6 creative ways to inspire your inner artist using paintbrushes

paint brushes

6 creative ways to inspire your inner artist using paintbrushes

Many people think that creativity is a gift given to people like Pablo Picasso, Claude Monet, Frida Kahlo, Vincent Van Gogh and many other known and unknown talented painters. But is that really true? Is creativity given to some, but not to others?

Absolutely NOT. I am glad to inform you that this is not true. There are a few facts that show the opposite. Before I give you a few super-cool ideas of how to inspire your inner artist with paint, brushes, on different surfaces and with different media, I would love to share these facts with you.

Fact N 1. The architecture of the brain

The brain is the most complex organ in our body. It is responsible not only for all human organs and functions of the body, but also for our minds and souls. Even though it is so complex, the functions of the brain can be explained simply by dividing it into two halves, left and right.

In general, the left part of the brain controls speech, comprehension, arithmetic, and writing. The right part of the brain controls creativity, spatial ability, artistic, and musical skills. The left part of the brain is dominant in hand use and language in about 92% of people.

We all have left and right sides of our brains, right? Therefore, we are all creative by default. The only thing which sets apart creative from “non-creative” people is that the “non-creative” ones simply neglect the right side of their brains by not doing any activities to develop their strengths.

Fact N 2. We can learn to be creative

The brain is not a muscle. However, we can train our brains pretty much the same way we train our muscles. Repetitive activities which use the right side of the brain will help us to expand our brains and eventually become more creative.

The best part is, the more we practice, the more creative we become.

Fact N 3. Creativity and limits

We don’t need to be creative only when we do something like painting or crafting. Creativity is important in our everyday lives because we often have to “think outside the box” to solve a problem or to make an important decision.

The more artwork you do, the more experienced your creativity becomes, so when you need it, it will be a lot more productive. However, you can’t do some creative activities, and in a month or two just say, “OK, I am already creative enough, so I can stop now.”

I don’t want to break your heart, but the ugly truth is, we can never can be creative enough. Every new painting, every new craft project will challenge your creativity over and over again. This means that being creative will never get easier. It’s an ongoing process. https://thenextweb.com/news/11-brutal-truths-about-creativity-that-no-one-wants-to-talk-about 

Now, there are many more facts about creativity, but I found those three the most exciting and motivating, as an argument to inspire someone to roll up their sleeves, grab their paintbrushes and canvas, and start creating beautiful paintings.

Let’s move on to the main part of this post: 5 awesome ideas for how to use paintbrushes to be creative with different media and surfaces. The most well-known media are acrylics, watercolours and oil paints. I will start with these.

Painting with acrylics on a different surface

Acrylic paints are the perfect medium for beginning artists, as they do not require any special techniques and materials. You basically need acrylic paints, brushes and a standard surface, a canvas.

 

Acrylics are based on a material called “polymer,” which is plastic. This paint dries quickly and seals to the surface. This means that as soon as it is dry you can paint over it again. This is the reason this medium is brilliant for Paint & Sip parties, as it’s quite forgiving of any mistakes. One of the things you may not know about this medium is that you can paint with acrylics on pretty much every surface: canvas, wood, stone, or glass.

 

You can come to our events regularly and paint different beautiful paintings, but you also can try to do some home-based projects by yourself, using the techniques we will teach you during our workshops.

Painting with acrylic in watercolour techniques

Watercolour is a specific medium that requires a bit more practise and skills. Watercolour is a medium that does not seal. That makes it a bit difficult for beginners or people without painting experience. 

 

However, mixing acrylic paint with a little bit more water will develop the same effect. To create your watercolour masterpiece, you will need watercolour paper instead of canvas, and a primer to cover the canvas before you start painting. For this technique, you don’t need a lot of paint as you are going to mix the paint with a lot of water. The best subjects to paint are: under the sea, galaxy, abstracts or flowers.

Acrylic pouring

Another wonderful way of using acrylic paints that is very popular at the moment is acrylic pouring. What is great about this technique is that every single painting is a one-of-a-kind masterpiece that cannot be replicated.

The painting itself looks very much like marble and during the creative process you can add metallic colours like gold or silver, and you can add a little bit of glitter and so on.

 

You will need either ready-to-use acrylic paint for pouring or you can mix any acrylic paints with “Pouring fluid” in a ratio of 50/50. You need a surface to pour on like canvas, wooden board or anything else you’d like. Remember, this is still an acrylic medium, so you can use it on almost any surface.

 

There are quite a few interesting techniques, but if you are a beginner, start with “dirty pouring” or “puddle pouring.” Both techniques are for beginners.

For dirty pouring, you have to mix all paints in one cup, pour over the canvas and move the canvas to create your own piece.

For puddle pouring, you need to mix the colours on the canvas before you start moving the canvas.

 

Both techniques are super fun and the results are incredibly beautiful.

Painting with wine

I LOVE wine, so when I discovered this wonderful technique I was stunned by how amazing things can be done with only wine and paintbrushes.

There is one incredible artist, Marina Ren Taotao have a look at what she does with wine. 

 

I am a massive wine lover, so I can tell you that painting with wine is a super enjoyable and interesting experience.

 

In Merriment Atelier, we have a few workshops with painting with wine- a virtual workshop, a painting with wine in-person private parties and team bonding workshops in combination with wine tasting.

 

If you’d like to give it a try, check out our virtual workshops or request a private party.

 

Trying to paint with wine at home can be fun too. What you need to know is that different wines give different colours, so if you want to experiment you may want to try to paint with merlot, cabaret or rioja for lighter shades, and I use Malbec or pinot noir for darker shades.

Sometimes, depending on the project, I reduce the wine, so I can get even darker colours, or add some wine dye to get the same effect.

Painting with wine is like monochrome painting. The good thing is you can build the colour and make it more intense. For this technique, you have to use primarily watercolour painting techniques – wet on wet or wet on dry.

Painting with coffee

I love coffee as much as I love wine, so discovering that coffee can be a medium to paint was also an amazing experience for me. We have the same workshops with coffee as with wine.

However, painting with coffee requires different techniques. The coffee has more intensity and darker colour, especially if you are using an instant coffee over a brewed one.

 

If you’d like to try it at home, use instant coffee to start with. This will give you more bold and intense shades. Once you master the techniques with instant coffee you can experiment with americano, espresso and brewed coffee. The same as with the wine, the different ways of preparing the coffee will give you different shades.

 

To make different shades of coffee minimum, you just need to mix one teaspoon of coffee with a small amount of water, another one with a medium amount of water and one more with more water. You easily can create a lot more shades by experimenting with the quantity of water you add to the coffee.

Painting with tea

Another organic medium to paint with is tea. Various teas both loose and in bags produce not only different shades but also colours.

 

Unlikely wine and coffee, tea can give you some more creative options.

 

Like coffee, the more you brew the tea, the more intense the colour becomes. As a basic, you can use English breakfast, particularly Tetley and Yorkshire teas, for achieving red and orange-brown tones. South African Rooibos tea will give you a bit more reddish colours. Macha will give you a nice green colour, but green tea itself will turn a bit more brown.

Herbal teas are lighter and they then fade quite quickly, so don’t expect them to offer you intense colours.

 

Definitely try as many different teas as you can so you can explore many different options.

 

One more thing: surprisingly, the tea changes colour if you add a little bit of alcohol to it, such as brandy, rum or whiskey.

