Informally Formal: Marrying modern and classic in your table setting

My segment on yesterday’s “Better Kansas City” show on KCTV-5 was all about “informally formal” entertaining at home! Just click this link to the “Better Kansas City” website to  enjoy the 4-minute video clip!: Marrying modern and classic in your table setting

As mentioned in the video clip, our Easter dinner tablescape was, I think, a good example of informally formal design. We simultaneously celebrated my son’s 39th birthday, and I wanted both my son and the rest of the family to feel special – because they are! But this was a day I wanted to be able to relax a little, too, so instead of formal china and crystal, I pulled out some terrific Pier 1 plates to fill the bill. This tablescape, minus the obvious nods to Easter, would be perfect for any Springtime event including birthdays, Mother’s Day, ladies luncheons, bridal or baby showers, or even engagement parties.

 

 

 

 

I’ve not used these beautiful Pier 1 plates since 4 years ago when I posted a piece called “The Bluebird Special“. While certainly far from what might be construed as traditionally formal, they have a simultaneously staid/laid back look. The woven square chargers and faux bamboo flatware lend texture and an organic feel to the place setting.  The yellow undertones of the flatware complement the bird on the plate as well as the floral centerpieces. The lavender napkin is fashioned in a traditional pyramid fold, and the green goblets are from Dollar Tree.

 

I enjoy creating specialized menus on my computer for at-home events. This colorful one in shades of yellow, purple and white with a bright pink clip leans to the side of informality. The colors complement the florals.

 

 

 

 

 

I might have gone a little wild with all the florals this year, but they were all so pretty! Our generous across-the-street neighbors allowed me to snip from their lavishly blooming lilac bush to complete the springtime floral designs of pink & yellow tulips, Mardi gras Solidago, and alstroemeria in white vases. The florals extended down the length of a fresh moss runner dotted with moss bird nests from Home Finishings. (HINT: If the smell of moss wrinkles your nose, open it up and air it out for a couple of days before use.) For additional height, texture, a burst of color, and the pure drama of it all, I filled a white glass vase with forsythia branches and placed it at the very end of the table. Note that the full-length white tablecloth from LinenTablecloth.com is knotted at the end for safety as well as a cool contemporary look.

 

The alternating pink and lavender satin chair sashes almost didn’t make the cut. My husband thought the plain white stretch chair covers were sufficient. I, however, begged to differ. When he saw the chairs with the sashes, high fives and mea culpas were in order. (We agreed they made the chairs resemble Easter eggs!) Depending on the type of event you are hosting, chair sashes may or may not be appropriate. It’s up to you!

When planning your next Springtime event, keep in mind who your guests are, what feeling you’d like the space to evoke and, as always, just what level of formality is within your comfort zone! As alluded to in the video clip, formality may be circling the bowl, but it ain’t dead yet! 😉

For more photos of tablescapes seen in the video clip:
“Blurred Lines With Shades of Pink”
“Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous”
“My Sister’s Wedding China”

A few other Spring tablescapes on this blog you may enjoy include:
“Springtime In Paris”
“Patisserie de Paris”
“Easter Brunch”
“Pinky Peter Cottontail”
“Barton’s Easter Brunch”
“All A’Bloom For Spring”
“Spring Has Sprung”
“Welcome Back, Joel”
“Peony Power”
“Tulips in the IHOP Hour”
“Float Like A Butterfly”
“Purple & Pastel”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Dorothy By Any Other Name: Purple and Cream 80th Birthday

There have been many remarkable Dorothys to walk this earth. Among them the brainy Dorothy Johnson-Vaughn (NASA mathematician recently depicted in the movie “Hidden Figures”), the brazen Dorothy Height (women’s and civil rights activist), the brilliant Dorothy Hamill (ice skater), the beguiling Dorothy Dandridge (actress), the bubbly Dorothy who captured our hearts along the Yellow Brick Road, the beleaguered Dorothy Tucker-Roberts (my poor hairstylist of 20+ years for whom one must feel sympathy having to put up with me!), and finally the blissful, beautiful and beloved Mrs. Dorothy J. Knight, the honoree for this lovely celebration. When my high school friend, Audrey, asked me to craft a head table with the colors and flowers her Mother adored to celebrate her 80 birthday, I was most humbled.

 

Mrs. Knight’s birthday celebration was held in the auditorium at the Bruce R. Watkins Cultural Heritage in Kansas City, Missouri.

 

 

 

 

 

I created a dramatic centerpiece using a silver faux manzanita tree branch adorned with various hanging crystals and cream spray roses. I placed it on a round mirror to reflect back the sparkle, shine and movement of the crystals. A cluster of four standard size julep cups filled with cream roses, spider mums, baby’s breath, and miniature chrysanthemums. Satellite miniature juleps each held a single rose surrounded by baby’s breath and a few mini chrysanthemums.

 

 

Each place setting at the table included a mirrored charger, creamy dishes, lovely heirloom flatware, and a cream colored napkin emerging from a silver pew cone, also known as a cherub cone. (Other posts on this blog incorporating silver pew cones as napkin holders include “Purple & Pastel” and “Pretty in Pink”.) I placed a personal set of salt & pepper shakers at the top of each place setting.

 

 

 

The creamy ivory rosette table runner contrasts with the royal purple full-length tablecloth and complements the chair caps that are placed over ivory stretch chair covers and all tied up with a lavender satin sash.

Family members worked hard to plan and create the remaining atmosphere. They put a lot of love into it! To play on Shakespeare’s words in Romeo & Juliet, a Dorothy by any other name would not be as sweet as Mrs. Dorothy J. Knight.

For more birthday celebrations on this blog:
“88 Years & 88 Keys”
“Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous”
“The Party She Deserves”
“Purple and Pastel”
“Blue & White 30th Birthday”
“Purple + Green = Happy Birthday!”
“Happy Birthday, Barf!”
and see FIVE additional birthday celebrations on the “Birthdays” tab!

 

88 Years and 88 Keys


This is a 2-minute compilation video of the birthday celebration.
See still photos below.

