Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Grandma Would Love This



When Mr. Pressed Pants told me (sort of at the last minute) that he was not going to be home on Valentine's Day, we decided to have a dinner for two on Sunday.  We never go out on February 14th anyway because of the crowds and the "prix fix" menus, etc.  So surf and turf at home suited me just fine.


I had just arranged these flowers for a sick friend, so they became an impromptu centerpiece for just this one meal.  Sort of "borrowing" up front! The more I think about this, the more I think it might be tacky.  Oh, my! Well, they could sit on the counter, or they could sit on the dining room table, right?

I love this combination of colors.


Grandma's Haviland china matched them perfectly.  I buy very few "sets" of dishes.  I'm more of an impulse buyer of miscellaneous pieces which I use to mix and match.  But this pattern was my Grandmother's and she gave me all of the many, many pieces for our wedding.  The best part is that her name was Rose Ellie, and my name is Linda, and the pattern is called "Rosalinda".  I just love that.  I didn't use any of the serving pieces, cups and saucers, or even bread and butter plates.  I kept it special, but not at all over the top.


The linens kept the dishes from being too precious.  They are just a bright pink tablecloth and a scalloped linen placemat.  No charger, and no fine silver.  Just French reproduction flatware that reflects the cream colored dinner plates.


Then, I chose light pink linen napkins and tucked a bright pink carnation into the ring.


The napkin ring is made of ivory.  It is old and I've collected these for years.  They can't make these anymore, of course, since ivory is a protected resource.  So they are becoming very hard to find, but that makes the hunt more fun.







These cranberry glass stems are another antique, or maybe just vintage element.


Not old, but fun, are these gold cherub candlesticks. 






Some special things and some casual things.


I don't mean to be flippant about being apart on Valentine's Day, but our marriage can surely survive an early celebration and short notice of travel plans! 

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Thursday, February 2, 2017

Lydia's Luncheon


Nothing beats an afternoon spent with good friends, celebrating a birthday!  Several of my friends and I gave a luncheon for a mutual friend and it was such a lovely day.

I was anxious to celebrate spring, as well, so I chose these colors and added a selection of birds and bird related dishes.  

This greeted the guests as they arrived at the front door.

I like to give a hint of the event on the gates or the door, or both.  This chalkboard with ribbons was a substitute for a wreath or basket of flowers.


These majolica-like salad plates led the charge!  They came from  Pottery Barn a year or so ago.  I paired them with turquoise dinner plates from Target.

The flatware was cream, and kept the look casual and the colors soft.

I've had these stems so long, I can't begin to remember where I got them.  They are unusual, in that the base is a periwinkle blue, the stems a soft turquoise, and the bowl a light blue.  Unfortunately, I broke two while I was cleaning up.


I thought the butter pats would look pretty with a fresh viola.

These clear glass napkin holders were a hit.  I actually bought more to give the birthday girl as a gift.  They came from Boxwoods in Atlanta.  The tag serves as a placecard and is just attached with a narrow ribbon.  The napkin is a soft linen banded in white.  I think I picked them up at Homegoods.

I love to print a menu for each place setting, and include a quote at the bottom.  This one says, "Here's to tall ships.  Here's to small ships.  Here's to all the ships on the sea.  But the best ships are friendships.....Here's to you and me."  It is an old Maritime blessing.  At the end of the event, I always ask the guests to sign their name on it and then I keep it as a souvenir of the day.
















I bought these twig and nest arrangements at the floral wholesaler.  Then I added the eggs and the velvet covered birds.

Here's a close-up.  Doesn't he just make you smile?


The centerpiece is an arrangement of fresh hydrangeas in a whitewashed birch pot.  Then I added thistles for some interest......


And texture.

This ceramic bowl held the rolls.

I think these bird salt and pepper shakers came from Boxwoods, as well.



I used this chicken wire cloche with a bird in it on the chest in the dining room.

And the buffet held the coffee/tea set-up.


I have this sweet teapot and sugar/creamer with birds on them.  Don't you love the way I left the plastic wrap on the lemons in the picture?  Keeping it real here, folks.


Another bird plate that one of my guests gave me for Christmas held the tea selection.  The silver bird and edging added some class to the offerings!

I even found a beaded bird in the same colors for the gift wrapping.

And every birthday girl must wear this fun crown.  Lydia looked beautiful in it, but I promise my friends that they needn't have their picture in my blog.  Some folks are too private for this, and I want to respect their feelings.  I don't even put my own photo on the blog!


















This was the beverage set up in the bar.  I had these white hydrangea plants but I'm afraid that they are at the end of their beauty.


One powder room had our first three daffodils and an extra hydrangea.

The other powder room had a bird vase, as well.


And some Caspari guest towels in an aqua toile.


It was a pretty day, but cool, so we sat by the fire and talked and talked.

Don't you wish you joined us for this dessert?  As pretty as it is, it tasted even better.  I'm sure hoping that Anne shares this recipe!!!










Monday, January 2, 2017

New Year's Eve 2016

No matter how you feel about 2016, there had to be good times that you can celebrate.  I refuse to despair about the year, but rather count the many ways that I was blessed in 2016.  Mr. Pressed Pants and I prefer to celebrate the New Year at home, and this was our centerpiece.  The red amaryllis was the only color on the gold and white table.  Don't you love this vase?  One of my besties made this for me for Christmas.  I might be obsessed with it!

I set the table for four, just for photos, but was just the two of us dining.

I started with this gold and white tablecloth made by Luxe.  It's sort of Indian looking, and has the nicest sheen to the gold.

Nothing exactly says "New Year's Eve" here, but it is festive.

Here's an overhead.  You can see the white tulips and the paperwhites that I added to the amaryllis. 

A gold charger, a white scalloped dinner plate and a white and gold scrolly salad plate stack up and are simple but eye-catching.

White linen napkins from The Palm are held with a matte gold ring, and sit beside the cream French flatware I chose.

I had to add these clip-on candleholders with gold candles.  It is so fun to have your own flame at dinner.

This gold dipped glassware is joined by a gold stem from Pottery Barn.  Don't judge!!!!  We stayed home so we could use ALL of these glasses!

These fancy gold candlesticks add a little more elegance.





As darkness fell......

this all became prettier.........

and more intimate.

I am wishing you and yours a new year filled with blessings beyond your wildest dreams.

MENU:
Chevre Creme Brulee
with baguette slices
(Sounds like dessert, but it
is savory, and YUMMY)

Green Salad with Pomegranate Seeds
topped with Roasted Pear and Brie Wedges

Scalloped Oyster Bake
Brussel Sprouts with Pecans and Cranberries

Peppermint Ice Cream
Hot Fudge Sauce



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