Blueberries & Lemons

Summer is drawing to a close…at least on the calendar. Withering heat still plagues us here, but we know relief is a stone’s throw away. My last summer tablescape of the year includes two very prominent products of the season: blueberries🫐, which I buy in copious amounts to flash freeze for winter, and lemons🍋.

Our dining room palette is shades of blue and white on a daily basis, but the addition of sunshiny yellow really perks it up! The table runner is from At Home which has a few good decorative items from time to time. Cobalt blue metal chargers from Pier 1 ground the place settings which include “Mirandela” dinner plates, also from Pier 1. A white ceramic charger separates the two and adds depth. The monogrammed lumbar pillow is from Sew Gracious.

I love the very European design on the plates! These lemon napkin rings around plain white hemstitch napkins work well with the design rather than competing for attention. Faux bamboo flatware with a yellowish undertone easily slips right in for a polished look.

Blueberry Lemon sparkling water…naturally!🫐🍋😉

The centerpiece was so easy to create it’s almost embarrassing.🙈 I have had the Z Gallerie yellow finial urns forever. When I saw the cobalt blue ones on a recent shopping trip to Nell Hills, I knew I had to have them! The asymmetrical faux floral piece is comprised of a single Nell Hills lemon branch nestled among showy palm leaves and spiked with the most fabulous blueberry branches from a little shop (been there at least 40 years!) in Blue Springs, MO, called Petals & Potpourri. Ice cream bowls from Pier 1 hold blueberries and lemons to keep the theme going from base to tip.

Lemon blueberry cake, anyone?

Blueberries, all ready for the freezer!

Just FYI, I get absolutely nothing in return for mentioning products & services or for providing links to various sources. Just sharing the info!

I’m really not ready to say goodbye to summer, but I suppose it has to be. If you would like to check out a couple of other blue & yellow tablescapes on this blog, “Mother’s Day Brunch” and “Sun & Sky” (from 2017 which used some of these same elements in a very different way) might tickle your fancy.

Or if you’re just looking for a tablescape with scads of lemon yellow:

I’m so happy you stopped by! If you wish, let me know you popped in via the comment section below. Have a safe, happy, healthy week ahead!

Pagoda Paradise In Pink & Green

Bold color. That’s what late summer calls for. We’re broiling right now here in the Midwest, and it’s taking its toll on my beautiful flower beds. (Dear Mother Nature, Please take note: This is Missouri, not Hell!🔥🥵) So if crippling heat wants to suck the life out of what I’ve created outside, I guess I’ll just have to compensate inside!

Our dining room, awash with shades of white punctuated with blue most of this summer, has been taken over by bright hues of pink and green.

The inspiration for this tablescape came in part from this gorgeous custom pillow made by Sew Gracious Monograms on Etsy. A pink pagoda is right up my alley! Thanks, Pam!

The other part of the inspiration came from a pair of these GORGEOUS tea towels from Nell Hills in Kansas City, MO, fashioned into a table runner. Because our dining room is decorated in blue and white, the addition of pink and extension of blue via the fabulous pagodas in the runner and pillows is fabulous!

Each place setting starts with a hot pink Bormioli Rocco “Inca” glass charger, followed by a Ralph Lauren “Mandarin” dinner plate rimmed in blue, a square white B. Smith plate, a Kate Spade for Lenox “Rutherford – Navy” salad plate, and is topped off with a Granny Smith green Mikasa appetizer plate from their “Daylight” collection. Sleek stainless Hampton Forge bamboo flatware, a citrusy crushed silk napkin cinched with a Z Gallerie parrot napkin ring, and simple stemware round out the setting.

I went REALLY big and showy on the floral pieces using a mix of beautiful fauxs that tower above and around the painted pink birdcage that (somewhat) resembles a pagoda. To give the birdcage a larger presence, I perched it atop a stack of natural (to break up the profusion of color a bit) bamboo trays. Large white Z Gallerie parrots stand sentry in front of the floral arrangements.

This is a wonderful and welcome departure from the staid wash of white we have enjoyed the last couple of months. My way of easing into the deeper jewel tones of fall which is fast approaching.

