Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink

INSPIRATION: Singer Robin' Thicke's black & white striped suit worn  during his infamous performance with Miley Cyrus at the 2013 Billboard Music Awards. (shown here with wife Paula Patton)

INSPIRATION: Singer Robin Thicke’s body-hugging black & white striped suit worn during his infamous performance with Miley Cyrus at the 2013 Billboard Music Awards. (shown here with wife Paula Patton) Source: US Magazine

Inspiration apparently comes from just about anywhere. Sometimes when you least expect it. Last year as I watched the 2013 Billboard Music Awards, Robin Thicke sashayed onto the stage in a suit that commanded my utmost attention. At first I couldn’t decide…

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - Beetlejuice, Alice In Wonderland, Convicts collage

Convict? Tweedledum and Tweedledee from Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland”? Michael Keaton in “Beetlejuice”???

Then, I thought of another image a little closer to my wheelhouse…

 

 

Sunflower Soiree by Carolyne Roehm

INSPIRATION: Another fabulous party designed by Carolyne Roehm. Source: The Party Dress

Ah, yes! This beautiful party designed by my beloved Carolyne Roehm. A few short months later I found just the thing to help me bring the spirit of these two very diverse yet equally inspiring ideas (I mean, c’mon…Robin Thicke is a cutie pie!!!) to life in my own way for an intimate summer dinner party.
(Click on any image, and then click again to enhance/enlarge it.)

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - Full table

 

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - Full tableThis semi-formal contemporary table for 12 was created by using two 6′ tables dressed in white stretch tablecloths from LinenTablecloth.com. I’ve talked before about the ease of these tablecloths and how they require absolutely no ironing…my favorite feature of all! 🙂 (I don’t get paid to peddle LTC’s products or say nice things about them…I just know what I love!)

 

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - multiple place settings

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - single place settingKeeping with the linear look, sharply squared black chargers are topped with square white B. Smith plates.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - menuI created individual menus using black and white striped paper from Hobby Lobby. I chose to use a long decorative sheet underneath with a short top sheet to highlight the elongated aspect of the stripes.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - Flatware, Napkin, Stemware collageThe modern design of the J.A. Henckels “Bellaserra” flatware with its straight lines and squared off heels is perfect for this setting. The jet black napkin is simply folded and tucked beneath the charger to cascade off the side of the table. Again…going for the same long, lean look of the stripes.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - centerpiece flowers

 

 

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - Calla lilies and candlesticks collage

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - single glass votiveTo keep with the posh, modern look, I opted to go with dramatic floral arrangements in bright hues of a singular bloom to offset the undeviating lines of the stripes. Scads of calla lilies – a decidedly contemporary flower – are displayed in chunky black glass vases. Long-stemmed tulips (faux here for demonstration purposes, but I encourage you to go fresh for an actual dinner party) arch gracefully from taller, curvier vessels. Graceful 15″ metal case candlesticks are set in simple glass holders. (Metal case candles never lose their shape, don’t pose the same dripping problems as wax candles, and pose a reduced safety hazard.) Those same glass holders are flipped upside down to accommodate a random scattering of votives down the table.

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - line of chairs

 

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com, Blurred Lines with Shades of Pink - Chair collageThe black and white striped stretch chair covers are from LinenTablecloth.com. When I first saw these on their website, I just about lost my mind with glee! As with all of their stretch chair covers, the front has an opening that allows guests to comfortably put their feet back. Like the tablecloth, these stretch chair covers are very easy care, require no ironing, and slip on in a matter of mere seconds to transform a banquet chair from blah to Wham-Bam-Don’t-I-Look-Absolutely-GLAM!!! To see these chair covers used in a completely different setting, check out “Hometown Pride: Kansas City Chiefs vs Denver Broncos Football Tablescape”.

(IMPORTANT NOTE: These chair covers are designed to fit standard banquet chairs only. See product description on LTC website. I bought my banquet chairs on Craig’s List, but you can also purchase them at Walmart, Costco, Sam’s Club, or through hotel/restaurant/clubhouse going-out-of-business sales, churches, etc.)