 

My favourite thing about the last three mediums is that you can sip and paint with the same material; isn’t that wonderful?

Final thoughts

To be creative is easy, but can feel a bit scary at the beginning. The reason is that for many years we keep repeating to ourselves – I am not creative, I have two left hands when it comes to painting, I cannot do this. 

But as Kurt Vonnegut once said “To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it.” 

So, tell me which one of those painting ideas you like the most?

Leave me a comment below and share it with me.

Warm hugs,

Mariella

Autumn bucket list

Autumn bucket list

I don’t know about you but I love autumn. It may sound a bit weird, but the reason I love this season so much is ‘cos there are so many things that make me feel cosy and with a romantic spirit.

 

Officially, autumn isn’t here yet, but realistically we all start to have a feel of autumn right around when September starts.

 

So this year, we have a lovely paint-and-sip workshop with a lovely “Autumn bucket list” painting. The great thing about this painting is that everyone can customise it as they wish.

 

Here’s what I’m going to have on my Autumn bucket list:

Photo session in the park

The colours of the leaves in the autumn are stunning. From bright yellow to dark burgundy and brown.

 

A photo session in the park is always a great idea, something like our new painting.

 

I live next to Bushy Park and I can have some lovely deer at the back of my photos.

Pumpkin pie

Cooking is my thing. I’ve been cooking since I was a teenager, but one thing I’ve never baked is pumpkin pie. In Bulgaria, we have something called “Tikvenik” which is basically a pastry with pumpkin puree filling, but I’ve never tried to make a classic pumpkin pie.

So this one definitely goes on my bucket list.

 

HERE is the recipe for the traditional pumpkin pie I am planning to try. 

Jack-o’-Lanterns

Speaking about Halloween, this is another thing I’ve never tried to do – to carve a pumpkin.

 

I remember as a kid, we loved to make lanterns from watermelon, but pumpkins – never. I’ll try it for sure.

Halloween makeup

Halloween is something I haven’t celebrated. It wasn’t popular in my country so I never had a chance to have a Halloween costume or to have scary makeup like blood dripping from my eyes, or a hole in my head, lol.

 

Well, I want to give it a try this year. I think it will be fun.

Pumpkin decoration

I never miss decorating the house for Christmas, but for some reason, I barely have decorations for the autumn.

 

So this year, I will make a themed decoration, “Pumpkins”.

 

One of the things I’m going to do is a painting with pumpkins. I love the idea of making something instead of buying it.

Spiced pumpkin popcorn & romantic movie night

Popcorn is my favourite snack when watching movies, but in autumn it’s so lovely to wrap up myself with a warm blanket, get a big ball of pumpkin-spiced popcorn and watch a romantic movie.

 

Well, I haven’t done this for a long time, so this season is the right time.

Acrylic autumn painting

Painting makes me happy.

I feel joy and peace and so much more. I love mixing colour, I love the creamy texture of the acrylic paint and most importantly I love how my painting makes me feel at the end. 

It is so satisfying to see the complete painting hang on my wall. 

So, the painting I will do for sure will be “Happy fall y’all”. 

 

What are you going to paint this month?

DIY Autumn wreath

The door wreaths are a wonderful decoration for the Christmas festive season, but I have seen such beautiful and cute autumn wreaths too.

 

So, what I want to do this autumn is to make my own door wreath as a part of my season-themed decoration at home.

Final thoughts

This is my very realistic and easy-to-do bucket list. I don’t want to promise myself something I can’t make. I will start with painting my bucket list, so I can have this as a checklist on the wall. Then, I will do everything one by one. Woo hoo, I am getting excited!

 

What are you going to include in your bucket list?

 

Why don’t you come and paint with us during the “Autumn Bucket List” painting and get inspired?

 

Check our event calendar for upcoming event dates HERE. 

 

Lots of love,

Mariella & Ania

5 ideas for non-alcoholic Paint & Sip Party

5 ideas for non-alcoholic Paint & Sip Party

Paint-and-wine or paint-and-sip parties were invented with an alcoholic drink in mind (you can read the story HERE). However, this is no longer the case. Paint-and-sip parties can be with non-alcoholic drinks, coffee, tea or even shakes for children’s parties.

As a professional wedding and party planner, I always have to think about the guests who don’t drink. Sometimes, the non-alcoholic options can be boring, but not for me. I love matching non-alcoholic drinks to the theme of the party as much as alcoholic options. In fact, there are many interesting and yummy options for non-drinkers.

I made a selection of my favourites, but of course, you can use anything else you wish and think will be a suitable choice for your paint-and-sip party.

Here are 5 ideas for alcohol-free drinks for your next paint party:

Gourmet coffee

I am starting with coffee as this is my favourite drink. I start my day with a cup of hot coffee with a dash of cinnamon. I recently started using cinnamon in my morning coffee and I love it.

 

Gourmet coffee is a fantastic option for an afternoon party, a me-and-mama painting party or event, or a mum’s-day-out party. In fact, some of the recipes for this type of goodness in a mug are truly wonderful for a themed paint party.

 

For example, coconut mocha frappe is lovely while painting palms or a beach, while a homemade pumpkin spice latte can be the perfect cause for painting pumpkins in early autumn or Halloween. Any options for iced coffee are wonderful for a summer paint party.

Afternoon tea

This is a lovely British tradition. Having afternoon tea has always been something special to me. The great part about it is we can have savoury and sweet little things like sandwiches, scones, teacakes and buns, biscuits and different jams.

I love offering afternoon tea with paintings such as an English garden, roses or even a summer field with wildflowers.

There are plenty of ideas when it comes to what to serve at an afternoon tea paint party, so that one is very easy to plan.

Lemonade

As we know, the original fruit you can do lemonade with is…lemons, yay. However, lemonade can have many other fruity flavours like mango, peach, strawberry, watermelon and so on.

The best thing about lemonades is that they are full of vitamins and they are great for children as well. They can be vegan, definitely gluten-free and even a little bit fizzy if you use sparkling water.

Lemonades are a great drink choice for all summer-style painting, but in particular, are good for painting things like ice cream, fruits, cupcakes as well as animal paintings.

Lemonades are also quite suitable drinks for a picnic paint party.

Milkshakes

As a child, I loved having a milkshake with a couple of scoops of ice cream. My favourites were vanilla and strawberry until I discovered banana and chocolate flavours . I think a milkshake is one of those drinks that always bring lovely happy memories. Having a selection of milkshakes for your paint party can be a fabulous idea.

 

The same as lemonades, shakes are perfect for a summer paint party, alfresco or in the backyard. Of course, paintings like ice cream and cupcakes are great, but also any beach paintings or sunsets.

Mocktails

These are the preferred option for late afternoon paint parties for adults, but I always have one or two options for late paint parties as well. The beauty of mocktails is they still have these lovely cocktail look with colours, decorations, maybe a small umbrella or cherry, but unlike alcoholic cocktails, you can have an unlimited amount of these ones.

You also can use them to complement the theme of your paint party in colours and taste.

Final thoughts

Planning a paint party is always fun. Of course, like any other party, there are many details to think about, but still, you don’t need to make things very complicated. So, once you know the painting you will be using, then brainstorm and think about what the best match will be in terms of decoration, food and drinks which will make the experience even more special.

Always think about the drinks and dietary requirements of your guests.

