Surf & Turf Dinner

Back in March I created a tablescape as part of a live auction package for the 13th Annual Taste of Lee’s Summit benefiting the Lee’s Summit Educational Foundation, Inc. (LSEF). I made good on that prize this past weekend at the lovely home of board member Mary Stilley and her husband, Jim, who hosted a fabulous gourmet dinner for ten. I agonized for months over what to do. In the end I decided to use starfish-shaped plates to represent the “surf” part of the meal, and a play on words and stretch of the imagination landed me at moss-covered balls to represent the “turf.” (Football on the brain already!!! 🙂
(Click on any image to enhance/enlarge it. All photos by Sheri L. Grant)

Starting with a plain white palette (upper left-hand corner and going clockwise), each layer went down in a painstakingly slow manner, measuring to make sure every element was precisely set.

When all was said and done…and after a few very tense minutes when Mary, Sheri and I found ourselves having to raise the billion pound light fixture to accommodate the height of the centerpiece…this is what we had. (Gosh, I wish I had pictures of that! ;-))

Starting with the photo in the upper left-hand corner of the collage and going clockwise, I started by layering two chargers: One a square rattan, and the other a round silverplate. By layering the two, I felt it gave the table the depth it would need once the plates were removed to the kitchen for the actual dinner. It also added both a sort of rough-hewn texture and a glossy shine, two elements I thought represented the surf and turf theme. The square white dinner plate was a good foundation for the colorful mix of blue and white starfish salad and appetizer plates you see here. These plates were in place upon the guests’ arrival, but then whisked to the kitchen just before the start of the meal.

The flatware is from the hostess’s personal collection. I liked the clam shell pattern that fit in with the “surf.”

The cobalt blue stems, seen in various posts on this site, were for water and the clear stems for wine.

The foundation of the centerpiece is the indigo blue “Logarno” glass vase from Z Gallerie topped with a large moss ball. The vase is lit from underneath with a multi-pinspot LED uplight designed to direct light upward into floral arrangements. (Lower right-hand corner of collage.)


The rest of the centerpiece that extends down the length of the table includes a number of repeated elements. Cobalt blue cylinders with the same color as the water stems have chunky white candles for ambient dinner light. Smaller clear cylinders, mimicking the colorless wine glasses, dot the table with white Fuji mums. Smaller moss balls and a few cobalt blue votive holders complete the look.

It was an honor and a delight to work with Mary Stilley who was most gracious to Sheri, Ramon, and me as we set up and broke down the table. She is indeed “The Hostess With the Mostess”!
Many thanks to the Lee’s Summit Educational Foundation, its Board of Directors, Advisory Board and staff (including Sheryl Franke!) for allowing me to participate in the auction for such a worthwhile cause.

Other posts on this site using blue and green:
Summer Blues & Greens
Under a Paper Moon

Other posts on this site using cobalt blue:
Daffodillyicious
Peony Power
Blue & White 30th Birthday
Summer Blues & Greens

Other posts on this site with a tropical flair:
Tropicana
Summer Breeze
Hot Tropical
Flamingos in Paradise
Oranges & Blossoms

I’m joining Cuisine Kathleen for the fun blog party known as “Let’s Dish” starting at 6:00 p.m. CDT on Wednesday. I’ll also be joining Susan for “Tablescape Thursday” on Thursday morning starting at 9:00 CDT. If you want to see the work of some really talented tablescapers, click on over to join us!