Thank you for stopping in to visit! I appreciate it and welcome you to leave a comment if you wish. Have a glorious end of summer, and I hope to see you back here again soon. Meanwhile, if you would like to see other creations in pink and green on this blog:

If you’d like to check out other posts on this blog using the parrots, go to:

And if orchids – real or faux – are your thing, check out these posts:

Remember to follow me on Instagram!

The Power of Pink

It’s no secret I love the color pink. It has the power to simultaneously soothe and energize me. “Coquettish” is how it has been described, but I am invincible when cloaked in it or when my surroundings bathe in it. I’ll take it! Serve it up any way you want…from the softest blush to the boldest bright…like Shelby in Steel Magnolias”, “Pink is my signature color!”

At times I opt to keep the drama of a table confined to a single element. For this one, the WOW is in the waterfall of graceful florets (Nell Hills) spilling from a trio of tower vases.

The softness of this tablescape lends itself to the most feminine events: birthdays, wedding or baby showers, Mothers Day, Breast Cancer Awareness, or just a much needed girls’ night in.

I used these same floral branches in a totally different way in the recent post “Solemn Stars & Stripes“. White flowers instead of pink are used to keep the table from looking overly “sweet” and saturated.

A mix of old china and new Grace Teaware gold-dotted porcelain with a gorgeous pink band sits atop gold-leaf glass chargers. The faux pearl napkin rings are actually 2 rings fitted together for more girth, a trick I first used in the post “Peonies & Pearls” back in 2012.

I am so excited about and in love with these shapely gold-rimmed beverage glasses from Nell Hills!!! They are quite substantial in hand and easily pair with many items already in my repertoire. The blush pink stemless champagne glasses (Michaels) mimic the bowls with their generous sprinkle of gold dots.

This white pheasant has made an appearance in autumn posts like “Pheasants & Pumpkins” and “Candy Colored Autumn“, but never in a spring/summer setting. He just looks right at home here, though, so…voila!

These glass lamp votive holders are a favorite of mine, but I have rare occasion to use them. I bought them on clearance at Pier 1 some 20+ years ago in 3 colors, and they add just the right amount of ambient light at a slightly raised level. (I used the purple shades for “Celebrate Mardi Gras!” in 2014 but still haven’t found the right time and place for the red ones.)

The vitrine holds coffee service and dessert that includes assorted confections on a tiered tray and cupcakes under a fluffy cloud of pink frosting.

If you like pink as much as I do, check out these posts!

Thanks so much for stopping by to visit my little blog! I appreciate it more than you’ll ever know. I’m also on Instagram if you’d like to follow me there! Enjoy your day!

Solemn Stars & Stripes

This 4th of July (and always) I pray for peace, true freedom, liberty and justice for all souls on this earth.

Placing the ceramic foot bath on a silver gallery tray adds another dimension and a bit of formality to the centerpiece.

Kate Spade for Lenox “Rutherford Circle – Navy” salad plates and “Rutherford Circle – Red” dinner plates atop white ceramic chargers. A mix of alternating red and blue Pier 1 star shaped bowls and a star-studded napkin folded flag style round out the place setting. I first did this napkin fold for “4th of July – Coastal Style” back in 2014.

Hampton Silversmiths “Patriot” flatware.

Mikasa “Jamestown Platinum” stemware.

Faux floral stems and blue & white chinoiserie foot bath from Nell Hill’s (Kansas City).

My Mother’s American flag is displayed on the vitrine in her honor.

Don’t forget to share in the abundance of the season including fresh fruits and pies! My favorite: blueberry! What’s YOURS?!!

To see other patriotic tablescapes on this blog, just click below. Have a safe and happy 4th!

