The Design Confidential From Fandom to FANtail in 3 Easy Colors

From Fandom to FANtail in 3 Easy Colors - said no one ever... which is precisely why I am calling on you fabulous folks to help me do just such a thing! So what exactly is a FANtail you ask? Well get excited, because when we finish with it, it will be the best cocktail this side of the Mississippi - using my favorite team's colors of red, white and gold. That's right, we will be taking the art of FANdom to staggering new heights!

At least that is how I see this happening.... there might even be confetti! Or maybe just a pom pom?

And on that note, I am super excited to announce my partnership with Smirnoff Ice this fabulous football season - as we celebrate female football fans everywhere - and take those manly tailgating parties from Eek to Chic - whose with me?

The Design Confidential From Fandom to FANtail in 3 Easy Colors

First on my list is to create the ultimate FANtail using Smirnoff Ice as my foundation. Now I suppose right off the bat I am extremely lucky that my team's colors just so happen to be super easy to work with. Imagine if I had to work with black or blue... Not impossible, but certainly more difficult - amiright?

There are so many decisions to make... and I think we should make this a group project as you may have noticed... but I suppose we should start at the beginning and decide - sweet or savory? What say you?

Most of the Smirnoff Ice flavors are on the sweet side, which is naturally an easy direction to take here. But why limit ourselves to what is easy, eh? With several flavor options in the citrus family, it shouldn't be too difficult to make the leap to the savory or salty spectrum here, without things getting weird. That is always a good thing in my book. Halloween is over so there shouldn't be any fright in this delight, if you know what I mean.

The Design Confidential From Fandom to FANtail in 3 Easy Colors

Now that isn't to say that we can't make things complex and dare I say 'interesting' with our flavor combinations... Truly, there are so many directions I can see this going, so I turn to you for guidance and input along the way! I hope you will join me and let's just see how this little culinary social experiment turns out... Maybe it is like our very own 'Cocktail Idol' with voting and judging - obviously I need to think this through, but it sounds fun, don't you think?

The Design Confidential From Fandom to FANtail in 3 Easy Colors

Sweet or Savory - this will be our first decision.

On the sweet side, think strawberries, cranberries, raspberries - divine! Maybe even Rhubarb, coconut, caramel and spice...

On the savory side, think tomatoes, Sriracha, and bell peppers - delish! Maybe even radishes, radicchio, citrus and salt... Lend me your taste buds and take your pick.

A big thank you to Smirnoff Ice for partnering with me on this. This will be the first in an ongoing series and of many fun things to come and I can't wait to see where it takes us. And thank you fine folks for supporting the brands that help bring fresh new content and projects like this to The Design Confidential. I heart you guys, and as usual all ideas and opinions are my own!

The Design Confidential's Halloween From Day to Night // Fright and Delight + Spooky Mixtape

Brought to you by Pier 1 Imports

This ghoulish holiday season I have partnered with Pier 1 to bring a little Fright and Delight to our home. Halloween is a favorite in our house and since I am the first of my local siblings to have children, we often have family join us for our candy filled escapades with the boys.


The Design Confidential's Halloween From Day to Night // Fright and Delight + Spooky Mixtape

I love this tradition and while I love to entertain, it’s so nice to find pieces that blend seamlessly between day and night… or in other words, they look good during the day while they are on display and when night falls and guests roll through, these holiday pieces do double duty and serve their festive purpose!

The Design Confidential's Halloween From Day to Night // Fright and Delight + Spooky Mixtape

My boys are obsessed with these spooky LED candles and demand they be left on around the clock. It is lovely to know that I won’t be burning the house down anytime soon.

The Design Confidential's Halloween From Day to Night // Fright and Delight + Spooky Mixtape

The skull ice bucket is gorgeous and looks amazing all on its own, but I adore it with flowers for a bit of the macabre that is much more delight than fright.

And when it’s time to gather round for a night filled with fun for those young at heart (and actually young), I dress things up for an evening that caters to the rest of us as well.

The Design Confidential's Halloween From Day to Night // Fright and Delight + Spooky Mixtape

With sweets pouring in by the pound, I love to have other options available for those who prefer to keep it light, yet still indulge.

