Smoke & Mirrors – Sensational at 70

My remarkable friend, Marchita, recently celebrated becoming an official septuagenarian in high spirits and high style. I was asked to create the ambience for the 160-guest celebration. So even with flooding rains plaguing the city (hence the substandard photo quality despite my best editing efforts), my husband and I made every second count of the allotted 2-hour setup time to create a space that represented Marchita: simply, sweetly, sensationally elegant at 70.

This recent 4-minute appearance on KCTV-5’s “Better Kansas City” show summed up my thinking on how to approach the decor without using flowers.

 

My inspiration for the overall room plan was quite unexpectedly stirred by the venue’s house decorator. This luxurious ceiling treatment was going to already be in place for a wedding reception…so I just rolled with that and chose white silk, reflective silver, mirrors, candlelight, and bling for the tables to complement it.

 

 

 

This is the woman of the hour, the sensational Marchita Stanton, standing at the table I created especially for her. I started with a black full-length pinched pinwheel taffeta tablecloth, an upgrade from the venue’s lap-length poly cloths used for the guest tables. A silver 5-arm candelabra to which I added crystal bobeches for extra sparkle graced the center. (These same candelabra were used for “Blue & White Family Picnic” and “Hollywood Fright Night“.)

 

 

 

Satellite lighting included lots of votives and candle lamps created using silver Revere candlesticks topped with white silk shades. (I used a similar technique for the post “Should Have Put A Ring On It“.) I used the same bobeches on the lamps as on the candelabra.

 

I created signs like this for areas throughout the venue. The frames are laden with pearlescent gemstones and rhinestones. (I used these same frames for seating cards in the posts “Fete Noir et Gris“, “Purple & Pastel“, and “Bling Wedding“.)

 

I slipped the chairs at the guest of honor’s table into black Spandex chair covers and added a black sash to which a rhinestone cuff was affixed.

 

 

 

Centerpieces for the guest tables were more subdued than the head table with a single lamp and a few votives. While the lamps complemented the overhead decor and head table, they did not serve to compete. I opted to use the venue’s mirrors to double back the light.

 

 

Marchita requested a special table for the children next to her own table. I wanted it to be special and fun but still work with the rest of the decor. I ordered up a balloon bouquet in black, white and platinum (after all, platinum is the color for celebrating 70 years!) and omitted candles. Marchita put together fun gift/activity bags to be placed in each child’s chair.

 

A quick peek at other details I set up around the venue includes the table in the vestibule for guests to self-check their umbrellas. I admit it could have been nicer, but I didn’t think about it until a few hours before setup when I realized the rain was NOT going to back down. At any rate, it helped avoid confusion after the event as so many umbrellas look alike.

 

 

As guests stepped inside the party room they were greeted by a table reminding them to treat themselves! I dressed the table in a white pinched pinwheel linen and, like the head table, added a silver candelabra. A few scattered LED votives further illuminated the table.

 

I expected a significant amount of cards, so I opted for a silver punch bowl (also used in “Kentucky Derby Buffet” for Mint Julep Punch) to collect them on the gift table.

 

 

 

I forgot the silver trays for the ladies and mens room pampering stations!!! Ugh!!! Oh, well…several guests remarked how appreciative they were to have things like breath mints, floss sticks, and hair spray at their disposal. Notice how the men got FAR less!!! But those shoe mitts came in handy after coming in out of the driving rain.

A few other birthday celebration posts on this site include:
88 Years & 88 Keys
Pretty In Pink
Blue & White 30th Birthday
Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous!
Purple & Pastel
Grazin’ In the Grass
Princess Pink Birthday Dinner
Happy Birthday, Barf!
Black, White & Red All Over

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Let It Snow!”

Christmas Eve 2009 brought a thick blanket of snow to the Kansas City area. What better way to celebrate it than to bring a few snowflakes inside to the dining room tablescape?

 

 

 

Because I wanted to keep a little bit of a “woodland” look, I kept the table bare of linens to expose its grainy wood.