If you need a little help with planning your next paint party you can get our free paint party checklist HERE or if you need a bit more in-depth help you may want to get the complete paint party planner HERE.

Don’t forget that we actually are masters of planning unforgettable parties. We can do everything for you and you just can be a guest at your own paint party. 

Just send us an enquiry HERE. 

Thanks for reading. I’d love to know what is your favourite non-alcoholic option for a paint & sip party? Let me in the comments below.  

 

Warm hugs from me,

Mariella  

7 great ideas for team building activities and corporate events

7 great ideas for team building activities and corporate events

What are the best team building activities for work? 

 

More than ever, coworkers need activities to bond and unite their teams. The pandemic forced us to work from home, and now going back to the office can be really stressful for some people. We just got used to working in Zoom suits from the comfort of our homes, and now suddenly we have to start dealing with rush hour again, running to catch the train and spending the whole day in the office.

 

What can you do to make team members more relaxed and comfortable with going back to the office? There are a few great team-building ideas that are great for the office, which will make team members happy to be back, motivate them, and inspire their reunions.

 

There are a few different ways to build teams:

 

– Active classes where all team members go outside and do something together, such as games, competitions and so on.

– Intellectual activities, such as games or mysteries, where they all have to brainstorm and find a solution or solve a mystery.

– Activities where everybody does something individually but together with all the other colleagues: this would be all creative workshops and activities that allow each member to express their own personality, allowing the team members to get to know each other better.

 

For activities to welcome people back to the office, I think it would be best to do the third one. Here are a few great ideas for how to make your team happier when they are back in the office:

Cocktail-making workshop

Who doesn’t like cocktails, right? A cocktail-making class can be a great way to have some fun at the office. Make the class even more exciting by asking each member to create their own signature cocktail with their favourite spirits. 

 

Of course, you will need a professional barman to teach them how to mix the ingredients.

Flower-arranging or wreath-making class

Arranging flowers and making wreaths are very rewarding activities. Most people love flowers, but not many can arrange them.

This workshop will bring fresh and beautiful flowers into your office that will last for at least a week.

Wine Tasting and Wine Painting Class

Wine tasting activity is perfect for teams where most people appreciate wine. Add a little bit of creativity to this activity by having a short and sweet paint with a red wine class. Yes, you can paint with wine and in fact, it’s a super lovely experience.

The workshop with a few different red wines is great, because different wines have different colours. For example, merlot has a bit more pink shade, pinot noir has a bright burgundy shade and malbec has a darker colour.

 

We had quite a few workshops like this one and all our guests loved it.

Perfume Making Class Team Activity

Senses evoke memories and different senses bring different feelings. The perfume making class is a wonderful way to educate the team about their senses and learn more about creating personalised fragrances.

Paint & Sip Team Building Party

Painting is proven to be a relaxing and calming experience. Not only that, painting is a creative process. Creativity makes people feel happier and inspired. Our paint & sip office parties are designed as an experience that can be personalised to your company.

 

You can choose from individual painting or team masterpiece creating activities.

 

Download our Team building experience brochure here.

A Comedy Workshop

Make them laugh with tears. The comedy team building is so much fun as a comedian will lead the party and teach the team members how to make funny jokes.

 

Then the team members will make their own comedy show.

 

How cool is that?

Balloon Making Class Team Building

Balloons are not only for children’s parties. They are great entertainment for adults too.

 

A professional balloon instructor will show your team, step by step, how to create different things and shapes, even a self-portrait with balloons.

 

This is super fun and enjoyable activity.

How can you decide what activity will be the best for your team?

All of the above team building ideas are brilliant for office bonding activities. However, there are a few tips I can give you so you can pick the best one.

~ Space – Make sure that you have enough space at the office for the activity you want to do. For example, you wouldn’t need a lot of space for a Paint and Sip party, because the team members can have the easels on their desks. However, for a flower-arranging course or cocktail-making class, you would need to have a bit more space, and some additional equipment, like scissors and knives for the flowers, or a fridge for the ice and some cocktail glasses.

~ Male to female ratio – Consider if you have more males or females on the team. Some events are great for the ladies, some are more for the guys, and others are unisex activities.

~ The number of team members – This is also quite important, as some activities might not be easy for a large team. For example, wine tastings, Paint and Sip parties, or balloon-making classes would be very suitable for either small or large groups, while perfume-making or comedy workshops would be better as team-building activities for a small group.

~ Ages – The ages of the group members are not really that important. But still, you can take the average age of the team members into consideration.

~ Day and time – It’s important to think about the day and time of an office party, especially if you are having a wine tasting or making cocktails. You wouldn’t have this kind of party in the middle of the week, or during working hours. However, flower-arranging classes or Paint and Sip parties are great at any time of the day. “Sip” need not necessarily mean alcoholic drinks; there could be coffee, tea, soft drinks or mocktails.

Final thoughts

Team-bonding activities are something that can be considered to have on a regular basis. I’m not leaving people to go to the pub after work. Organise something on a regular basis, so team members can have fun, enjoy some time with their coworkers, and most importantly, get to know each other outside of doing tasks for work.

 

The above activities are not intense and do not require a lot of active work, which is great, especially after the long lockdown period. They will make the transaction from home to back to the office smooth and relaxed.

 

So which one of those team office activities is your favourite?

 

Don’t forget to download our team building brochure and find out how we can make a wonderful paint party at your office.

Recommend your company for paint party team building and get a £50 reward if they book with us. Just send us an email to the right person at your company on hello@merrimentatelier.com 
with the Subject: Company recommendation.

How to plan a picnic paint & sip party?

How to plan picnic paint & sip party?

Having a paint party as an al fresco experience is a great way to spend some quality time with friends and family. Still, it’s summer and we’re still enjoying the lovely sunny days.

 

A picnic is one of my favourite things to do with my family and for me, prepping for a picnic is as fun as the picnic itself. However, having some activities during the picnic makes this happy event even more exciting.

 

If you’re looking for ideas for what activities you can do during a picnic, here’s one lovely for you – a paint party. A picnic paint party is a great thing to do if you want to sit on your blanket, have some nice food and drinks, and at the same time do something fun and enjoyable.

 

So, if you want to plan something like this, keep reading as in this blog post, I’ll give you my pro tips on how to plan the perfect picnic paint-and-sip party. And if you read the post to the end, there’s a gift for you too.

 

I always advise everything to start with choosing the painting design. That is why first

Choose the painting

Start with the style of painting you want to paint, as this can set the whole theme of the party – food & drinks, colours of the napkins and others. For example, if you want to paint one of our bestsellers, “Juicy lemons from Sorrento”, the picnic can have an Italian influence. If you decide to paint a bit more Caribbean style, like “Pinkie pop flamingo” or “Summer paradise”, you’ll have a bit more of a tropical or Latino influence.

Painting materials

~ Easels & Canvas

Seating on a blanket and painting needs a bit more preparation. If you have easels with telescopic legs, it’ll be perfect as everyone will be able to set the level of their easel. In this case, you can use a normal stretch canvas. However, if you don’t have easels, the best thing would be to use a canvas board. Your guests will be able to place it on the blanket or their laps.

 

I recommend smaller canvas sizes like A4, but you can have any sizes you wish. Don’t go bigger than A3 though because it might be difficult for people to paint holding the canvas on their laps.

~ Paints

Acrylics are the easiest medium to paint with, however, they dry relatively quickly, especially outside and if the weather’s hot. You’ll need something to mix the paint, so they don’t dry that quickly. 