The Blue & The Grey – Lest We Forget

Juneteenth now has now established its place in history. With origins in Galveston, TX, it commemorates the emancipation of people enslaved right here on American soil as it simultaneously celebrates African American culture. Though not a part of the general American curriculum, it has been celebrated on June 19 of each year since 1866, and it has just been declared a federal holiday. African American history is AMERICAN HISTORY. While the colors of the Pan-African flag – red, black & green – have been more recently associated with Juneteenth, the official flag was red, white & blue as it declared that all previously enslaved American people and their descendants are indeed AMERICANS. Nothing less. The uniforms of the Civil War (1861-1865), fought in part over slavery in American society, eschewed both of these color schemes in favor of blue for the Union (North) and grey for the Confederates (South). My celebration of Juneteenth, lest we forget, unites those uniform colors in harmony and embraces the red, white & blue that stands for ALL AMERICANS in the ongoing, often painfully elusive pursuit of “one nation under God” with “liberty and justice for all.”

I paired my Mother’s beautiful light grey/white center/platinum rim Easterling “Majestic” china with the more contemporary Kate Spade for Lenox “Rutherford Circle Navy” pattern. I love the simplicity of both patterns that transcend time and levels of formality. To lean in the more formal direction this go round I used my Mom’s “Lady Esther” by Queen Esther silverplate flatware and my own Noritake “Spectrum” platinum-rimmed stemware. White ceramic chargers create a unified look around the table.

Crisp white hemstitch napkins are gathered with a floral starburst ring.

The centerpiece is made up of a silver reticulated gallery tray topped with a massive glass globe filled with curly willow branches that encircle a pair of American flags. (My first thought was that the branches represented the branches of our American government, but that got WAY too deep…even for me!🤔) Flanking the bowl are smaller glass globes filled with beautiful red roses from my friend/neighbor, Barbara, and a pair of tall, intricately engraved candlesticks. (That Barbara…she always knows how to cheer me up!🥰)

I absolutely LOVE these Kate Spade bowls! Classic and chic!

On the vitrine, coffee and dessert (I am LOVING all the cool new baking cups found at Home Goods/TJ Maxx/ Marshalls!!!) are served up in high Americana style. I ceremoniously fold and save every flag that we fly on our house, then dutifully drag them out each summer to put on display in our home. The one in the center was given to my Mom upon her retirement from the Missouri Senate.🇺🇸

If you’d like to see more patriotic tablescapes on this blog, check these out:

Wildflower Easter

Here is the 3rd of 3 tablescapes I’m considering for Easter Sunday…and just in the nick of time! I’ll have to decide by Friday so that I can get the ball rolling! If YOU have a favorite of the last 3 posts, please drop me a comment to let me know which most tickles your fancy! I’ll combine your votes with those from my Instagram account for the final decision!

The inspiration for this tablescape came from my Mikasa Stone Craft dishes in mixed and matched hues of mauve, pistachio, cornflower, and green. SO MANY tablescaping opportunities with a mix!

The Mikasa plates and mugs are paired up with 222 Fifth Bunny Land bowls (Home Goods) that also have varied color checkerboard rims to mix and match.

Bright lavender napkins from LinenTablecloth.com sprout from each coffee mug, and the egg cups are filled with pastel M&Ms that mimic the melange of colors in the dishes and centerpiece.

The mix/match of dish colors at each place setting is unified with uniform white ceramic and rattan chargers, bamboo stainless flatware, napkins, egg cups, and glass cloches from Nell Hills in Kansas City, MO.

The “grass” centerpiece, purchased for a mere $10 at an estate sale some years ago, has been punched up with a variety of Spring “wildflowers” in colors that complement the dishes. You’ll notice the same daisies on the plates are in the centerpiece to tie it all together.

On the vitrine behind the dining table are colorful cupcakes (in cupcake cups and on a ceramic cake pedestal from Home Goods/TJ Maxx) with another small arrangement of daisies. (All flowers used in this post are faux for demonstration purposes. I’ll use the real deal for my Sunday tablescape!)

So…take a peek back at the other 2 entries – “Lettuce Talk About Easter” and “Artichoke Easter” – then let me know which is your favorite. I’ll post the winner!

Looking for more Easter tablescape inspiration? Look no further! See if one of these floats your boat!:

Mardi Gras, Baby!

I…AM…STIR CRAZY!!! Nine – count ‘em – NINE weeks since this most recent spine surgery and I am STILL on lockdown for what seems like perpetuity! I’ve been growling and pacing, and I’m just about ready to bite!!! But I am making progress, albeit at a snail’s pace.