 

 

A shiny silver charger anchors platinum rimmed white Noritake “Spectrum” dinner plates, followed by a shimmering acrylic snowflake, and finally a white snowflake-laden salad plate from Pier 1. Mikasa‘s Jamestown Platinum stemware and heirloom silver flatware complete the setting. The centerpiece is made up of a large silver cake plateau topped with “snow-dusted” faux evergreens and lots of pillar candles.

 

Sometimes one napkin is simply not enough! Layering napkins – here a sheer silver organza from Pier 1 over crisp white cotton – gives a richer look. The rhinestone flecked napkin rings continue the snowflake trend.

 

I love these mirrored candlesticks from Pier 1 (2009 collection) used to elongate the centerpiece! Silver jingle bells rest on a mound of faux snow in modern crystal mini vases, and a 3-D glittery star work to complete the centerpiece.

 

 

 

The buffet decor mimics that of the dining table with snowy faux greenery, pine cones, more jingle bells, and lots of sparkle. The glass Parisian decanter is filled with “snow” and greenery, and a length of brown satin ribbon literally “ties” the dining room in with decor in the foyer.

A few other Christmas tablescapes on this site include:
Celebrate the Season
Christmas in the Woods
“Kaleidoscope Christmas”
“Merry & Bright – Multi-Color Christmas”
“Christmas Through the Red Door”
“Life Is A Cabaret – New Year’s Eve”
Waking Up to Christmas – Bedroom Decor
Black, White & Red All Over Christmas
Christmas 2012 – Red, Black & Silver
Checkered Christmas
Pink & Purple Chocolate Christmas
Sugar High Payback
Contemporary Christmas
Gentlemen’s Winter Retreat
Woodland Men’s Tablescape
Cranberry Christmas
Cranberry Christmas Squared
Get Me To the Church On Time
Christmas Progressive Dinner
White Hot
Winter Brunch
Really Red Christmas
Roman Holiday
Cardinal Christmas
Frosty the Snowman
March of the Penguins
Winter Cardinal
Ideas for Throwing a Winter Dessert Party
Christmas Fiesta
Over the River and Through the Woods
Black Friday Luncheon
Noel Progressive Dinner
Old-Fashioned Red & Green Christmas
Timberland Christmas
Christmas Coffee
Warm Metal Christmas
Tuscan Holiday

 

 

 

 

Rhapsody In Blue

RHAPSODY IN BLUE
(a re-post from September 2010)

I treated a couple to a post-nuptial luncheon in our home to celebrate their union. A smattering of “diamonds” brings glitz & sparkle to the wedding tablescape.

 Bursts of bright green play nicely off the bride’s chosen colors of French blue & white. Granny Smith apples and juicy green grapes are surrounded by green button mums, spider mums, pink waxflower, Queen Anne’s lace, viburnum, and fragrant Stargazer lilies all spilling from a silver pedestal bowl. The main piece is flanked with green grapes atop simple silver pedestals.

 Each lady’s place setting is marked with an oversized “diamond” napkin ring. The gentlemen have simple “wedding bands” of silver. Two chargers – one rhinestone-rimmed and the other a plain silver – mimic the differences in the men’s and ladies’ place settings. The scrolled-edge cream-colored plates are from TJ Maxx, and the quilted table runner and napkins are from Z Gallerie.

  Although a simple fare is served (pecan-chicken salad on croissant, honey-dipped fruit on a skewer, assorted cheese slices and kettle chips with strawberry shortcake for dessert), the tablescape still has a decidedly regal feel about it.

Miss Missouri Teen USA 2017 Send Off Party

UPDATE, July 29, 2017: SHE WON!!!!! SHE WON!!!! Sophia Dominguez-Heithoff is MISS TEEN USA 2017!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Looks like we’re getting along, but I’m silently plotting against him!

I will publicly admit (for the first and only time) that Andres Dominguez is one of my dearest friends. I put it that way because we (good-naturedly, of course!) razz each other like siblings…or sworn enemies.

 

Amy was taking NO chances here! She knows I should not be allowed the freedom to wield sharp objects…especially that close to Andres!!! No prob…I’m actually going in for a choke hold!

I get him with the bunny ears a LOT!

