Ain’t Misbehavin’ – Celebrating Mom’s 89th Birthday Gatsby Style

While recuperating from my most recent spine surgery, I planned a 1920s/Gatsby-style ladies luncheon to celebrate my Mom’s 89th birthday. (Doesn’t she look beautiful??? Don’t tell me this chick “Ain’t Misbehavin'”!!!) A grand luncheon in her honor has become sort of a tradition (when I’m healthy!) since her 2011 retirement from the Missouri Senate, and it’s always a delightful challenge to come up with a theme that both she and her guests will enjoy. (Check out 88 Years & 88 Keys, Celebrating 85 Years of Fabulous, Pretty In Pink, Grazin’ in the Grass.) This year’s inspiration came from a flapper bar towel my friend/neighbor, Barbara, gifted me while I was convalescing. Mom was born in the March preceding the start of the Great Depression in 1929, and I thought it would be a fun idea to travel back in time to explore the good things about that (infamous) year!
(This post is super photo heavy, but I pay close attention to the “cat’s particulars” aka details and want to share each and every nuance with you!)

 

Setting the mood from the very start was an important part of the planning. The invitations I created on my desktop had the familiar art deco design representative of the 1920s. Along with the invitations was an insert suggesting accessories to help the ladies get “all dolled up” for the occasion. Notice the flapper lady I put in the return address corner and the Lena Horne stamps!!!

 

A pair of “V.I.P. Entrance” signs in 1920s black and gold art deco style flanked the doorway, greeting guests as they approached the porch. Music from the decadent era rang out as it would outside a bustling nightclub, courtesy of a Google Mini.

 

The computer-generated, sequin-backed sign on the front door welcomes guests to the fictional “Gold Sequin” speakeasy.

 

My friend/neighbor, Jane, was such a sexy, gracious (and convincing!) “cigarette girl” hawking bubble gum cigars and candy cigarettes I ordered from the Blair Candy Co.

 

Our modest entry hall sets the tone for thumbing our noses to Prohibition with the oversized champagne flutes! They’re filled with tiny crystals. (Crystals…Cristál…the champagne…get it?) On the walls are cute Rosanna cocktail plates I bought a few years ago for cocktail parties that were first used for “Hooray for Vodka!” back in 2013! (Smaller plates of this same design were used to serve the birthday cake!)

 

The primary bar with specialty drinks (potent Mary Pickfords and chocolate martinis that were really a couple of “quilts”!) was set up in the library, although guests were invited to get whatever they may want from any of the other 3 bars on the main floor.  (Tip: Make up pitchers of these drinks and then just have the bartender shake small portions with ice to serve!) The bar was covered with a gold crinkle taffeta tablecloth and black sequin table runner from YourChairCovers.com. The towel that inspired this theme reads “You can’t regret what you don’t remember” and jokingly refers to the temporary amnesia caused by one of the meds I was taking, prominently hangs in the front. We borrowed cocktail artwork from the basement decor to further lend to the bar atmosphere. The ostrich feather trimmed lamp (’cause that’s how I roll!) is borrowed from my dressing room, and the glass of brandy and “burning” cigarette (both fake) further lent to the speakeasy theme. The two booze hounds  in the above pics…just pitiful!!! 🙂

 

We transformed the family room into a 1920s era fine dining establishment complete with a 1920s music playlist in the background. It didn’t take long for me to know what linens I’d use from my stash. The palette of the Gatsby era was gold, black & white. I layered floor-length (90″x132″ for 6’x30″ folding tables) black linens from LinenTablecloth.com with gold sequin runners from YourChairCovers.com. The chairs clean up nicely with gold stretch leather-look covers (no longer available where I bought them, but I’ve seen them at TableclothsFactory.com) with black spandex sashes and sparkly gold slips (YourChairCovers.com).

 

I ordered 100 white ostrich feathers to create these lush (and surprisingly easy!) centerpieces. The glass tower vases are filled with odd-sized bulk “pearls” from Hobby Lobby and topped with a beautiful dangling bobeche affixed with a bit of Cling® Floral Adhesive to avoid catastrophe. The extended centerpiece is filled in with gold mercury glass votives with LED tealights, black  ceramic pieces (again, borrowed from my dressing room), and cabaret lamps created with crystal candlesticks, bobeches, and white silk shades.