Thank goodness for a very welcome email from a freelancer on behalf of TasteOfHome.com who reached out to me for permission to use a photo from my 2013 post, Mardi Gras Madness.  My chance to blog without having to do any real work!!! I hope you will pop over to take a look at “10 Centerpiece Ideas for Your Mardi Gras Party” which went live yesterday. I’m #5 on the countdown.

Have a joyful and raucous (but don’t come to me for bail money!😉) Fat Tuesday, and a loving and memorable Valentine’s Day! I”ll see ya when I’m a bit more limber and mobile!

Other Mardi Gras-themed posts on this blog include:
Celebrate Mardi Gras
Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler!
Mardi Gras Lite
Mardi Gras Mojo
The Peacock Effect
Peacock Pizzazz!

Valentine’s Day is less than a week away so here are a few posts you might consider for planning a celebration of love for your Valentine or Galentines!
Queen of Hearts Card Party
Platinum & Pink
Be Still My Heart
Should Have Put a Ring On It
Days of Wine & Roses
Chocolate Traditional
Love’s Arrow
Peonies and Pearls
French Poodle
Pretty In Pink
Fairy Tale Wedding Shower
Showered In Pink
Princess Pink Birthday Party

I’m happy to once again join all the ladies and gents over at Susan’s place for the 489th Tablescape Thursday. Pop on over to get lots of Valentine’s Day AND Mardi Gras ideas!

Better Late Than Never, Pt. II – Christmas 2016 in the Dining Room

This is Installment #2 of 4 from a very late reveal of Christmas decor around our home in 2016. The first installment peeped around the entry hall and library. This time we move into the dining room.

I like to use black in Christmas decorating because it’s a wonderful neutral that really showcases gemstone colors and brilliant metals. I draped this table with a 90″x132″ black diamond pintuck tablecloth from LinenTablecloth.com  that skims the floor.

 

 

The centerpiece is a flat woven basket from Tuesday Morning filled with mounds of red and gold glass ornaments in varying sizes to lend depth and dimension. Frolicking amidst the ornaments are two playful gold reindeer with beaded antlers from Pier 1. (The ones they’re selling this year are similar to these, but cooler with little red scarves!) A smattering of gold mercury glass chargers complete the centerpiece.

 

 

 

 

Gold glass chargers sit beneath Ciroa gold-rimmed black & white buffalo check bone china dinner plates. Austere white cotton napkins are cinched with ornamental red berry picks from Hobby Lobby twisted to create a napkin ring. (I used this same technique for “Christmas Progressive Dinner” on a much different table.) The pattern of the Longchamps crystal complements that of the dinner plates. A red and gold English cracker is set alongside each place setting for fun after dinner. (Our family has TOO MUCH fun with them!)

 

 

 

On the buffet behind the dining table is another flat basket loaded with spirits for guests to help themselves at will. A creamy white ironstone pitcher filled with red berry picks from Hobby Lobby (the same as used for the napkin rings) dresses it up a bit. On each side are painted gold manzanita “trees” from LinenTablecloth.com that I ordered on a whim. (“On a whim” means when I was taking medication that had me doing weird things that I don’t even remember doing!!! Still…not a bad purchase!) In front of those sit shiny red mercury glass lidded canisters clad in black & white gingham ribbon bows. The gilded bay leaf wreath on the mirror is uplit at night.

 

 

The tea/bar cart is ready to serve after dinner coffee and/or libations by way of a Grace’s Teaware white lattice coffee set accented with Ciroa plates on a silver tiered stand. A metal champagne bucket from Home Goods brims with gold glass ornaments.

 

The wood & metal sconces hold more of the Ciroa plates with a shiny red ornament hoisted in front to draw the eye up.