 

Other posts using black & white (some with touches of a bright accent color) on this site:
Shake, Rattle & Roll ‘Em!
Fete Noir et Gris
Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend
Little Black Dress
Black, White & Red All Over
A Little Pomp IS the Circumstance Graduation Buffet
Life Is Just a Chair of Bowlies
Hooray For Vodka!

I’ll be heading on over to Christine’s Rustic & Refined for the 13th installment of “Table It!” starting tonight (Sunday) and then to Susan’s Between Naps on the Porch for “Tablescape Thursday” later in the week. I hope you’ll join me as I check out tablescape genius from around the globe!

 

Thanksgiving 2012 – Celebrate Me Home

For the first time in as long as I can remember we won’t be hosting Thanksgiving dinner this year. I can’t even begin to tell you how deeply wounded I am about that. It is hands down my favorite holiday, and I always look forward to my loud, gregarious, hungry family and friends gathering under our roof. Sigh! 😦 I know I just need to put on my big girl bloomers and deal with it, but instead I find myself hitting the “repeat” button on my playlist for Kenny Loggins’ “Celebrate Me Home“.

For my “Fabulous Fall Tablescaping” class this semester, I created a decidedly contemporary Thanksgiving tablescape. I am a traditionalist all the way when it comes to Thanksgiving, but I wanted to demonstrate to my students that you CAN step outside of the box without completely thumbing your nose at tradition.
(Click on any photo to enhance/enlarge it. Photos by Sheri L. Grant.)

More often than not, the main table for our Thanksgiving celebration is set up in the family room. The windows face south so there’s plenty of natural light, the crackle of the fireplace adds ambience, and with two 6-ft. tables kissed lengthwise, we can comfortably seat 12. There’s just something about a long, Tuscan-style table that suggests a bounteous celebration.

As usual, full-length linens are used to cover the multitude of sin that is a folding table. I used a creamy, soft ivory to work with the ivory dishes. Burnished gold-tone acrylic chargers with a subtle braided edge from Hobby Lobby anchor each place setting.

Pumpkin-colored napkins from LinenTablecloth.com bring a burst of color to the table. The simple elongated fold allows the napkin to slightly drape off the side of the table to break up the expanse of ivory there. You may have noticed how the kind of bell shape and the pumpkin color of the napkin mimic that of the calla lilies used in the floral arrangements. This is one of those subtle details that, while not starkly apparent, plays on the subconscious to suggest harmony and flow.

I like to provide individual menus for Thanksgiving settings, even if we’re doing a buffet. It’s nice to let your guests know what to expect, and the menu card serves as a nice (and inexpensive!) memento of the day. Notice how the small embellishment on the menu not only provides a bit of color but mirrors the centerpiece theme.

“Why on earth would you use (faux) bamboo flatware at Thanksgiving,” you might ask. Well, I’ll tell you why on earth: because it looks good! Bamboo flatware isn’t just for Asian- or tropical-themed events. It is a year-round, all-occasion staple that adds contemporary flair. You will notice later how the dark color works with the rosewood stands upon which some of the florals are displayed, as well as the preserved curly willow in the arrangements. Using a dark color here also keeps the setting from becoming too vanilla and helps to balance the light and bright of the ivory and pumpkin colors.

Simple, stark stemware is used to keep patterns from getting out of control. The shape and sleek design of the stemware bowls is also congruent with that of the floral vessels.

One of my favorite mediums for decorating is glass. You can just do SO much with it. It becomes whatever color and takes on any shape within its confines that your imagination will allow it to. The round or globe shape of these clear glass bowls adds to the contemporary feel of the table. They are alternately placed upon rosewood stands for a staggered effect. A chunky ivory LED (for safety’s sake!) pillar candle is nestled among swirls of curly willow tips and pumpkin-hued calla lilies. (I used faux callas here for demonstration purposes, but fresh ones work beautifully for this arrangement! They’ll stay fresh for a bit if in a cool room, but you might otherwise want to give them a water stem that can be concealed beneath the willow.) While a more traditional bloom for Thanksgiving might be roses or mums, the calla lily is a breath of fresh air without sucking all the life out of tradition. While this curly willow is now pretty much petrified, you have to start with fresh to swirl it in the bowl without breaking it. It looks great fresh or rigid. One final thing to note with the centerpiece is how, like the stemware, the votive holders are similar to the shape of the vases.

