Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells

INSPIRATION: Brilliantly blue glass starfish plates by AKCAM

INSPIRATION: Brilliantly blue glass starfish plates by AKCAM in all the colors of the ocean

I hope you’re enjoying your summer! It has been weirdly rainy here in the Kansas City, Mo. area, and I’m just about sick of it. It’s great for the grass and trees and flowers, but it SUCKS for tablescaping!!! So…I’ve dredged up a beach-inspired tablescape that I created and photographed two years ago but felt unworthy to publish because it didn’t meet my potential. I had very quickly thrown it together for an impromptu birthday dinner party (for myself!) using just what I had within reach. (Note to God: Thank you for Ramon and Costco’s prepared meals!!!) I’ve since had a change of heart that says simplicity can be a good thing, and that’s why I’m publishing it today. Well…that and I have no ability to get out on the deck to do anything else but get wet for now!
(Click on any photo, then click again to enhance/enlarge it.)


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells:  As with many of the outdoor dining environments I create, this one started with full-length (90″ x 132″) white tablecloths from LinenTablecloth.com on the two 6-ft. folding tables kissed end-to-end. They give the table a crisp, clean, “white linen suit” look that can still be considered casual.


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells:  white resin chairs lined upWhite resin patio chairs add to the casual feel. Inexpensive as they are, they always look great neatly lined up in a row!


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells:  Multiple place settings


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells:  Single place setting with glass starfish plates, Rocco Bormioli glass chargersWhen I named this post Ocean Blue, there was a definite reason for it! Look how brilliantly blue!!! Thirteen-inch silver metal chargers are topped with a beautiful 12″ turquoise blue Bormioli Rocco Inca glass charger. The dinner plate is a cobalt blue glass plate from Pier 1. The AKCAM starfish salad and bread plates were purchased at Home Goods a couple of years ago. (To see these plates used in another tablescape with a slightly more formal feel, click HERE for “Surf & Turf Dinner Party”.)


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells: J.A. Henckels "Bellaserra" stainless flatware


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells:  Brilliant glass starfish plates in shades of blue or white from Home GoodsThese photos lend even more clarity to the beauty and depth of color on the table. Each place setting is a bit different with either a cobalt, turquoise or white mix-matched salad and bread plate. The flatware is J.A. Henckels “Bellaserra” stainless.


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells:  Cobalt blue stemware from Dollar TreeThis cobalt blue stemware from Dollar Tree never looked so good on one of my tables! It was the perfect complement to the dishes used!


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells:  White cotton napkin with initialSoft white cotton hemstitched napkins with our initial are simply folded.


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells:  seashells in multiple tall glass cylindersI get a lot of mileage out of these tall clear glass cylinders. Every year I find a new use for them, so I really feel I’m getting my hard-earned money’s worth. Ahem…make that Ramon’s hard-earned money! 😉 Here they are simply filled with every seashell I could put my hands on from around the house. The four cylinders are evenly spaced down the length of the table. (DESIGN NOTE: If you think you might want to extend a bit of the brilliant blue color into the cylinders, consider mixing in a scant few blue sea glass chips, dragon tears, or slivers of agate. You can purchase these items at craft stores like Hobby Lobby or Michael’s.)


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells:  turquoise, cobalt blue  & silver mercury glass votive holdersThese beautiful turquoise, cobalt and silver mercury glass votive holders are among my favorites! They were purchased at Village Gardens in Blue Springs, MO a few years ago. The color they turn with the candle flickering inside is amazing!!!


Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells:  white pillar candle with Z Gallerie seashell candle ringI bought a bunch of these fun seashell candle rings from Z Gallerie a few years ago. I don’t use them often, but they’re great for quick, easy decorating.

This tablescape would work nicely for a summertime birthday dinner party, lunch or brunch (minus the candles), rehearsal dinner, or even a casual, laid back wedding reception…especially if the happy couple’s honeymoon is somewhere balmy with sandy shores!

Other tablescapes on this site with a seashell/beach/nautical theme:
All-American Seafood Boil
Caribbean Queen
Flamingos in Paradise
Surf & Turf Dinner Party
Summer Breeze
Old Navy Seafood Cruise

I’ll be back next week with another surf- & sand-inspired tablescape for Cuisine Kathleen’s “Let’s Dish! – Summer Whimsy Tablescape Challenge”. If you’re looking for ideas for casual and fun summer tablescapes, be sure to join me! Meanwhile, this week I’m linking up with Christine from Rustic & Refined. Her new blog party is called “Table It!” I’ll also be linking up again with Susan from Between Naps on the Porch for “Tablescape Thursday”.


