Summer Cocktail Series: St-Germain Margarita Snow Cones

So Nole and I decided to try something a little different this time around, something neither of us had tried before: frozen drinks. There was a little trepidation: are we sure we can get these things right? What about the tarnished reputation of frozen drinks among cocktail aficionados? But it turns out all that worrying was for naught. Frozen drinks are perfectly easy to make with just as much care as any of our other cocktails, and they are – let me emphasize this – perfect for August. If you’re not making frozen drinks this summer, you’d better start now.

We’ll be sharing the recipes in separate posts since some of them are a bit more involved than others – but they’re all totally worth it. Our first recipe is for build-your-own St-Germain margaritas with a choice of three natural syrups: delicious, fun, and cool – you can’t fail to impress your guests with this one. – Andrew

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 32b Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 41 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

St-Germain Margarita Snow Cones

2 Cups Cazadores Reposado Tequila
1 Cup Lime Juice
1/2 Cup St-Germain

Combine the Tequila, lime juice, and St-Germain in a squeeze bottle. Squeeze over a snow cone or glass filled with fresh shaved ice, then top with a squeeze of syrup. Makes about eight servings.

St Germain Margarita Snow Cones Recipe Card Dinara Mirtalipova OSBP Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

Illustration by Dinara Mirtalipova for Oh So Beautiful Paper

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 85 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

To Make the Blueberry Syrup:

1 Cup Blueberries
1 Cup Sugar
1 Cup Water

Bring the water to a boil in a saucepan, then reduce the heat to a simmer and add the blueberries and sugar. Stir to incorporate the sugar, breaking up the blueberries as you go. Simmer for about fifteen minutes, then strain into a squeeze bottle, pressing the solids to extract as much blueberry flavor as possible.

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 42 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

To Make the Watermelon Syrup:

1 Cup Watermelon Juice
1 Cup Sugar

Crush and strain a chopped watermelon to get your juice, then gently heat the juice in a saucepan. Add the sugar, stirring frequently at low heat to incorporate the sugar. Pour into a squeeze bottle.

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 72 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 71 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

To Make the Mint-Basil Syrup

1 Cup Sugar
1 Cup Water
1 Cup Mint Leaves
1 Cup Basil Leaves

Blanch the mint and basil leaves first. Add the leaves to boiling water for fifteen seconds, then remove them with a slotted spoon and immediately submerge them in ice water for about a minute. Bring the water to a boil in a saucepan, then reduce the heat and add in the sugar. Stir frequently until the sugar is fully melted. Add the mint, basil and syrup to a blender and pulse everything to break up the leaves. Strain the resulting syrup into a squeeze bottle.

Drinks shouldn’t take themselves too seriously. Cocktail enthusiasts spend a lot of time perfecting recipes and resurrecting lost spirits and tracking down obscure ingredients and the like. And that’s awesome. But there’s always the risk in this of forgetting that a drink, no matter how perfect, is still just a drink, and the point is to have fun with them. That’s what this recipe is: a lot of fun. There’s quite a bit of prep work involved, but once you’re done, all your guests have to do is grab a squeeze bottle – or two or three or all of them – and squirt over some shaved ice. It’s interactive and lets you play around with vibrant colors and rich flavors in a way that most drinks don’t.

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 55 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow ConesFrozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 89 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

 

And you can easily turn this into a plain-old non-alcoholic snow cone for anyone not drinking – or make popsicles with any extra syrup. If you’re really thinking about making these for a party, I highly recommend you invest in a real shaved-ice machine. They’re not that expensive (we used this one) and they’re life savers for churning out a ton of fluffy shaved ice on short order.

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 37 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 113 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

On a total aside: I believe that drinks should be honest. The taste, scent, color and feel of each drink should be the product of its ingredients, and not any artificial coloring or ingredients. Even though we’re living through the greatest age in American Cocktails since the time of Jerry Thomas, too many drinks are served with artificial bottled mixers and fake neon colors. So I’m happy to showcase these syrups, which show how tremendously easy it is to make ingredients with bright, bold flavors and colors to match at home, using natural and fresh ingredients. Just look at those colors in the photos: they’re awesome. And they’re all real.