 

My Mom very recently celebrated her 88th birthday. Here’s the thing, though: In no way does this woman personify the “typical” 88-year-old. Although she retired from the Missouri Senate about 6 years ago to care for my ailing Dad, she never really retired. She still has a seat on several boards, is active in her church and community, shops like a demon, and continues to pick up various civic awards. In fact, I had to postpone her annual birthday luncheon by 5 days so that she could attend an awards luncheon on her actual birthday! The Starr Women’s Hall of Fame Induction & Award Luncheon had an impressive guest list of about 1,000 and featured keynote speaker actor/activist/author Ashley Judd (so nice, so pretty, and a powerful speaker). It was a different but fun way to celebrate.

Sen. Yvonne S. Wilson (Ret.)

Mom entering the stage as she is introduced.

 

Sen. Yvonne S. Wilson (ret.)

Mom with her medal

 

Sen. Yvonne S. Wilson (ret.)

Proud moment for my husband and me to be there with my Mom!

 

L to R: my cousin Dee, me, my Mom, Ashley Judd, my Aunt Vivienne, my niece Yvonne, and my sister Berishia

 

How on earth could I possibly follow something as cool as that??!?!??!!? Answer: Don’t even try to compete! Just do what you or, as the kids say, “Just do you.”

The invitations were the inspiration for the tablescape. My Mom has always loved piano music (she endured me tickling the ivories for years!), and so I came up with the idea to pair the 88 keys of the piano with the celebration of her 88 years. I bought 3-part invitations at Hobby Lobby, but decided to create the actual invitation insert myself on plain white cardstock. You’ll see what I did with the other part later.

 

We moved the keyboard upstairs from the basement level to the library for our featured pianist, 10-year-old music student Gabriella Howell, to regale the ladies as they arrived for cocktail hour. (This is Gabriella with her mother, my friend, Angelynn Howell.)

 

 

 

Each guest stopped in the foyer to greet Mom and have an individual photo taken with her. Guests included longtime friends and family. I asked guests to please wear black, white, or a combination of the two for the event so that Mom would stand out in her brilliant red outfit.

 

The dining table was, as almost always during inclement weather, set up in the living room. In keeping with our 88 Keys theme, I chose black & white striped stretch chair covers from LinenTablecloth.com. I’ve used these same chair covers in other diverse tablescapes including Hometown Pride: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos and Blurred Lines With Shades of Pink. The invitation and menu had beautiful black & white damask, so I represented that in the table runner, also from LinenTablecloth.com.

 

The tablecloth used on each of the two 6-ft. tables is simply a white washable 90″ x 132″ poly from LinenTablecloth.com. I loosely tie the ends to keep guests from tripping over the generously proportioned cloth.

 

Nothing pops on black and white quite like red does, so I put together five arrangements of deep red regular size and spray roses along with fluffy, fragrant carnations in cut crystal rose bowls. Simple, but elegant.

 

Each place setting began with a black charger in a contemporary cut topped with a simple square cut B. Smith plate. Black “San Remo” flatware is paired with a cut crystal-handled luncheon knife. “Longchamps” stemware completes the setting.

 

Here is where I used the intended invitation insert…for the menu! I couldn’t get them to go through my computer, so I MacGyver’ed it and printed the menu onto plain white cardstock which was then cut to size and clipped to the backdrop with a tiny black clothespin from Michaels. The red grosgrain ribbon and rhinestone buckle were included with the invitations, so I used them to add a dash of color to the menu. The menus were placed atop a plain black napkin set on the luncheon plates.

 

After-luncheon coffee and dessert service was set up on the breakfast bar. Our kitchen is mercifully decorated in black & white, so everything worked well together through the semi-open space.

 

I found painted white wood numbers in the clearance bin at Hobby Lobby.

 

The dollar store now has cool black & white striped paper napkins!!!

 

I made vanilla cupcakes with light buttercream frosting sprinkled with red & black sugar confetti. They are displayed on white Ralph Lauren “Pavillion” cake stands.

 

No one leaves our home after an event without some sort of favor in hand! I baked sugar cookies, some in musical note shapes and some stamped with musical notes using black gel dye. The black & white striped cardboard favor boxes from Michaels each got a splatter of notes, too. I stuffed them with black & white crinkled & shredded paper.

 

Happy 88th Birthday, Mom! You know I so enjoy being able to host you and your friends each year. Here’s wishing you many, many more!

If you’d like to see previous birthday celebrations for my Mom:
“Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous”,
or the “Birthdays” tab above for more celebrations!
One more you might really like on this site:
“The Party She Deserves”

Happy April, everyone!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Confectionery Christmas

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – table signageI was pleased to participate as both a designer and one of 4 workshop presenters this past weekend at “Garlands & Gatherings”, a benefit event for Hope Haven of Cass County, MO. Hope Haven provides shelter, advocacy and support services to women and children in our area who have fallen victim to domestic violence or sexual assault. The Saturday morning brunch brought out a nice group of women looking to support the cause, have a little fun, and learn a few tips on holiday decorating (Karen Mills, Interiors by Design and me), personal style (Jennifer Niehouse, It’s So U!), and cooking trends (Jean Ostby, Williams-Sonoma). Over the next 3 weeks, I’ll be posting the tablescapes I designed for the event with the hope that you will enjoy them as much as the benefit attendees did!

To kick it off, this first table is something fun for kids. The pastel/candy/polka-dot theme would be great for a Christmastime birthday party or just to make the kids feel extra-special at their assigned Christmas Day dinner table!

Please pardon the photo quality. The lighting wasn’t the best, and I was under a tremendous time crunch.
(Click on any photo, then click again to enlarge/enhance it.)

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – pastel tablescape for kidsAlthough it generally would not be practical to employ a full-length linen for a children’s table, I used one here to cover the ugly legs of the folding table and to hide scads of storage boxes! The 90″ x 132″ white tablecloth on this table for 8 is from LinenTablecloth.com. (Alternatives to a linen: [1] go bare, [2] use an inexpensive sheet, [3] wrap the ugly legs in festive ribbon, [4] add Christmas elf stockings to the legs stuffed with gift tissue to make them stay up & cover the leg all the way to the top, and then “gift wrap” the table surface.)