Truth is, though, he is one of those people who come into your life for a reason. Among those reasons: for me to watch as his family grew. I met Andres the year he married Amy. They’ve since put their hearts and souls into raising two incredibly gifted and kind children, one of whom in recent months was crowned Miss Missouri Teen USA. I have watched Sophia grow from a super cute baby into a talented, compassionate, intellectual (she graduated high school a year early and is headed off to college in August!), inspired/inspiring, confident, graceful, jaw-droppingly beautiful young woman.

She will be competing in the Miss Teen USA Pageant this coming Friday/Saturday, July 28/29 at Symphony Hall in Phoenix, AZ. We are so excited and plan to have ourselves parked front and center to watch and root for her.

I was honored when Sophia’s mom, Amy, called to ask if I’d lend a hand with setting up the send off party in Sophia’s honor this past weekend. Are you kidding me??!??! A chance to use a bunch of my silver pieces?!??!? Oh, “HELL to the y-e-s” as the kids say! I hope you enjoy the pics as much as I enjoyed creating what Amy and I ultimately dubbed “The Tiffany Room” and helping to pitch in on other rooms for the party.

This is Sophia’s Mom/Andres’ wife, Amy. Amy and I work together like hand in glove and get on quite well because we both run on 2 speeds only: “Bugatti Chiron” and “speed of light”!!!

 

So much to do setting up the “Tiffany Room” including stacking dozens of macarons just right on miniature cake plateaus.

 

 

 

Sophia’s exquisite (and delicious!!!) Tiffany blue cake was created at Wally’s Pastry Shop in Kansas City, MO.

 

 

I wanted the table to resemble a Tiffany’s gift box, so I started with a Tiffany blue pintuck tablecloth from YourChairCovers.com. I glitzed it up with bling ribbon and scattered rhinestone brooches.

 

 

 

 

There were fabulous French macarons and petit fours everywhere!!! To balance the sweet with a little savory, I brought along these faceted crowns (purchased at Hobby Lobby that I first used for a “Princess Pink Birthday Dinner” back in 2011) for a peanut/butter mint mix. I have used the miniature cake plateaus in other settings, most notably “Fairy Tale Wedding Shower – Princess & the Frog” and “Springtime in Paris“, both posted back in 2012.

 

A few additional touches around the “Tiffany Room” included custom M&Ms and a delicate ballerina posed atop another miniature plateau placed next to one of Sophia’s many crowns. The ribbons are from her Quinceañera.

 

More inspired touches from Amy’s brilliant mind included these custom-made cookies from April at Sweet & Saucy Life in Platte City, MO, just north of Kansas City. This woman can create!!! Just LOOK at those crowns and ballet slippers!!!

 

 

The living room was a great place to display a couple of Sophia’s ball gowns including the spectacular red one she wore when she won the Miss Teen Missouri 2017 pageant! The room is decorated with festive Mylar balloons proclaiming her title.

 

 

 

There’s MUCH more to Sophia than bling and balloons as the “KU Room” showed with snippets of her many accomplishments. Look closely at those M&Ms. Yes, a 4.0 GPA!!! No wonder…pardon the pun…she’s a Wonder Woman!!!!

 

 

It was a crazy hot & humid day here in the Kansas City area, and the hosts were ready to keep their guests cool with these stylized water bottles.

 

Handsome photographer/hubby Ramon and me taking a much-needed break.

 

Posing with the ecstatic family. That handsome gent on the other end is wardrobe stylist/fashion consultant Wlaa of Wlaa Style. I hear ya, ladies. I hear ya!!! 😉

 

Ramon and me with sweet young friend/Miss Missouri Teen USA 2017, Sophia Dominguez-Heithoff.

Other French-inspired posts on this site:
French Poodle
Patisserie de Paris
Springtime in Paris – Mother’s Day Brunch Buffet

And if you dig the Tiffany’s vibe, check out this post from 2013:
Breakfast At Tiffany’s

 

 

 

Fairy Princess Party – For Little Girls!

