Wine & Watercolour

Best summer party ideas by To Vogue or BustIf you guys follow me on Insta Story, then it’s probably become pretty clear that Matt and I love hosting—a lot! We’re lucky to have this great rooftop patio with views all around and since we moved in 4 years ago, have spent many a happy afternoon (usually creeping into the evening) hanging out either together or with our friends, watching the city go by and the sun glide down the sky. We’ve become so accustomed to our easy evenings at home but recently, I was realizing all the evenings were kinda blurring into one. I wanted to start making both our space and our evenings a bit more special somehow when I realized—I could turn our patio into a bit more of a creative mecca!

How to host a watercolor party by To Vogue or Bust Urban barn patio furniture for a summer party by To Vogue or BustLast summer I became obsessed with watercoloring and it’s a meditative and soothing practice I’ve carried into this year as well. I love the idea of inviting some friends over for a watercolour party, complete with some vino, some beautiful flowers (to paint, obviously) and of course, a beautiful view to look at. Thankfully I have all the watercolour essentials on hand and with a layered Turkish towel over my tablecloth (to protect it from any splatters) I’m basically all set, but was feeling like our place needed a more inspired feel in general.

Urban barn piazza furniture for a summer party by To Vogue or Bust How to decorate for a summer party by To Vogue or BustCue in Urban Barn—Matt and I actually live relatively close to one and have taken to slowly adding in key pieces over the years (my desk, our coffee table, etc). I love its effortless take on everyday style, with so many pieces that work seamlessly in our space, give a whole lot of function but are always so stylish too!

How to plan a watercolor party for summer by To Vogue or Bust Tips for hosting a watercoloring party by To Vogue or BustWe updated our older deck chairs with these stunning Piazza chairs (seriously taking us back to Italy!) which are rust-resistant (needed in our Vancouver climate) and easy to fold to put away for winter or when they’re not being used—I feel like it totally added to the artistic vibe of a watercolour party! Another key ambiance tip: cruise through Spotify and find some cafe music, whether it’s Parisian, Italian, etc! A bit cheesy but it really does set a tone!

How to host a summer watercolor party by To Vogue or Bust Summer party ideas by To Vogue or BustWe also stocked up on some beautiful Jacques glassware as well, which fortunately also makes for a beautiful subject for painting—in love with its bubble detailing! Finally, other than fresh flowers, I picked out this stunning Talea vase that features ocean-hued watercolour detailing—perfect to recreate with the brush!

Patio party decorating ideas by To Vogue or Bust How to have a watercolor party by To Vogue or BustA few tips for watercoloring if you’re new to it: start with lighter layers (easy to build up but hard/near-impossible to take away), focus on painting an isolated subject instead of trying to build up background and flowers are a really easy way to start because of their lovely rounded lines!

Best patio party ideas for summer by To Vogue or BustHave you ever done a watercolour party with your friends or anything else that was along the lines of a DIY or creative get-together? Tell me in the comments below!

This post was sponsored by Urban Barn but all opinions are my own

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  1. 7.12.17
    Heli said:

    Ugh, I wish we had a roof patio like that! The views alone are to die for. I paint and draw a lot (I’m an illustrator) so that would be a perfect spot for doing the artsy stuff, too.

    (I also love that glassware, but I hate it that it’s such a glaring rip-off of Iittalas Kastehelmi, a design classic.)

    • 7.12.17
      Alexandra Grant said:

      What a cool job! I’m always open to general tips – very much at a beginner level with watercolour! x

      • 7.13.17
        Heli said:

        It’s all about the paper, and “less is more”. You’ll just get frustrated trying to paint on cheap and thin watercolor paper since it falls apart really quickly and buckles if you don’t stretch it first. I use heavy, cold pressed Canson and Winson & Newton papers with both my Holbein watercolors and Derwent watercolor pencils. Paying a little more initially will be worth it since your paintings will last longer (and won’t yellow over time) and won’t flake off or buckle when you paint in several layers. (The same theory about better quality tools also applies somewhat to the paints you choose, since the less pigmented hobbyist colors are also a pretty surefire way to get frustrated and disappointed.)

        Which brings me to the “less is more” part. Trying to get really strong, pigmented areas in one go won’t work, so painting in layers is a key. Going from light to dark is also crucial, since otherwise you won’t get the really sensitive color areas that watercolors are so perfect for. Other than that it”s just trial and error!

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