Kate van Geldern Bowler has been the author of the popular lifestyle blog, DomestikatedLife.com, for nearly a decade, chronicling her adventures in entertaining, home cooking, DIY projects, and life as a new mother. Exploring the charming coastal town of Scituate, where she resides with her husband and adorable two-year-old daughter, has allowed for endless, unbelievable family photo ops, helping her build a following of approximately 20,000 followers on Instagram. Her blog does not only provide pretty pictures for inspiration; it's chock-full of logistical advice and tips on arranging flowers, organizing your linen closet and baking the perfect pie. Whats more, her very first entertaining cookbook, New England Invite: Fresh Feasts to Savor the Seasons, was just released in October of this yeara guide to over seventy recipes and all things, dcor, seasonal blooms, and more for your upcoming ftes.
What is your favorite room in your home and why?
I think the living room is my favorite room in the house because it went through such a transformation since we first moved in. When we bought our house, we needed some serious vision to see the potential. There were a lot of quirks (like a hair-salon in what is now my office!), wallpaper, old carpet, and tons of dark wood paneling. The living room had the worst of the wood paneling. After applying ten coats of white paint to cover up that dark woodwork and ripping up some old shaggy mauve carpet, we ended up with a living room that is bright, cozy and modern. Im so proud of our DIY work that transformed that space.
Where you raise your family is one of the biggest decisions you'll ever make. What specifically about the South Shore captured your heart?
We landed on the South Shore truly because it possesses a lot of the things we previously loved about living in the citylike walkable downtowns with cute shops and great restaurantswhile offering us the comforts and space of suburban living and the perk of being close to the water.
With the holiday season fast approaching, Kate shares how she throws the perfect holiday celebration, cooks up festive meals her family and guests will enjoy, and creates consistent content that truly resonates with herdevoted followers.
Can you share any tips for the perfect holiday table setting?
My best tips for creating a beautiful table setting for your guests are to think about the functionality of the space. Will each guest have enough room, can people see over the centerpiece, and is there ample space on the table for food and wine (the important stuff!)? I also almost always start with classic white plates, because they work for every occasion. Get creative with the table linens to make them work for your occasion!
I like to think about bringing in seasonal elements to make it feel currentnatural elements are an inexpensive way to do that. Pumpkins and gourds in different shapes and sizes, small bud vases filled with in-season flowers, or cut branches and greenery from your yard in clear mason jars are all very simple, but impactful ideas.
What was the most memorable celebration that you've planned? Are there any annual gatherings that you host at your home?
My wedding is definitely my most memorable celebration that I planned it was brimming with DIY projects and definitely reinforced my love of throwing parties!
My other favorite gathering though is for New Years. We have always hosted a big New Years Eve partyits my favorite holiday, I love the idea of celebrating a fresh start! Its evolved a bit over the yearstwo years ago I hosted it eight days before my due date, and my husband convinced me to pull back on my usual over-the-top party and have some friends over for a low-key dinner party with take-out. It ended up being one of my favorite celebrations! And last year, we decided to switch to a New Years Day brunch since so many of our friends have young childrenI really love seeing how the party evolves with us each year.
What is your favorite fall recipe in New England Invite?
Its a tie! I love the macaroni and cheese stuffed applesthey have a real wow factor in both flavor and presentation. I also love the pumpkin butter. Its so simple to make and it fills the home with the most beautiful fall scents.
Aside from your book launch, the holidays are fast approaching, so its clear youre definitely busy right now! What else do you have planned for this year?
I am spending lots of time at the end of this year touring around New England for book signings and events, which has been a very exciting experience so far. Im also cooking up several new holiday features for my blogits the best time of year to write about entertaining! And Im really looking forward to celebrating the holidays with my family. Our daughter is almost two years old, and this time of year is magic with little ones.
What do your family and friends make of the success you've achieved with your brand?
My family is a big part of the success, so I think they feel proud! Im so lucky to have such an amazing, supportive, tight-knit family that has jumped in to help me make big things happen. Writing my cookbook was a family affair, it was done on a pretty tight timeline and they all pitched in for babysitting, dish-washing, therapy sessions, and lots of recipe testing feedback. Im so grateful for them!