Designer Andie Day’s Holiday Decorating & Entertaining Tips
Serene, beautiful kitchen design by award-winning designer and Aging-in-Place specialist, Andie Day.
The always elegant and stylish, Boston-based designer, Andie Day, shares the following fabulous and chic holiday decorating advice:
- Whether you envision holidays filled with elegantly decorated rooms or radiating exquisite simplicity the key to success is an organized home. We suggest tackling this sometimes overwhelming task with an objective friend or hiring a home organizer. Simplicity is conducive to an improved quality of life for you and your family.
- Layer scents throughout home. My favorite candle is Diptyque French candles with their beautiful and long lasting fragrances. The candles last about 50 hours making it a better value than many other candle collections. (Andie’s favorite Diptyque candle scent is, Figuier “Verte” / “Green” Fig Tree.)
- Add a little sparkle using glinting crystal, polished silver and festive ornaments.
Andie also shares two of her family’s favorite holiday recipes: German Coffee Braid, and, an equally delicious sounding, Santa’s Toffee Chip Cookies. “ Both [recipes] are time consuming but well worth it “, according to Andie. She explains, “I must confess that I’m not much of a cook – I do rely heavily on my husband for this. While he’s bringing the turkey to perfection I work toward designing a memorable martini…White Blizzard Chocolate Martini. “ (martini recipe also included below).
German Coffee Braid Family Holiday Recipe
- 1 package yeast package = 2 1/4 teaspoons
- 2 tablespoons warm water
- ¾ cup scalded milk
- ¼ cup butter
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg
- 3 cups flour
Ingredients for Filling
- Soft Butter
- ½ cup sugar
- 1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Dissolve yeast in warm water. Pour hot milk over butter, sugar and salt. Let cool to luke-warm. Add yeast, egg and ½ flour (or 1-1/2c) Beat until smooth then add remaining flour. Knead. Let rise, punch down and let rise again. Divide into three equal parts. Spread each with butter and filling. Roll the three pieces of braid together. Let rise. Brush top with butter and sprinkle with spiced sugar. Bake for 30 minutes.(Recipe origin unknown)
Santa’s Toffee Chip Cookies Family Holiday Recipe
- 2-1/2 c flour
- ½ tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 cup butter
- 1 cup English toffee bits
- 2 eggs
- ¾ c brown sugar
- ¾ c granulated sugar
- 2 tsp. vanilla
- 7 ounces of Kraft caramels
- 3 tablespoons of milk
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Walnuts for garnish
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Stir flour, salt and baking soda together and then set aside. Cream butter with both sugars until fluffy. Add vanilla and eggs. Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture, mix well. Add toffee bits. Take two healthy tablespoons of dough and roll into a ball. Place 4 balls on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake 10 minutes.
While the cookies are cooling, melt 7 ounces of Kraft caramels with three tablespoons of milk over medium heat. In another pan, melt one cup of chocolate semi-sweet chips over low heat. After the cookies have cooled, spread the melted caramels over the cookies, and then the melted chocolate over the caramel.
Garnish with crushed walnuts. Makes 12 huge cookies.
(Obtained from Salem Evening News)
White Blizzard Chocolate Martini Recipe
- 4 ounces of Absolut Vanilla vodka
- 1 ounce of clear Creme de Cacao
- 2 ounce of Godet White Chocolate liqueur
- 1 teaspoon of coconut flakes
- 2 freezing martini glasses
Add the vodka to a shaker half full of cracked ice. Shake vigorously for a full minute. Add the white chocolate liqueur, and Creme de Cacao. Swirl the shaker for another full minute, and then let it rest for a minute.
Strain your martini into the freezing martini glasses. Each glass gets half of the coconut flakes.
Stir each martini gently to start the blizzard!
(Recipe obtained from Group Recipes. Obtained from Salem Evening News)
About Andie Day
Andie Day is a national award-winning interior designer whose inventive solutions have been featured in, Kitchen and Bath Ideas®, Washington Post, New England Home, Design New England and in NECN’s inspirational television series: New England Dream House.
Andie Day is CAPS certified and has crafted her niche as an Aging-in-Place specialist. Ms. Day has expanded her expertise and passion for combining safety and fine design through her philosophy, DESIGN FOR LIFE™.
The Decorating Diva is a luxury home design magazine and lifestyle journal dedicated to the concept of living a stylish and comfortably elegant life at home – joyfully surrounded by the beautiful things you love. Join, Carmen, The Decorating Diva’s founder, as she blogs about sophisticated, smart, stylish and beautiful decor for your home and shares her decorating and style advice with you. Follow her and several of our wonderful contributors on inspirational design trips as they explore enchanted lands both far and near – returning with a delightful treasure trove of design finds for your home.