My husband and I are native Los Angelenos and we always feel so lucky to be surrounded by lots of family and friends during the holidays without the stress of travel.
One of my favorite holiday traditions is getting together with my high school friends who are also locals. We usually do a brunch or dinner and this year I’ll be hosting. One of the great things about old friendships (besides being able to tease each other about teen fashion faux pas ) is that extra layer of comfort and casualness when we get together. Brunch this year will be low-key but, of course, I still want to provide a festive setting, great music and amazing food.
As much as I enjoy putting together menus and trying out new recipes, it’s a crazy time of year and I welcome any extra help I can get. We’re going to do a potluck brunch – I’m going to make Spinach & Gruyere Dutch Baby Pancakes and a smoked salmon, and ask my friends to supplement with sides and sweets. Since we recently re-did our backyard and planted orange trees I’m going to serve fresh-squeezed Screwdrivers with Mint. I also love the idea of using fresh oranges and their leaves to make centerpieces for the table.
I take the same approach to entertaining as I do with my design work by incorporating high-end and more affordable pieces. If you are doing things last minute, as I seem to be this year (and always), here are some great options for tabletop and decor –
« LAST MINUTE HOLIDAY BRUNCH IDEAS »
- PLATES – If you’re in a time crunch and need plates for your party try these from Amazon. Enamel plates like these are a great idea for parties too since they’ll stand up to kids and adults. If you have time to hit the stores, I love the simple organic shape of these from West Elm as well as this set (shown above) from ABC Home.
- LINENS – Most of my friends know I have a soft spot for linens. All of Heather Taylor’s napkins are beautiful and I especially love these (shown above). Although there’s something extra special about a fine linen napkin, there are plenty of more affordable alternatives like these and these and these.
- FOOD – In addition to making a few dishes, fresh bread is the easiest party addition and a brunch “must” if you ask me. There are so many amazing choices near me these days and my favorites are the delicious breads from Roan Mills, Gjusta and Lodge Bread to name a few. If I have time I’m also going to attempt to make the Cranberry Lime Tart (shown above) – I’ll let you know how it comes out!