Explaining why Rachel Blumenthal is awesome in one short paragraph is no easy feat. With a stellar background in the fashion industry (think YSL and Rachel Leigh Jewelry and Warby Parker), it’s no surprise that the Manhattanite snagged a spot in the tastemaker hall of fame early on with a feature on The Coveteur. And since then? The mama to one (with another on the way!) has gone on to cultivate her entrepreneurial spirit with her latest adventure, Cricket’s Circle — a simpler, easier, more honest way to shop for baby. Curiosity got the best of us when we heard about Rachel’s whirlwind New York lifestyle, and we just had to know how she makes time for fun. Her solution: laid back, wonderfully colorful family affairs that have us considering a cross-country move to The Big Apple…
As the Founder of Cricket’s Circle, Rachel set out to solve the what-to-buy conundrum she encountered during her first pregnancy. The site serves as an end-all-and-be-all registry where expecting mothers can find everything they need, without feeling completely overwhelmed. We can’t imagine anyone better to curate a shopping list…
What (if anything) scares you about entertaining?
It’s always hard to balance making sure everyone has what they need and socializing with your guests. At the end of the party, I always worry I wasn’t attentive enough and I didn’t get to have as many meaningful conversations as I would have liked. But that’s just part of it I guess!
How do you minimize mess for a kids party?
Cover the dining room table with a plastic table cloth, then layer white kraft paper on top. Not only does it give a simple, clean place to start the activity but it doubles as entertainment — coloring! The plastic table cloth ensures that if something is wet or bleeds through the kraft paper, it doesn’t ruin the table.
If your dining room chairs are fabric, these covers are a must. They’re stretchy and fit just about every chair (they’re also less than $4 each and worth every penny). You want the kids to be comfortable without worrying that they’re going get stick, chocolate fingerprints all over your chairs.
My must-have entertaining tool:
I live for color and texture, so my decor go-tos are balloons with streamers, tassel garlands, confetti, and monochromatic flower arrangements in vibrant colors.
Give each child his/her own materials — in this case, colored sprinkles and various chocolate colors — to prevent fighting and excess mess.
My entertaining style in 5 words or less:
Casual, colorful, too much food!
Click here for a step-by-step guide to making these delicious, decorated pretzel sticks!
My dream party guests:
Anyone that will make me laugh.
The restaurant meal I’ll never forget:
5am omakase breakfast at the fish market in Tokyo — I still dream about it.
Always in my refrigerator:
Flat and sparkling water + ice cream in the freezer.
What are your tips on hosting parties with lots of young kids in attendance?
- The activity should be one they can pretty much do on their own. In this case, 3 and 4 year olds can easily dip a pretzel in chocolate and dip.roll it in sprinkles. This ensures they can get lost in their own creative ideas and don’t need you hovering over them (a plus for both of you).
- Be realistic about kids’ attention spans. Generally an activity that will keep them busy for 15-20 minutes is ideal.
- Prepare your space to be conducive to young kids: height-appropriate tables and chairs, covers that welcome mess, and a sweet treat they can taste-test along the way.
The entertaining rule I rarely break:
I’m a “yes” hostess. Regardless of the rules your family lives by (no shoes in the house, dishes in the sink, feet on coffee table, sitting on kitchen counter), you have to let them all go when you’re entertaining if you want guests to feel exceptionally comfortable.
My standard host / hostess outfit:
Right now I’m pregnant, so anything that’s flattering (which is few and far between these days) and comfortable. When not pregnant, it’s typically leather pants and a short sleeve cashmere sweater.
Current favorite color palette for parties:
Pale pinks, peaches, and raspberries
The perfect party playlist includes:
Anything by Van Morrison or Taylor Swift
Be sure to head over to the Cricket’s Circle blog for more from Rachel (pictured here with husband Neil, co-founder of Warby Parker, and their sweet son Griffin)!
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