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – Multiple place settings

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – single place settingI chose to go with paper and plastic goods for this kid-friendly tablescape. Each place setting begins with a colorful polka-dot “placemat” which is actually a piece of felt from Hobby Lobby. Very inexpensive at just 50¢ apiece. Next are Dollar Store plates in pastel blue and purple topped with a ring pop to add a little color, fun, and a bigger sugar high for the kids. 😉

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – Flatware, napkin, cup collageI used various colored flatware to add to the colorful nature of tablescape. A trio of soft paper napkins are tucked beneath each dinner plate.

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – Centerpiece

 

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – "marshmallow" Christmas tree

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – curling ribbon "tree skirt"The inspiration for this tablescape was the pair of “marshmallow and candy” Christmas trees I found at Hobby Lobby. I set them atop a clear glass pedestal for added height and then created a “tree skirt” using scads of curling ribbon. (What a pain in the patootie!)

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – Candy in apothecary jars collageKeeping with the confectionery theme, I added clear glass apothecary jars down the center of the table filled with all kinds of colorful candies. The swirl pops amidst the Pixie Stix look very much like the inedible “marshmallow” swirl pops from Hobby Lobby in the very center of the table that add even more height to the overall look. (NOTE: If you don’t want to risk your nice glass apothecaries, try using various sizes of clear Mason jars or jars that previously held jelly, mayo, pickles, etc.)

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – pastel nutcrackersI also found these wonderful pastel nutcrackers at Hobby Lobby to place at each end of the centerpiece and stand sentry over the candy!

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – Pastel chair with candy swag

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – ribbon, candy & ornament chair swagI created this fun look by covering ordinary banquet chairs with a white stretchy cover and a bubble gum pink satin sash from LinenTablecloth.com. I then used a length of yellow satin ribbon to affix a melange of candy ornaments to the center. The polka-dot ribbon (Hobby Lobby) was the final touch to tie the chairs in with the dots on the marshmallow trees and the placemats. (Chair covers for a kid’s party? With these easy stretch covers, clean up is a breeze! Just toss ’em in the laundry!!!)

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – Gift bag collageAs a final touch, I added a couple of gift bags adorned with candy cane ornaments. The paper gift tissue is a mix of pink and polka dots.

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – Ebony Smith-Jackson of EAJ Events helping outBig shout out to Ebony Jackson of EAJ Events In Lee’s Summit for coming to lend a helping hand in the 6+ hour setup!

 

Alycia Nichols, Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, “Confectionery Christmas” – set up for Garlands & Gatherings, a benefit event for Hope Haven of Cass County, MOLast, just for laughs, here’s a picture of me – no makeup, pancake flat hair, and my “out in public” back brace bulging beneath my sweater – as setup began. Goodness knows that back brace needed to be on, because when it was my turn to present…..well, just watch this 90-second video!

 

AND MY BACK & SHOULDER PAID A HEFTY PRICE FOR THE CRAZY SHENANIGANS THAT LITTLE BURST OF ENERGY BROUGHT ON!!! 😦
I’m back on my walker now to get around and having sleepless nights from the pain. But it sure was fun while it lasted! 🙂

More kid-friendly Christmas-themed tablescapes on this site:
Pink & Purple Chocolate Christmas
Sugar High
Frosty the Snowman
Kaleidoscope Christmas

Parties I’m linking up with this week:
Between Naps on the Porch – Tablescape Thursday
Rustic & Refined – Table It!
Style Sisters – Centerpiece Wednesday
How Sweet the Sound – Pink Saturday

Cupcake Colors

Ever have one of those days? Mine was yesterday. I accidentally erased half the photos for this post off my camera before transferring them to my computer. So…..I’m just going to put on my big girl panties, dry my mascara-stained face, and hope you guys don’t fire me for posting it anyway!

 

INSPIRATION: Cupcake placemats from Pier 1 purchased several seasons ago.

INSPIRATION: Cupcake placemats from Pier 1 purchased several seasons ago.

It is rare that I create tablescapes suitable for children, but every once in a while I go there. This tablescape would be great for a birthday or any kid-friendly celebration.
(Click on any photo, then click again to enhance/enlarge it.)

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Full deck

 

 

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Full tableThis children’s table for 6 starts with a 90″ x 132″ hot pink/fuchsia 100% polyester tablecloth from YourChairCovers.com. Because it’s polyester, any stains generally lift right out with a little presoak treatment. The easy-care white stretch chair covers are from LinenTablecloth.com.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Place settingEach place setting begins with two placemats. The first is a fun fringed and polka-dotted rectangular placemat from Pier 1 that drapes off the side of the table. The top placemat is the cupcake-shaped placemat made of heavy-duty felt, also purchased at Pier 1 and featuring a cherry on top. The lime green plates are from the Dollar Tree.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - napkin in paper cupcake baking cupSomething fun for kids young and old is the unique napkin fold. I rolled 20″ x 20″ hot pink/fuchsia napkins from LinenTablecloth.com into tight mounds that, when placed in a colorful paper cupcake cup, resemble frosted cupcakes! (Click HERE and scroll to Tip #33 for a step-by-step tutorial on how to create these napkins that are often referred to as the “rosebud fold.”) This can also be done with a sturdy paper napkin, but the results usually aren’t quite as pretty.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Flatware & stemwareThe hot pink-handled flatware is from T.J. Maxx, and the yellow-orange plastic stemware (lets the youngsters feel grown up!) is from Old Time Pottery. To add a little more flair and fun, I used one orange and one hot pink straw.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Centerpiece

 

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Centerpiece curling ribbonThe centerpiece is fun and colorful for kids, but very inexpensive to create. I used clear ginger jars (you know the kind you get when somebody sends your FTD flowers or that you can find in overabundance at thrift stores everywhere!) and just dumped in loads of curling ribbon in different colors. I allowed some of the ribbon to overflow from the ginger jar and onto the table. To add a little more height and a touch of whimsy, I added an oversized orange Gerbera daisy from Pier 1‘s summer clearance a couple of years ago. Very simple, and very budget-friendly at about $10 total for the entire centerpiece!