 

The place setting decision was remarkably simple. As a restaurant might use, I opted for all white from the ceramic charger to the B. Smith luncheon plate to the Pier 1 “White Poppy” salad bowl. The “Graham” matte gold flatware is from Target, and the Longchamps stemware is accompanied by individual bottles of non-alcoholic Martinelli’s sparkling cider for the toast. Faux pearl napkin rings cinch simply folded black napkins. The menus layered in white, black, and gold sequin-covered cardstock from Hobby Lobby were created on my desktop using Microsoft® Word. (That sequin cardstock is no joke to cut!!!) The pearl embellishment on the menus came from a pair of summer sandals I broke! The meal served included the Louisville, Kentucky Hot Brown Sandwich, a late night/early morning diner staple back in the 1920s to soak up the liquor enjoy after a night out of unabandoned carousing. Water and lemonade bottles were placed on both sides of the dining table.

 

Other special touches around this room included another ostrich feather lamp I created using a crystal candlestick, an abundance of paper rosettes (Michaels) mixed with oversized champagne glasses of crystals and pearls, and an extra tall martini glass (Hobby Lobby) that I placed in a large flat glass bowl to give it girth. Final touch: notice a muted television in the background playing “The Great Gatsby” movie!!!

 

My sister makes fun fortune cookies for all occasions, these with art deco-style fabric. While the take-home fortune cookies were a demure little thank you to the guests, I asked her to create some funny, slightly suggestive ones for us to play the fortune cookie game “In Bed”. Ever heard of it? Each guest opens their cookie and reads the fortune aloud followed by the words “in bed.” As the pictures show, this game got lots of laughs!!!

 

Check out this cake created by my longtime friend, Patrick Snuffer. I provided him with an almost childlike sketch using various elements I’d seen around the Internet, and voilà! A delicious art deco cake with a black ostrich feather! To the left of the cake are the mini martini glasses in which ice cream (choice of 4!!!) was served. The miniature gold spoons are from Michaels.

 

The candy bar in the dining room was one of my favorite elements to create! I researched candies and gums that were popular in the 1920s and then went on the hunt. The result: a favor bar laden with 22 flavor treats served up in various size martini and pilsner glasses!!! Guests scooped up what they wanted into favor bags with black, gold and/or white twist ties displayed in my Limoges swan salt & pepper cellars. The table is covered in another gold crinkle taffeta cloth with a black sequin runner. The gold painted manzanita “trees” just seemed to work with the decor, especially dressed in large hanging crystals. My generous neighbor provided the sequined dress for the dress form, and I finished it off with a few ostrich feathers, a feather boa, and all the remaining pearl necklaces from my jewelry collection!

 

The dining room was “fun central” with the candy bar AND a “photo booth” where guests could take selfies or have their photo taken. We simply took the existing artwork off the wall and replaced it with oversized gold and black paper rosettes (Michaels). I hung a huge paper rosette over the mirror and draped it with crystal garland. The photo prop table beneath was laden with vintage accessories (thanks, Dee!) and fake cocktails. (Notice I was a good girl and stayed in little black flats instead of the gorgeous T-strap heels I really wanted to wear!) Fun/Silly pics of guests at the photo booth and around the house are at the very end of the post. Such fun!!!

 

Without question this was one of the most fun birthday parties I’ve ever put together in my Mom’s honor!!! My sister, Berishia, and I both love our Mom so much, and we are blessed to have had her in our lives for all these years.

 

MOST DEFINITELY MISBEHAVIN’!!!

 

Special, HUGE thanks to: my friend/neighbor, Jane, for being the best cigarette girl a flapper could ask for; my friend/neighbor, Barbara, for mixing up those insanely potent drinks, whipping up a mean Mornay sauce for the Kentucky Hot Browns, and helping out so much in the kitchen; Barbara’s helpful husband, Lynn, for graciously taking time away from college basketball to take our group photo; my dear friend, Patrick, for creating such an extraordinary cake; my cousin, Dee, for all the props she contributed for the photo booth and for doing such a fabulous job on Mom’s makeup; my sister, Berishia, for the fortune cookies; my best friend of nearly 55 years, Sheri, for her precision serving skills and so many great photos despite the overcast skies, and; my husband, Ramon, for all the photos he took, his bartending prowess, being such an all-round good sport, and PAYING FOR THIS!!! 😉

Now…on to the fun guest pics with captions chock full of 1920s Flapper/ Gangster Slang. (The Flapper Slang Guide, Slang of the 1920s, Molls & Dolls Slang Dictionary) Enjoy!