My expertise doesn’t run particularly strong when it comes to tablescapes for children, but I still take the plunge every so often. This time around I’ve tried my hand at a little girls’ party fit for a fairy princess.

 

 

 

The Dollar Tree often sells really terrific stuff for entertaining. I’m always so glad to hap upon items like these fairy wings and cute Disney princess products that sparked an idea for a kids’ tablescape with very feminine features.

 

Every little girl should have the benefit of a special party created in her honor. To do so doesn’t require a ton of money, but little touches can make it extra special. I started the tablescape for 4 with a luxurious pink pinched pinwheel taffeta tablecloth from LinenTablecloth.com.  (These tablecloths are machine washable and easy care, so you can rest easy while little girls enjoy.) Bling runners are crisscrossed on the table for an extra lavish touch.

 

 

 

I used disposable tableware including a clear plastic plate (the better to see the princess placemat with, my dear!), a trio of lavender, white & pink paper napkins (messy hands need lots of napkins!), and plastic cutlery in pink, lavender and yellow. Pink striped princess party hats for each guest and a “gemstone” candy ring top off each place setting. Reusable Dollar Tree Disney fairy-themed cups with bright yellow straws serve as a part of the take-home favors.

 

 

 

 

Dessert is part of the off-center centerpiece! A trio of clear glass cake stands are stacked and topped with a princess dress form clad in pink, white & yellow tulle (to which I hot glued white fairy wings) that creates a fun and pretty way to display cupcakes.

 

Dollar Tree is the place for kid-friendly favors, too! Disney princess coloring books and crayons become a part of the centerpiece that can be easily accessed for coloring together at the party. Each guest can then take her book & crayons home to continue the fun.

 

I found these cute polka-dotted pink & green butterfly canvases in the clearance section at Hobby Lobby some years ago. This seemed like the perfect tablescape to finally use them.

 

 

I’m on a roll with these paper lanterns this year! A fun mix of royal purple, princess pink, diamond white, lime green, and juicy orange lanterns that complement the colors on the cups and placemats sway overhead. To amp up the deluxe factor, I added garlands of crystal bling. (Are we still using that word? It’s all I’ve got, man!)

Fairy Princess Party…OUT!!!

Other clumsy attempts at parties suitable for children on this site:
Life is Just a Chair of Bowlies
Popsicle Party
Cupcake Colors
Pink & Purple Chocolate Christmas
Confectionery Christmas
Sugar High
Kaleidoscope Christmas
Frosty the Snowman

Other princess-inspired posts on this site:
Princess Pink Birthday Dinner
Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Fairy Tale Wedding Shower – The Princess & the Frog

 

 

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!

 

Bald Is Beautiful – Breast Cancer Awareness Month

 

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Holly Bertone Pink Fortitude collage

INSPIRATION: The many faces of my brave, beautiful, creative, very determined, cancer’s-butt-kickin’ friend, Holly Bertone, author of The Coconut Head’s Guide to Survival blog and CEO and President of Pink Fortitude, LLC.

 Holly Bertone of The Coconut Head’s Guide to Survival blog was kind enough to consent to being a part of this post on the condition (that I happily accepted!) that I share her message with you:  “I was young and healthy.  If it can happen to me, it can happen to you.  Please take care of your health.  Early detection saves lives.”

So this post is dedicated to Holly and every woman or man out there who has stared breast cancer in its ugly face and “beat it like it stole something.” The fight is a tough one. I salute those who won the battle and honor the memory of those who, in spite of fighting the good fight, were taken from us too soon.
(Click on any photo, then click again to enhance/enlarge it.)

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Full table

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Banquet chair with stretch white chair cover and pink satin sash from LinenTablecloth.comThe table is dressed in a pure white full-length tablecloth from LinenTablecloth.com. The stretch white chair cover and pink satin sash are also from LTC. I wanted so much to tie the ribbon in the shape of the Breast Cancer Awareness symbol, but just couldn’t figure it out! Maybe by next year this time…! 🙂

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Place setting

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Menu & napkin collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Homemade Chicken Pot Pie with Breast Cancer Awareness Ribbon crustEach place setting starts with a silverplate charger and platinum-rimmed Noritake “Spectrum” dinner and salad plate. A soft pink, simply folded napkin from Bed, Bath & Beyond sits atop the plates. I created the menus on our home computer and gave them more of a 3-D look by adding an actual ribbon dotted with a pink gemstone. (The menu items were our actual dinner that night. You can find my recipe for the chicken pot pie on this site under Recipes. The cake is a wonderful recipe from Kitty’s Kozy Kitchen, and it is decadently delicious!!!)

