Tag Archives: entertaining

Helpful Thanksgiving Planning Tips

I love this time of year, all the beautiful colors, family, food, and fun! As we are a couple of weeks away from Thanksgiving, I wanted to offer a few tips to help take the stress away and have a little fun.

First, create your to-do list. I don’t know about you, but I can’t operate without a prioritized list. Be realistic about what you want to get done and list shortcuts if you run out of time. If you need a dessert and baking isn’t your thing, it’s ok to run to Trader Joe’s and grab a box of their Apple Cranberry Tarts. Add fresh whip cream or ice cream, and it will be delicious!

Do you plan to get a fresh turkey? If so, be sure to order it from your favorite market now. The rule to go by has always been one pound per person. That may be too much turkey, and you will have leftovers with all of the other items you plan to serve. If you want tips on planning a menu or recipes, click here for information from Epicurious.

Put together your shopping list and purchase all of your dry and frozen goods this week.

Decide on the decorating theme you want for your table setting or buffet. Now is the time to pull out any time-cherished items and use them. If you have a set of silver from your grandmother, pull it out, polish it and get it ready.

Personally, I like to see the person across from me and don’t enjoy centerpieces that get in the way. Grab an assortment of flowers from your local grocery store, selecting the color theme of your choice and mix in greens (or use cuttings from your yard), and create a lovely arrangement, click here for how-to instructions. For ideas decorating your table with pinecones click here, or to use fruits click here.

Take a moment and walk around your dining area and remove any extra things that may be taking up needed space. Do you have a bar cart? Now is the time to consider getting it ready and stocked with whatever you wish to serve to your guests. If you need help with ideas on pairing wine with your turkey, click here. If you do plan on serving wine with dinner, be sure to have a non-alcoholic beverage perhaps a Cranberry-Mint Water, not only does it taste delicious it’s beautiful!

Remember what’s important to you, relaxing and enjoying your time with friends and family!

Redesign Right, LLCBy Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz, Google+ and Instagram.

4 Ways to Liven Up Your Deck or Patio

shutterstock_286718537Are you getting ready for summertime parties and dining outdoors? Is your deck or patio in need of a fresh look? If you already have the furniture consider changing or adding the following:

  1. Lighting
  2. Rugs or Flooring
  3. Shade (if your deck or patio is in direct sunlight)
  4. Color

Outdoor Lighting Options

There are situations where you may not want to worry about real candles burning. In these cases, I suggest an outdoor LED candle available in many shapes and sizes. Personally, I prefer candles with timers (because who ever remembers to turn the candles off?) and find the candles that require two type AA are longer-lasting than those that require three AAA batteries. Another option is to use the white string lights or fairy lights, I have many saved ideas in my Outdoor Pinterest board, click here to view. If you have a lot of sunlight on your patio or deck, consider using fun solar powered lighting, such as these from Gardeners.

Outdoor Flooring Options

If you have a cement patio and wish you could change it, try instant flooring! Click here for an idea from Ikea to use outdoor floor tiles. Keep in mind that these instant floors can be utilized in an apartment or rental balconies where you want to add a different look as they “float” on top of the cement. Add a colorful rug to tie together conversation areas such as these ideas from Overstock.

Shade Options

If your deck or patio is in direct sunlight, you will want some shade. Add a table that can support an umbrella or if you have space, add a retractable awning or install a pergola. If you’re interested in the construction of a pergola, click here for instructions from DIYnetwork. Even if you live in an apartment or have a very small space to work with you can still have shade to make your outdoor area more enjoyable by using a half umbrella, click here to view an option from World Market.

Color Options

I saved my favorite topic for last! Use the same rules inside your house as you do outside! Don’t be afraid to use color which can be achieved in your furniture, pillows, throws, rugs, containers, or wall art. If you have vinyl siding, you will not want to put a hole through the siding to hang something! Instead, click here to view an option for hanging things from vinyl siding without affecting the siding. There are many options available to you for outdoor wall art; such as canvases, metal artwork, decorative ironworks, or rustic cottage-styled items. To view some ideas for inspiration, click here.

Color can come from beautiful flowering plants and various sizes and heights of containers. I also love the idea of hanging gardens, click here to view an idea. My Outdoor Pinterest board includes many ideas for vertical gardens and screening, click here to see.

Note:  With all of the viruses that mosquitoes carry you will want to manage them in your yard as much as possible. Click here for a Special Report: Moderating Menacing Mosquitoes from radio host, Mike McGrath from “You Bet Your Garden.” To view a report from Consumer Reports, click here for repellents that can be used by people.

Redesign RightHave fun with your deck or patio refresher! If you need assistance, give Debbie a call 610.955.8202 or email for all your color consultations, redesign, home staging, or training needs.

