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Occasions (New Series of Lifestyle Books)
Release Date: April, 2004
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Back in 1993, the editor-turned-designer Kate Spade made a splash in the fashion world by turning out a small collection of boxy, utilitarian handbags, each elegantly accented with her name stitched in discreet, lowercase letters. As a result, the simplicity and unabashed refinement of the Spade moniker on those Lilliputian labels has come to define the very foundation on which the designer has since built a fashion empire, one that now, in addition to handbags, includes shoes, clothing, and smart home things, all of which embody the Spade formula of timeless style--a seamless merging of cheerful colors, clean shapes, and well-chosen embellishments. Not bad for a Kansas City-born girl who used to comb vintage stores for fun. Having perfected and expertly marketed her own brand of personal style (one that has famously been counterfeited throughout the world), the designer has emerged with an equally elegant trio of books whose topics Spade has become a virtual authority: Style, Occasions, and Manners. Applying a personal touch to everything you do is Spade's mantra, and leads us off to parties big and small in Occasions. Just like its sister volumes Style and Manners, Occasions has the spirit of a light-hearted scrapbook, but it still packs a bounty of inspired entertaining ideas into its slim proportions. From classic cocktail recipes and setting a sparkling table to seasonal menus, party themes, and the art of the perfect toast, Spade offers all the ingredients for making a party memorable (and maintaining grace under pressure). While she often spotlights the wisdom and flair of famous party stars she loves (Truman Capote and his Black & White ball among them), Spade in her own words resonates as the real tastemaker, getting the balance between girl-next-door and bon vivant just right. --Christene Barberich
||Simon & Schuster
||0.7 x 6.2 x 8.0 in.
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Posted by Anonymous on 5/7/2004
This book is wonderful. After watching Oprah and reading about these books in Style Magazine, I decided to see what the hype was about! This particular book helped me organize a great Happy 40th birthday for my mother and her friends. After the success of my party, I went ahead and bought the other two books as well. These books have great suggestions and look great on the coffee table! I would recommend buying all three books, they are excellent!
Posted by Star Woman on 4/12/2005
I had the opportunity to read Occasions about two months ago... and I'm still thinking about it! This book (as well as the others in the series) was a quick read with concise, sweet bites of information. More than finding any concrete information about throwing parties or dressing correctly, I found inspiration in the pages of these books. Instead of merely telling me HOW to throw a party, the vivid colors and witty drawings in this book made me WANT to throw a party. These books are succint, bright, and happy--just like the author's handbags.
Occasions Give Everyone the Opportunity to be the Hostess with the Utmost Style
Posted by L. A. Plancich on 3/3/2009
The cover and design are bright red. It's a perfect color for all occasions with a white paint brush look depicting a woman sitting among boxes. The cover opens to this quote, "Occasions always gracious, sometimes irreverent". Well stated.
The book opens with little nagging questions a host, hostess or guest may wonder but seldom ask. Kate Spade tackles the questions and addresses the answer before you are saddled with dilemmas like a non-alcoholic drink at a cocktail party or what to put into a well-stocked bar.
The topics include three main chapters titled, Setting the scene, Party standards and Specific events. The book helps you along, in little pieces, to consider details like lighting, flowers and music. It then moves forward to setting the table and how/what to serve. Finally Spade closes in on the specific event and how to differentiate the occasion by making it extra special.
In setting the scene, Ms. Spade discusses décor such as linens, stocking the cupboard with basics like flatware, dinnerware, glassware etc. She also graciously supplies shopping lists for the newbie entertainer. Music and lights, such as votives vs. tapers, invitations and even being a good guest is addressed.
In the party standards chapter Ms. Spade discusses the mixed drink, wine and beer. She helps the host along by deciding on hors d'oevores and then assists with a shopping list and timeline. Aside from food hints and helps, she discusses the guest room and how to entertain beyond just a few hours in your home.
"Occasions" fills itself out in the closing chapter with special events. Brunch and birthdays and how to make them special are contrasted with picnic and even the "un-occasion". What Kate Spade seems to want her reader to know is that any occasion is doable. Certainly there is the possibility of challenges but the payoff is so much greater. Life is more interesting when you look past what might go wrong and go for it.
A lot is covered in this little book. Detail is sparse yet to the point. Ms. Spade omits fluff and details. Entire books could be devoted to many of these topics. Kate Spades pared down style, much like her accessory designs, makes her reader aware of considering these details. If you need more information you are now armed with your topic and the internet will allow you, the reader, to zero in on specifics.
This would be a great book for a bride to be or a new homeowner. Kate Spade encourages someone to open their home and embrace the ease that comes with having people over. She implies that anyone can be a great hostess and put on a great party. It isn't difficult. It just takes a smile and consideration for the guests. Unlike many "experts" who leave their viewers/readers questioning if they can do it, Kate Spate let's us know that with just a little planning we can pull it off.
Posted by Miss Juliet on 6/14/2007
This book has great ideas. I think anyone who thinks otherwise doesn't know how to throw a good party!
Posted by Rachel Riley on 4/9/2009
A great book for a hostess gift, shower gift, etc. I received a copy for my birthday and then decided to get it for a friend for a wedding shower present. Very classic ideas and a must for a Kate Spade lover!