My cousin, Dee, and I always take pictures of us rough housing. Here we are trying to put each other in a “deep sleep.” A whole new meaning to “clutching your pearls”!!! Somebody call the “coppers”!

Wow! Here’s a real “sheba”! Barbara was the ultimate flapper girl, ready to have a great time in her sparkly black dress!

Mom and her forever baby sister, Vivienne, who I call Aunt Bean Bean Dancing Machine!

Here’s a couple of “swell dames”: Mom and friend/LINK sister, Shirley Thaw.

Mom and friend/LIncoln High School classmate from the Class of 1946/”canary”, Geneva Price

Mom and friend/Delta sorority sister, Dr. Susan Wilson. Check out those “gams”!

Mom and friend, Amy Heithoff-Dominguez, lookin’ like “the cat’s meow”!

Mom and friend/Delta sorority sister/education colleague, Dr. Marjorie Williams. That’s some “dish”!

Mom and friend/LINK sister, Barbara Graham, in her “glad rags” looking “air tight.”

Mom and my good friend & neighbor, Barbara Alsup. Quite the “billboard” that Barbara!

Mom and her friend/neighbor/fellow church member, Virginia Jones, who looks like a real “floorflusher”!

Mom and her niece/my arch nemesis cousin, Dee Evans, who’s had a little too much “giggle water.”

“Jeepers Creepers”! It’s Mom and her longtime family friend from the neighborhood (Leeds) where they grew up, Kimberly Randolph!

Mom and her son-in-law/my husband, the very dapper Dr. Ramon Nichols. Hubba hubba…what a “sheik”!!!

Well, look who stopped by to say hello and have her picture taken with the birthday girl! It’s little Ava Rutherford with her own flapper boa!!!

Ramon and me. Gosh, he looked so handsome in that outfit!!!!!!!!!!!! A real “brooksy” in those snazzy “dog kennels”!!! Me…post-op flat shoes! 😦

These “dolls” came ready to party! Barbara Graham (in a coat I really wanted to steal!) and Amy Heithoff-Dominguez (with a handbag to die for!)

Our resident bootlegger, Bob Rutherford, had to come check on his moll, Jane, and have a cigar!

Mom looked like the queen she is!

 

What a “babe”! Mom wears a 1920s-inspired gown designed and created by her granddaughter/my niece, Yvonne Chamberlain, for her to wear to the Governor’s Ball about 10 years ago. She still looks fabulous in it!!!

Even a “croaker” has to get his nutrition!

A couple of snappy “sips”: My “tomato” cousin, Dee Evans, and the flapper with the sexy “stilts”, Susan Wilson.

This is the look of PURE JOY!!! I absolutely adore this picture!!!

This outfit is absolutely the “duck’s quack”!!!

I’m so proud of my Mom!!!

A trio of real “lookers”: Barbara Alsup, me, and Sheri Grant

Check out these “kittens”: Barbara Graham, Shirley Thaw, Susan Wilson, and Dee Evans

Ripe and ready “hoppers”: Shirley Thaw, Susan Wilson, Dee Evans

I’m joining Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday this week. Check her out for a wealth of Spring and Easter ideas!

My friend, Debbie, at Debbee’s Buzz has another wonderful theme party you might like. Check out this fabulous Alice In Wonderland invitation!!!

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

 

 

 

Casablanca Cool

Good grief! It is actually cooler in Casablanca than in the Kansas City area right now!!! Not officially summer yet here, and the temperatures are hovering in the 90°-93° range for several days straight! Since I won’t be boarding a plane to that cooler destination in Morocco, I created a dining environment that can take me there in spirit.
(When you reach the bottom of this post, see who I DID travel to see!!!)

 

 

Our deck hosts a 6-ft. table covered in an easy care 90″x132″ gold crinkle taffeta tablecloth from YourChairCovers.com. A deep red beaded organza runner adds visual interest and helps to break up the expanse of gold color. I didn’t include chairs for this demonstration, but something natural like bamboo or wicker would look great!

