, should hold a little more weight on the overall budget of the wedding expenses, everything else will last a day, so if there is anything worth splurging on, it’s the one thing that you will wear forever, and Tiffany’s is certainly a great place to start your shopping.

If you are already married, they had some fabulous bands that you can add to your wedding set as your family grows, which a lot of women do, and I even tried a few bands on! In addition to engagement and wedding rings, they have a world of other jewels for any occasion or even to treat yourself! I personally love the pearl earrings in the case with the pearl necklace and diamond bracelet shown in the pictures above.

The event had a florist on hand who made custom bouquets for the brides-to-be and a calligrapher who made a custom keepsake with your name, ring size and desired ring of choice to hand over to your sweetheart when you got home. In addition to the passed hors d’oeuvres, there was a little dessert table with Tiffany box cookies, wedding cake cookies and chocolates. Everything was beautifully done, the event was great and I had a really nice time! I finally met a friend of a friend who I’ve talked to a dozen times but never met and I also met the founder of Style Me Pretty, Abby Larson, who is so sweet and very down to earth.

All in all I’d say it was a successful night! And P, if you are ever in a bind trying to decide what to get me, I’ll take either of those add-on bands (though I think the baguettes will compliment my setting better), or the anything from the pearl case.

What is everyone up to this weekend? It’s a rare weekend when we both have a Saturday night free, so this weekend while we are both off and have no social obligations, our obligation is to each other! We are taking a little date night in the city, planning to head in early and go to the TKTS booth to score show tickets, have a nice dinner before, and then enjoy whatever musical we can get tickets to! Sunday will be a chore day and maybe a good day to take Brantley on an adventure, and then the weekend will be over before we know it!

Happy Friday–enjoy the weekend!!

PS, I apologize for the poor quality of some of these photos, they were all taken on my phone during the event, so I know they aren’t the best, but they are better than nothing and at least this way you can see the bling!

(This post is not sponsored by anyone, although it may seem like a Tiffany’s promotion, it is simply my own reflection of this event that I attended. I hope you enjoyed a little peek at the bling!)

Dreaming of a Valentine’s Day Soiree

It’s February, and I’m noticing all things lovey dovey. Maybe it is because this is our first married Valentine’s Day… maybe I’m just happier than I’ve been or less cynical.. I’m not sure why, but whatever the reason, love is most definitely in the air over here.

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Whatever it is that has me feeling the love has got me thinking. My valentines have been my good friends for years. I’ve always celebrated with the girls, or ignored the holiday altogether. Even when I was dating someone, we’ve never really celebrated it. This year I’ve been thinking, why? Why all the negativity and cynicism surrounding this day? Honestly, isn’t there enough bad in the world? Couldn’t we all use a little love?

So, for all of you anti-V-Day folks, here is a list of things you can celebrate on Valentine’s Day.

Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 9.04.00 PM  1. Celebrate yourselfYou are amazing, and I shouldn’t have to tell you why. Take a minute to celebrate all the great things about you. Treat yourself to a little pampering; get your nails done, have a little spa day. Whatever it is, take a minute to appreciate the things that you do.

2. Celebrate your family. If you have little ones, whip up a special at-home dinner that feels fancier than your norm. Set the table with candles and flowers and don’t leave out the dessert! If you don’t have kids, celebrate with a siblings dinner, or by going to visit your parents. Take it upon yourself to fix up something for them as a sign of your appreciation and love for them.

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3. Celebrate your friends. Let’s face it. We all have those friends that are there for us through it all, and we love them for it. So why not whip up some cocktails and host a night in with the girls. Have everyone bring their favorite chick flick and laugh and cry the night away with your favorite ladies.

4. Celebrate a hobby. I’m a knitter and I used to have a fantastic knitting group in Connecticut before we moved to New Jersey, and I haven’t found a new group yet, but our knitting group was the type of group that knows how to have a good time. Have some of your fellow hobby-sharers over and spend some time progressing on your projects. It’s a great time to focus on something you love with a good group of people, whether your hobby is knitting, photography, scrapbooking, etc., invite a group of friends over that enjoy the same thing to hang out and work on your skills.

5. Celebrate your fur baby. We love our puppy and it is so much fun to spoil him! Take a trip with your fur baby to the pet store and buy him/her some special treats, a new toy, etc., or treat him/her to an extra trip to the dog park or a long walk or play session.

At the end of the day, it’s all about the love. So celebrate the love in your life this Valentine’s. Don’t let it bog you down, have fun with it, call some friends and get your soiree planned!

Motivation Monday {Andventure}

Welcome to the new Designed by Krystle blog! I’m so glad that you found us here and I’m thrilled to be starting this new chapter for DBK.

DBK Adventure

So, why did we switch over? Well, if you take a look at the new logo at the top, I wanted to have a place not only to share design things with you but also share posts that would fall into more of a lifestyles category. I have been working away (with some fantastic support) on creating a new website for all of my design work exclusively that will cater directly to my interior design clients. But I really wanted the blog to tackle more than just design, and cater to a wider audience. I feel like I have so much to say and so much I want to share that just doesn’t work under the design umbrella alone, hence the design and lifestyles.

All said and done, this blog is the sequel for me. It is the next logical phase of growth and the next step (hopefully of many) towards really living the life that we want to live.

I have transferred over a few months’ worth of content from the original blog and I will continue to transfer over some archives, because the first blog has a lot of good info that is worth sharing. You can of course hop over there and check out the old content for a while, but I’m not sure how long it will stay there and be easily accessible.