Everything comes together seamlessly and easily with the perfect blend of holiday and everyday party ware. The spooky cloth is the perfect little spooky table runner to add just a bit of that something special.

The Design Confidential's Halloween From Day to Night // Fright and Delight + Spooky Mixtape

Mini popcorn balls and a cheese plate are a bit more my speed.

The champagne flutes are stunning, and have me wanting to work black into every party I have, forever more… Not to mention they make a signature drink of the most deadly variety stand out from the crowd.

The Design Confidential's Halloween From Day to Night // Fright and Delight + Spooky Mixtape

The skull shot glasses just happen to be perfect for serving up sinful dippers, like pumpkin spice cookie butter, that pairs well with apple slices and bananas. Still sweet and delicious but perhaps a tad bit more sophisticated than standard Halloween treats.

A mix of frightful and delightful along with some amazing everyday party ware turned out to be a perfect balance here. I have a feeling these beauties may even stick around well beyond their traditional season.

The Design Confidential's Halloween From Day to Night // Fright and Delight + Spooky Mixtape

Of course no amazing party goes without great music, for your spooky listening pleasure I have rounded up some of my favorite frightful songs with my Ultimate Halloween Bash Mixtape. It will definitely please a diverse audience, with a bit of something for everyone…


If you need a fun way to round out the amazing food spread you have planned to celebrate Mom this weekend, or any fabulous day this summer, I have just the thing for you with this modern twist on an old classic – a Tropical Tequila Sunrise Poptail! For the 21 and over crowd this seemingly complex treat is actually super simple to make - no culinary skills required.

Have you gathered up your bottles for The Art of Patron contest yet? If you plan to try your hand at creating something unique from their iconic bottles (check out the prize and the details here), you will need a few good reasons to empty them out and so I thought it only prudent of me to share this fun series of cocktails to help you put that artisanal tequila to good use.

The other recipes in this series //

The Art of Patron // Coconut Mint Margarita Recipe

Without further ado… I give you an easy, semi-DIY recipe that will have your guests oohing and aahing over your culinary prowess, without hardly lifting a finger.


To make this recipe as a drink rather than a poptail, the same directions and ingredients apply, simply fill each glass in the same manner you would fill your popsicle mold. // Serves 3



16 oz or 2 cups Passion Fruit Juice

4 ½ oz or 3 Jiggers of Patrón Tequila

1 Crystal Light On the Go Stick – Raspberry Ice

1 - 20 oz Bottled Water

Popsicle Mold with Sticks



Note // Passion fruit juice sounds like a specialty juice (and it is), but Welch’s makes it in a carton or individual bottles that can be found in the refrigerated juice section (near the orange juice), so it should be easy to find. If you aren’t able to find the On the Go packs of Crystal Light, you can use a standard 2 quart mix container of Raspberry Ice as well. You will simply skip the water bottle step and prepare as outlined on the package.

// Open your 20 oz water bottle and empty out just a tiny bit of the water. You need to create room for your raspberry ice packet and give yourself room to shake, shake, shake. Go ahead and do this now and set it aside for just a bit.

// Add 2 cups (16 oz) of Passion Fruit Juice to a shaker or your blender if you prefer. Then add 3 jiggers of Patron Tequila (4.5 oz) and shake, shake, shake. Pour this mixture into your Popsicle mold and fill ¾ of the way full. Now give your Raspberry Ice a quick shake and fill the remainder of each Popsicle mold with it. Try not to shake things around too much if you want to get that separation of color. Place your lid or lids on your mold and place your sticks in through the openings in the lid. Place the whole thing in the freezer near the coldest part and let the magic happen. Because we are trying to freeze alcohol, the colder the better. If you have trouble getting your sticks to stand up as much as you would like them too, try letting your popsicles set up for a couple of hours before you put them in.

Let them freeze overnight if possible and enjoy.

This article was created in partnership with Patron. Thank you for supporting the amazing companies that help bring fresh new content like this to The Design Confidential! I heart you guys!

