Monday, September 17, 2012

Tablescape Construction

I love a fabulous tablescape. Call me crazy, but I think the more fabulous the table décor, the more fabulous the food tastes.  And, who doesn’t want great tasting food?
As Autumn rushes in, so do all the reasons to host dinner parties. I want to help ensure that when your friends and family sit down at the table they are mesmerized even before the food makes an appearance.  Here is a quick guide on how to build a fabulous tablescape.  I’ve even thrown in some of my favorite Autumn inspired designs.  Enjoy and Happy Hosting!
1.       Color Scheme – Before you get started you must figure out your color direction.  For some reason when it comes to Autumn dinner parties, many hosts stick to typical colors associated with fall – the reds, oranges, yellows, and browns. I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to do that. If you want a monochromatic scheme of gray hues, go for it.  If you want your Autumn party to be purple inspired, go for that too.  There is no color limit that one should place on themselves because of the season. 
2.       The Canvas – This is by far one of my most favorite elements of a tablescape.  I mean, come on…it’s the foundation upon which your brainchild design will be perched.  Typically I’m all about linens…textured and patterned linens add dimensions and depth to a tablescape that, I think, just makes everything pop.  However, I sing a different tune in Autumn. Because this particular season makes me feel rustic and natural, I’m open to a no linen tablescape during this time of the year.  I especially love when the canvas is a solid, distressed wood surface.  It makes me feel like the outdoors has come inside. 
3.     Floral or Non Floral Décor – I’m going to try and remain objective here, but I’m a flowers girl.  Thanks to technology and overnight shipping, you can get just about any flower you want in any season you want it.  So, I ask, why not use flowers on your tablescape?? And, flowers aren’t always as expensive as you think.  I typically wouldn’t recommend this, but it’s a secret of mine for holiday dinners – grocery store flowers.  Yep, you read it right. I go to the grocery store to decorate my holiday tablescapes. First of all, they are affordable and always in abundance. Many stores will sell a bouquet of the same variety so you can design your own arrangements.  If you don’t want to use flowers, try different gords that will go with your theme, or better yet...mix and match flowers with non floral decor.
4.      Lighting – Even if you want an intimate feel…you’ll need the proper lighting to pull it off. Candles are your friend. And, make them fun. Mix and match candle holders between colors, styles, and sizes.  If you decide to go LED, make sure to test at the proper time prior to your event to make sure the lighting isn’t too harsh or ineffective. 
5.     Dinnerware – Once you’ve gotten the color scheme, linen or no linen, décor elements, and lighting questions answered, you’ll be ready to pick out the dinnerware that will pull it all together.  Please, please, please…whatever you do, don’t go cheap on the dinnerware. You’ve put a lot of time and attention into building this fabulous tablescape, so why stop now.  If you don’t have the budget to purchase a new china set, no fear, you can contact wedding rental companies as an affordable alternative.  While you’re at it don’t forget to order Plate chargers. They really help to highlight table settings. 
6.       Food – Don’t be afraid to get creative with your food by making sure it too contributes to the décor.
Well, there you have it!  I hope you have a fabulous time building your Autumn table scape.  Make sure to take pictures before your guests start arriving. You’ll be so proud of yourself that you’ll want to look at your work again and again.
Check out these wonderful Autumn Inspired designs:
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The simple purple table linen goes wondeful with the purple rimmed dinner plates. It's understated, but totally changes the typical color scheme of an Autumn dinner.
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Who says you can't have pops of bright yellow on your autumn tablescape?  The layer of burplap on the table, provides the autumn canvas which balances out the more spring like flowers. It still feels like nature has come inside to join you for dinner.
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I really have to start using tree trunks more often. I love this look. It's that perfect tablescape when Autumn is on it's way to greet the winter. I would have used taller candles and a tad bit more color to add flair, but overall this look is perfect for Autumn dinner!
~ Ciao

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