READY TO PARTY: Fresh off hosting a 100-guest dinner party in her TriBeCa home with Questlove, Lela Rose jetted to Chicago to promote her first book, “Prêt-à-Party.” Starting with the whimsical cover, showing a dinner party with baker’s twine used to create guests’ initials instead of traditional place cards, the 200-page hardcover coffee table book is filled with Rose’s best entertaining tips.
A Dallas native, the party ideas not surprisingly have a Southern flair — from a Texas-inspired pig roast to a tequila-infused tea party to some of the designer’s favorite recipes, from “Pink Lady Punch” to crispy fried chicken to strawberry rhubarb crumble. “This is kind of a different entertaining book in that it’s not about having matched china or the perfect monogrammed napkins,” said Rose, prior to her book party launch at Neiman Marcus on North Michigan Avenue last Thursday, although she admittedly has been known to match her pot holders to her dress. “It’s really about using creativity to entertain and plan a party. It’s very much how we design a collection — taking one idea and making everything work around that.”
With the holidays just around the corner, Rose said no party is complete without a specialty cocktail. “It’s truly vital to any party,” she said. “The cocktail is the first detail you greet people with. It’s the moment they come in and you’re offering a specialty cocktail. Instantly, they start thinking ‘ooh, this is going to be fun.’ You always name it and you name it with something that has to do with the night.”