The Design Confidential and The Art of Patrón Coconut Mint Margarita Recipe

With Cinco de Mayo right around the corner and hot weather right on the heels of that, the timing of this fabulous cocktail recipe couldn't be better, if I do say so myself... which I definitely do, since I had the distinct pleasure of creating and then testing this recipe. And a pleasure it was, since I had reason to celebrate the start of a new partnership between The Design Confidential and Patrón Tequila for the launch of The Art of Patrón, a contest for Makers and Creatives alike.

This contest celebrates the story behind the craft and the making of their bottles. Created with heart by skilled artisans, no two are alike and each has its own individual beauty and character. It is a very special thing indeed when a product produced en masse is still made by hand and not by machine. And so we should celebrate the beauty of this artisanal tequila and the gorgeous bottles that house it and in turn see how you might be inspired to use these bottles to create something unique and handmade of your own. If you craft something amazing from the bottles and help us celebrate the Art of Patron, you just might win $10,000.

I am also excited and honored to tell you that I have the privilege and pleasure of being one of the judges for this contest and I will be creating a project of my own to get in the spirit of things and mark the occasion. I hope you will join me and put some of those DIY skills to good use… maybe win yourself an amazing prize… In the meantime, I thought it only considerate of me to help you put that tequila to good use with this fine specimen of a margarita!

Of course if something that is equal parts fun and simple to make with a playful modern take on an old classic is a bit more your speed, be sure to check out my other tasty Patron recipe the Tropical Tequila Sunrise Poptail 

The Design Confidential and The Art of Patrón Coconut Mint Margarita Recipe




16 oz or 2 cups Coconut Sorbet / Ice Cream (5 of these will also work)

1/2 Cup of Patrón Tequila

1/4 Cup Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice

4 - 5 Mint Leaves

4 Tablespoons Simple Syrup


2 Tablespoons of Sugar

1 Tablespoon Shredded Coconut or Flakes

1 Mint Leaf



Make the Rimming Sugar /

To do this you will want to add a couple of Tablespoons of shredded coconut to a plastic bag (can also use a paper towel or napkin folded in half). Add a mint leaf and gently rub or muddle the mint leaf and shredded coconut together until the mint infuses the coconut just a bit. This will generally take just a minute or so. Once you can tell there is a hint of mint mixed with the coconut, add your sugar and stir to mix, you can do this right in the bag or you can pour your mixture into a bowl at this point. You simply need to be sure that the bowl is relatively shallow and has a base that is large enough for your glass to sit with the rim sitting slightly down into your rimming sugar mixture and set aside.

Make the Drink /

Add Tequila, Lime and Mint Leaves to your blender and pulse or grate to mix and chop the mint leaves. Keep your juiced limes on hand for rimming later. If you are using a Coconut Ice Cream or the Coconut Helado Paletas, you can add a cup of ice to the blender along with your ice cream. If you are using a Coconut Sorbet, you can most likely skip the ice but this will be a judgement call. Blend thoroughly to mix well.

Put it all Together /

Use a juiced lime remnant to wet the rim of your glass, then turn upside down and set your glass in your rimming sugar mixture until the rim is well coated. Pour your coconut mint margarita into your glass and garnish with a mint leaf or sprig. Enjoy!

The Design Confidential Going Green

It has been far too long since I gave a nod to chic decor and party picks in shades of green without mention of a Christmas theme. They say green is the most universal color and while I am sure that is true, I find many shades of green a bit hard to fall in love with. Of course those I do like, I tend to adore...  It is awfully convenient that St. Patrick's Day is upon us and we have the perfect excuse to go green and spice things up a bit - literally - like with a spicy green bloody mary... Yahoo for that.

If you want to go green but only want to dip your toes in that pond and partying like it's St. Patty's Day in a college town isn't quite your thing, then perhaps some of these ideas are just the right amount of fun for you!

The Design Confidential Going Green

Any excuse for a bloody mary is a good excuse in my book, but a lack luster love for green beer would certainly top the list. This green bloody mary recipe over on Domaine Home sounds just amazing! I can't wait to give it a taste test.