 

The best thing is to get a bottle of slow drying medium. Your guests will need to mix just a little bit from this medium with their paints and everything will be perfect.

~ Water containers

Consider a bigger container for water to rinse the brushes. It’ll be more convenient and will last for the entire paint party. You can use either a big plastic container or kids’ sand buckets.

~ Tablecloth

Plastic tablecloths cut into small-size pieces would be a great option to protect the blankets. Measure the size you think will be appropriate and cut the tablecloths into the number of guests you’ll have.

~ Aprons

You may want to have some aprons as well. Disposable biodegradable aprons are perfect for a picnic. 

Instructions on how to paint the painting

The best way to make this more relaxed and fun is to give each guest printed instructions, so they can follow the steps and paint at their own pace.

 

If you like to be a bit more organised, you could do the painting before the event and learn the steps, so you can show your guests how to paint.

Food & Drinks

As I mentioned at the beginning, to plan an interesting and different picnic party, you can use the painting as a starting point of your ideas for the style and food & drinks.

 

I’ll leave the creative part of choosing what to serve your guests; however, there are a few tips I want to give you because I think this will make the experience even better.

~ Make a separate package for each guest

It would be lovely if you could make individual packages for each guest. You can use food boxes or paper bags. I personally think the boxes are more elegant, but in some cases, the bags can be more convenient. Individual packaging is a great idea for a few reasons:

 

  • If you have guests with dietary requirements or food allergies. Saying that, you should ask your guests in advance if they have any preferences.
  • Individual packages are a more hygienic and healthy safe option as everyone will open the food they want to have at the time they want to have it, which means not everything will be open.
  • You can personalise the packages with the name of your guests. This is a little touch that will make them feel special. Wrap the food in paper napkins or foil, and tie them with colourful cords or tin ribbons and add little tags with their names.

~ Platters

If you don’t have the time to pack individual meals or if you prefer your picnic party to be more like sharing a food experience, you can make platters with some nibbles.

 

You can use a big paper plate or if you want to have a more interesting presentation, you could get one or two big wooden paint palettes and use them as serving boards.

 

Arrange the food before the party and wrap it up in cling film. If there are any sauces or dips, you can use jars with lids.

 

There are cool ideas on Pinterest. Just search for “picnic food ideas” and you’ll find tons of inspiration.

~ Plan to have savoury food and desserts

It would be fantastic if you could have both options. The desserts don’t have to be anything complicated. You could even have some biscuits or chocolate, but it’s always nice to have a dessert option for your sweet-tooth guests.

~ Drinks options

People often think that a paint-and-sip party is related to alcoholic drinks only, but this is not the case at all. You can sip anything from coffee or tea to homemade lemonade or fruit-infused water.

 

Of course, wine and Prosecco are the classic drinks for paint-and-sip parties and they are wonderful options for a picnic. However, you can also have a craft beer or flavour-infused gin.

 

It’s important to think about different options as not everyone will want to drink alcohol.

 

When you get your drinks ready, don’t forget to also take just pure mineral water. Always keep your guests hydrated.

 

Serving drinks is also an important part of the picnic. You’ll need a cooler bag to keep them cold. If you have two bags, fill one with the drinks and the second one with ice if you’d like to have an option for your guests to add some ice to their drinks.

 

If you need to use both bags for drinks, stick the ice bags around the bottles.

Additional things you might need

~ Napkins

Napkins for the food and for the brushes. So get extra to make sure they will be enough. Make sure you get them in colours matching the theme of the party.

~ Baby wipes

Wet disinfectant napkins or baby wipes are great for picnics, especially if you’re having a paint party.

~ Picnic cutlery

Some cutlery if you have food on shared boards, sauces or dips. If all your food is prepacked you may not need cutlery. So, it depends on your menu.

~ Eco paper straws

Straws are always a good idea if you have soft drinks in bottles. They can replace the need for cups or glasses. Also, if you have cups with covers (like the takeaway Coca-Cola cups) which, in my opinion, are the best option, you will definitely need them. They are also a lovely part of the theme setting.

~ Blankets

Of course for a picnic, you’ll need baskets; however, you could ask your guests to bring their own if you know that they all have them. If not, you can buy some. Depending on the size, you might need 2-4 blankets if they fit 4 to 6 people.

Of course, the number of your guests will make this decision easy.

~ Pillows

If you can bring some pillows, it would be awesome. Pillows always make the picnic look special and cosy. Sitting on a pillow will also improve your guest’s experience.

~ Music

Pre-select appropriate songs and have them ready on your phone. I normally use Spotify but you may have other applications. For a small picnic party, like 10-15 people, you can easily use your phone to play music. Just make sure you have portable chargers for your battery to last.

~Rubbish bags

Take 2-3 rubbish bags with you as this will make your cleaning after the picnic super easy.

~ 2* 1 ½ litre bottles of tap water

You’ll need water for the water containers, so one of the bottles will be for that, and you’ll need one bottle of water for a quick wash after the paint party. You won’t be able to clean your brushes perfectly but you can try to get the most of the paint out. Make sure you clean them as soon as you get back home as they may get damaged if the paint dries on them.

~ Plastic zip bag for the dirty brushes

After you rinse the brushes with water, put them in a zip bag, so they won’t colour something else. This also will keep them moist and will prevent paint from drying on them.

~ Box or separate bag for the paints

Make sure that your paints are separate from other things, especially the food. I recommend boxes for them just because they normally come in tubes that can be easily squashed, but if you have room for a separate bag, this works perfectly well too.

Final thoughts

Before you realise, summer will be gone.

It’s already August and there aren’t many sunny and warm days left. Don’t miss out on them – plan an alfresco party with a twist.

A picnic paint party will be something exciting and different, and all your friends and family members will love it. To help you plan everything in detail and for you to be the perfect picnic paint party host, I created a picnic paint-and-sip party checklist for you. It’s free and you can grab it HERE.

Happy planning & painting!

Lot’s of love, Mariella

What is a paint and sip party?

What is a paint and sip party?

We just reopened here in the UK and I got my first invitation for a networking event. This made me super excited as I finally got a chance to go out there and to talk to people about my new adventure – stylish paint and sip parties. 

 

The event was a warm-up meeting before the big event in September which is called “The Christmas event show”. I very much looked forward to attending this event, not only because I am a massive Christmas lover, but also I want to meet other service providers and venues which will be happy to collaborate with me. 

 

A bit of background about my networking skill, though, I am not good at approaching people and starting a conversation. But at the same time, I like talking to people. Yes I know it’s a bit weird, but it is what is. I decided to be a bit tactical. I sat at a big table (there were not many big ones) and because there were a few seats available, every now and then people have approached me and asked if they can sit down. Yes, this was my networking “hook”. Of course, the seats were available, as I was alone. As soon as they sat at the table, starting a conversation with them was not difficult at all. 

 

I met a number of very interesting people at this event. 

 

As you know, when you meet someone for the first time, people normally ask – “what do you do?” 

 

And of course, I quickly responded – I am a planner of stylish paint & sip events, people come to my events to have lots of fun, have a few drinks and paint something beautiful. 

 

But what I noticed was, many people actually don’t know what a paint & sip party is, some had never heard of this type of party. In fact, people not only don’t know what these events are all about, but they also don’t know the real benefits of painting and being creative in a relaxed and happy environment. 