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - View of buffet from dining table

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Dessert buffet tableThe dessert buffet is covered with a 108″ round hot pink/fuchsia poly tablecloth from LinenTablecloth.com. I used two more of the polka-dotted placemats to carry part of the dining table decor to the buffet. (Note to my “Art of Tablescaping” students…this is another example of subtly but effectively carrying the theme throughout the room/space.)

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - ceramic cupcake holders with condiments

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Cupcake & Sundae toppings in ceramic cupcake holdersI found these cute ceramic cupcake holders at a local wholesale place. I think they’re meant to be floral vessels, but I thought they’d be great for holding various toppings for sundaes and cupcakes.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Candy collageA raging sugar high is the key to a successful kids’ party! The same type of clear ginger jar vases as used on the guest table are used here on the cupcake/candy bar to display Pixie Stix, Dum-Dums lollipops, Good ‘n’ Plenty licorice, and colorful gumballs. Just add a ladle for scooping!

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Cupcake collageCupcakes are displayed on stacked glass cake stands from Hobby Lobby. (Sometimes it’s fun to just have the plain cupcakes and let the kids decorate them with whatever toppings they want…if you’re up to the inevitable mess!) I even found some candies that are actually called Cupcake Bites for this party!!! And notice the corner of a stack of cupcake napkins at the upper left. That’s one of those detail photos that was erased from my camera. Aaaaarrrggghhhhh!!!!

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Buffet table collageOK, sorry again folks, but this is where it gets really bad. Since I lost those photos, I did what I could to crop and enhance some details for you. Not my best work, but hopefully you’ll get the gist. I found the oversized metal cupcake with the words “Sweet Treat” in the clearance aisle at Hobby Lobby last year. Perfect! Drinks are dispensed from inexpensive plastic pitchers with color-coordinated lids. (Lemonade from the yellow, limeade from the green, and fruit punch from the pink.) You can just barely make it out that those are giant marshmallow lollipops displayed in yet another clear glass ginger jar in the lower right corner.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - Paper lanterns on curling ribbon

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Cupcake Colors - multi-colored paper lanternsLast, but certainly not least, is the display of multi-colored paper lanterns in varying sizes. I used color-coordinated curling ribbon to hang the lanterns at varied heights for visual interest. Most of the lanterns here are from the new collection at LinenTablecloth.com. They come in 9 different colors, 3 sizes, and are super affordable! (Just be sure to hang ’em high enough that the boys can’t make piñatas out of them!)

So there you have it…a kids’ party that is in overdrive on color, texture and high-fructose desserts, but easy on the pocketbook!

Other kid-friendly posts on this site:
Pink & Purple Chocolate Christmas
Sugar High Payback
Checkered Christmas
Kaleidoscope Christmas
Frosty the Snowman

Other posts on this site featuring the “rosebud” napkin fold:
Mother’s Day Luncheon in Pink
Springtime in Paris Mother’s Day Buffet
Au Revoir!

Other posts on this site featuring paper lanterns:
Under a Paper Moon
Butterfly Kaleidoscope
Blue & White 30th Birthday
Easter Brunch

I’ll once again be joining Christine at Rustic & Refined for the 14th installment of “Table It!“, Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for “Tablescape Thursday”, and Beverly at How Sweet the Sound for “Pink Saturday”. I hope you’ll join me for more tablescaping ideas from talented bloggers the world over.

Spring Green

Join me starting at 6:00 CDT tonight for
Cuisine Kathleen‘s Birds/Eggs/Nests Tablescape Challenge!!!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Full Centerpiece view from side of table

INSPIRATION: Flowers left over from my Mom’s 85th birthday luncheon (Click on photo to go to this post.)

I had a ton of flowers left over from the ladies’ luncheon I hosted for my Mom’s birthday a couple of weeks ago, so I put together a quickie tablescape to demonstrate how some of these same flowers could be used in a less formal but nonetheless pretty luncheon or brunch setting for Spring or Summer. This setting would also be ideal for a baby shower (especially if the gender is unknown!), special adult birthday, bridal shower or luncheon, engagement party, Mother’s Day gathering, rehearsal dinner, or even a garden club get-together.
(Click on any photo, then click again to enhance/enlarge it.)

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Spring Green: Full table from end

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Spring Green: Full table from side viewAs with the luncheon, full-length 90″ x 132″ white tablecloths from LinenTablecloth.com were used. The table this time, however, is configured to seat 8 instead of 12, with the two 6-ft. tables kissed together lengthwise to create an “almost square.” (Consider this table arrangement in rooms where multiple tables will be set up, too. A mix of rounds, “squares” and oblongs is very pleasing to the eye, helps settle the problem of too few or too many place settings at a table, and can offer varied centerpiece opportunities!)

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Spring Green: Multiple place settings

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Spring Green: Single place settingThe place settings here are quite pared down compared to my Mom’s luncheon! A square rattan charger from Tuesday Morning anchors the setting. A very feminine and pretty white scrolled plate from Home Goods is set out for lunch.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Spring Green: Napkin fold, Stemware, Flatware, Rim Shot collageA cotton napkin in spring green and white from Stein Mart is simply tented and placed atop each plate. The flatware – also used in last week’s “All A’Bloom in Pink for Spring” tablescape – is Hampton Forge’s “Bamboo Mirror” stainless steel pattern. The glassware is from Dollar Tree.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Spring Green: Full centerpiece

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Spring Green: Centerpiece pitcher, moss pot and plater collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Spring Green: Floral collageAll of the flowers needed to be re-cut anyway to keep them fresh longer, so that was the perfect opportunity to rearrange them into different vessels. Lined moss-covered flower pots make beautiful small arrangements to complement the centralized large whitewashed metal pitcher. Whitewashed metal planters flank each end of the table-length centerpiece, with all of it anchored by a sheet of moss. (Flowers and greenery: white spider mums, peachy pink roses, peachy pink spray roses, fragrant stock, greenish white carnations, seeded eucalyptus, goldenrod, leatherleaf and variegated pittosporum)

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Spring Green: Cluster of porcelain birds

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Spring Green: Porcelain birdDecorative white birds from Michael’s and bird salt & pepper shakers from Pier 1 dot the centerpiece. Small birds from Michael’s also rest at the tip of the forks.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Spring Green: Chairs with LinenTablecloth.com stretch coversFinally, the same white stretch chair covers from LinenTablecloth.com are used, this time without the white rosette chair cap or satin sash. Reducing the layers of fabric on the chairs serves to further reduce the complexity of the overall tablescape.