The Design Confidential Going Green

Go green by adding a little living greenery to your home and yard. 90% of my plants are this variety and the selection and quality is just so good.

The Design Confidential Going Green

If the idea of live greenery scares you, perhaps the faux variety in the form of a gorgeous print is more your speed.

The Design Confidential Going Green

Put a pillow on it! A tropical vibe inducing variety is always great to add to the mix. Besides, it looks like greenery of the tropical and living kind, so really it should just blend with your decor regardless... like plants do.

The Design Confidential Going Green

I'm completely obsessed with this gorgeous wallpaper. It has me seeing green, both literally and figuratively.... Not entirely sure the mister will love it as I do, but who knows... he just might surprise me.

Are you celebrating with gusto on this green occasion or do you lay low like this old gal with young babes at home? Is green on your radar this spring or do you love it all year round? Happy St. Patty's Day to all my Irish kinfolk, be safe out there in the great wide open!

The Design Confidential Home for Holidays // Easy Pumpkin Spice Eggnog Latte Recipe

If you happen to know me in real life, you probably know all about my love for sweet treats and coffee. This is a love that runs deep and seems to have come straight down the line, directly from my mom and her mom before her. When we are home for the holidays and together, there is nothing better than having amazing coffee shop style lattes alongside my pie. Last week I got a fancy new coffee machine and being able to make my own lattes just the way I like them, has essentially rocked my world.

I like my coffee drinks sweet, like most everything else, so naturally I immediately set out to create a really simple recipe for making the perfect holiday latte that doesn't require much effort, can be made on the fly and in bulk, and tastes like it was made by a specialty coffee shop!

Coffee Capsules in the Nespresso VertuoLine The Design Confidential Home for Holidays // Easy Pumpkin Spice Eggnog Latte Recipe

Nespresso VertuoLine has 12 capsule varieties - 8 large cup coffee flavors and 4 espresso varieties, and in truth any of these will work beautifully for this recipe, though I definitely play favorites to the hazelnut and vanilla. This smart little machine can tell which capsule you insert and will serve accordingly, so if you choose one of the espresso capsules, for instance, you will have quite a bit more room left in your coffee cup than if you choose a coffee capsule, so consider this when you choose your capsule and when you choose your cup. In other words... you will need a larger cup to accommodate a coffee capsule and the remaining ingredients for this recipe.

Brewed Coffee for Nespresso VertuoLine by The Design Confidential Home for Holidays // Easy Pumpkin Spice Eggnog Latte Recipe


Serves 4 - Double or Halve as needed.

// Coffee or Espresso

// 16 oz of Eggnog

// 1/2 cup of Pumpkin Pie Puree

// 4 oz of Spiced Rum - optional

Begin by brewing your capsule of choice. The beauty of the Nespresso VertuoLine is that each person can choose the variety they prefer so those who like decaf or maybe an extra kick, can have precisely that.

Eggnog Pumpkin Pie Puree for Nespresso VertuoLine by The Design Confidential Home for Holidays // Easy Pumpkin Spice Eggnog Latte Recipe

Start by adding the pumpkin pie puree to the eggnog in a large shaker or carafe with a lid. Add spiced rum if you prefer the boozy version of this after dinner treat, and mix well by shaking.

Frothy Pumpkin Spice Eggnog using the Aeroccino+ by The Design Confidential Home for Holidays // Easy Pumpkin Spice Eggnog Latte Recipe

Pour about 4 - 5 oz of the eggnog mixture into the Aeroccino+ and set for warm froth. If you want an iced coffee drink, choose the cool froth option of course... that would be amazing as well! Once it is finished frothing, pour the contents into the brewed coffee or espresso, that is likely to have finished it's pour, and stir with a spoon. Serve with a dash of cinnamon or a bit of whipped cream and you will be the hostess with the mostess for many a holiday party to come.

This project was created in partnership with Nespresso, but my love for sweet treats, coffee and their VertuoLine is all my own! Thank you for supporting the amazing sponsors who allow me to create exciting and tasty new content like this. I heart you guys!


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