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How One Simple Purchase Made My At-Home Happy Hours So Much Better

Bar area with pink wine glasses, greenery, and art.

Lauren Zillinger for Laura Metzler Photography

As we approach the end of this year, I can confidently say I never thought I’d still be cheers-ing my friends via Zoom happy hours this late in December, but I’m proud to note that my cocktail hour game is stronger than ever.

For one, I’ve finally perfected a recipe that I love—gin, St. Germain, tonic water, and a big squeeze of lemon is a magical combo, in case you were wondering. But also, I’ve made a point to bust out vibrant drinkware that makes me feel a bit more cheerful than a plain old wine glass would—hey, it truly is all about the little things these days. 

Close-up of pink wine glasses, rose, and vintage decor.

Lauren Zillinger for Laura Metzler Photography

When I first read about Estelle Colored Glass over the summer, I knew I needed a few colorful drinking vessels in my life. Named in honor of founder Stephanie Summerson Hall’s grandmother, this incredible Black-owned biz sells glassware in practically every hue under the sun. I treated myself to a few pieces in the amber smoke shade, and I will admit, they make the experience of sipping red wine on my sofa feel a bit more special and stylish. 

As an avid thrifter, I’m always on the lookout for colorful drinkware on the cheap, too, and have made a point to use my vintage finds more in 2020. I rarely poured anything other than a glass of wine at home, but over the past several months, I’ve tried my hand at everything from jalapeño margaritas to gin and tonics accompanied by edible flowers.

Close-up on drink with edible flowers.

Courtesy of Sarah Lyon

Having peppy, sizable glasses on hand has made the experience feel a bit more special—and Instagrammable. Plus, some of my vintage glasses are actually sturdier than those that I’ve picked up at big box stores in more recent years, which is a major pro if you’re a bit of a clumsy dish washer like me.

I’ve been noticing colorful glassware make a major resurgence outside of my own home, too, with many of my favorite secondhand sellers stocking tons of beautiful pieces in their shops or proudly displaying finds on their shelves at home. And since most kitchen essentials are purely utilitarian, why not have a little fun where we can? If there’s anything we need in our lives after a year beyond anyone’s imagination, it’s color, color, and more color. 

If there’s anything we need in our lives after a year beyond anyone’s imagination, it’s color, color, and more color.