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Flatware collage

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Cristal d'Arques Longchamps stemwareI wanted this table to literally reflect everything beautiful, so I used Cristal d’Arques Longchamps stemware with lots of reflective facets that caught the light of the votives in the centerpiece. The handle of the dinner knife and the mirror shine of the charger both have the same reflective quality.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Cup & saucer, sugar cube collageAfter-dinner coffee is extra sweet with a rose-kissed sugar cube from Rebekah Foster, Cake Artist.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Centerpiece

 

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Centerpiece from overhead

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Centerpiece collage

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Bald Is Beautiful: Votives in a sea of pink and clear crystalsWho says bald can’t be absolutely beautiful? I admittedly spent a great deal of time working on this unique Breast Cancer Awareness centerpiece. I wanted to shout to the world that bald can indeed be beautiful, simple, sweet, sexy, exotic, erotic, and everything in between.
To create this very special centerpiece, I used ballerina pink and soft glitter spray paint to tint an inexpensive Styrofoam wig form. I applied flirty black eyelashes (did better than I do on my own eyes!) and then went to work with gemstone and pearl head pins. Just when I thought I was finished, I decided to add the nose ring to give her a youthful, contemporary flair to punctuate Holly’s message: Just because you’re young and healthy doesn’t mean it can’t happen to you. I spread sparkling clear and pink crystals (Beau-coup.com) at the base to represent reflective beauty and added votives to symbolize hope and light radiated by fighters like Holly.

Other tablescapes suitable for Breast Cancer Awareness Month on this site:
Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon
Pretty in Pink, Wicked in Spurs
All A’Bloom
Pleasant Under Glass
Roses in October
Princess Pink Birthday Dinner
Blushing Bridal Shower
Pink Plaid & Posies
Luncheon in Pink
Pretty in Pink

Springtime in Paris
Peony Power
Coming Up Roses
Tea Roses

I am happily joining these ladies’ blog parties this week:
Christine at Rustic & Refined for “Table It!”
Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for “Tablescape Thursday”
Bev at How Sweet the Sound for “Pink Saturday”

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!

Platinum New Year’s Eve Wedding

This past week or so I have been missing the rip, run and raucous roar of the years I spent as a professional wedding designer. Thank goodness I have this blog to purge those feelings because Lord knows my body could not go back to that kind of grueling, back-breaking (literally!), sleepless schedule.
(Click on any photo to enhance/enlarge it and see details up close.)

INSPIRATION: Sparkling silver & white Christmas tree napkin created by my friend & neighbor, Barbara.

INSPIRATION: Sparkling silver & white Christmas tree napkin created by my friend & neighbor, Barbara.

I’m pretty sure I’ve said it like 100 times before, but I feel compelled to say it again: I have the best neighbors anyone could ask for!!! I was working on this tablescape for my winter 2013  “Art of Tablescaping” class that I teach through MCC-Longview, and up pops Barbara with these FABULOUS napkins!!! Her gift made me reevaluate the table and want to add design elements that would give it a little more zing. So I tore the tablescape down and started over!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Full dining roomThe table is covered in a beautiful 90″ x 132″ platinum pintuck tablecloth from YourChairCovers.com. The diamond shape of the pintuck cloth fits right in with diamonds for a wedding!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Full TableThis is a tablescape that – minus the napkins – could easily fit into any month of the year for a rehearsal dinner or wedding reception. For a Christmas or New Year’s Eve wedding reception, the napkins are spot on!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Place settingThe place setting begins with a 13″ silverplate charger. The china used here is Easterling “Majestic” that my Mom gave to me a few years back. It’s staid design of dove grey rimmed in platinum with a white center to break up the concentration of color seemed perfect.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Napkin collageEach place setting has one of Barbara’s sultry, shimmery, beautiful napkins topped with a Moravian star. To see other tablescapes with Barbara’s napkin designs, click HERE and HERE. For the tutorial on how to create them yourself, click HERE for the YouTube video or HERE and scroll down to Tablescape Tip #31 for a step-by-step photo tutorial.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: FlatwareInternational Silver “Royal Danish” flatware, another gift from my Mom, is paired with Fifth Avenue crystal steak knives.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Stemware - Jamestown PlatinumMikasa’s “Jamestown Platinum” stemware is perfectly matched with the china.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Full centerpiece

