Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies


INSPIRATION: This fun Mary Engelbreit fabric "hot pocket" my sister made for me for microwaving potatoes and ears of corn.

INSPIRATION: This fun Mary Engelbreit fabric “hot pocket” my sister made for me for microwaving potatoes and ears of corn.


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies, full table

Ah, summer! It may officially be a few weeks off, but it’s already feeling very much like it here with highs in the upper 80s. Scorching! I’m fighting back with a fun little tablescape that would be great for breakfast, brunch, or even a ladies’ luncheon. This tablescape could work nicely as a light-hearted Mother’s Day table, a fun birthday theme, or a shower theme for the woman who adores Mary Engelbreit…or cherries!

This casual summer tablescape begins with a 48″ round table draped in a 108″ black & white checkered tablecloth from I then placed an 85″ white square tablecloth over the top. Notice how just a shadow can be seen beneath the white, while the full complement of the checks are boldly on display at intervals around the bottom.


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies, single place settingI spied the fun black & white cherry-covered placemats at Old Time Pottery and fell in love. While they’re not my usual style, they just seemed like something that would bring levity to a table in a heartbeat! And they just had a whole Mary Engelbreit/MacKenzie-Childs vibe about them that couldn’t be denied! The red luncheon plates are from the good ol’ Dollar Tree. The oversized cup and saucer set is from Pier 1 many moons ago.


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies - San Remo flatwareLovely Hampton Silversmiths “San Remo” flatware works well.


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies -  Stemware collagePretty glasses hold refreshing limeade with a juicy cherry for good measure. The choice to use these particular glasses was made after deciding upon the cloche in the centerpiece. Notice how the ball of the stemware mimics that of the cloche top.


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies -  napkinA simply-folded black napkin is draped down the side of the table from beneath the plate to break up the expanse of white in the tablecloth.


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies -  overhead shot of centerpiece


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies -  Centerpiece


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies -  Centerpiece collageThe centerpiece is relatively simple. A white ceramic teapot holds scads of clove-scented, bright red carnations. A black glass compote cradles – what else? – chocolate-covered cherries for dessert. Finally, a fun Mary Engelbreit “Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies” clock is nestled in just for fun.


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies -  bowl of cherriesProsaic? Perhaps. But the table just wouldn’t be complete without an actual bowl of cherries!


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies -  Mary Engelbreit wooden figureAnd the whole look comes together with this life-sized wooden character from the imagination of Mary Engelbreit with her sassy attitude and fruit-laden hat!

Other light-hearted, casual summer tablescapes on this site:
Ants In My Pants Picnic
Oopsy Daisy!
Daisy Crazy
Summer Breeze
Oranges & Blossoms
Caribbean Queen
Flamingos in Paradise
Summer Orange Tablescape
All-American Seafood Boil
Stars & Stripes
Brilliant Italian
Working Lunch
Orange You Glad You Came To Dinner?
Summer Blues & Greens
Tulips in the IHop Hour
Dinner With Friends

Please join me again this week at Susan’s place, Between Naps on the Porch, for Tablescape Thursday. I’ll also be linking up with a new link party at Christine’s “Rustic & Refined” called “Table It!”. Check it out! And next week, we’ll be dining fine with Cuisine Kathleen’s “Wedding China Tablescape Challenge”!!!

49 thoughts on “Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies

  1. So darn cute and fun Alycia. Life is a bowl of cherries….LOL.Love your life-size cut-out. The black and white checked is great, along with your red accent. Gotta have fun with this table.


  2. How cleaver, I never know what’s going on in that pretty head of yours when we are shopping and I see you going gaga over stuff I would never picking up. That’s the difference in creativity and “non-plus”.


  3. Lots of errors in my previous post.and I can’t blame it on “spellcheck”:-) I left out “consider” after the word “never”


  4. Mary Englebreit would love an invitation! Love her and miss her magazine so much. Thanks for bringing Mary’s fun style back to life. I love the cherry placemats too. So Cherryful! And one can never have too many cloches….especially one holding chocolate covered cherries! Just lovely Alycia and I think it actually has a bit of a French vibe!


  5. We did KC’s first apartment with a Mary Englebreit Kitchen. It always made me smile…just like this table. And cherries?…I’ve received my fair share of ME cherry items in my life. Thanks for all the sweet memories that this table evokes. Cherry Kay


  6. I am new to Mary Engelbreit, thanks for the introduction! This is such a whimsical table and I would love to have a seat here. Would love to have the heat wave you’re having and those chocolate covered cherries too!!! Happy Tuesday!!


  7. You were right to buy those placemats, they are really festive! and they do have a Mackenzie feel too them. Great color scheme!

    I’m almost jealous of your 80 degree temps, we’ve been getting warmer but so far still in the 70’s. Which is great for now. I have been gardening almost every day (and yes I’m not over doing it) and I am starting to feel like my energy level is finally getting back to normal.

    Now tell me…you called the carnations clove scented. Please explain…is your florist doing something with their carnations that isn’t happening up here in the Yankee Boonies?

    and lastly, (and then I’ll get back to finishing up my chores) I would be truly honored if you could stop by blog and link up some of your favorite tablescapes. I did my very first link party this morning to share my (our) dish fetish and it wouldn’t be a party without the Tablescape Queen! The link ends in about 24 hours, so if you have time…and now worries if you don’t. There going to run every Monday morning.


  8. You hit this one out of the ball park! So cheerful and fun!! I love Mary Engelbreit’s creativity, Erma Bombeck’s humor, and Alycia’s taste. xx


  9. Alycia,
    I love this table…especially the picture you took from above the table..great shot…ME is one of my favorites anyway…You did a beautiful job with this one..
    Love, Mona


  10. Very fun with all your little extras. I think we better enjoy every opportunity to eat outside because the too hot weather is coming fast. Funny how much time we spend thinking about the weather.


  11. I’m a life long ME fan. Your cherry table is full of fun, Alycia. Looks like a beautiful alfresco setting. Hope your trip to SA was fun. I want to hear all about it.


  12. This table is adorable! You know, I never get over how nice those Dollar Tree dishes are! I’ve gotten the black ones and I think I “need” to buy red ones, next! I’ve been slow to get on the cherry bandwagon, but boy, the older I get, the more I enjoy cherries. In fact, I could use some Black Forest cake right now! Yum! Carnations are another thing that I appreciate more now than ever before. Why “clove-scented?” I’ve never detected much of a fragrance on the ones I buy . . . I love this table, Alycia!


  13. Oh my goodness!! I am such a huge Mary E fan!! I love her fabrics and designs, she just oozes with fun, sass and whimsy- so does your table!! I have to say I am so jealous of your 80 degree weather, we are still struggling to stay in the sixties, no tables out side yet. Thanks for putting a great big smile on my face while enjoying your post!!


  14. Oh my gosh Alycia, what a fun, cheerful table! How could one not be happy sitting at your setting??!! The centerpiece is simple, but perfect and you’ve thought of all the details… clock, cherries and even ME. I wish I was a guest. I’ll bring some cherry pie. xo


  15. Awesome! I love the red, black, and white! Fun place mats, pretty dishes, and (my favorite) beautiful stem wear. The life-size Mary is the “cherry on top” – sorry, I had to say it. Love it all! 🙂


  16. So fun & cheery Alycia! I adore ME, the cherries and black & white check add such whimsy. Your limeade looks so refreshing with the cherry and I love your choice of glass! We are going to be in the 90’s today…entirely too warm for May for me. I can only imagine what July will be like 🙂


  17. Dearest Alycia. This was just the lift I needed today. I love each element but the simple red, white and black is so fun but elegant at the same time. Love that stemware and the standup cutout is adorable.
    Happy Mother’s Day, Ginger


  18. Mary Engelbreit’s designs are so much fun. Love the black and white check with the red cherries. It’s HOT here too. I just went out on the deck and forgot to put my shoes on. Just call me “hot foot”. I made a fast dash back in the house. Happy almost Summer.


  19. Love the cherry theme. M.E. always makes me smile and you achieved a table that makes me smile, too. Upper 80’s is a hot blast. I was feeling the humidity here in N.C. today and my hair took on a life of it’s own. oye!


  20. So cute and as several people have said, your creativity is amazing! Love Mary E and I actually dressed up for my baby shower in that outfit to match the invitations (many moons ago, of course).


  21. Too, too, too cute, Alycia! And yes, refreshing. We hit 80 yesterday, and while I’ve promised myself that I will NOT complain about heat this summer after the winter we had, it sounds like you are in the same boat with me–let’s have spring before we get to summer! Spring is just too nice a season to miss out on! I haven’t been around much lately (computer problems and just busy, busy!), so I’m glad I have you coming into my mailbox to see what you’re up to! Darling post! Here’s hoping you get some spring yet this year! ~Zuni


  22. So cute Alycia! I need something happy like this right now! Where on earth did you get a full size wooden character Mary Engelbreit piece? She’s too cute! This table would fit in just about anywhere in these parts since cherry’s are a big deal up here!


  23. You captured he ever so enchanting world of Mary Englebreit!!…We all need to live life “like a bowl full of cherries”…I love Mary E….I have stacks and stacks of her old magazines…I cannot part with them…and where did you get that fabulous wooden character?….I have had many prints from her over the years…and treasure one that is a limited edition….Such a fun table Alycia!


  24. Hello My Lady A…
    Graciousness… those colors are indeed D´Box fave colors.

    Love every piece and every inch. I can’t believe you have all those treasures.

    I am envious and you always blown my heart with your talent and you are such an inspiration. Just telling, 🙂

    Enjoy the rest of the day and have a blissful weekend ahead.



  25. Be still my heart Alycia, I LOVE ME! Yes, life is just a chair of bowlies when she’s around!! I love love love those placemats, and your whole table is totally fun!! The life size stand up is hilarious!!!


  26. First, I just love the title of this one. Things like that just make me smile. I kept right on smiling as I scrolled and read through the whole table, big old smiles too. That was the goal, I think: to be a HAPPY table.

    It’s wonderful and fun and colorful and a hundred more adjectives.that I can’t think of right now.

    Wait. Cheerful. It’s also cheerful. I love it.


  27. All so lovely. Cherries are arriving in my Country so it made me smile to see the tablescape :). Gorgeous and Happy Inducing, as usual.
    I’m just curious about what that first “thing” does? Microwave potatoes?! Why on Earth? Well, I guess I’ll look into the net and try finding out… there’s never a coming and going with you ;).
    Thank you for sharing and inspiring,


  28. Don’t you just love those potato/corn bakers for the microwave? I sure do! I made my mom a cherry pie for Mother’s Day and I adore the cherries and black & white check. We are in the 80′s today, and I’m trying to get used to this warm weather. Happens every year, and then I don’t want the warm weather to end. Thank you for your heartfelt message on my blog. Love you!


  29. Sorry to be so late Alycia, I have been cleaning up my yard and garage from the flooding we had last week. I have not posted anything new myself for nearly two weeks with all of the insanity going on in my life. I did stop for a minute several days ago and read through most of this really sweet and cheerful post but did not take the time to stop and say hello. I love the red plates with the black cups they are perfect with the black and white checks and the marvelous cherry theme. This is such a treat to see and makes a for a wonderful early summer table. Have a wonderful week….. Candy


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