So, there you have it. From over-the-top fab one week to sweet, lovely and a whole lot easier to accomplish while maintaining quality results the next!

Other posts on this site featuring Spring tablescapes:
“Spring Has Sprung”
“The Bluebird Special”
“Daffodilyicious”
“Purple for Spring”

“Zen Garden”
“Mum’s the Word”
“Rolling Fields of Green”
“Taste of Wine Buffet”
“Goin’ Green for Spring”
“Springtime in Paris Mother’s Day Buffet”
“Peony Power”
“Moss & Manzanitas”
“Daisy Crazy”
“French Poodle”
“All A’Bloom in Pink for Spring”

“Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous”
and the “Spring” tab above for a couple of fun Springtime tablescapes

In addition to Cuisine Kathleen‘s Spring Challenge (challenging us to present tables using birds, eggs and/or nests), I’ll be joining Susan again this week for “Tablescape Thursday”. I hope you’ll come visit these fine parties for a lot of inspiration and a whole lot of tablescaping fun!

 

 

Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous – Happy Birthday, Mom!

There are certain moments in our lifetime that simply need to be extravagant. Yesterday, in celebration of 85 years of touching the lives of so many in only a way my Mom can, was one of those moments.

INSPIRATION: My Mom. Ever poised, elegant, and ahead of her time, but much more than that...forever young!

INSPIRATION: My Mom at 85. Ever poised, elegant, and ahead of her time; but much more than that…forever young!

If I tried to put my Mother’s lengthy & powerful resume on this post, I would crash the system. She has always been a go-getter in every sense of the word. I have only to aspire to her greatness in this life. For all that she is, all that she does, and all that from her has spurred me on, I wanted to bring a few ladies together again this year to celebrate. Mom has graciously consented to allow me to share her special day with all of you. Enjoy!
Click on any photo, then click again to enlarge/enhance it.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Table positioned lengthwise

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - table from side view

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - multiple place settings

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - white rosette chairs & runner from LinenTablecloth.com

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Table linens & chair cover collage To create this spring green and white birthday tablescape, I used all linens from LinenTablecloth.com. The tables are cloaked in 90″ x 132″ white tablecloths with a pair of beautiful white rosette runners. The chairs start with a fabulously utilitarian white stretch banquet chair cover topped with a white satin rosette chair cap. They are finished with a flowing white satin chair sash tied in a prim and proper bow. This look is perfect for weddings, birthdays, and all special occasions in need of an exquisite feminine touch! An extravagant look for a not-so-extravagant price point!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Full place setting The 12 individual place settings begin with a silver metal charger. The Noritake “Whitebrook” china, embellished with white flowers and grey scrolls, is on loan from my sister who co-hosted the luncheon.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Stemware, napkin, favor collage LinenTablecloth.com napkins in tea green serve as a lovely backdrop to the rose-topped favor boxes. The stemware for water and lemonade is basic glass from Old Time Pottery.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Menu   Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Bread basket, S&P shakers, plate of food collageI created the 3-layer menus for the luncheon on our home computer. I used a photo of my Mom in her 20s as the watermark, mimicking the look of the invitations. I actually found the strength to do all the food preparation, too, with the exception of the rolls (Costco…those things are tasty!!!) and the cake! My sister and my friend, Barbara, expertly plated the food to presentation perfection!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Centerpiece view from end of table   Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Full Centerpiece view from side of table   Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Centerpiece floral collage   Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Moss dog with floral basket   Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Dog collageThe centerpiece….OH, that centerpiece!!! I wanted each guest to be able to enjoy a little bit all the way down the table, so I put together four medium-sized fresh florals (white roses, cream spray roses, white spider mums, seeded eucalyptus, leatherleaf and goldenrod) in silver julep cups, two smaller versions in miniature juleps, glass pilsner vases topped with white faux rose balls that extended slightly into the vases for a little drama, and then two moss covered dogs. Yes…DOGS! They represent my parents’ beloved dog, Cupcake, who is my Mother’s constant companion. I slipped a small glass votive into the little basket the dogs are carrying, jammed in some wet oasis, and then filled it with flowers. A really FUN and unusual centerpiece item that added whimsy to the overall look!   Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Coffee Service collageJust across the way from the dining table I set up a silver tray with coffee service for after lunch.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Guest book table collage

Clockwise from upper left: My Mom with my social butterfly niece, Von; with my stylish cousin, Dee, whose scarf reminded us of movie stars from the 50s and 60s; with my cousin Cynthia, whose fabulous gloves boasted bows at the wrist, and; with my beautiful inside & out cousin Madeline from my Daddy's side of the family.

Clockwise from upper left: My Mom with my social butterfly niece, Von; with my stylish cousin, Dee, whose scarf reminded us of movie stars from the 50s and 60s; with my cousin Cynthia, whose fabulous gloves boasted bows at the wrist, and; with my beautiful inside & out cousin Madeline from my Daddy’s side of the family.

Clockwise from left: Mom with her baby sister, Vivienne; with my stepdaughter, Robyn, who wore her hair as a fascinator instead of the actual fascinator hat (very clever!), and; my sweet friend & neighbor, Barbara.

Clockwise from left: Mom with her baby sister, Vivienne; with my stepdaughter, Robyn, who wore her hair as a fascinator instead of the actual fascinator hat (very clever!), and; my sweet friend & neighbor, Barbara.

Mom with my cousin, Irene, who was stunning in red & black. Check out those fishnet gloves and fabulous shoes!!!