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Candlestick collageThe centerpiece is a mix of high and low with 29″ silver Revere candlesticks and multi-faceted candle holders in different shapes and sizes. I used rhinestone-studded wax pillars to add shine up high.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Centerpiece elements

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Centerpiece faceted candle holders collageI gradually amassed this collection of faceted candle holders from Hobby Lobby and Home Goods over the years. Note how the glow of one of the votives on the table casts light beneath the rose ball. (To see another tablescape using some of these faceted votive and candle holders, click HERE for “Princess Pink Birthday”.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Dining chair with embellishment

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Dining chair ornament embellishmentThe dining chairs are covered with silver satin universal chair covers recently purchased from LinenTablecloth.com.  I love the way the so beautifully drape down the back of the chair! I used a fancy ornament hook to affix an embellishment of a pewter glass ball ornament, a clear glass ornament, and one of the Moravian stars which enhances the 3-D look.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Full buffet

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Buffet collageThe buffet behind the dining table is dressed with a huge faux evergreen, pine cone and white orchid arrangement in a beautiful mercury glass pilsner vase. The height of the arrangement helps to bring balance to the tall candlesticks on the table. Other elements from the dining table are repeated here including the rhinestone-studded pillar candles, the faceted candle holders in various sizes and shapes, the rose balls, and the Moravian stars.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Platinum New Year's Eve Wedding: Decor on top of china cabinetThe top of the china cabinet also has a few elements repeated from the table and buffet. Faceted crown candle holders hold white rose balls.

Other wedding-related posts on this site:
“Purple & Pastel”
“Bling Wedding”
“Roses in October”
“Showered in Pink”
“Fairy Tale Wedding Shower – Princess & the Frog”
“Something Blue Bridal Luncheon”

“Autumn White Wedding”
“Fete Noir et Gris”
“Planning in Purple”
“Love & Orchids”
“Rhapsody in Blue”
“Dinner for the Ladies in Waiting”
“Tented Green!”

I’ll publish a fun, contemporary New Year’s Eve cocktail/dinner party post tomorrow that will  also be featured on Cuisine Kathleen’s blog party, “Let’s Dish!”. next Wednesday anytime after 6:00 p.m. CST. Meanwhile, join me and other talented bloggers right now for fabulous Christmas and New Year’s Eve design ideas on Susan’s 276th edition of “Tablescape Thursday”!

Christmas Fiesta

INSPIRATION: The multi-color, shiny, jingly little dudes purchased at Pier 1 several years ago.

INSPIRATION: The multi-color, shiny, jingly little dudes purchased at Pier 1 several years ago.

Tired of all this color yet? This is the third and final installment of my multi-color Christmas posts for this year. The first two, “Merry & Bright Multi-Color Christmas” and “Kaleidoscope Christmas – Multi-Color Kids’ Tablescape”, shared some of the same elements but in very different ways. Today’s offering does the same, returning to the basic red tablecloth and “wispy multi-color jingle bell thingies” that bring the room to life.
(Click on any photo and then click again to enlarge/enhance it and see more detail.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Full roomThe 90″ x 132″ bright red tablecloth from LinenTablecloth.com anchors the table decor.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Full table, lengthwiseThe winter months always start up my cravings for traditional Mexican food. Maybe because it’s my go-to comfort food…so spicy and tummy-warming. Maybe because we have happily indulged in the traditional tamales and arroz con leche of the Christmas season for decades.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: double place setting