 

So I decided today to crack open this topic and to explain in detail what paint and sip events are and what makes them a unique experience every time you attend them. But let me start first with a little bit of history. 

How Paint & Sip parties were born?

Everything started in 2002 at a studio outside Birmingham, Alabama USA. A young lady, Wendy Lovol, quit her job at the age of 28th to follow her passion to teach children and adults how to paint. She opened a studio and started giving painting lessons. But what she noted was that the adults are slower painters than the children. The adults tend to spend a lot more time thinking about how to complete the process. They are more uncertain and doubting their painting and creative abilities. 

 

To ensure that all her adult students also manage to complete their paintings by the end of the class and at the same time enjoy the process, Wendy encouraged them to bring some drinks with them at the studio and she also limited the class to two works. 

What she explained in an interview on APNews:

“When you give an adult time, we overanalyze and overthink everything. When you give them that time restraint, they can create anything. They just have to get outside of themselves, and you do that when you move fast. You shut down that anal side of your brain and your creative side opens up.”

Wendy Lovol

Inspiring story. I always want to know how a successful business started.  

Now, the big question:

What is a paint & sip party all about?

By now, you should already know that a Paint & Sip party is actually an informal art class where, without the pressure of fine art lessons, people without any painting experience can paint a painting from start to finish. To make the experience even more relaxed, the guests can have a glass or two of good wine, Prosecco, a cocktail or any non-alcoholic beverage.

Many people “believe” that they are not creative. I often hear people say, “I can be sipping very successfully without embarrassing myself and trying to paint something. I have never painted in my life… maybe as a kid at school, but this is different.”

I was one of those “believers” before I tried to paint. True story. But then, I not only fell in love with painting, I even started a business, as I wanted to spread happiness and help as many people possible discover painting as a new way to meditate and connect with their inner selves.

What you should know about the influence of painting on your brain and mental health:

~ It will help you to be more confident

Self doubt is one of the major reasons for people not being confident. Here, I can raise my hand too. Every now and then I think I cannot do something because I am not good at this or that. It was the same with painting.

 

But when I completed my first painting, I looked at it, and I said to myself, “Mariella, you can paint!” My painting was lovely, and this made me realize that it was not a lack of talent, but a lack of confidence that made me think that I was not good at painting.

~ It will help you to be present

Many people struggle to be present when they are thinking about a lot of things at the same time. Well, painting requires concentration, as you need to mix colours, you need to create shapes, and so on. This form of unforced concentration will help you to discover the benefit of being present.

~ Painting will teach you to focus on one, and only one thing

In addition to being present, you also will discover that you are focused on only one thing. Multitasking is the king of unsuccess, but many of us quite often do a few things at a time. With painting, you can only do one thing and you should be focused if you want it to look lovely at the end.


This is also the reason why painting is considered a new way of meditation. Focusing on one thing helps you stop thinking about something else. It’s very relaxing indeed.

~ You will learn to appreciate the colours of Mother Nature

In general, the main colours are only three – red, blue and yellow. From these three colours, you can create all other existing colours on earth. The only exception is the colour white.

I like colours, especially of flowers. The sea world has always been fascinating to me, but when I started painting, I started looking deeper into how Mother Nature has mixed and matched all these wonderful colour palettes in different places in the world.

In the water, in the sky, in the forest or on the beach. The beauty of the sunset, the monochrome colour of the storm and so on.

I started seeing the colours more clearly and more saturated. You’ll discover this too.

~ Painting will teach you to be patient

I don’t know about you, but when I want something, sometimes I get a bit impatient. But with painting, you can’t speed up some of the processes. Even if you use a blow dryer to dry your painting between the steps, still the process of painting follows some steps. If you skip even one, the painting may not look as you want.

The other problem with not being patient is when you look at the painting in the middle of the process and say to yourself, “Ah, looks awful”.

This is the wrong approach.

With painting, we need to be patient because we can only see the beauty of our work once it’s complete. That’s why I always say to our guests not to judge their painting before adding the highlights.

~ Painting will help you feel good and appreciate yourself

As much as paint-and-sip parties are social events, when you paint, it’s just you and the canvas. If you attend one of our events your experience comes with decorations themed around the painting, appropriate music, a drink that complements the painting, and recommended snacks. We create a happy environment where you can enjoy activities combining fun and creativity, with no pressure on you.

 

That is what makes our guests feel relaxed and gets all of the creative juices flowing.

 

We teach our guests to explore their own creative approach and to paint whatever they want, however they want.
This approach helps people to try different things and to discover their hidden talent. Finding how well you can do something that you have never done before makes you appreciate yourself a lot more.

Final thoughts

Sip and paint parties are wonderful activities for spending some quality time with family and friends, but it is also a fantastic way to give yourself a break from your busy daily life. Painting changes the way we see colours and appreciate art, but also make us feel happier.

 

So, if you have never tried a sip and paint party, go to our TIMETABLE, choose a workshop and join us for the next paint party. 

With love,

Mariella

Happiness, creativity and paint & sip at home experience

Happiness, creativity and paint & sip at home experience

It’s a lockdown, it’s cold, and it has even been snowing, something unusual for London. It does not look like anything is going to change soon. Well, it’s true, but let’s look at the positive side.

– We have more time to stay at home and be with our family,

– to catch up with friends living overseas at Zoom/Skype/Teams. 

– or to watch NETFLIX.

– We even have more time to learn something new or to get to those DIY projects at home. 

 

Talking about learning something new, let me tell you a few scientific facts about happiness, creativity and paint and sip at-home experiences. 

What makes people happy?

So, the scientists of Positive Psychology have been researching for years what makes people happy. In a study from 2009 “Achieving sustainable new happiness: prospects, practices, and prescriptions”, Kennon M. Sheldon and Sonja Lyubomirsky determined three primary factors influencing the chronicle happiness level:

– Life circumstances -10% 

– Set point – 50% 

– Intentional activities – 40% 

 

What they found is that the set point is generally determined and essentially constant, and it has a 50% influence on the overall chronic happiness level. 

 

The life circumstances take 10% and they refer to demographic variables such as age, marital status, employment, religion and so on. Those are the factors which mainly state stable influences and they are part of our background. 

 

In other words, the set point and the life circumstances are something we barely can change. 

 

Then there are intentional activities, which contribute to our happiness with 40%. 

 

The intentional activity is a cognitive decision we take to do something regularly like exercises, practising meditation, eating healthy and so on. 

 

The intentional activities have the potential to create sustainable positive change because of their dynamic and varying nature, and because of their capacity to produce a steady positive and rich experience. 

 

The intentional activities are the only thing we can control, which means that 40% of our happiness and wellbeing is in our hands and we can make a difference in our life as soon as we decide to do so.

“Your happiness can be a gift to others”

In his article “Your happiness can be a gift to others” Professor Neil Frude form The University of South Wales wrote, “Doing whatever you can to make yourself happy can be a powerful act of kindness towards the people around you, your family and friends and, in your work context, your colleagues, patients, pupils or customers”.

 

According to many pieces of research, there are 5 factors which easily can increase the level of our happiness and make a massive impact on our wellbeing. They are:

  1. To be active
  2. To give and to volunteer 
  3. To keep learning 
  4. To take notice and live in the present, and
  5. To connect with others. 

