Friday, July 31, 2015

Once In A Blue Moon Dinner


Tonight, to celebrate the "Blue Moon", we ate a late dinner out in the cutting garden.  A blue moon is a rare phenomenon when there are two full moons in one calendar month.  Mr. Pressed Pants and I were married on a blue moon evening, so we always celebrate whenever this occurs.  After tonight, there won't be another blue moon until 2018!

 
Come on into the garden with me.

Of course, the table must be blue tonight!

This is pretty simple, but it is just the two of us and it's a very casual meal.

I put a white burlap tablecloth from Ballards over the collapsible table that I keep in the potting shed.  Then I layered this blue and white cloth from Crate and Barrel over that.  The rattan chargers are from World Market, and the blue handled flatware is too old to have a provenance.  These hand painted plates are made by Mesa in Porgugal and I love the way they echo the checks in the tablecloth.

These clear goblets came from Bed, Bath, and Beyond years ago, and I used these footed blue goblets as wine glasses.  They are not at all precious, and pretty sturdy, so I don't hesitate to take them to the garden.

These blue and white barley twist candlesticks are also from Portugal.

Here's what the white roses from Whole Foods looked like when I took them out to the potting shed.

I cut some hosta and some ferns and tucked them in and it made a world of difference.

Here's the arrangement on the table.

This French pot is the perfect size.  I use it a lot.

The "matching" bowl will hold salad tonight to go with pasta primavera.  The stripes are a counterpoint to the checks.

A simple white napkin from the Palm restaurant line of linens separates the charger from the plate.

Here's the tray that brought the dishes out from the house.  Isn't it pretty?  I gave it to my mom years ago, but when we sold her house and she went to an assisted living facility in June, I took it back.  I knew I would love using it.  

It was a beautiful evening.

The effort to get the stuff back and forth is worth it.  Every meal in the garden seems to make a memory.

The light wasn't the best to photograph, but you get the idea.

Here's a different angle, over the paddock area and down the driveway to the road.

I keep several sets of pillows in the potting shed and these blue and white ikat ones were perfect for this dinner.

The potting shed is one of the reasons I fell in love with this house.  You can take a tour of it here.

I can't pass up an opprtunity to style a surface!

The Limelight hydrangeas are white this year.  They have been more green in past years.

Can you see that we need to paint the board that was replaced early this spring?

The fence could use a date with a paint brush, too.

We're now awaiting the appearance of the moon tonight.  I naively thought that it would be blue, but our meteorologist says not necessarily.  We'll see!

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Blue Moon Thoughts


The Atlanta Gift Show is a sight to behold!  Located in the Americasmart buildings in downtown Atlanta, it is an unmatched array of top gift lines in many categories and many price points.  They offer over seven million square feet of vendor displays and exhibits.  I saw more incredible merchandise than I could believe, and as I reflect on the offerings, the color blue stood out over and over.  In a salute to the blue moon we will have tomorrow night, I'm going to show you some of the blue items that caught my eye as I traipsed through the show.  These incredible salad plates are part of the Flowering Quince porcelain collection from Artisanal Home.  This company offered several bold, graphically interesting designs that were not your gramma's dishes.

The Emdee International company has some of the most beautiful drapery panels I have ever seen.  This blue applique panel is just stunning.

Here's a close-up of the edge.  Oh, Mamma!  It's gorgeous.

Now, here's a brand new item from Mitchell Black.  It's a grass cloth with Chinoiserie AND stags AND toile!!! What's not to love?   This pattern is called Pagoda Forest Toile.  There's also an incredible wallpaper called Lodge that comes in a great blue and white. It has stag heads in mirrored stripes.  Really stunning. 
  
Another charming Chinese design shows up on this collection of glass ornaments made by Thomas Glenn Holiday. 

Here's another design from their Asian line of these handcrafted ornaments.  Could you stand an entire tree of these?

 
You might not know what you're looking at here, because it is so unusual.  It's a rack of hair-on-hide rugs!  I can't decide if I love the Greek key design or the chevron more. Madisons makes these sophisticated pieces and they are so fabulous.  I could just imagine  a room with one of these.  Focal point for sure!  I hope one of my clients can be talked into one of these.

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Callisto Home  offered these and many more wonderful pillows.  Man!  A simple linen chair is suddenly "done" with the addition of one of these pillows.

Blue Coral 11" Dinner

Blue Coral 9" Salad
If you're looking for a really nice quality melamine with a ceramic like appearance, this blue coral collection of Galleyware Company fits the bill.  It's from their yacht and home collecion.  I also loved pieces from their Lake and Lodge and their Reef and Sailin' collections.


Have you seen these wine glass lamp shades?  Made by diPotter, they are flat sheets of parchment like paper.  They come six ready-to-assemble pieces to a set and fit red wine glasses 20 oz and smaller.  Each set has three designs.  I was given a set of them as a hostess gift and I thought they were so clever.  Please use them with flameless tea lights dropped into a wine glass.  So cute!

I'm setting a Once In a Blue Moon Table for tomorrow night.  After all, we won't have that to celebrate again until 2018!



Friday, July 24, 2015

The Softer Side of Turquoise


With the colors of the sand and the sky, this table is quite a departure from the last one I set.  This one makes me feel like I am at the beach, for sure.

We did very little entertaining this spring and early summer, so we're enjoying seeing our friends and thanking them for their hospitality.  We have several good times planned, but this one came together on the spur of the moment.  Just an afternoon phone call, and we were on!

I was planning to go to the cutting garden for some hydrangeas when I spied this dish of seashells and sand on the dining room table. 

Done!  It even had the bits of sea glass in it that brought in the soft blue colors. 

You're probably thinking that you just saw these on this blog in orange.  You did.  I bought them in two colors several years ago.  It's a good thing that linens don't take up much storage room, because I just can't stop buying them.

These little net covered fishing floats are the only new things on the table.  I found them at the Pottery Barn outlet.  I just printed out and curled a paper banner and used them as place cards.

I chose this mismatched silverplate and pearl handled knives, and you can see the bleached wood chargers here.  I thought they were reminiscent of driftwood.  You can find them at World Market.

I almost forgot about using these beach themed etched stems.  Can you see the lobster and seaweed and coral on them?  I also used these Martha Stewart turquoise tumblers.  They are so thin, but that makes them so fine to drink from.

These real shells made a cute little bread and butter plate.

I picked up these salt and pepper shakers shaped like sea urchins in Seaside, Florida.  I love it when a  souvenir brings back such a delightful memory whenever it is used. 

Here's how the place setting looked.....

and here's how the table looked.

I gathered four turquoise stripped pillows to add a little more color and comfort.

It was a beautiful evening and a beautiful setting.

Can you please appreciate the clean stones on the terrace.  They were FINALLY pressure washed this week and man, that sure makes a huge difference!  

I served coffee with the delicious coconut cake that Cindy brought.  We just couldn't make ourselves go inside, so we went to the upper terrace and enjoyed the views from up there. 

I only used three of these rope handled cups, because Mr. Pressed Pants doesn't drink coffee at night. 

How about this cream and sugar set?  Perfect!

I love these salad utensils that I used with a plain glass bowl for a colorful Mediterranean vegetable salad.  I may have gone overboard buying coral accessories lately.  I think I better stop now.

Vodka tonic, anyone?


Menu:

Appetizer:
Crostini with Grilled Figs and Honey

Salad:
Mediterranean Vegetable salad
(Ina Garten)

Entree:
Grilled Salmon over Couscous

Bread:
Grilled Pita Bread Triangles

Dessert:
Coconut Cake
(brought by our guests)


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