54 thoughts on “Ocean Blue – Starfish & Seashells

  1. Wow! The beach tablescape you “dredged up” just knocked my flip flops off. That’s one that would chase the blahs away on any rainy day.\ LOVE, LOVE the glass cylinders filled with shells, and the gorgeous starfish plates.


  2. Now, Alycia, when have you ever had a tablescape that wasn’t worthy of being published? This one is beautiful! I love the cobalt blue, against the crispness of the white. It feels so breezy and refreshing!


  3. This is absolutely beautiful and I can’t understand why you would say it isn’t worthy of you. Everything looks so unique with the abundance of shells and the pretty starfish plates. You always go “big” as in those awesome glass cylinders and this tablescape is truly amazing!


  4. I’m so glad you changed your mind about sharing this lovely table. What fortunate guests to have been in attendance. It might be ‘simple’, but it’s simply gorgeous.


  5. Such a fresh, cool look on your table. Love the layers of blue. Those starfish plates are a lot of fun. Perfect outdoor setting…


  6. Oh my gosh, your table is just so blue-tiful, my friend! Those glass cylinders get me every time with how versatile and stunning they are. I’ve said it time and again…you do the table and I’ll make the food, then we can party! xo


  7. I agree with the others, this is a fabulous tablescape because of the tall sparkling glass cylinders and the unique starfish plates. It is very unusual and striking. I don’t think you could ever set a poor table. This is a setting no one could forget.


  8. This is what you throw together with just the stuff you can reach??? Of course, I forget who I am talking to. You are the queen! I am in love with the blue. Cobalt is one of my weaknesses and this is beautiful. Dianne


  9. Well this is a very pretty table! Such a pretty range of colors in blue. Love the star fish shaped plates- especially how they curl up and those cylinders- big wow! That’s a lot of sea shells!
    Wishing you a Very Happy Birthday (tomorrow)! XO, Liz


  10. I know what you mean about the weather. It’s wet here, too. Every day. Rain. Sometimes twice. Or three times. Ugh! It must be nice to have pictures of former tablescapes to post! it’s gorgeous! Those starfish plates are amazing, and all the shades of blue look like the ocean. Why don’t I ever see stemware like that at Dollar Tree? I love those! The cylinders are very versatile and can give you so many different looks. What a terrific investment Ramon made in those. Ha! I’m not a huge beach-lover, but your table makes me want to be. 🙂

    I hope your weather gets sunny and warm very soon!


  11. Those cylinders were a great investment! They are stunning with the seashells. Love all those blues and just coming back from a shore vacation, they truly capture the spirit of the beach. Came home to rain as well so happy to escape back to the shore through your stunning tablescape, Alycia!


  12. Good grief girl, you didn’t think this was blog worthy???? It is GORGEOUS!!!! The starfish dishes are fabulous and I LOVE the tall vases. I may have to pick up a few of them too! I love every detail. Hope your rain stops soon so you can get back outside!!!!


  13. Oh, Alycia, how could you have doubted your tablescaping prowess? This table is exquisite! From the crisp white tablecloth to the amazing dish stack (LOVE all the various blues and am drooling over those starfish plates!), to the glorious tall cylinders full of shells, plus the flatware: it’s all such a treat for the eyes. Bravo!! And thank you for sharing. Rosie @ The Magic Hutch


  14. I relate to the part about not posting a table because it does’t meet the standard you set.

    Having said that, I will say that YOUR standard is very high! I love this table. It’s one of my favorites that you have done, and that says a lot. The blue and white is so crisp and cool together, and I love the whimsy of the dishes.

    Just wonderful!


  15. Sweeeeeet Table!!! Those tall cylinders really add drama all lined up! Love the blue and white color scheme and those pretty wine glasses….I am soooo hitting the dollar tree this week! and thank you for sending people my way. You are one of the most generous bloggers/women out there and it shows!


  16. I can’t believe you didn’t post this before, it is stunning! You know I want those glass starfish plates, just gorgeous! Also, I have serious shell envy! The blue stemware certainly doesn’t look like it came from the Dollar store either! I just love it all!


  17. Alycia, this table is every bit as gorgeous as any other high-styled tablescape! I’m glad you’ve had a change of mind insofar as your thoughts on it. It proves that one doesn’t have to always have the finest of the fine to be able to set a great table. It tickles me to no end to be able to make inexpensive items look so grand. It’s all in the attitude and how you carry it off – great table, great attitude!
    I’m kinda wishin’ for rain so I can take a day off from my obsession in the garden!