 

 

 

Cooling turquoise blue Bormioli Rocco Inca glass chargers anchor each place setting. (These beautiful chargers were also used in Ocean Blue -Starfish & Seashells.) Amber dinner plates from Pier 1 add another layer of color. The final piece is a glass faux mercury-lined sorbet from World Market, a different color at each setting. See how the blue sky reflected in the glass resembles a swimming pool or ocean? Cooling and soothing!

 

 

Glassware from Pier 1 includes a deep purple stem for wine (purchased 12 years ago!), a water glass with a different jewel tone at the bottom at each place setting, and a lovely shot glass, both from Home Goods. Each has  a beautiful gold pattern – noted in this last picture – that ties the trio together.

 

Silky polyester napkins are cinched at the waist with red gemstone-flecked gold napkin rings.

 

I created a lush high/low centerpiece made up of multiple glass and metal elements.

 

 

I love these muted gold Casablanca Lanterns from Z Gallerie! I bought them in two sizes a few years back. I’m not sure if they still have them, but I’ve seen similar ones in other stores.

 

These sleek hot pink glass vases are from Hobby Lobby. I embellished them with amber glass tassels and filled them with palm fronds.

 

 

I have been waiting for years to use these multicolored cylindrical candle holders!!! I bought them on closeout in the large and small sizes at Gordman’s 7 or 8 years ago with a tablescape like this in mind.

 

These fun fabric votive holders are scattered on the table to add a little extra color, texture, and light.

 

 

 

 

To add to the ambience, I hung multicolored miniature chandeliers among the existing bistro lights on the deck overhang. In the center is a gathered bundle of colored ribbon first used in a Christmas setting some years ago to decorate a bar cart. The ribbon adds movement and texture as it sways in the summer breeze.

 

A small table off to the side, covered in a Pier 1 fringed and beaded throw, serves as a mini bar. (To see this throw used in an autumn setting, visit Morocco for Two on this site.)

 

 

 

 

A melange of colorful shot glasses line up on a gold melamine tray. (To see another appearance by these cute little shot glasses, visit Cinco de Mayo 2013 on this site.) For a little drama, height and fragrance, I added a martini glass filled to the rim with whole star anise. Additional shot glasses strewn with baby bracelets (first used as napkin rings in Diwali My Way) add a little more flair.

 

Here, a smaller version of the gold Casablanca Lantern from Z Gallerie lights guests’ way around the bar.

 

Colorful, fragrant lemons and oranges piled high in a gold glass vase with a pattern very much like that of the dining table linen.

 

A red silk throw lie beneath colorful pillows piled on a bench.

 

This tablescape in my head for a LONG time!!! I’m glad to have finally been able to bring it to you! Thanks so much for stopping in!

 

While attending my husband’s med school reunion, I FINALLY got to visit with blog buddy DIANNE of Dianne’s Creative Table!!! One of the most FUN, TALENTED, CREATIVE, INTERESTING, HOSPITABLE, and BEAUTIFUL souls in this world! We hit up an estate sale, then shopped, lunched, and shopped some more in historic downtown Franklin, TN, before visiting her gorgeous home.
Thank you so much for your incredible Southern hospitality, Dianne!!!

Dianne & Alycia

For more tablescapes with lots of bright, energetic color on this site:
Cupcake Colors
Summer Fruits & Penny-farthings
Hot Fun in the Summertime!
Butterfly Kaleidoscope
Diwali My Way
Livin’ la Vida Loca
Flamingos In Paradise
Give Peace A Chance Retro Tablescape
Peacock Pizzazz
Tropicana
Daisy Crazy
Hot Tropical

Summer Breeze
Caribbean Queen

Quote - If you live for people's acceptance, you will die from their rejection

 

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.

Celebrate Mardi Gras!

INSPIRATION: Colorful miniature masks found on clearance after Christmas at Pier 1

INSPIRATION: Colorful miniature masks found on clearance after Christmas at Pier 1

If you’re looking for some last-minute Mardi Gras inspiration, you’ve landed at the right spot!
(Click on any photo, then click again to enlarge/enhance it.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Full dining room