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 45 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 88 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 66 Summer Cocktail Series: St Germain Margarita Snow Cones

Calligraphy by Lauren Saylor of A Fabulous Fete

Styling by Nole Garey for Oh So Beautiful Paper

Photos by Sweet Root Village for Oh So Beautiful Paper

Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

It’s August, which here in DC means plenty of long and hot summer days. So for the next installment in our summer cocktail party series, we’re partnering with St-Germain to offer some ideas to help cool off with friends. I was also super excited to collaborate with the amazingly talented ladies of Sweet Root Village for this project on both the photography and beautiful floral arrangements. The result is my favorite yet in the series: a frozen cocktail party!

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 196 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Shannon from The Paper Cub designed the invitations – I’m a huge fan of her unique hand lettering style! The invitations also feature illustrations of fruit, cold drinks, and other summer motifs perfect for a late summer gathering. Lauren from A Fabulous Fete (and one of our talented DIY contributors!) addressed the envelopes in her whimsical style using bright pink watercolor.

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 197 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 198 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Okay – now onto the party! Our overall inspiration came from bright summer colors – specifically aqua, pink, and yellow – and anything beachy or summery. I’m a big fan of creating individual stations at a party to keep guests moving around and avoid a bottleneck around the bar. So for this cocktail party we designed three cocktail stations, each featuring a different frozen recipe designed to be enjoyed with a group of friends. Our first cocktail station features our first ever cocktail granita: a St-Germain and blackberry granita! (On a related note: I now want to granita everything.)

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 137 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 130b Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 22b Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 23 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail PartyFrozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 60 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 138 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Remember Lauren’s DIY tutorial for these awesome spray painted acrylic menu signs? Here they are in action! The giant pink and blue popsicle was made with crepe paper fringe and gold mylar fringe based on this tutorial from Jordan.

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 18 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail PartyFrozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 59 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

The floral arrangements from Sweet Root Village included bright shades of yellow and pink with air plants and succulents mixed in – along with a few smaller arrangements with fragrant tuberose and succulents in small terra cotta pots. I love the combination of different textures in all the arrangements!

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 142 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 6 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 146 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

For our second cocktail station, I created a bar sign using paper flowers pieced together from different Paper Source flower kits and giant letters cut from cardboard boxes. We mixed in some colorful honeycombs in our party colors – and of course more beautiful floral arrangements. It was the perfect backdrop for our second cocktail: a frozen St-Germain daiquiri!

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 147 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 153b Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 155 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail PartyFrozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 157 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 3 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 162 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail PartyFrozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 158 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 107 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 167 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail PartyFrozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 168 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Our third cocktail station features another acrylic cocktail sign that I made using Lauren’s DIY tutorial – and what might be my favorite idea from the entire day: build-your-own St-Germain margarita snow cones! We mixed our margarita base with three different syrups inspired by our favorite summer flavors: mint-basil, watermelon, and blueberry. You can also enjoy the syrups by themselves for a non-alcoholic version, or even turn the syrups into popsicles!

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 171 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 182 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 38 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 44 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail PartyFrozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 129 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 83b Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 114 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail PartyFrozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 12 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 119 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 121 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 179 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

I love the idea of repurposing party decor as favors – so our air plants and tiny potted succulents became favors with the help of a beautiful watercolor calligraphy sign by Lauren.

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 192 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail PartyFrozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 152 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

Frozen Cocktail Party Inspiration Sweet Root Village OSBP 188 Summer Cocktail Series: A Frozen Cocktail Party

 Stay tuned for the cocktail recipes in just a bit!

Invitation Design: The Paper Cub

Calligraphy: Lauren Saylor of A Fabulous Fete

Floral Design: Sweet Root Village

Styling: Nole Garey for Oh So Beautiful Paper

Photo Credits: Sweet Root Village for Oh So Beautiful Paper

This post is brought to you in collaboration with St-Germain. All content, photos, recipes, and words are our own. Thank you for supporting the sponsors that help make Oh So Beautiful Paper possible!