Vivid color is shared at the lowest part of the table with these gorgeous mini pumpkins that are abundant this time of year. Using a mix of colors adds optic interest. Here I went with plain orange as well as cream-colored ones with orange & green stripes. The casual tumble of pumpkins between each arrangement acts as a “connector” and provides visual continuity for the long centerpiece.

I always like to create a foyer piece that contains some of the same elements as my dining table as a hint of what’s to come. Here bittersweet vine is loosely wrapped around the stems of about 40 calla lilies in a large oil rubbed bronze urn.

Find other ideas for Thanksgiving tablescapes on these posts:
Pheasants and Peacocks
Best Laid Plans
Wondrous Wheat
or on the “Autumn” page where you’ll find 10 autumn tablescapes!!!

This week, despite her own losses and inconvenience courtesy of Hurricane Sandy, Cuisine Kathleen is graciously hosting her 1st annual Thanksgiving Tablescape Challenge. So if you’re looking for more great ideas to decorate your Thanksgiving table…or you just want to see talent gone wild from tablescapers all around the world…scoot on over to Kathleen’s “Let’s Dish!” anytime after 6:00 p.m. CST on Wednesday. I’m also joining the Style Sisters for “Centerpiece Wednesday” and Susan for “Tablescape Thursday” anytime after 9:00 a.m. CST on Thursday.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Mardi Gras Lite

Fat Tuesday in celebration of Mardi Gras 2012 is just about a week away now!!! Problem is, the term “Fat Tuesday” probably has my photograph posted next to it on Wikipedia. I have been bad, bad, bad, bad, bad the last……oh, let’s say 10 years to be honest. I quit exercising every day but continued to shovel in the food and drink despite the ever-expanding hips, thighs, belly and “Oprah arms” waving back at me in the mirror.

This year, instead of the tower of fried catfish, vat of jambalaya, shrimp étouffé, hush puppies, King’s cake and hurricanes I’ve routinely enjoyed in the past, I’m pledging to lighten up. To that end, I have also created a Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras tablescape “lite”…an upscale, sophisticated, pared down version of the more decadent Mardi Gras style to which I am accustomed and hold so dear.

The traditional hues of purple, green, and gold will still be there in all their glory…just not as over-the top in their presentation. This table might work for those who want the essence of Mardi Gras without the whole “Swing from the balcony and show me your —-!!!” feel. 🙂 (In-laws, bosses or clergy invited for dinner might appreciate the less bawdy tone of it!)

I’ve never used a royal purple table linen for any occasion, but this year it lands on the table as the base of the tablescape. Dual chargers in a gold square and purple cobblestone round cradle a clear glass dinner plate and green glass salad plate, thus incorporating all the traditional colors.

A royal purple cotton napkin is cinched with a flirty bangle napkin ring from Bed Bath & Beyond.

Goldtone flatware works well with the place setting.

I was so pleased to see that I had stemware of a similar shape in purple (TJ Maxx), green (Dollar Tree), and gold (World Market).

I’m going to give credit where it’s due. It was totally my husband’s -who fancies himself “The Tablescape Whisperer” – idea to include the long strands of beads. I resisted, thinking it would be way too cliché to have bundles of them down the center of the table. Plus, I whined, it will take away from the clean lines! We compromised, and I ended up arranging them in this quieter “grid” that frames each place setting as well as the centerpiece elements. Purple, green, and gold glass vases hold simply-arranged royal purple calla lilies. Finishing out the centerpiece are clusters of Mardi Gras “disco balls” that catch the light.