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Place settings

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - LinenTablecloth.com gold crinkle tablecloth detailingI’m all for fun where Mardi Gras is concerned, but we tend to go a little more upscale in the decor for certain friends & family…and you know who you are! 😉 This gold crinkle taffeta tablecloth from YourChairCovers.com serves as a beautiful foundation. The crinkles remind me of ruching on some bridal gowns. Very elegant AND no iron! Gotta love it! If you want to go for a posh Harlequin look, I suggest the eggplant (purple) pintuck from LinenTablecloth.com. You can’t go wrong either way!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Place settingThe royal purple Bormioli Rocco “Inca” glass charger anchors the place setting and is topped with an American Atelier “Florentine Scroll” dinner and salad plate. I chose this pattern because of the frenzied flourish of scroll work around the rim and in the center…for what is Mardi Gras if not frenzied and full of flourish? 🙂

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - MenuThere will be food. LOTS of it!!! I always overdo. I can’t help myself. At least there are great leftovers which = time off from the kitchen for at least a day. I created these menus on my desktop. The fun multi-colored background layer are actually postcard invitations I’ve had for years just waiting for the right moment to make their debut. Notice how here, too, there is frenzied scrolling. I added various colored faux gemstones for a more 3-D look and…let’s be honest…because the blingier the better!!!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Flatware, napkin collageThese things really excite me! I have literally had them for 20 years and NEVER used them. NEVER!!! I don’t know why. I have about 20 of them, purchased at a wholesale place in a “grab bag.” I suppose they’re actually feathered tassels of some sort, but I never let “intended use”get in my way. 😉 They’re quite full, very luxurious to the touch. They really add a lot of texture, color and sheer drama to the place setting!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Pier 1 stemware/TJ Maxx glassware

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Glassware from TJ MaxxI use this Pier 1 gold-rimmed purple and green stemware just about every year for Mardi Gras. It’s perfect for the occasion and never gets old to me. It also comes in handy at Christmastime or when I want to go for an exotic look. I bought the intricately-designed glassware in several colors at TJ Maxx a couple of years ago (used HERE in a celebration of Diwali) after deciding the World Market price was just way too crazy for me. It has a wonderful vintage look, and notice…scroll work!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Sequinned Mardi Gras maskThese miniature mask ornaments were the inspiration for this Mardi Gras table for 6. I found them while sifting through the 75% off area at Pier 1 this past January. While purple, green & gold are the traditional Mardi Gras colors, I’ve added a few more just to kick it up a notch!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Purple glass cabaret lampsThese purple glass cabaret lamps are yet another Pier 1 clearance purchase from about 15 years ago that I have never used until now. I got them in purple, red and clear. What was I waiting for??!??!!! Placed at each individual place setting, they add kind of a nightclub feel to the table.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Centerpiece collageThe centerpiece consists of two very dramatic aubergine “Moran” glass vases from Z Gallerie. The 31″ vases are filled with the beads that make Mardi Gras the decadent good time it’s known for and then topped off with glittered palm leaves.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Buffet mask surrounded in feathered tassels

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Buffet mask collageFeathers are a big part of the Mardi Gras celebration from the clothing, to the often elaborate/whacky headdress, to the decor. So I spread them around the room from the table to the buffet top! Here they fan out at the base of this aloof ceramic Jester mask rescued from the clearance section at Home Goods a couple of years ago. I added a handful of beads for color, texture and fun. In retrospect, I probably should have blinged him out a bit more. Well…there’s always next year, God willing!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Sconce with Mardi Gras fairy

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Sconce fairy collageThese fanciful Mardi Gras fairies were included in the same grab bag as the feathered tassels from years ago. I forgot they even existed. They somehow slipped past my trusty computerized catalog system and were still neatly tucked into the original packaging!!!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Gumbo

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com: Celebrate Mardi Gras! - Alycia with homemade gumbo & catfishNo, Ramon didn’t pick up some bag lady and bring her home. This is me after a long day of cooking and cleaning, and I apparently have no shame! Isn’t that head a mess? At least I’m wearing Mardi Gras purple! I did a trial run of the food for Fat Tuesday next week. I ended up adding crab and shrimp to this pot, but next week’s guest list includes someone who claims she’s allergic to shellfish…and you know who you are! 😉

I hope you’re all ready for Fat Tuesday with menu and drinks and games already decided! It’s going to be a blast…and then Lent. What are you giving up this year?

Other Mardi Gras tables or tables suitable for Mardi Gras on this site:
Mardi Gras Madness
Mardi Gras Lite
Mardi Gras Mojo
The Peacock Effect

I’m joining Susan over at Between Naps on the Porch again this week for “Tablescape Thursday”, and I hope you’ll come with! You’re bound to find loads of ideas from lots of other talented tablescapers (especially those Southern galsand you know who you are!) for a great Mardi Gras celebration.