  18. I swear you can even make me love Summer 😉
    What a gorgeous setting… until you brought it up I not even realised “we” were on the porch :D. In fact in many pictures I get the same feeling one has when walking through those Sea Exhibitions. Amazing!
    I’m in dire agony wondering what kind of setting to choose for dear daughter’s Confirmation Dinner. With her all can go and if no theme goes it’s ok too…
    Love this and the way you pull it off and even weather bows to you.
    Thank you for sharing,


  19. Alycia,
    HaPpY BiRtHdAy, dear friend!!!
    I feel totally refreshed after viewing this blue tablescape!!!
    Gorgeous curves to the starfish dinnerware!!!
    The Dollar Tree glasses appear to be fine stemware on your festive tablescape!!!
    Hopefully, the sun will come out and chase those dreary clouds away!


  20. Are you kidding Alycia??!!!…This table is gorgeous!…I would have hit the publish button so quickly!!!….I love those “starfish” accent plates…the blue color scheme is so magnificent with the outdoor setting…so, so very beautiful…you are one talented person!!!


  21. Seriously, you didn’t want to share this table? Surely you jest! This is gorgeous and the shades of blue are stunning. If I had put together a table this beautiful I probably would repost it continuously. I am in love with those tall vases. For some reason I can see them filled with cake truffles!!!


  22. Ocean blues. Quite refreshing. Love the star fish plates. Very pretty shells in the cylinders. Definitely makes one want to kick off their flip-flops and stick toes in the sand. Turn up the Beach Boys tunes. Surfs up baby!


  23. Seriously lady.. I’m like good gosh.. her talents never cease to amaze me.. those star fish plates are awesome..(where on earth do you find these items.). this setting definitely puts you in a beachy mood…


  24. So very charming and evocative of some of Summer’s best moments. The colours and the arrangements are lovely, and just the smooth, symmetrical lacing of the chairs down the length of that pristine white table—what a perfect picture of welcome and hospitality and relaxing with friends.

    You have no idea how much I NEEDED this today—We were packed to leave on Saturday morning—bags and bags of clothes, games, crafts, and a lot of home-cooked things for “our turn” to cook dinner, plus infinite Tups of spreads and dips and peanut-butter variations to go with crudité and fruits, for our BIG family gathering on the Gulf coast beach. 36, including GRANDS of all ages, but DH had a dire medical emergency which sent us dashing out of the house to the hospital, from which we returned last night.

    He’s much better, and recovering well, but just wading through all those hopeful boxes and bags, all ready to share and enjoy with our group—that was a sad.reminder of what we’ve been missing all this week.

    Your own BEACH beautifuls have brightened our disappointment and given us a bit of the beach right here on this rainy day. I love your cheerful energy and bright, welcoming scenes.



  25. To say this table setting is stunning would not be the correct words. It is beyond stunning. I love the starfish and all of the various blues. How in the world did you ever get so many sea shells?


  26. Fabulous! While I love all your table elements especially the tall vases with shells and the fantastic blue starfish dishes, I am amazed at how terrific you’ve made simple white resin chairs look against your table! I’ve seen you use these in other t’scapes and they always look wonderful! Shows that even inexpensive items can be put to use with the fancier stuff!



  27. Oh, I am so happy that you did post this table. I plan to steal every single idea for the beach place – lol!! Seriously, I love everything, especially, the starfish plates! Wow!!


  28. Happy Birthday lovely friend! Many blessings to you today and always!
    Wow, your beach style table in the garden is amazing! I really love all the blues you’ve used and all the Shell centerpieces, they’re awesome Alycia. My fave, the starfish plates…love, love them!
    Have a great weekend ahead.


  29. Alycia, what happened?
    Why do you feel it’s not worth while publishing this great post?
    This s a beautiful table setting and the ocean blue color gives such an elegant summer touch.
    A wonderful inspiration for a table setting at the seaside or in a nice garden.


  30. I adore colored glass dishes and always am on the lookout for pretty ones, so I just love this tablescape. What neat starfish plates–I’ve never seen any like them before–just perfect for this table design!


  31. I am all for digging up old posts and recycling them, especially when they are THAT beautiful. Simple seems just right in the summer when it is hot and humid outside. It is all stunning Alycia, as always. 🙂


  32. OMGosh! As usual, Alycia, your tablescape is gorgeous, but I LOVE those starfish plates. They are so unique and beautiful. Your plate stack is perfection, and those cylinders look so great, filled with seashells and marching down the center of the table. laurie


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  34. I am way behind visiting! There is something about a cobalt table that mesmerizes me…gorgeous table, Alycia. Those cylinders are awesome! I love everything about this table. Do you think summer is setting in…I kind of got used to that cooler weather…now to acclimate myself to the stifling heat and humidity.


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  39. This table is gorgeous! The starfish plates in the beautiful shades of blue, the sparkling silver chargers topped with another lovely turquoise charger, the cylinders with your fabulous collection of seashells in them, they are all gorgeous! How could you think this table is not gorgeous. If you have any other little gems like this one tucked away you had better bring them out and share them too. Gorgeous I say, just gorgeous!!!


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