DIY Tutorial: Candy-Colored Wooden Trivets

My favorite kind of DIY project is one that brings a little life to an otherwise purely practical item. In this simple project, I turn trivets into pure playfulness for your table or bar using wooden baubles and candy-colored paints. – Mandy Pellegrin of Fabric Paper Glue

DIY Candy Colored Wooden Trivets OSBP 1 DIY Tutorial: Candy Colored Wooden Trivets

DIY Candy Colored Wooden Trivets OSBP 2 DIY Tutorial: Candy Colored Wooden Trivets

Materials

Fourteen (14) 1.5″ wooden half-spheres per trivet
Craft paint
Painters tape
Paint brushes
Paper
Pencil
Ruler
Scissors
Felt
Heavy duty glue

DIY Candy Colored Wooden Trivets OSBP 3 DIY Tutorial: Candy Colored Wooden Trivets

Step One: Give the half spheres a paint job. I left a few bare and gave a few some quick and dirty brushstroke dots. For the remainder, I taped off half with painters tape and gave them a couple of coats of candy-colored paints.

DIY Candy Colored Wooden Trivets OSBP 10 DIY Tutorial: Candy Colored Wooden Trivets

DIY Candy Colored Wooden Trivets OSBP 4 DIY Tutorial: Candy Colored Wooden Trivets

Step Two: Lay out the spheres in the arrangement shown on a sheet of scrap paper, and outline it using a ruler and pen/pencil to create a template.

DIY Candy Colored Wooden Trivets OSBP 5 DIY Tutorial: Candy Colored Wooden Trivets

Step Three: Cut out the template about 1/2″ smaller all the way around than your outline from the previous step, and use it to cut the same shape from a piece of felt.

DIY Candy Colored Wooden Trivets OSBP 6 DIY Tutorial: Candy Colored Wooden Trivets

Step Four: Glue the spheres into place atop the felt. Enjoy!

DIY Candy Colored Wooden Trivets OSBP 8 DIY Tutorial: Candy Colored Wooden Trivets

DIY Candy Colored Wooden Trivets OSBP 9 DIY Tutorial: Candy Colored Wooden Trivets

Photo Credits: Mandy Pellegrin for Oh So Beautiful Paper

Abbi + John’s Rustic Summer Wedding Invitations

Happy Monday everyone! This is my favorite way to start the week: beautiful wedding invitations! These beautiful rustic summer wedding invitations come to us from Samantha and Whitney of Gus & Ruby Letterpress. The invitations combine bright summer colors like yellow and aqua with animal silhouettes to represent the New Hampshire farm wedding venue. So pretty!

Rustic Letterpress Summer Wedding Invitations Gus and Ruby Letterpress OSBP3 Abbi + Johns Rustic Summer Wedding Invitations

From Samantha and WhitneyThis custom suite was designed for an active fun-loving couple who were married at a farm in New Hampshire. The bride and groom wanted the invitation suite to reflect the bright colors of summer and the casual and rustic feel of the farm.

Rustic Letterpress Summer Wedding Invitations Gus and Ruby Letterpress OSBP5 Abbi + Johns Rustic Summer Wedding Invitations

Each invitation was mounted onto a bright yellow backing paper and featured a pairing of whimsical, casual and classic font. A color palette of aqua, sunny yellowand charcoal gray set the summertime tone for their outdoor event.

Rustic Letterpress Summer Wedding Invitations Gus and Ruby Letterpress OSBP Abbi + Johns Rustic Summer Wedding Invitations

All pieces were wrapped in a belly band featuring a variety of animal silhouettes letterpress printed in two colors and tied with twine and a hang tag directing guests to Abbi and John’s wedding website.

Rustic Letterpress Summer Wedding Invitations Gus and Ruby Letterpress OSBP4 Abbi + Johns Rustic Summer Wedding Invitations

Rustic Letterpress Summer Wedding Invitations Gus and Ruby Letterpress OSBP7 Abbi + Johns Rustic Summer Wedding Invitations

A graphic yellow envelope liner completed the invitation suite and z-fold ceremony programs tied the day-of paper goods all together. As always, the pieces were lovingly letterpress printed by hand on our antique press on beautiful, textural, super thick 100% cotton paper.

Rustic Letterpress Summer Wedding Invitations Gus and Ruby Letterpress OSBP6 Abbi + Johns Rustic Summer Wedding Invitations

Rustic Letterpress Summer Wedding Invitations Gus and Ruby Letterpress OSBP8 Abbi + Johns Rustic Summer Wedding Invitations

Rustic Letterpress Summer Wedding Invitations Gus and Ruby Letterpress OSBP11 Abbi + Johns Rustic Summer Wedding Invitations

Thanks so much Sam and Whit!

Design and Letterpress Printing: Gus & Ruby Letterpress

Gus & Ruby Letterpress is a member of the Designer Rolodex – check out more of their beautiful work right here or visit the real invi­ta­tions gallery for more wedding invitation ideas!

Photo Credits: Brea McDonald Photography for Gus & Ruby Letterpress

Friday Happy Hour: Rosé Sangria

It’s hard to go wrong with Sangria. Sangria is an agreeable drink, soaking up mixers and fruit without prejudice and turning whatever you throw at it into a perfectly mellow drink that you can serve (or drink) by the pitcherful. The name hints at its origins in a jazzed up red wine, but we’ve had fun playing around with white wine sangria and now a rosé. We’re already a week into August, so September and fall are just around the corner. There’s still some time to squeeze in a pitcher or two. – Andrew

Rose Sangria Cocktail Recipe OSBP 25 Friday Happy Hour: Rosé Sangria

Rose Sangria Cocktail Recipe Card Shauna Lynn Illustration OSBP Friday Happy Hour: Rosé Sangria

Illustration by Shauna Lynn for Oh So Beautiful Paper

Rosé Sangria

1 Bottle (750 ml) Dry Rosé Wine
1 Cup Pineapple Juice
1/2 Cup Orange Juice
3 oz Bourbon
3 oz Triple Sec (like Cointreau)
Half a Cantaloupe, Diced
Half a Honeydew, Diced

Combine all of the ingredients in a pitcher and let it sit in the refrigerator overnight. (This step – letting the flavors merge overnight – is the difference between a mediocre Sangria and an amazing Sangria.) Pour over ice, fruit and all, and enjoy!

Rose Sangria Cocktail Recipe OSBP 8 Friday Happy Hour: Rosé Sangria

Rose Sangria Cocktail Recipe OSBP 43 Friday Happy Hour: Rosé Sangria

We used a dry, oaky rosé so we could sweeten it with fruit and fruit juice without turning the whole thing into a sugary mess. The bourbon was an unusual choice, since most sangrias are fortified by a smooth, mellow brandy, but I wanted to see how it would work paired with the oaky wine. The first taste test left me fearing I had a dud on my hands – it was harsh and muddy, full of clashing flavors. But, I took my own advice and let it sit overnight. Turns out I had nothing to worry about. The flavors married up over night, and the sweet melon mellowed out all the rough edges. The result is light and sweet and summery, with undertones of rich oakiness, and a big silky mouthfeel thanks to the melon. I’m a fan.

Rose Sangria Cocktail Recipe OSBP 48 Friday Happy Hour: Rosé SangriaRose Sangria Cocktail Recipe OSBP 23 Friday Happy Hour: Rosé Sangria

I don’t have a grand unified theory of sangrias yet, and I believe that many of the best sangrias are improvised, but there’s a definite rhythm to the best: a big, dry wine, mellowed by seasonal fruit and a dash of citrus, fortified by a dash more of a smooth liquor and a smoother liqueur. I’m wondering now what I could do to a red wine with some lime juice, rum, and falernum… Photo Credits: Nole Garey for Oh So Beautiful Paper