As you may see, there is a correlation between those two, completely different articles. In both, it states that by doing and learning something new we can increase your happiness, wellbeing, and longevity. Even more so, our happiness directly affects and benefits the people we love and care about. 

 

You probably heard this before that painting will increase your creativity, but did you know that the creative process of painting will contribute to our mental health, happiness, and personal satisfaction?  

 

Ok, let me tell you how this is happening. 

 

There are a few steps to plan your sip and paint at home experience. I call these steps mini “happy moments” because in each planning level you deal with different, exciting things.

 

Here there are:

1. Taking the decision that you’d like to try to paint with acrylic.

Just by deciding to do something new you will make yourself feel happier. Not only that, but during the time you browse on the internet to choose a picture you want to paint, you will extend this feeling for longer. Choosing a painting or event to attend is a fun process. You may want to pick something you like to paint, but also want to hang on the wall at home. 

2. Choosing the type of experience.

Currently, there are no live events available due to Pandemic, however, there are plenty of options for virtual painting parties or ready to paint art kits. Both options are wonderful, but if you are wondering what the difference is, let me explain:

  • The virtual painting party is an interactive online event where you and other painters’ enthusiasts will be together in a virtual room, painting, sipping, and mingling. This option is fantastic if you like to spend some time with other people and to socialise from the comfort of your home. 
  • The second option is wonderful if you like to create some “Me” time or if you like to spend some quality time with someone else (family, friends, partners, etc).  For this experience, you can choose from different painting art kits. Once your art kit arrives, you are ready to start painting. 

But isn’t that difficult to paint at home without instructions?

 

I am glad you asked. 

 

It’s not difficult at all. You just need to select the right painting kit. Our painting art kits, for example, come with complimentary video tutorials, so if you like to watch and paint by following along with our professional artist, you can do so. 

 

You also have the option to challenge your creativity. Each kit has a flyer with a picture of the painting and detailed instructions of the step-by-step painting process. Once you read these, you can leave the flyer on the side and follow your instinct and artistic voice to lead your painting.   

3. Setting up for your home painting party and creating a ritual around it is like a happy-mood booster.

In one of our next blog posts, I will explain to you how to create your ritual of getting ready for the painting experience. This is a wonderful way to switch off from your daily routine, thoughts and habits and move your mind to a more relaxed and even spiritual state. 

 

The process of “setting up” is enjoyable as you need to select what drinks and snacks to compliment your experience, what music you are going to play to get those creative juices flowing, how are you going to arrange and decorate the table, and so on. 

 

Of course, if you are setting up a party only for yourself it won’t be a lot, but if you like to have a few more people with you, you may want to check our complete planner of “How to plan a painting party at home”.

 

There you have it, I am giving a lot of pro tips on how to plan a painting party and make a memorable experience. 

4. Mixing colours - this is where the fun part starts.

Many studies show that colours have a huge influence on creativity and even the fact that colours can improve brain performance. 

 

Let’s look at the primary colours – Blue , Red and Yellow

 

Blue is known as a creativity booster, red is a colour enhancing the attention to the detail and yellow is а happy and energetic colour. 

 

Now, by mixing only those three base colours you can achieve pretty much any other colour on earth. This is what makes mixing colours so existing. You need to add a little touch of blue to the red and you already have beautiful purple. Add some red to the yellow and will have a warm orange colour. 

 

The best part of mixing colours is that no one can tell you what colour you want to create and use in your painting, you get to choose and make your own colours.

 

This takes me to the next point.

5. While painting with acrylic, everything is in your control.

You are the artist and the boss of this canvas. Everything you paint comes from your heart and it’s made with your personality.

Being in control and painting the way you want, makes a little magic happen in your brain. This moment of knowing that you can do everything you want calms your mind, makes you feel happy and it’s a great self-esteem booster.

6. Paint at your own pace - another beauty of painting at home is that you can do it for as long as you wish.

Acrylic paints are fast drying mediums, which can be fixed with a few techniques. However, they also allow us to build layers, which means you can paint over and over until you reach the desired shape and colour. 

 

No pressure, no stress, and fun. 

 

That is what painting is. Comparing it to stress-relieving activities, it is also recommended to relieve anxiety and mental health issues.

7. Satisfaction with achievement.

Raise your hand if you think the same “I am not a creative person”, “I cannot paint, I have two left hands (if you are right-handed)”, “I have never done painting” and so on. Yes, I know, I used to say the same things to myself until I took the brushes and started painting. 

 

I am going to let you in on a secret, paint and sip parties are not a fine art class. You don’t need to follow any rules, or to master difficult techniques. The paint and sip parties are all about starting from a blank canvas and getting to a beautiful result. It’s all about having fun in the process by doing something creative.

 

A good artist instructor will show you easy techniques and will simplify the steps for you, so you can complete the painting with the most beautiful result. 

 

In the end, you will feel like you have been hiding a little Picasso and you will definitely want to have these experiences over and over again. 

8. Sipping & snacking something yummy.

Good food and drinks make the party special and certainly contribute to our happiness. Having a glass of delicious wine or bubbly prosecco, or other drink of choice, while you are painting can also help to break the ice with your self-doubt that you cannot paint. 

Something like the popular phrase “You can dance” signed by Vodka. 

However, alcohol is not mandatory so grab your drink of choice.

One of the ways to create an unforgettable experience is when you select your food & drinks which match the theme of the event or the party. In my e-planner “How to plan a painting party at home,” I give quite a few interesting ideas of what you can serve to your guests. This is extremely handy if you plan a party for more than 3 people. 

However, if you are planning a painting party only for yourself or with your partner or even with a couple of friends, the best option will be to choose one of our Painting Art Kits – here.

 

Final thoughts

Paint and sip at home is a different, exciting, and fun way to spend some quality time with friends and family. But it’s not only that, think about painting as a “self-made wellbeing retreat” for yourself. The new style of meditation or yoga for your soul. 

 

Having, every now and then, some “me” time it’s so important in our days. To take the pressure of non-stopping thoughts and uncertainty about the future. 

 

You easily can switch off and relax because your mind is focused on the painting. It’s a time off for your eyes too because you are not staring at the computer or phone screen. 

 

Painting makes you feel good and it does not require a lot of equipment and tools. A good painting art kit has everything and it’s perfect to buy all materials on one go. If you haven’t tried to paint and sip at home experience yet, now is the perfect time to do this. 

 

Because we love creating happiness, take a special treat from us – a 10% discount from your first order >>> Happypainting10<<<.

 

We can’t wait to see your amazing masterpiece. Tack a snap and tag us @merrimentatelier. 

 

If you are already following us on social media, you know that we have regular interesting mini-tutorials and posts about painting and planning parties. If you haven’t, please do so now here>>>. 

15 romantic decoration ideas for Valentine’s day

15 romantic decoration ideas for Valentine’s day

Decorating for a romantic dinner at home for Valentine’s Day is an important part of the experience. All you need is a nice, sexy dinner menu, delicious drinks and a handcrafted Valentine’s card with a sweet message in it. However, adding some lovely Valentine’s decorations will definitely make the evening extraordinarily special.

There are so many elements you can add to the table, in the room or even on the door. You can have a lot of fun by doing something by yourself like acrylic-painted Valentine’s cards. You can add a bit of a romantic touch by making and printing the dinner menu with a personal message >>> here’s a small tutorial for you <<< or DIY Valentine’s table decorations like paper napkin rings – download >>> here <<< the printable napkin ring.