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Single place settingWith the multi-colored tree, the multi-colored inspiration pieces, and these fun “Serape” plates from Tuesday Morning in the cupboard, I knew I had one more opportunity to create a fun and inviting Christmas tablescape. These dishes were also used HERE and HERE.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Flatware, stemware, napkin drop collageFor a twist on the traditional green of Christmas, I opted to use a Bed, Bath & Beyond lime green napkin. Black “San Remo” stainless flatware from Hampton Silversmiths lends a little formality to the setting. The ruby red stemware is from Pier 1.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Sombrero, runner collageThe miniature sombreros at each place setting are embellished with colorful glass ornaments and a sprig of Christmas-y greenery. The colorful bamboo runner (also seen HERE for a tropical tablescape) works well with the theme and helps to pull the elements of the centerpiece together.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Full centerpiece

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Centerpiece details

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Red hurricane sleeveI wanted the centerpiece to be kind of full and dramatic and reflective of the season, but I also felt the need to bring in other elements that would work with the Mexican theme. I started with 3 red hurricane sleeves from Old Time Pottery. Snow-flecked evergreens and the “multi-color jingly thingies” were added to the mix. The arrangement was topped off with various succulents.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Buffet arrangement

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Buffet vase and tray collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Glass ornaments in bowl, pitcher

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Greenery on buffetThe buffet borrows the same citrus green vases (Home Goods) used on the table for the kids’ “Kaleidoscope Christmas” setting. Rather than filling them with the just the jingly pieces, I opted to mix it up with snow-frosted evergreens and a single succulent. Another bamboo runner pulls together all of the buffet elements including a serving trays and a bowl of ornaments. More of the frosted greenery is brought down to the buffet level, front & center.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Tea cart

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Candy, cookie, gumball collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Tea cart lower shelf

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: "Bennington" the Butler with jingle bell candy cane

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Tea cart ribbon treatmentThe vintage tea cart is still decked out with the colorful flurry of ribbon from “Kaleidoscope Christmas” and Bennington the Butler still holds onto the jingle bell candy cane. Candy from last week’s post has been transferred into “Serape” bowls and cookies onto a plate.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: Geoffrey, Christmas tree, gumballs collageGeoffrey, standing ready to serve by the Christmas tree, now offers a trio dish of colorful gumballs. Notice the tree is now teeming with sprigs of the jingly bling found in the centerpiece and buffet vases, a change from the last 2 weeks.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Christmas Fiesta: China cabinet collageThe colorful mercury glass-lined votive holders (World Market) used first on the buffet for “Merry & Bright” and then on the china cabinet with fun glass ornaments rather than candles for “Kaleidoscope Christmas” are back once again with candles and surrounded by greenery and jingly bling.

So there you have it! Elements carried from one tablescape to another with very different results each time out. Proof positive that you CAN teach an old dog new tricks, even if the old dog is jingly bling! 🙂

I’m joining Cuisine Kathleen for her blog party, “Let’s Dish!”, this Wednesday after 6:00 p.m. CST and Susan for “Tablescape Thursday” after 9:00 a.m. on Thursday. This will be one of your last chances to get some ideas for holiday decorating from lots of talented and enthusiastic decorators all around the world, so join me, won’t you?

More winter and Christmas posts on this site can be found at:
Kaleidoscope Christmas – Multi-Color Kids’ Tablescape

Merry & Bright – Multi-Color Christmas
Christmas Through the Red Door
Pink & Purple Chocolate Christmas
Black Friday Luncheon Tablescape
Winter Dinner
Contemporary Christmas: Fire & Ice
Celebrating the Season
Sugar High Payback
Cranberry Christmas
Cranberry Christmas Squared
Checkered Christmas – A Snowman Theme
Get Me To the Church On Time
Christmas Progressive Dinner 2011
Black, White & Red All Over Christmas
Frosty the Snowman
Warm Metal Christmas
Winter Brunch
After the Hunt – Gentlemen’s Winter Retreat

plus NINE additional posts on a single page under the “WINTER” tab!!!