The Peacock Effect

INSPIRATION: The softened peacock-like colors and design in this Home Goods plate

INSPIRATION: The softened peacock-like colors and design in this Home Goods plate

With the nasty winter pretty much everyone here in the U.S. has suffered/is still suffering through, it’s good to be able to pull out color and style that bring cheer and hope for Spring. Valentine’s Day is now under our belts (or around our necks or on our fingers…am I right, ladies?!), and it’s time to look toward the celebration of Mardi Gras. Don’t care for the traditional Mardi Gras colors or just want to switch it up? Perhaps something like this would work for you!
(Click on any photo and then click again to enlarge/enhance it.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Full dining room

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Full tabletop

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Full tabletop, lengthwiseThis beautifully-appointed table begins with a 90″ x 132″ soft silver tablecloth from YourChairCovers.com.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Double place setting

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Single place settingThe place setting begins with a lavender charger from Michael’s. The lavish glass plate is from the Topkapi line often found at Home Goods, T.J. Maxx and Marshall’s. It is 100% food safe. The colors are from the softer side of those found in peacock feathers, and the flourish encircling the plate reminds me of how a peacock proudly unfurls his tail.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Flatware and rim shot

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Flatware & plate detail collageThe International Silver “Royal Danish” sterling is paired with the setting to complement the majestic plate design. Notice how they both sort of fan out.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Glitter & sequin peacock embellishmentI picked up these flashy glitter- and sequin-covered peacock ornaments at this year’s 75% off after-Christmas clearance sale at Pier 1. They are simply clipped onto the side of the charger as an added flourish to the place setting.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Fleur de lis napkin foldI didn’t want to hide any part of the plate design or interfere with the beauty of the peacock on the charger, so the 20″ silver napkins from LinenTablecloth.com are placed dead center at the top of the place setting. They are folded into a fleur de lis which is a great tie-in to Mardi Gras.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Z Gallerie stemwareI bought this wonderful and oh-so-delicate aubergine-tinted “Andre” stemware from Z Gallerie about 3 years ago, but this is the first time I’ve used it. It picks up yet another hue from the peacock feathers.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Centerpiece vase collageI do love a pretty centerpiece, and this one was several weeks in the making. I just couldn’t decide on the center vase! Finally – after selecting mercury glass votives for the table and buffet – I settled on this gourd-shaped silver mercury glass vase from Hobby Lobby. A scant few peacock feathers rise and drape from it.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Silver Revere bowl with turquoise agate and floating candle

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Floating candle and turquoise agateNow you’re just going to think I’m really anal, but here goes anyway: I chose the silver floating candles (Pier 1) because, again, looking at them reminded me of the peacock’s fanned out tail. The candles drift over a bed of turquoise agate from Michael’s.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Buffet collageThe buffet behind the dining table is decorated with two low florals of white, purple, and green-tinted hydrangea, viburnum, deep purple calla lilies and feathery soft dusty miller. Each arrangement is finished off with a peacock like the ones on the table. A mixture of silver and turquoise/purple mercury glass votive holders also carries over from the dining table. The reflection in the mirror if of the same two wreaths used in yesterday’s peacock post.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Tea cart collageTo balance out the room, the tea cart holds a 21″ silver mercury glass pilsner vase filled with peacock feathers. This, also, is a carryover from yesterday’s post, “Simply Peacock Garden”.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, www.tabletwentyone.wordpress.com - The Peacock Effect: Feathered mask for Mardi GrasAdd a pot of gumbo and a few lavishly-feathered masks as party favors, and this dining atmosphere instantaneously becomes a Mardi Gras celebration!

So there you have it. This tablescape with a peacock effect can work with or without masks and King cake. Your choice!

Other tablescapes on this site using peacock feathers:
Simply Peacock Garden
Peacock Pizzazz
Pumpkins & Peacocks
Pheasants & Peacocks
Proud As a Peacock

Other tablescapes on this site for Mardi Gras:
Laissez Bon Temps Rouler!
Mardi Gras Mojo
Mardi Gras Lite
Mardi Gras Madness

I’m linking up with Susan over at Between Naps on the Porch for “Tablescape Thursday” again this week. If you’ve never joined in on this weekly blog party, this is your chance! There are so many talented tablescapers all over the world who share their creativity all in this one place. Join us, won’t you?