The buffet in back of the table is also relatively staid with a single, albeit oversized, royal purple Vidrios San Miguel recycled glass vase stuffed with an arrangement of graduated purple calla lilies. Using a single piece in a dramatic size and color negates the need for lots of little pieces all over the buffet top. Purple and gold glass votives dot the buffet’s edge and add to the overall ambiance in the room.

I don’t think they make gumbo-flavored rice cakes, so I’ll have to come up with something that will be healthy, filling and tasty without sending me into carb/fat/sodium/sugar overload. Yeah, I know…good luck with that! 🙂 New plan: Stick with the old eating plan, but eat it at the pared down table! Love it!

Please join me for Tablescape Thursday again this week to see how other tablescapers from around the globe are decorating for and celebrating Mardi Gras!
Laissez bon temps rouler, y‘all!!!

To see other Mardi Gras tablescapes on this site:
Laissez Bon Temps Rouler
Mardi Gras Mojo
Mardi Gras Madness
Celebrate Mardi Gras!

Just Us Girls

This week’s post is of a quiet, simple dinner for “Just Us Girls” when we want to relax, unwind, jibber-jabber, and have a good time in an elegant setting with minimal fuss. I hope you enjoy its simplicity.

Getting together with “the girls” is always fun. I have such a good time with them just relaxing, rehashing old stories from days gone by, and dreaming about the future. No better way to do that than over a hot meal in a quiet, relaxed atmosphere. Music for tonight: Soundtracks from “First Wives Club” and “Something’s Gotta Give”, a little Billie Holliday, and Patsy Cline.

 

Soft pink and velvety rich chocolate brown on a white background is the color scheme. It is a little on the contemporary side. A large round mirror anchors each place setting. Next comes a silver beaded edge charger. Then my favorite…fabulous glossy chocolate brown and white “Delfina” dishes with a silver rim from Z Gallerie! How I longed for these dishes!!! I was finally able to buy them a few months ago. They are classically clean-looking without fussy adornment. I love them! The rim of the Mikasa “Jamestown Platinum” stemware is a perfect match. The menus – generated on my home computer – are a brown underlay and a soft pink vellum overlay with pink velvet ribbon.


A peek at the plate. A bit difficult to pick up on the actual color, but believe me…to die for!!!


Keeping with the contemporary look, I chose these unusually shaped silver napkin rings. They remind me of a gentleman’s cuff link. Very snazzy!

The curvy J.A. Henckels “Bellaserra” stainless mimics the lines of the napkin ring. I love the way the knife sits on its edge.

The centerpiece is kept simple and streamlined. Pairs of clear oyster votive cups punctuate the “lamps” made of clear glass pilsner vases topped with a squared off bell shade in chocolate brown (from Walmart!). Click here and scroll down to Tip #21 see how the lamps were put together. While it is not completely evident from these photos, I must share with you a little secret: When using a clear lamp base such as this, try turning the LED votive used for illumination upside down. In doing so, you illuminate the shade and cast the light down into the glass which looks so cool!!! While I used white for this tablescape, it’s even cooler if you use a colored LED votive!  Try it and see what it does for the lamp and your adjacent florals! (For more candle lamps on this site, seeRaining Orchids“, “All A’Bloom In Pink for Spring“, “Should Have Put a Ring On It“, and “It’s All About Me!“.)

The contemporary look and feel is completed by a mass grouping of petal pink calla lilies in a simple clear glass vase. Nestled between the taller lamps, it brings a soft dash of color to the table.

 

Other pink & brown tablescapes on this site include:
Chocolate Traditional
Au Revoir!
Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon

 

Be sure to check out the newest Table Twenty-One Table Tip, too! Coincidentally, it’s #21 on the tip page! Click here to find it or on the “Table Tips” tab above. Once on the page, just scroll down to Tip #21!

  Remember to check out my other tablescaping pals at Between Naps on the Porch for more tabletop ideas!

I am joining Susan and the bunch at Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday.