From backyard cocktail parties to Sunday barbecues, springtime festivities call for a change of décor – and these candles are just the thing. Prep time: five minutes. Cost: pick up a box of tea lights at the dollar store, or at the grocery store where you buy your coffee – all in all, about six dollars. Result: candles that make the house smell like a coffee shop. BLG-1365_coffe-beans[2] By Julia Ivins, Staff Writer

What do you think of using coffee beans for candles? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us at @ruelala, then check out our Rue How-To column every Wednesday.

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March 27, 2013

Spring is here, and what better place to celebrate nature’s annual awakening than outside on your patio or deck? It’s just the spot to host an it’s-finally-spring party (or even to chill solo with a cocktail and a good book). But all deck décor is not created equal, so before you gather friends and family and kick off the outdoor season, take the time to piece together a welcoming retreat with some help from these tips.

Deck Retreat

Keep your décor colorful, your food and drinks convenient, and strive for a good balance of shady and sunny areas (with plenty of relaxing seating). Then you can kick back and bask in the spring-ready glory of your outdoor space.

Our Let’s Lounge Alfresco: The Outdoor Living Room and Let’s Toast Spring: The Outdoor Cocktail Party Boutiques open Wednesday, March 27, at 3PM ET.

By Jess Huckins, Staff Writer

Do you have any favorite outdoor cocktail party recipes? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us at @ruelala, and be sure to check out our Food & Entertaining column every Wednesday.

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March 27, 2013

Whether you celebrate a springtime religious holiday or are just grateful for the return of consistent sunshine, it’s getting to that time of year when we move parties outdoors – or at least open up the dining-room windows. Break out the pastels, bright jewel tones, and serveware patterned with butterflies and flowers, then march boldly into the season with these warm-weather entertaining must-haves:

Spring Holiday Entertaining

By Jess Huckins, Staff Writer 

How does your table décor change with the seasons? Share in the comments below, or tweet us at @ruelala. 

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March 6, 2013