Be Still My Heart – A Valentine’s Day Tablescape

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Be Still My Beating Heart: Four plate collage

INSPIRATION: Pretty burgundy, black & white dessert plates found on the clearance table at Pier 1 and used here as bread & butter plates.

I hadn’t really planned on doing anything for Valentine’s Day other than what I’ll do for my husband on the 14th, but when I saw these little plates at Pier 1 on the clearance shelf, I had an immediate change of heart…so to speak. 😉
(Click on any photo, then click again to enhance/enlarge it.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Be Still My Beating Heart: Full Room

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Be Still My Beating Heart: linen hemsThis Valentine’s Day tablescape for four (two couples or maybe get some of your single girlfriends together for a fabulous night in!) is all about layering. I used three different tablecloths from LinenTablecloth.com to achieve an ultra lush look on this 48″ round table: a 108″ white round, a 90″ black round, and finally a 70″ burgundy square. The layering allows each of the three colors found in the inspiration plates to peek out with the burgundy taking center stage as the color of love.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Be Still My Beating Heart: Full tabletopThe table shown here is outfitted with a few pretty votives for dinner, but could be easily transformed to a luncheon table by removing them.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Be Still My Beating Heart: Place setting

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Be Still My Beating Heart: Napkin & flatware collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Be Still My Beating Heart: StemwareI wanted the place setting to evoke romance, so I used these intricately-embellished American Atelier “Empress” ironstone chargers and soup bowls that don’t usually see much action around here. The standard black dinner plate is part of a set from Walmart. The black-trimmed burgundy raw silk napkins are from the Bombay Co., a retail store I really, really miss. I chose the black Hampton Silversmiths “San Remo” flatware because the detailing on the handles resembles hearts. The stemware is one of my favorites, “Chelsea” from the Godinger collection.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Be Still My Beating Heart: Favor boxYou’ve just gotta have a box of chocolates for everyone on your Valentine’s Day guest list! The Russell Stover (local company!) chocolates here are covered in plain white wrap and adorned with tiny silk rosettes in the same burgundy color found in the top tablecloth.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Be Still My Beating Heart: Centerpiece collageThe centerpiece is simple but pretty. For demonstration purposes here I used silk rose balls, but it would be the crowning touch for your table to go for the real deal. Ask your florist to create them for you or, if you’re feeling particularly ambitious, go DIY. (Be sure to keep the finished rose balls in a cool spot before putting them on the table, and be VERY sure there is no water dripping from the floral foam.) Touches of pink in the rose balls help to soften the overall look and add contrast. Three silver-rimmed votive holders with shapes that mimic the black vase are strategically placed. (TIP: When setting a table, look for similar or complementary shapes in the decor pieces you use.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One – Be Still My Beating Heart: Chair with LTC Spandex chair coverI just LOVE these stretch chair covers from YourChairCovers.com!!! They are so easy to slip on, stay put even with the wiggliest butts on them, wash and wear with no fuss (no ironin’….y’know what I’m talkin’ ’bout, ladies?), can bounce back & forth between traditional and contemporary dining environments, and they come in 14 colors! YourChairCovers.com carries a wide variety of lovely sashes, too, but I chose this organza one from my repertoire with its fancy beading for a little extra ooh-la-la.

Quick and easy post for a quick and easy tablescape to celebrate with your loved one(s). Please come back in a couple of days to take a peek at my second (and final!) Valentine’s Day 2014 tablescape.

Other tablescapes on this site suitable for Valentine’s Day dining:
Platinum & Pink Valentine
Should Have Put A Ring On It
Diamonds Are a Material Girl’s Best Friend
Queen of Hearts Card Party
Love’s Arrow

Days of Wine & Roses
Chocolate Traditional
Peonies & Pearls
Fete Noir et Gris

Pretty In Pink
Princess Pink Birthday Dinner

I’m joining Susan for “Tablescape Thursday” again this week. Drop on by to see what other tablescapers from all around the world are up to this week!

Thanks for stopping by! Valentine hugs!