So, we are moving on with this next phase. It is going to be quite the adventure, I hope you like where we are heading and stick around for the ride. Let us know what you think of the new site and this new venture, and feel free to send over your design questions for the ‘Ask Krystle’ series as well.

Thank you for your continued love and support on this journey!

Holiday Hosting

This year P & I hosted our first-annual holiday soiree! I love getting friends and family together under one roof and the memories you make when everyone is together. To me, this is the reason for the season: to be together with loved ones making those memories.

I don’t have any good pictures of the tree, so this is as good as it gets! Note the DIY garland strung across the otherwise bare windows.

Doing what I do and being who I am, I needed everything in its place. The house needed to be in order, the halls perfectly decked and the food perfectly plated.

I love how this garland came out, strung across the wreath on our front door wishing everyone a Merry Christmas!

Instead, what we did was minor holiday decor, a wreath on the front door to welcome guests and a tree in the living room corner as the focal point. The rest was all candles, florals and greenery.

I found this jingle bell garland at Home Goods and decided to string it up as a card holder in the entryway.

We let the day be about eating, drinking and merry-making, instead of about perfection. I joked with my mom while planning and mentioned that as long as there was food prepped, showering and being a pleasant host were more important that the holiday decorations. (She said being pleasant was more important than showering.)

I love this little Christmas gnome, found at Target.

P & I moved the dining table into the living room and used that as the food station, where we served a variety of meats, cheeses, veggies with dips and pigs in a blanket. Since there was no outlet here, we used a coffee table in the corner as a station for the little crock pot which contained spinach artichoke dip and a freshly cut baguette.

We cleared the coffee cart to be used as a coffee and dessert station, and we set up the small counter next to the fridge for drinks, using an ice bucket for the white wine, champagne and sparkling cider, with a bottle of red and a stack of cups along side.

Nobody commented on the decor or lack of decor, everyone ate the food, enjoyed the wine and bubbly, and there was plenty of laughter to last the night.

Brantley didn’t shower, but he was very pleasant and had a great time with all the company that was obviously there just for him!

Did you do any hosting this holiday season? How did it go?

Our DIY Wedding Decor {A Natural Romance}

It’s hard to believe that we have already been married for two months. Our wedding turned out to be such a wonderful day filled with great memories, but there was a lot of work that went into it.

We opted to use a space where we would be supplying everything. I did speak to a few wedding planners, however, doing what I do it was hard for me to relinquish control on such a big event in my life.

DIY wedding decor is a huge part of planning any wedding. Meaning, that no matter how big or small your budget is, you are going to want to customize the details to make the event really represent you and your new spouse!

Wedding shawl made with love by my incredibly talented mom.

For our wedding, we wanted to create an event full of florals, natural elements and soft romantic lighting. For inspiration, I looked through wedding magazines (it was finally acceptable to buy them once we were officially engaged) and of course through Pinterest. To get started with the space I measured the space, noting key details such as window and door locations, main entrance, fixed booth locations and spacing of the beams. I then sketched out my concept for the space and went over it with my hubby to make sure that he liked the overall plan.

Here are some of the details of our day:

For the lighting we used two main elements: strands of globe lights sweeping across the rafters and a customized monogram light. We accomplished both of these things with a lot of help! My mom designed the monogram for us, and a great friend of ours (JP) is a lighting designer who helped turn it into a projectable image for a spotlight.

Monogram light on stage with the ampersand MJ made for us.

JP also helped us install the globe lights across the dance floor. To get them just right, we used the beam measurements to ensure we were getting strands the appropriate length. The bulbs come separate from the strands and my family all pitched in to get them ready to go up.

After the lighting had been tackled, we started working on the tables.

The booths were used as places for the escort cards, the gift station and the guest book. We found these great downloadable signs on Etsy to indicate each station and framed them without glass to keep the chalkboard illusion.

Here’s a look at each station:

For me, what really brought the look of our day together was the guest tables. We used long rectangular tables, fresh white linens and craft paper to run the length as a runner. I loved the layered effect of the paper on the linens. The final layer was a long row of glass vessels of different shapes and sizes, some were filled with candles and some left empty. The morning of the wedding we added mason jars filled with farm fresh flowers to fill in along the lengths of the tables.

If you are looking to personalize the layered table look for your wedding day, look no further than Shutterfly. You can customize everything from table runners to candles (which can double as your favors!) and of course photo books where you can share your dating timeline with your guests through pictures, or use one as your guest book.

Our interior look was perfectly customized to represent us. I loved the way the space came together and that we had so much wonderful help from our friends and family to make our big day perfect.

The look extended outside for the ceremony with tulle draped shepherds hooks and hanging mason jars with more farm fresh florals leading the way to the alter. On the front steps of the lake house we used big planters full of mums and more draped tulle at the front steps.

The day of the wedding everything came together beautifully. I was so happy with the whole scene, and the whole day was filled with so much love, it was perfect! Now that our day has come and gone, I’m so thrilled to have all of the pictures back from the photographer (click over to her site here if you are in the CT, NY, NJ, PA area–she’s amazing), and I cannot wait to put everything from our day together in a Shutterfly photo book. I love their hardcover books, they are a perfect coffee-table book and such a special way to bring you back to the special memories of our day!


All images in this post provided by PhotoJenicMoments from our beautiful wedding day!