Photography by Jackie Sayet @jackiesayet
Hello again HOL friends! I had a blast co-hosting our August 1st workshop about all things entertaining! There was wine and cheese and flowers and so many wonderful people. Here are the highlights in case you missed it, and of course you can always catch up with me on Instagram @tablesalt__. Happy hosting!
- Lindsay Glenn
THE PERFECTLY MIS-MATCHED TABLE
I am truly happiest when I’m setting the table – pulling out too much glassware, mixing new pieces with vintage touches, lighting ALL the candles – I could go on, and on. When it comes to table top styling, I am most often asked about quantities – how many matching plates/ bowls/ cups to buy. Well, my overstuffed cabinets will tell you the answer is infinite. Here’s how I like to pull it all together:
- Choose a color scheme for plate ware. Mine is mostly white and light gray. Shop within that palette and you’ll have endless options to mix and match.
- Be random. When mismatching china, each setting should be different than the one next to it and across from it. Try to avoid patterns.
- If possible, let one element remain consistent – silverware or water glasses for example.
- Use linen! I’m a big fan of linen napkins. They make any table look more elegant. You can find affordable options on Amazon and Etsy.
Once the table is set, add your flowers. Get arrangements from HOL or shop their gorgeous new stem bar! I love these suggestions from Melanie:
- Less is more! Don’t overdo it.
- If you’re working with a lot of tableware (or food!), go for bud vases. They’re inexpensive, and you can tuck them in to small open spaces.
- Mix tall and short so you have some visual variety – HOL likes to keep it varied, but symmetrical!
- Consider dried bouquets if you want something that will last.
- Make sure your arrangements don’t interrupt the flow of conversation. If you love to make a statement, consider a garland for lushness without blocking anyone’s view!
A SIMPLE, DELICIOUS MENU
As much as I love a beautiful table, in the end it’s really all about the food. The secret to stress-free entertaining is PREP. Make as much as you can the day before, so that when guests arrive you can relax and spend time with them. All you should have to do during your event is add finishing touches and enjoy your wine.
- Serve family style. It’s more conducive to entertaining at home, and way less effort for you.
- Choose one slow-cooked main – like braised short ribs, or a hearty stew. Make it the day before and then reheat before guests arrive. Bonus – your house will smell amazing.
- Pair it with two or three cold or room temperature dishes – like heirloom tomatoes with sea salt and olive oil, or a grain salad with roasted vegetables. Do all of your cutting and cooking the day before, and then toss with dressing and fresh herbs right before serving to freshen it up.
- As for the wine – I usually choose a red and a white (or rosé) to serve throughout the meal. Yes, your guests will likely bring booze, but plan as if they won’t. One: you won’t run out if someone skimped, and two: you won’t be stuck opening some random dessert wine from CVS (we all have that friend!)