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 Through the Red Door

Welcome back! I’m so glad to be back to doing what I love, now with substantially less pain than ever! In the coming weeks, I am excited to be able to post 6 different Christmas tables  that will feature ideas for kids, adults, and even one very “guy-specific.” Today’s table, my first post since bouncing out of here in July for shoulder surgery (which was a grand success…thanks for all your wonderful well wishes!), takes you through our newly-painted front door all ready for the holidays. I have always wanted a white Colonial-style house with classic black shutters and an iconic, welcoming, shiny apple-red door (think Elizabeth Arden or Talbot’s!), and just in time for the holidays I invite you to come on in!
(To see photo detailing close up, click & then click again.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door - adorned gift box

INSPIRATION: Red & gold decorated metal Christmas box from Pier 1

Tablescapes at Table Twenty- One: Front door wreath & library Christmas table in red & goldThis table in our library was created for a one-night only tablescaping class I conducted in October through MCC-Longview. (Setting up for that class completely wiped me out since I wasn’t quite healed. It took a month to get my wind back!)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One:L Christmas Through the Red Door - full table

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door - Tabletop in red & goldThis 48″ round table for 4 could be easily recreated with a larger table – round, oblong or square – to accommodate more guests.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door - Red & gold place settingI wanted the place settings for this table to represent the ultimate in elegance for the holiday. Gold-leafed glass chargers are the foundation for the red & gold Royal Scotland china. The white centers of the china helps to break up the concentration of color on the table.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door - adorned gift boxWhat nicer way to present a favor or holiday gift to guests than to personalize it and have it at their place setting? These particular boxes represent the level of flourish to consider to make the outside of each gift as special as what’s inside. Notice how the red diamond shape of the “wrapping paper” mimics the pattern in the tablecloth and cut crystal. (These permanent demonstration boxes were purchased around 2009 from Pier 1.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door - gold decorative birdI added an extra dimension to the top of the boxes in the form of this pretty clip-on gold beaded bird. Something similar to this makes the presentation a bit more special, ties into the centerpiece, and doubles as a nice take-home favor for guests.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door - flatware/rim shotGold-colored flatware borrowed from my Mom is complemented with a gorgeous crystal-handled steak knife from Fifth Avenue Crystal.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door - stemwareCristal d’Arques “Longchamps” stemware adds lots of reflective quality to the table and complements the design of the tablecloth.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door - napkin drop, gold pintuck tableclothThe scarlet red organza napkins (Pier 1) strike a brilliant pose against the muted gold pintuck tablecloth from Your Chair Covers.com. I like to use linens with a little extra something-something going on during the holidays! (If you prefer a layered look, a solid satin or solid poly full-length tablecloth can be topped with a pintuck overlay or runner. It’s a really cost-effective way of glitzing up a table! You can find a great selection of pintuck runners and overlays as well as basic linens and chair covers at great low prices at my favorite “go-to” place, LinenTablecloth.com! Order now for quick, carefree delivery in time for all your holiday decorating!!!)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door - Crystal centerpiece

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door - Centerpiece collage detail, I

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One: Christmas Through the Red Door- Centerpiece collage detail, IIIf you’ve ever visited this blog in the past, you know I heartily subscribe to the “go-big-or-go-home” theory when it comes to decorating. We tested this crystal epergne out for visibility across the table before I decided on it. The cut of the crystal mimics the design of the tablecloth and the cut of the stemware. A melange of shiny, muted and glittered red balls bring color to the top of the table. A single gold bird perched on the side carries the theme up from the place settings. The crystal, of course, just makes a huge statement during the holidays!

I am so, so happy to be back at the computer to share with you! For more Christmas & holiday tables on this site:
Cranberry Christmas
Cranberry Christmas Squared
Checkered Christmas
Get Me to the Church On Time
Black, White & Red All Over Christmas
Warm Metal Christmas
Winter Brunch
Christmas Progressive Dinner 2011
After the Hunt – Gentlemen’s Winter Retreat

Black Friday Luncheon
Sugar High Payback
Winter Dinner
Winter Cardinal
Fire & Ice – Contemporary Christmas
Pink & Purple Chocolate Christmas
or check out our “WINTER” page for NINE more all on one page!!!

I’m so pleased to re-join Cuisine Kathleen for her weekly party “Let’s Dish!” and Susan for Tablescape Thursday this week! Please hop on over to these ladies’ blogs to check out the many talents of tablescapers from around the world!