 

The china cabinet in the opposite corner of the room is topped with more metal wine/champagne cooling vessels. The center one is filled to capacity with bright red glass ornaments to complement the table centerpiece.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, the skinny tree in the window with a fun stovepipe hat topper! (See another tree topped with a stovepipe hat at  Christmas 2012 – Red, Black & Silver.) A load of ornaments on the tree include more stovepipe hats (Dollar Tree), red lanterns (Walmart), red berry picks (Hobby Lobby), frosted pine cones and acrylic snowflakes, grinning snowmen and twists of black & white check ribbon. (Other tablescapes using these snowmen are Black, White & Red All Over Christmas Tablescape, Checkered Christmas, and Frosty the Snowman.) Beneath the tree are piles of snowflakes, snowballs, and baskets of pine cones with black lanterns lit up for the season.

That about does it for the 2016 dining room. I’ll be back in a couple of days with pics from the family room that I hope you’ll enjoy. Meanwhile, there is LOTS of other Christmas inspiration on this site. Just type in the word Christmas under Categories on the right-hand sidebar to hit the jackpot!

I’ll be joining Susan later this week for Tablescape Thursday as well as Sandra & Chloe for Celebrate Your Story and Linda for her Dishing It & Digging It Link Party! Come on along and get inspired!!!

Shop ‘Til You Drop – Prepping for Black Friday

Alycia and “Better Kansas City” host Alexis del Cid, playing with dishes

Every tablescape blogger and those who read the blogs have at least one thing in common: WE LOVE TO SHOP!!! We chase after bargains, bright ideas, and innovative styling tips. Shopping can make a person awfully hungry and thirsty, and with Black Friday just over the horizon now, this super high-spirited 4-minute segment from the “Better Kansas City” show has tips on creating a fun and fanciful after-the-hunt tablescape. A few still photos of the tablescapes created on set follow, and at the end stick around for a super silly 60-second bonus clip from the show I think you’ll enjoy!

 

I created two separate tables for this segment: a colorful dining table for guests and a fun buffet table.

 

 

Bright pink/fuchsia 17″ poly napkins from LinenTablecloth.com are neatly stacked at the end of the buffet table. The fun metal figurine in the background depicts a carefree young woman out on a shopping spree and is one of 3 purchased at Hobby Lobby a couple of years ago. The cake…well, you’ll learn more about that cake in the video clip at the end of the post!

 

When I saw this stainless steel stiletto heel cake server at Burlington a few years ago, I just couldn’t resist! This would be great for showers and wedding events, too. Such a fun, feminine way to serve up dessert!

 

Here’s another of those metal shopping figurines from Hobby Lobby. This chick is ready to shop ’til she drops come rain or shine! Next to her is a fabulous glittering stiletto heel vase overflowing with an array of colorful flowers and greenery.

 

 

 

This was one of my favorite parts of the whole buffet tablescape! The drink station is set up on a wooden Lazy Susan for easy access. The wine glasses with purses all over them are from the Dollar Tree and complement the shoe wine glasses on the dining table. The stiletto heel bottle stoppers were an impulse buy from a Michaels clearance bin a couple of years back that really add style and a little shimmer. We were really pressed for time, and I asked my genius friend, Barbara, to figure out something to do with the shot glasses on the table. She stacked them pyramid style for a look that is a real winner! A+!!!!! (She’s a retired teacher!)

 

 

When setting up a buffet table, I like to have various sizes, shapes, textures and anything else available to give the table “motion.” Setting the spoons on the diagonal seem to do just that. The bowls by Rosanna feature a stiletto heel motif. They were purchased at Tuesday Morning some time back.

 

A feminine dining tablescape for ladies who have had their fill of shopping for the day. (Wait…what does that actually feel like??!?!) I chose to go with very colorful place settings to complement the buffet table. Each place setting is grounded with a hot pink Bormioli Rocca “Inca” glass charger topped with a solid white plate. The pretty salad/dessert plates by Rosanna each have a fun shopping reference along with the stiletto heel motif. The flatware is J.A. Henckels Bellaserra.

 

The polyester LinenTablecloth.com napkins in “Caribbean” blue are folded lengthwise and placed with one end beneath the charger. Each napkin is cinched with a colorful beaded napkin ring rescued from the clearance bin at Bed Bath & Beyond 5+ years ago.

 

The fun stiletto heel glassware from Dollar Tree rounds out the place setting.