To inspire you with more ideas and to make your Valentine’s table decoration easy, we’ve prepared a list for you with the romantic items you can order online. You don’t need to have all of them. Just choose the ones that will complete your romantic home setup.

The products below are linked to our amazon.co.uk/shop/metrimentatelier shop where we carefully select products we love and can genuinely recommend to our merry community. As we’re Amazon affiliate partners, we may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links. This doesn’t affect the price for you and will help you quickly and easily find and buy everything you need for Valentine’s Day decorations at home.

Here it is a list with inexpensive valentine decor ideas:

For the table

Tall candles

Tall candles look more sophisticated and elegant than the pillar ones.

 

They’re definitely the best choice for special occasions; however, any other candles like tea or floating ones will be good too. Whatever type you choose, avoid fragranced candles for the dining table. You can have them anywhere else in the room, but on the dining table, try to avoid smells that can change the taste of the food and drinks.

Plates in heart shape

Heart plates are a wonderful way to make the table look special and different than just a normal dinner.

 

The heart plates can be small ones just for the dessert or you can have the entire dinner served in different sizes of heart plates.

Red Napkins

If you don’t have heart plates, you can use red napkins.

 

This will give some colour to the table and will complement Valentine’s theme table setting.

Napkin rings with heart

Alternatively, you can have a napkin ring with a heart. To make it look even more romantic, add a little red flower. Check out the paper template we’ve prepared for you. You can buy a bit more expensive paper because you’ll only need one A4 sheet.

 

Print and cut the napkin rings and arrange them any way you like.

Table mat in red

Another lovely way to add a bit more red to the table can be a table mat.

 

Of course, you can choose a table mat in pink, dark pink, burgundy or any other shade you prefer.

 

This is really helpful if you don’t have suitable tablecloths.

Ribbons

You also can add some colour by dressing the chairs.

 

You can use either a big red ribbon or small ones.

 

Chairs with small accents on them always look lovely and make the table more attractive and special.

Food decoration

We mentioned at the beginning that your choice of the sexy menu can make a dinner date truly exciting.

 

You can achieve this with some decor details which can also be made by you.

 

For example, you can cut out different sizes and shades of red hearts and glue them to toothpicks. You can then decorate the desserts or any other course from the menu.

Heart confetti

Little sparkles on the table like heart confetti, for example, is one of those romantic elements that don’t cost a lot but contribute to the visual experience a lot.

 

Anything that will reflect the candlelights can be perfect.

Glasses with hearts

The same as the plates, glasses with hearts make a wonderful statement of “this is a very special dinner”.

 

We love these champagne flutes which can also be used for cocktails.

Cocktail sticks with hearts

Speaking of cocktails, sticks with hearts can be a lovely touch to decorate the glass.

If you’re a cocktail lover, you may want to check out our recommended cocktails for couples.

Centrepiece - vase with flowers

Flowers are what will make Valentine’s table decorations look expensive and luxurious.

 

A few small vases with only one flower in them could be a good inexpensive option. You can add extra elegance with a short vase with beautiful flowers in it.

Valentine’s Day room decorations

After getting everything ready on the table, you can look around and think about adding some romantic elements around the room.

 

Here some nice ideas:

Heart garlands

These garlands can be stuck to the wall behind or next to the table, and they will immediately transform the room.

 

Garlands provide a wonderful background if you like to share your romantic dinner with friends on social media.

Balloons

Balloons for Valentine’s Day are a bit like chocolates for this day. We like any kind of balloon, but this particular one is awesome because you have a whole set—the love sign, the heart balloons and the small red ones for the floor.

 

This will be a fantastic addition to your home and will be a fabulous way to transform the room.

Fairy lights

Fairy lights will make the room look magical and extra special.

 

You can’t go wrong with them. You can have as many lights as you wish. In fact, the more you have, the better!

 

They will turn the room into an extra special and romantic place.

Pillows

I don’t know about you, but cushions are one of those things we are pretty much addicted to.

 

Just a couple of cushions on the sofa or on the chairs where you will have your dinner will make such a cozy and homey feel.

 

A sweet Valentine cushion can be a wonderful gift as well.

Final thoughts

Decorating for Valentine’s Day at home is something we definitely recommend because this will make your experience unforgettable and remarkable, especially if you like to have a special theme for that evening and want to do some interesting things together.

Here are some pro-tips for you:

Start getting ready and organise everything for Valentine’s Day at least 2 weeks ahead.

Make a small plan and checklist with everything you will need for the dinner and the decoration.

Do the shopping for decorations as soon as possible. Don’t leave it until the last minute because you may not be able to find everything you need.

The food and drink shopping is good to be done 2-3 days before the date.

If you are not a big cook, there are fantastic options for romantic meals for two.

You can check out the M&S “Love is on the menu” dine-in menu with Fred Sirieix.

You could also try Sainsbury’s “No-pressure Valentine’s menu”. 

Or the Waitrose “Valentine’s meal ideas”, which have delicious ready-to-cook recipes. 

To complete this special evening with something really unique and memorable—get one of our amazing romantic painting kits. You can choose from painting beautiful white swans, a red rose or a contemporary heart with roses.

I guess you already have some awesome ideas for 14th February. Share with us—what are you planning to do?

Lots of love,

Mariella & Ania

5 best romantic cocktails for two for Valentine’s Day or romantic date night.

5 easy romantic cocktails for two for Valentine’s Day or romantic date night

We always want Valentine’s Day or a romantic date night to be something different and interesting, predisposing us to share a wonderful time with the person we love. As Paint and Sip in Style event planners, we care about all the details when it comes to a fantastic experience. One of the most important elements for any party or intimate date is a selection of good drinks, to complement the theme of the fete.

 

When we mention romantic drinks for Valentine’s Day, most people will say something with bubbles, like Champagne or Prosecco. That’s right, those are perfect for special occasions, but the truth is, not all guys like bubbly drinks. They tend to be the girls’ choice. What else can you serve on 14th February that both partners will enjoy equally? Maybe wine? Why not cocktails? Yay!

 

This is a fabulous choice and a great alternative to the classic Champagne or Prosecco. There are so many wonderful cocktails, and many of them can be a good match for a romantic date night or a Valentine’s Day painting party at home. I know some will say that not all guys like sweet cocktails either. It’s true. That’s why we selected cocktails where you can use the same main ingredients to prepare them, and then give it a twist for her. You can add flowery or fruity flavours for a feminine style of cocktail, or fix them up a bit more sour and smoky for a masculine flair.

 

To make it easier for you, we have selected cocktails which you can make right in the glass, so you won’t need a shaker. However, we recommend you use the same types of glasses and garnish for both cocktails.

Tom Collins

Traditional Tom Collins is made with Old Tom gin, however, any gin works just fine. 

Ingredients:

  • Gin
  • Lemon juice
  • Sugar syrup or honey 
  • Club soda 
  • Ice cubes 

Feminine twist:

  • Pink lemonade 
  • Strawberry essence 

Other fruity flavours or elderflower will go quite well as well.

Fill a highball glass with ice cubes, pour in 4 parts gin, 2 teaspoons of syrup or honey and two parts lemon juice. Stir and top up with soda. For the twist – add 2-3 drops of strawberry essence and top up with pink lemonade.

Garnish with a slice of lemon and strawberry.

Source: Food For Net

Black & White Russian

There are two versions of Black Russian, the classic one and White Russian which is considered milder and easier to drink.