Mom with my cousin, Irene, who was stunning in red & black. Check out those fishnet gloves and fabulous shoes!!!

Mom with my sister, Berishia

Mom with my sister, Berishia, who is a cowgirl through and through as you can tell by the hat!

Mom and me...and yes, we both just happened to show up in blue!

Mom and me…and yes, we both just happened to show up in blue!

As guests arrived they were invited to sign the guest book set up in the foyer and then join Mom for an individual photo op. (I just set the camera up on a tripod, and it was SO easy!)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Moscato service collage DSCN2604WM

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Cake collage Guests were then invited into the library to pick up a glass of moscato and view the cake which I had displayed on the vitrine.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Group photo at Mom's 85th Birthday luncheon Hail, hail…the gang was all here and it was time to eat! (Camera on tripod with timer feature…a Godsend!!!)

After lunch, the ladies serenaded my Mom with the birthday song. Despite a fabulous starting note from Irene, I still couldn’t get on key! Turn your volume down, folks…I’m standing right next to the video camera, and my singing kinda sucks!!! 🙂

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Alycia & Barbara in their fancy lady hats Thanks again to my wonderful friend, Barbara, for all the help she rendered to make sure this party went off without a hitch!

It was a stellar day, and I am so grateful that I was able to recover in time to get everything together and actually look nice for the day. Oh…for those of you who did not know, this was my stylish footwear up until 3 days prior to the party: Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous - Alycia with fracture bootSO glad I was able to trade this in for stylish pumps for a few hours!

If you’d like to see five other birthday party posts on this site, please click on the “Birthdays” tab above,or pop in on these individual birthday party posts:
The Party She Deserves
The Bluebird Special
Blue & White 30th Birthday
Purple & Green Birthday
Happy Birthday, Barf!

Later this week I will join Cuisine Kathleen for “Let’s Dish!” (Wednesday after 6:00 pm, CDT) and Susan for “Tablescape Thursday” (Thursday after 9:00 a.m., CDT). I hope you’ll pop in on those fun blog parties with me! And check out a new link I’ve discovered, BeBetsy. It’s a wonderful lifestyle site featuring the work of fabulous bloggers covering everything from food to fashion that will blow your mind!

Diamonds Are A Material Girl’s Best Friend

A portion of this post was featured along with an interview on trends in entertaining at home in the January 2015 issue of “Kansas City At Home” magazine!

INSPIRATION: My "no boys allowed!" dressing room

INSPIRATION: My “no boys allowed!” dressing room

The decor in our house is pretty unisex…except for my dressing room! This is the one place that has a definite feminine touch with all the girly-girl trappings one might expect: chandelier, lavish antique dressing table, fainting couch near a window (yes, ladies…we all have our drama queen moments!), a tricked out nail station, bulging jewelry closet, stereo system, television (hoping for a flat screen to replace the outdated one in there now…anybody want to help me “accidentally” drop & break it? 😉 ), flowers, vintage hat boxes, innumerable handbags, and SHOES. Lots and lots and lots of shoes!!! And did I mention HATS? My cup runneth over with chapeaus of all make and occasion. It’s the place to feel all Marilyn Monroe and vogue to my heart’s content!
(Click on any photo and then again to enhance/enlarge it for fine details!)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Full dining room in black & red

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Full tableI started this Marilyn-Monroe-in-“The-Seven-Year-Itch”-meets-Madonna’s-“Blonde-Ambition-World-Tour” tablescape with a sleek, sexy black full-length tablecloth from LinenTablecloth.com. It’s like the little black dress of the room! Consider the fine jewelry store. The salesperson lays out your selections on a black velvet fabric. Why? To enhance the shine of the jewels! Everything on your table, therefore, is highlighted to the nth power when set atop a black linen.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Multiple place settings

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: single place settingWhat does every Material Girl have plenty of everywhere? Why, mirrors, of course! So I started this place setting with a 13″ round mirrored charger topped with sleek black plates. TIP: This charger is a slick little way to discreetly check your lipstick or make sure there’s no spinach stuck in your teeth during dinner! 😉

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Flatware, Napkin, Stemware collageImagination is key when setting a fun fantasy tablescape for any occasion. (This one would work well for a birthday, wedding shower, bridesmaids luncheon or girls night out dinner.) For this über-feminine, straight-from-the-dressing room tablescape, an ivory LinenTablecloth.com “clutch bag” napkin fold is set atop each plate with an oversized “diamond” clasp. The flatware is International Silver’s “Royal Danish” pattern. The stemware is Cristal d’Arques.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Place card collageI found these fun Marilyn Monroe note cards at Michaels Craft Store and thought they’d make really fun place cards. Just imprint the name of your guest along the bottom of the card perpendicular to Marilyn’s! The acrylic “diamond” place card holders are from Hobby Lobby.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Votive and bling runner collageA true Material Girl is bound to flaunt lots of bling, so I used the same rhinestone ribbon runners used HERE to trail the length of both sides of the table. Matching votive holders are used all over the setting. TIP: You can buy the votive holders already blinged out, or simply make them yourself with remnant pieces of bling ribbon.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Red Roses in novelty hat boxes for centerpiece

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Roses in hat box centerpiece