 

Each place setting had its own separate nosegay displayed in a bright pink fluted glass vase from Michaels. I like to do this for ladies luncheons and such. It’s such a personal gesture that guests really appreciate both during and after the event. All flowers for this segment were purchased at Aldi’s!

 

One of my favorite tricks for bringing color and depth to the table is to layer linens. Here I used a white 85″ square (to let the colors of the accessories on top really pop) over a hot pink/fuchsia 108″ round, both from LinenTablecloth.com.  (To see a couple of other examples of linen layering on this site check out Caribbean Queen: One Table, Three Looks, Queen of Hearts Card Partyand Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon. And if you’d like to see another post-Black Friday tablescape, check out Black Friday Luncheon from back in 2012. )

 

OK…post over, but here are a few bonus pics and a video you will get a kick out of from later in the show. The pic above is of co-host Rob in the kitchen with famed chef/author/restaurateur Lidia Bastianich who was also on the show that day. Yes…THAT Lidia!!!  I was too starstruck to ask for a selfie with her!

Then it just got loopy around there!

 

Rob and Alexis just had TOO much fun with that fake food!!!

 

Group hug! Me with co-hosts Hallie, Rob and Alexis with my buddy Barbara on the other end. Another show down!!

I will once again join Susan and the gang over at Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday. I’m also joining Sandra at Sweet Sensations for Celebrate Your Story. You can still catch cool ideas for your Thanksgiving tablescaping as well as the upcoming Christmas holidays!

Autumn In Cactus Country

My good friend (since 6th grade!), Monica, was recently swept away from the Kansas City area to Arizona. Arizona??!?!??!? We’re Midwestern girls! We don’t know anything about ARIZONA!!! We’re used to perceptible changes of seasons, with autumn (next to Christmas, of course) being at the top of our decorating list! We know that spring means pastels, summer means ice cream colors, winter means Chiefs red, and fall means russet, burgundy, deep greens and orange. Lots and lots of orange! What in heaven’s name is a Missouri transplant to do for fall in Arizona??!???!

Asked and answered on a recent “Better Kansas City” segment! This 2-1/2 minute clip includes four different autumn tablescaping palettes I think you’ll enjoy!

One way to bring the season to your table in climes where warm colors can overpower and autumn leaves simply don’t exist is to use white and pastel pumpkins along with lots of succulents.

 

 

 

 

 

 

While the palette is predominantly white, it’s the accompanying elements that lend to the fall feeling. Notice the use of translucent stemware and votive holders that keep the table light. The Home Essentials Antique White dishes, faux mother of pearl flatware, napkins…all in the white family but not the exact tone to add subtle variety.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tucked among the varied sizes of white pumpkins are chicks & hens, jelly bean plants, echeveria, agave and seeded eucalyptus. The greens and burgundy in the succulents are a deliberate nod to the season and keep the tablescape from becoming too austere.

 

While standard votives would look perfectly fine with this vignette, I chose these cylindrical ones from Pier 1 to add just a teensy bit of height. It’s already hot in Arizona, so just a few for ambience!

 

The dining table is loaded with decor, so I elected to keep the buffet behind it sparse. The clay pots I chose for these flowing succulents remind me of a weathered adobe home with its pinkish tones.

The elements used in this tablescape could be applied all around the house for light, airy, fresh fall decorating in southwestern U.S. states like Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada and Oklahoma, and in parts of California, Utah, Texas, and Colorado as well as in Mexico.

Without question this was one of the most fun challenges ever! Monica, I hope this helps! Michael, I still don’t forgive you for taking Monica away! 😉

Other tablescapes on this site from this
“Better Kansas City” show clip:

Autumn Chinoiserie
(others soon to come!)

Other tablescapes on this site
using white pumpkins for fall:

Thanksgiving 2010
Autumn White Wedding
Finally Fall
Over the River and Through the Woods

Another tablescape suitable for fall
using succulents (and sunflowers!):

Cinco de Mayo Simply Done

I’m linking up this week for the first time to “Dishing It & Digging It” and the “Share Your Style” blog party where you can see all kinds of talent in the blog world!