When one receives a beautifully addressed invitation by mail, an anticipatory excitement is sparked. Immediately, the guest begins to conjure up visions of chic revelers floating about in a candlelit glow, cocktails in hand. Consummate hostess and elegant tastemaker Stephanie Booth Shafran harnesses that very feeling in her debut volume, You’re Invited.
The brilliant book welcomes readers into Stephanie’s well-appointed homes for eight resplendent occasions including an intimate New York City dinner soirée and a Pucci-themed pool party. Each chapter divulges a glossary of hosting how-to’s, covering everything from flowers to menus and ambience. One of my favorite tips suggests using buffet plates in place of dinner plates as they are larger and, in turn, make food look prettier.
Stephanie also dishes on her preferred Chardonnay labels and there’s no one I find more trustworthy of wine recommendations than a native Californian! Her Los Angeles upbringing lends an especially refreshing mix of refinement and West Coast cool, evident on every page of You’re Invited. Stephanie’s sensibility is reminiscent of LA hostess of yore Betsy Bloomingdale with an added modern flair that speaks to today’s celebrations.
Inventive themes, fabulous fare, and layered place settings take center stage against the backdrop of Stephanie’s incredible abodes. Designer extraordinaire Jeffrey Bilhuber decorated each home with entertaining in mind. An inviting ambiance is created with several seating areas in a space coupled with plenty of cocktail tables and low lighting. Guests mingle and enjoy spirited conversation sparked by Stephanie’s thoughtful seating arrangements—the mark of a natural hostess.
For more of Stephanie’s expert insight, please do purchase your every own copy of You’re Invited here. She can be found on Instagram here and for book tour details and other announcements, visit here. I absolutely loved this book and I know you all will too!
A bonus treat! Stephanie indulged me in a round of Muffy’s rapid fire favorites, LA edition:
Hotel: Hotel Bel Air
Museum: LACMA and Peterson Automotive Museum
Clothes shopping: Boutiques on Melrose Place such as Oscar de la Renta, Zimmerman, Monique Lhullier, Chloe, Veronica Beard.
Jewelry shopping: Anne Sisterson on Canon and Verdura at Neiman Marcus
Home and tabletop shopping: Gearys in Beverly Hills
Lunch: Fig and Olive on Melrose Place, Polo Lounge, E Baldi, La Scalla boutique
Dinner: San Vincente Bungalows, The Tower Bar, Matsuhisa and Nobu, Georgios II, Piccolino, Bel Air Hotel
Cocktails: the bar at Bel Air Hotel
All images by Andrew and Gemma Ingalls, courtesy of Rizzoli.