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10 Essentials for a Swanky Cocktail Soirée

Lauren conrad
Source: Getty

Jan. 28 2015, Updated 2:42 p.m. ET

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Lauren conrad
Source: Getty

Impress your best friends with a summer cocktail soirée of celebrity proportions! Follow along for recipe tips, outfit ideas, and more.

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cocktail

Cocktail

Follow these tips from chef Richard Kuo and beverage director Patrick Cappiello of Pearl & Ash in NYC.

A Tropical Punch

2 oz. white rum

1 oz. orange juice

1 oz. pineapple 
juice

Splash of ginger 
ale

1 sprig of mint

Shake rum and juice over ice and strain into glass. Top with ginger ale and add mint leaf as garnish. 

dinner

Dinner

“The best cocktail party
 menu is made of dishes that 
can be eaten in one or two 
bites,” says Richard. “That
 way, people can eat and
 socialize.”

He suggests 
serving items like spicy 
deviled eggs topped with jalapeños and fried chicken tenders with mint mayo. “I love taking nostalgic food and turning it into something special, like chicken fingers made from high-quality ingredients and served with a bright mayo.”

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lipgloss

Lipgloss

A cocktail party is meant for mingling! Opt for a flirty, lightweight summer dress and sexy stilettos. Stand out with a bright lip color.  

Studio Collection Moisturizing Lipstick in Flirty & Fabulous, E.L.F. Cosmetics, $3, eyeslipsface.com

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Cocktail dress

Pleated Dress by Armani Exchange, $98, armaniexchange.com 

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heels

Heels
MORE ON:
PHOTOS

Heels by Schutz, $200, 655 Madison Ave., NYC

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Cheese plate

Cheese Board and Chalk Set by High Fashion Home, $16, highfashionhome.com

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pillow

Pillow

Ambiance is key. Think: hanging lanterns and bright pillows. Serve up cocktails in pretty glassware, and don’t forget a cheese plate!

Pouf by 
Lulu & Georgia, $175, luluandgeorgia.com

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decorations

Decorations

Lantern by Lulu & Georgia, $140 for a set of four, luluandgeorgia.com

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glasses

Glasses

Hobnail Collection by Martha Stewart Collection, $9-$10, macys.com

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Drink dispenser

Drink Dispenser by Pottery Barn, $69, potterybarn.com

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