Ingredients:

  • Vodka
  • Kahlua
  • Ice cubes

Feminine twist:

  • Heavy cream

In a low-ball glass add some ice, pour four parts vodka, two parts Kahlua and stir.

Add cream for a less intense taste and you will have a White Russian.

If you’d like to have a lighter version- the Black Russian- you can top up the glass with some Coca-Cola.

Serve with a short straw.

Source: Food For Net

Tequila Sunrise & Sunset

This cocktail looks beautiful and tastes great.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 shot of Tequila 
  • 120 ml Orange juice (from a box or fresh squeezed) 
  • Splash Rose’s Grenadine Syrup 
  • Ice cubes

Feminine twist:

  • Creme de cacao

You will need high-ball glasses for these cocktails.

For the Sunrise fill the glass with ice. Start with pouring tequila, then orange juice, finally adding grenadine. Don’t stir as the grenadine has to drop to the bottom to create those beautiful sunrise colours.

Start the Sunset version with the tequila, then add ice (preferably crushed), pour orange juice and dazzle with cream and cacao.

Garnish both cocktails with a slice of orange and cherry. Serve with a straw.

Source Advance mixology

Irish coffee

If you like something hot, Irish Coffee is a perfect choice. Super easy to make and super delusions.

Ingredients:

  • Irish whiskey 
  • Heavy cream
  • Brown sugar  
  • Freshly brewed coffee (if you like to have a few of those, you may use caffeine-free coffee)

Feminine twist:

  • Baileys instead of whiskey

For original Irish coffee you can use traditional Irish glasses, however, for Valentines Day you can go for a wine glass. The cocktail will look more sophisticated and special.

First, put 1 or 2 teaspoons of brown sugar on the bottom of the glass. Then pour the coffee and add the whiskey or Bailey’s. Top with lightly whipped heavy cream. Sprinkle some cacao on top. Don’t stir.

If you don’t like the taste of coffee you can try the same cocktail with cacao or hot chocolate.

Source: the spruce Eats

Non alcoholic Sangria

If you prefer to have a non-alcoholic drink, there are many mocktail options. We really like the non-alcoholic sangria punch because of the lovely light burgundy colour and wonderful fruity flavour.

Ingredients:

  • 1 750 mL bottle of nonalcoholic red wine
  • 1 orange, sliced
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 1 lime, sliced
  • 1/4 cup orgeat syrup
  • 1 cup orange juice, chilled
  • 1 cup of soda water, chilled
  • Ice

Combine all ingredients without the soda and ice into a big jug, stir it and leave it in the fridge for at least 3 hours.

Before serving add the soda and the ice. Serve in a red wine glass with a short straw.

Source: love to know

Final thoughts

Back in the days, Valentine’s Day wasn’t that a romantic and exciting day to celebrate, until Chaucer and Shakespeare romanticized it in their work, and it gained popularity throughout Britain and the rest of Europe. During the Middle Ages, homemade paper cards became the token- du-jour as part of the declaration of love.

 

That’s why next time we will give you some ideas of how to make Valentine’s cards and how to decorate the table and set the mood for your special romantic paint & sip at-home experience.

If you still wondering what to do at home for Valentine’s Day, have a look at our fun ideas –

5 fun things to do at home for St Valentine.

 

We’d love to know what are you planning for this year Valentine’s Day. Share with us your plans in the comments below. 

Lots of love,

Mariella & Ania

5 fun things to do at home for St Valentine.

5 fun things to do at home for St. Valentine's Day.

We are just a few weeks away from the most romantic day in the year, St. Valentine’s day. While still under quarantine, there is a great chance that you won’t be able to have a romantic dinner at a restaurant, travel somewhere or do something outside.

 

Why not explore some home-based options and set up some fun activities at home?

 

Believe it or not, there are so many romantic, exciting things you can do.

 

Here there is a selection of our five top favourite activities for home entertainment for couples.

Picnic in the living room

Set up everything for a real picnic! Having it in your living room actually feels almost the same as in a park.

 

Get your picnic basket, make some yummy sandwiches and other nibbles, and include a bottle of your favorite wine.

 

Arrange everything in a beautiful picnic basket. In the basket, you should have everything you need such as wine glasses, cutlery, napkins and so on (something like this >>> here<<<).

 

To add an extra touch and create an even more realistic experience, arrange some pillows, spray the room with a flowery scent and play some soft music in the background, something with sounds from nature like birds songs, the murmur of a river or ocean waves.

Have a home movie night

If you love going to the cinema you must be devastated as all cinemas have been closed for awhile. However, we have a fabulous solution for you. Have a real movie night at home. How? Very easily. You will need a bit of equipment but, believe me, it’s worth it.

First, get a mini projector (something like this >>>here<<<). One for children is a perfect option (and cheaper), connect it to your phone or computer, choose a big clean wall at home and, voila, you have a home cinema. Select a movie of your choice.

 

Next, pop some popcorn, grab a drink and set a couple of comfy armchairs or big pillows on the floor.

Romantic paint & sip party for two

You’ve probably heard that people get to know each other better by doing something together. Getting creative and having fun painting is a fantastic home experience for St. Valentine. Because this is our specialty, we made some lovely painting kits for romantic paint & sip experience at home. Check them out on our art kits page ~ here~.

You can subscribe to this event >>> here<<<. 

Painting together will take approximately 1 hour and a half and can be beautifully combined with a nice bottle of wine, some gourmet snacks or even dinner after the painting party.

You will need 2 canvases, paints & brushes, a palette, a jar or cup with water and a laptop or computer. You can buy all materials from our amazon shop >>>here<<<. 

Create a happy memories board

A wonderful way to celebrate St. Valentine at home is to express your happiness together with arranging your pictures on a romantic board. You will need a small phone printer (something like this >>>here<<<), A3 cardboard in any colour you’d like, some glue or double sticker and colourful markers. If you like stickers, you may have some St. Valentines stickers as well.

 

Start the evening by going through all the pictures you both have on your mobile phones. Choose those you like the most, connect the mini printer and print them all. Then comes the fun part. Start arranging all of the pictures on the board. You can arrange them by year, topic or destinations. Add some notes with the colourful markers and stick St. Valentines stickers around them.

 

This is a super fun and enjoyable activity, and it will evoke many lovely memories.

Take a virtual trip to Paris

This is such a cool idea. If you love Paris and you miss travelling, this is for you. Take a virtual tour and walk around the Palais Garnier – Opéra de Paris or Musée du Louvre. You can even look at Paris from the top of the Eiffel Tower or explore in detail the magnificent Sainte-Chapelle.

Here is the link to all the sites in Paris which come with a tour guide >>>here<<<.

Of course, matching the experience with menus and drinks is required. Paris is about champagne and other good French wine, delicious French cuisine, desserts and cheeses, and of course, romantic French music.

Final thoughts

St. Valentine’s Day is certainly one of the most romantic days of the year. It’s all about having a wonderful time with someone you love. The classic romantic dinner always works well, but if you plan something more exciting, this can make the day super special and unforgettable.

 

Don’t forget that St. Valentine’s Day is one of the most popular days for proposals as well. How wonderful it would be to get your diamond ring on that special day!

 

Let us know about your plans for St. Valentine’s Day. Leave your ideas below. We can’t wait to see them!

 

Lots of love,

Mariella & Ania