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Red rose, hat box and bling centerpiece collageI took a few hat boxes from my dressing room to create the centerpiece. If using fresh flowers, line the hat box with plastic in case of accidental spills. Place the roses in small vases and arrange them to fill & slightly over-spill from the box. Here I put roses in the center box but kept the lids on the two flanking boxes. To dress them up a little more, I added ruby red magnetic bling often used for enhancing chandeliers and other light fixtures. TIP: You can buy the bling in the lamp department at Hobby Lobby. These particular hat boxes had metal corner guards, so they were easy to apply. TIP: If you want to do something like this but don’t have metal on your hat box, experiment with taping magnets in strategic places inside the box for the bling to adhere from the outside.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Buffet decor using red roses, hat boxes, and lots of blingI always like to create a little coordinating vignette on the buffet behind our dining table if it isn’t being used for food display.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Hat box, cake plateau, bling collageRarely do I have a round cake with a large base (thanks to my step-daughter and nieces who are dragging their feet about getting married!), so my collection of silver cake plateaus is often called into service for other decorating. Here, I used a silver beaded-edge “hoop skirt” stand to add a little shine and raise more hat boxes in the center of the display.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Hand jewelry holder, bling, rose bouquet collageWhen I was a little girl, I enjoyed looking at the elegant displays in jewelry stores. The hand displays were particularly intriguing to me. Here I used a pair of display hands to hold petite red rose bouquets, flash oversized “diamond rings” from a store called Stuff in the historic Brookside neighborhood in Kansas City, Mo., and to string long, dramatic strands of bling garland through the fingers across the length of the buffet.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Sleek black vase topped with rose ball, bling collageOn each end of the buffet is a tall, sleek, 36-24-36 hourglass figure black glass vase from Tuesday Morning. The vases are topped with red rose balls and swagged with more of the bling garland.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Pillow & glove collageThe chairs on each end of the table got a little special treatment: fun French-inspired pillows from my dressing room depicting those fabulous black gloves like every socialite of the 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s used to wear. I added a pair of my own rhinestone-studded evening gloves for good measure.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Tea cartTea carts aren’t just for tea!!!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Top of tea cart

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Martinis, bling collageIn a scene from “The Seven Year Itch”, Marilyn Monroe’s character is introduced to the martini:

Richard Sherman: There’s gin and vermouth. That’s a martini.

Marilyn Monroe’s character: Oh, that sounds cool! I think I’ll have a glass of that. A big tall one!
Quote Source: IMDB.com

I’m with Marilyn…I’ll have a big tall one, too! The vintage tea cart is set up with all the makings of a fabulous martini including vermouth, vodka, olives and plenty of shakers to quickly whip them up.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: China cabinetThe china cabinet in the dining room often gets a little something-something to top it off, too.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: China cabinet collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend: Shoe collageOne of the black velvet jewelry busts from my dressing room was brought in to this display weighted down with strand after strand of bling. Another hat box is filled with red roses and carnations and adorned with a pretty bling brooch from my Mom’s collection. A couple of other red rose balls complete the florals. This terrific black stiletto heel figurine was destined for my neighbor’s thrift store pile. She and her daughter thankfully thought of me before shipping it off, and it makes a nice addition! To give it a little extra kick, I tied a length of red ribbon ballerina-style down the heel. Sexy little number, huh? 😉

I wanted to kick 2014 off with a bang-up post since 2013 was such a royal bust. Since I felt like kickin’, I figured doing it with attitude in black stilettos was the way to go! 😉

Other posts on this site with lots of bling:
“Should Have Put a Ring On It”
“Princess Pink Birthday Dinner”
“Fairy Tale Wedding Shower – The Princess & the Frog”
“Bling Wedding”

“Mandarin Bling”
“Platinum & Pink Valentine”
“French Poodle”
“Rhapsody in Blue”

Other posts on this site with red roses or floral balls:
“Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon”
“Days of Wine and Roses”
“Love’s Arrow”
“Kentucky Derby Buffet”
“Derby Day Dining”
“Run for the Roses”
“Lauren in the Library”
“Float Like a Butterfly”
“Diwali My Way”
“Show Me State Dinner”
“Roses in October”
“One Shoe Can Change Your Life”

I am delighted to join these blog parties this week:
Susan’s “Tablescape Thursday”

You can also catch me over at BeBetsy.com!

Daisy Crazy – Revisited for Mother’s Day

This crazy Kansas City weather is making me a basket case!!! I wanted to present a fashionable, fun, easy-to-assemble, and super budget-friendly Mother’s Day tablescape using paper goods. Our weather, however, has prevented me from getting outdoors to do so. The past 5 days have been filled with either snow, rain, sleet, wind, freezing cold temperatures, or some crazy combination thereof….all in the traditionally WARM and wonderful month of May!!!

So, I hope you will indulge me once again as I present in the absence of a new creation, another tablescape that was among the first ones I blogged about way back when. I promise more ideas soon using paper products for those who are on a tight budget or who just aren’t feelin’ the cleaning up thing, but still looking for something really cool!

Casual outdoor spring tablescapes needn’t cost an arm and a leg to make an impression! If your money is funny or you’re in a pinch for time, here are a few ideas to still put on a good show! With Mother’s Day just a blink away, you can still create a cheerful and pretty table to let Mom know she’s always in your heart!

Gerbera daisy paper products from Costco infuse lots of bright, energetic color into this tablescape. The colors are magnified when laid against a pure white table linen.

Grass in containerReal Gerbera daisies are cheap and plentiful in spring and summer at your local flower market or nursery. Just insert the tip into a floral pick filled with water, and insert the pick into the grass. Rye grass can be grown indoors in 2-3 weeks time using whatever containers you have on hand. (Really strapped for cash? Try using tin cans like those that green beans and Spaghettios come in. Wash them thoroughly, strip off the label, and plant the grass seeds. Cut a strip of colorful paper to fit the can and secure with double-sided tape or a fun sticker. Voila! Fabulous floral containers for next-to-nothing! See instructions for growing rye grass by clicking HERE and scrolling to Tip #15.) If time in growing your own grass is an issue, buy an inexpensive slab of sod and chop it up to fit your containers. Be sure to water!!!!!

Flatware & cup collageIf the wind is kicking up, use a weighted salad plate to keep the paper dinner plate intact. The clear glass used here allows the pattern beneath to still be seen. The dinner plates, cups and napkins are all from Costco. The bright pink Bed Bath & Beyond placemats (about $2 each) could be replaced by patterned paper from a stationery store (about $.59 each) or pieces of wrapping paper or wallpaper (averaging around $.25 each) cut into rounds, squares or rectangles.

The fun white-handled flatware is from Burlington. It, of course, could be replaced with less expensive plastic cutlery, or you could use stainless you already have.


The napkin ring is a strip of patterned paper with the guests’ name imprinted by hand or on the computer and then secured with a piece of tape in back.