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at www.RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz and .

Activities in the Philadelphia Area this Holiday Season

Holiday Check ListI love the holidays and all the fabulous food and fun times. I want to help you with your planning. If you are having guests come for any extended stay, you will want to know about activities that are available to you in the area to keep everyone happy. If you need help getting your guest room ready, click here to review my 15-item check list to assist you in your preparation. Get your calendars out and let’s start planning!

Activities and Resources in the Philadelphia and Surrounding Areas

If you have kids or grand-kids visiting for the holidays:

Unique Shopping options:

For those who enjoy history and home decorating, consider taking the Christmas at the Fairmount Park Historic Houses Tour.

If you don’t want to make the drive up to NYC for the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, consider a closer venue. The American Music Theatre in Lancaster, PA puts on a Christmas Show, click here to learn more.

If you have a plant or garden lover, actually I believe anyone would enjoy this idea, visit Longwood Gardens, which is stunning during the holidays! Click here for more information.

For a couple of resources of what is happening around Philadelphia and per county, go to Visitphilly.com or Yelp.com for more information.

If you are looking to fill an afternoon? Consider one of these ideas:

  • For the book lover head on over to Baldwin’s Book Barn in West Chester. (Insider tip:  Dress warmly, the barn is chilly in cold weather and there are many narrow steps to get to the many levels of the barn.) When you are done pop on over to the center of West Chester and grab a bite to eat, there are many fabulous choices available.
  • Do some unique shopping at Terrain in Glen Mills and enjoy a cup of tea or coffee on-location at the Garden Café.
  • If you have a guest who enjoys a lovely pot of tea and a scone, consider making reservations at The Lincoln Room in West Chester, PA.

I believe I have included something for everyone. Have a plan and your holiday season will be fun and enjoyable!

Redesign RightIf you need help getting your home ready for the holidays with a redesign, give Debbie a call 610.955.8202 to set up an appointment!

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at www.RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz and .

Having a Summer Party?

iStock_000006975789SmallThinking about throwing a summer party?  Here are a few tips to help you out with this fun summer idea!

Create the invite list!  There are many online invitation sites, consider one of these for a unique look to your summer bash:  PunchBowl.com, PaperlessPost.com, or Evite.com.  If you have a favorite website that you like to use, send me a note, I would love to hear about it!

How much food to get?  If you are planning an outdoor barbecue, click here for a food calculator from the Food Network.  Think about the types of food you will be serving and if you plan to serve food outdoors.  For a general guide to help you plan your party, click here.  Food should not be exposed to direct sun.  To keep food cool,  place ice on the bottom of a deep tray then place another tray on top of that tray, allowing the cold to chill the food and keep the melting ice water away.  Be sure to cover your food with a clean cloth or plastic wrap until you are ready to serve.

Do you have a theme for your party?  Since we are approaching the end of the summer season, it’s a great time to pick up outdoor items for parties on sale at stores such as Target, Pier 1, and online sites as well.  If you are in need of outdoor party ideas, or recipes I encourage you to visit Pinterest for great visuals on recipes or theme ideas.

General serving tips:

  • Create napkin and plastic ware bundles that you have at the end of the serving table. This will minimize spills and messes for guests.  Use raffia, gift ribbon, or fabric ribbon as an easy option based on your theme.
  • Instead of one big bucket for drinks – create small buckets for the various types of drinks you will be serving.
  • Serve small items grouped together on trays – it will make clean up quick and easy!
  • Use a table cloth that has various colors to mask any spills that may occur.
  • Use citronella votives around the party’s perimeter to keep the bugs away.
  • Use chalkboard stickers on glass tumblers instead of markers and plastic cups to label drinks.

Yummy appetizer ideas:

Looking for a refreshing summer cocktail?  Try this recipe for a Limoncello Collins, which can be made ahead, this recipe serves 8:

  • 16 oz limoncello (lemon-flavored liqueur)
  • 12 oz gin
  • 8 oz fresh lemon juice
  • 24 paper-think lemon slices
  • Ice
  • 16 oz chilled club soda
  • 8 mint springs

Directions:  In a pitcher, combine the limoncello, gin and lemon juice.  Cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours.  Press 3 thin lemon slices against the inside of each of 8 collins glasses.  Add ice to the glasses.  Stir the limoncello mixture and pour it into the glasses.  Stir 2 ounces of club soda into each drink and garnish with a mint sprig.

The last tip I can offer is to sign up a friend in advance to help you out so that you are not frenzied before or during the party!  Have a great party and enjoy the rest of the summer!

Logo-JPEG-1For all your redesign, interior design, paint color selection or training needs contact Debbie@RedesignRight.com!

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz and .