I believe if 2020 has taught us anything, it is that most humans are not wired to enjoy “social distancing”. At the very least, we long for up close and personal community and fellowship, the exchange of hugs and hand shakes at will, singing and dancing in a crowd, and celebrations that include individuals that live outside our homes.
Call me a rebel, a social deviant, a rule breaker; but last night I hosted a small dinner party and celebrated my dear friend’s birthday! In all actuality, we didn’t break any state ordinances. The four of us dined outdoors…we didn’t touch each other…we kept our distance. What did happen was what is supposed to happen when friends gather together to break bread around a table. We shared, we laughed, we cried some happy tears, we exchanged ideas, plans and dreams and we lifted one another up. So today, I encourage you to invite a couple friends to dinner…safely. It’s so, so good for the soul. And oh yeah! While you’re at it…
Have Fun and Enjoy Decorating your Table!
Friends and clients often share with me that they enjoy my parties because they look and feel fun and welcoming but never too fussy! What a compliment! They know I “fuss” a little bit over my parties and decorating, but they also know that “fussing over the little details” is one of the ways that I show my love for them. I want my friends and family to feel special…no matter the occasion. For me, they’re worth a little effort!
For this particular dinner party, I knew that I wanted to incorporate my friends’ love of mid-century antiques and fun textiles. So I perused my collection of mis-matched fabric remnants for one that jumped out at me. I picked a playful green Ikat fabric as my jumping off point and the rest came easy! I simply “shopped my stuff” and pulled together a cool little theme for the table.
I grabbed my 1960’s folding chairs down from the loft (the very ones that I had purchased from my guest of honor’s store a few years prior) and the table “mix” really started to get exciting for me!
I kept layering, layering, layering on the fun. Remember…don’t overthink it! Striped orange placemats, paired with multi-colored plaid napkins and mid-century modern turquoise flatware. The diminutive flower vases are actually mason jars and recycled Oui yogurt jars that I wrapped in craft tape. I chose grocery store purchased wildflowers because they are whimsical but also because they hold up well in 90 degree + heat.
Finish off the look with colorful glasses, candles and wine!!!
One of the reasons I am able to “pull off” this tablescape mix is that I’m not afraid of shopping (imagine that!) and accumulating a little collection. I’m always on the hunt for clients, as well as myself…and I’m looking for unique things that sort of speak to me. You may not know why you like something but if you feel connected to it and the price is right, that’s reason enough to own it. You may not know what you’ll do with it or where you’ll place it in your home…but believe me, if you love it, it will find its way to the right spot. I LOVED this Hammered Aluminum Ice Bucket when I bought it because it reminded me of my childhood but I don’t use it every time I have a gathering. However, it had to make an appearance here because it adds to the entire theme! Same goes for the turquoise flatware!
The last detail was adding the black and white awning striped umbrella over the table. It helps create this little space…adds playfulness and defines the dining area. We ate dinner around sunset, so we didn’t need it for protection from the sun. But it certainly adds to the mood.
So invite a couple friends, set an outdoor table, open the wine, turn on some music, order take out if you don’t want to cook and feed your souls!
My Summer Menu
- Chilled Sweet Corn Soup with Shrimp and Avocado
- Caprese Salad
- Summer Squash Casserole
- Grilled and Sliced Rib Eye Steak
- Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream and Sour Cream Pound Cake
Rose’ Blackberry Spritzer