 These colorful paper parasols were a steal (about $2 each) at Hobby Lobby’s end-of-season sale last year. They add a whole new dimension to the overall look and are a fun and fashionable way for guests to ward of the midday sun.

Total cost of paper goods, placemats, flowers, grass, and parasols as shown for this table for 12: about $48. With homemade placemats, the overall total drops to about $35. Fabric tablecloths used here to make the table a little extra special. My preferred linen provider is LinenTablecloth.com for inexpensive, easy-to-launder linens in an array of colors, patterns and sizes.

Great places to buy fun & festive paper dining products appropriate for just about any occasion include:
Tuesday Morning
Target
Dollar Tree
Walmart
Home Goods
Big Lots
Old Time Pottery
Hobby Lobby
Michael’s

While this would make a fun and fast Mother’s Day dinner or brunch tablescape, it would also work great for a birthday, wedding shower, or any fun Spring or Summer get-together.

Other tablescapes on this post using parasols:
“Oopsy Daisy!”
“Tropicana”
“Sunflower Simple”

Going Green for Spring

IF

INSPIRATION: Fun acid green woven favor boxes from Beau-coup.com

It’s finally starting to feel a bit more like Spring here in the Kansas City, MO area. Hooray! This time of year means a round of Spring cleaning (ugh! :-(), which means it’s time to reduce, recycle and reuse. So here’s a tablescape to remind us to go green (have a garage sale, donate to thrift stores, use old items for new creations, vow to stop shopping…..whoa! Wait a minute! Who threw that last one in there??!?!?!!). In other words, time to go green!!!
(Click on any photo, then click again to enhance/enlarge it.)

IF

IF

IFThis fun green & white table for 8 begins with a fresh white full-length linen from LinenTablecloth.com. I was so happy to once again have a chance to use this fabulous Mikasa “Daylight” dinnerware. With its freshly sprouted leaves on a wispy branch, it says Spring to me like no other dish I have whether it’s for a birthday, a ladies’ luncheon or Sunday brunch! (Click HERE to see these dishes used in another colorful Spring setting AND in a subdued Asian-inspired theme. They’re just that versatile!)

Flatware, stemware, charger collageSimple clear glass stemware from Old Time Pottery doesn’t compete with the flurry of decor on the table.  The “chargers” are rustic grapevine wreaths. (These were also used as chargers for an American Royal tablescape HERE.) Dark faux bamboo flatware from Home Goods works in concert with the chargers and branch design on the plates.

IFThe good folks at Beau-coup.com sent me these eye-popping acid green woven favor boxes. They look terrific “as is”, or you can dress them up with any manner of flourish. Here, to keep the organic look and  theme of recycling to go green, I hot glued pieces of broken from the chargers. Imagine these with a pretty silk posy, a tilted bird’s nest, a pouf of ribbon, or a simple twine bow. Just go wherever your imagination and theme take you! TIP: This shade of green is often hard to “match.” Don’t even try to go there. Take your cue from nature’s variegated colors and strive to complement rather than match.

Agapanthus, butterfly collageI found the squared-off green vases at a nearby wholesale store that always has something fun to tempt me. The shape of these vases lends itself to a variety of looks. On this table the arrangement is merely 3 majestically tall faux agapanthus. (I used these same green vases on the buffet with lots of orchids overflowing HERE.) An oversized acid green butterfly with pretty mesh wings perches on the side. To bring the moppy heads of the agapanthus down closer to eye level, I snipped and plopped a few into sleek white ceramic urns.

Mercury ball on candlestick collageCandlesticks aren’t just for candles! I used these white turned wood candlesticks from Z Gallerie to hold large, heavy mercury balls that sow a little shine into the otherwise unpolished setting.

Rose collageI bought a bunch of these little rose bundles wholesale a while back in several colors. I’ve seen similar ones in stores like Michaels. They look really good massed together as seen here in this white weathered aluminum planter. A single bundle is just enough to fill a smaller white ceramic urn.

Buffet collage

Wreath collageOn the buffet is a massive grapevine wreath that carries on the look of the chargers on the dining table. In the spirit of recycling and looking for something with a funky little beat, I used the stems cut from the agapanthus on the table to create a rambling design on one side of the wreath. The asymmetrical design is balanced a little with the presence of 3 more of the large butterflies. A mercury ball finial brings shine to the vignette, while dessert plates and forks peek out from beneath a floral arrangement.

Tea cart collageOn the tea cart are faux bamboo spoons and gorgeous Mikasa “Daylight” cups & saucers. A Ralph Lauren pierced cake pedestal (Tuesday Morning) holds more of the Beau-coup favor boxes, this time unadorned and filled with cookies for guests to take home. Your choice: favors on the table at each individual place setting, or displayed en masse for guests to pick up on their way out the door.

Many thanks to Beau-coup.com for providing these pretty favor boxes for me to play with! It was tons of fun! Beau-coup has a wonderful variety of “favors, party supplies, gifts, and more for all of life’s celebrations.” (I couldn’t have said it better myself, so I didn’t even try…I just plagiarized it! :-)) Stop by and check them out!

Other posts on this site with green and white tablescapes:
“The Party She Deserves”
“Moss & Manzanitas”
“Ready for My Close-Up, Mr. DeMille”
“Spring Has Sprung”
“Rolling Fields of Green”
“Apple Green Luncheon”
“Upscale Irish”

There are lots of fun blog parties out there with ideas from the creative minds of bloggers all across the United States and around the world. Partying hearty here in the Midwest (U.S.A.) are blog buddies like Marigene “In the Middle of Nowhere“, Lynne at “Lynne’s Gifts From the Heart“, Cindy at “Beaux R’eves“, Cherry Kay at “Entertaining Women” (she had a gorgeous green & white table last week!), Judy at “JBiggs Little Pieces“, sweet Pat at “Back Porch Musings“, “The Home Girl“, and newcomer Christine at “Rustic & Refined“. Join us this week at:
Cuisine Kathleen’s “Let’s Dish!
Susan’s “Tablescape Thursday

Blog parties are a wonderful opportunity for you to learn from tablescapers who do this regularly and have lots of tried and true ideas!