Thursday, May 26, 2011

Purple, Grape Hyacinths and Tiger Plates

I made this grape hyacinth bouquet outside on my flower arranging bench.
Don't you think this would have made a great table?

  Unfortunately after I made the bouquet, I didn't have time to set an entire table. Maybe next year.............

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Where I Store it All--Well, Most of It--OK, at least 3/4th's of It

I have shown this area before, but I recently spent six hours (over two days) removing everything from these cabinets, rearranging the shelves, washing all of them and then putting it all back (not exactly  all...I did donate three boxes of dishes that I felt certain I would never use to a thrift store---I am not a hoarder...I am not a hoarder). Now it all fits better and I can find what I want and I can get it out easily.

I am not going to talk about every shelf, but will highlight a few of my favorites.  I am very fortunate to  have this large area solely to indulge my dish hobby. 

Here are the first two units (I have four of these):  I used to have all the shelves the same size, but noticed some buckling of the shelves, so I decided  that I needed to put most of the super heavy plates on the bottom where there is more support.  That meant I had to remove the four little silver thingies that hold each shelf and re-adjust them all.  . . major ordeal....let me tell you...
 In the first section notice that I made the last area very small. I wanted to be able to have a shelf all by itself for my super big heavy meat fork and knife set.  It is a beautiful set, but it used to be on the bottom of about a dozen other trays and was way to difficult to get to, so I rarely used it.
Just look at those beautiful ducks engraved on the handles!  Now I can easily pull it out--wonderful!

One shelf is dedicated to my Tiara glass. I have loved this amber-colored dishware since the 1980's (when everyone else hated it--perhaps they still do, but I still love it).

Here are the other two shelf units:
 Some of you may be wondering what all the white stuff is sticking out of the dish stacks. Some of it is paper toweling and some is felt. I use both to prevent scratches.

I put another skinny shelf on the top of the end section for big heavy relish trays.  Shelf #2 is full of small relish trays. You would think we eat a lot of relish around here--LOL.
 The third shelf holds most of my pedestal servers--cake plates and footed bowls.

The bottom shelf holds white milk glass plates and my collection of those vintage crystal star plates (can't think of the proper name right now--maybe Federal Star or something similar--anybody know?).
 I cannot tell you how good it feels to have this job done. I had DH take the 3 boxes to goodwill right away so I would not be tempted to grab more items back.  I did grab a few before he left.

Like these tarnished silver plated items:

 I sent at least 6 silver plated items to Goodwill. These two called out to me just before they left, so I took them out of the goodwill box and spent a few minutes cleaning them with  silver cleaner.  They did clean up nicely, don't you think?

It feels so good to have this  major task completed!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Orange & Purple Tulip Tablescape

When I  made this bouquet, I knew I had dishes that would work perfectly for a spring lunch.

I tossed on a purple tablecloth:

 added purple glasses and orange napkins,
 a purple-ruffled dinner plate and topped it with an orange flower-shaped plate.  Another very simple table for two.
 It was perfect for a big spinach/chicken/mandarin orange salad.

Yum! I wish I was just starting lunch all over again!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Parrot Tulip Tablescape

I cannot tell you how wonderful it is to finally have some garden flowers for centerpieces.  I have decided to cut tulips each week and do a quick easy table to match. 

These tables are the 10-minute variety. You won't find me working all week on a table.  As an empty-nester, I only have to set weekday tables for two (sometimes only one).  Even my more elaborate guest tables are less than one hour.  I have too many other things to do and I bet you do, too!

But just because we lead busy lives, does not mean we have to sacrifice a nice dinner table.  I already had this bright parrot tulip centerpiece on the table.
All I had to do to complete the dinner setting was find some matching dishes. Since the flowers were in a cobalt blue vase, it was an easy choice-- cobalt blue dinner plates. The red/white flowered salad plate went with the flower theme.
My favorite red-flowered bowl glasses seemed to work just fine.

I recently made the chalkboard section of this menu pig, so I decided to use him, too. If guests were coming, I would have changed his tie to somthing with red and yellow (tiny details really impress guests).    :)

Quick and simple for a weeknight meal!

There is no need to sacrifice a pretty table when they are this easy to do. Bon Appetite!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Cinco de Mayo Tablescape

I love to work with bright colors, so this was another fun table.

I have had the fabric for years, but never seem to remember it for Cinco de Mayo.  I was thrilled that I finally remembered to use it.

I was happy to find dishes in almost the same colors as the fabric.
The sombreros I used as napkin rings look a tad too blah for me. They were a last minute addition. I had no time to embellish--they really could have used some bright ribbons tied around the brim.

The bright yellow daffodils from my garden worked well with the big paper flowers that I hung upside down from the chandelier.

Don't you just love these paper flowers? My friend at work made them. She is the Food & Beverage Director and she needed big flowers for one her bar parties. These were sitting in the liquor room for the past year and she let me borrow them for last night.  I think they made the entire table pop!

Are you wondering what that yellow snake-like thing is? 

We like hard shell tacos and that thing is what holds them upright on the plate. I use them everytime I have tacos. After I had put them out, I realized that I had the stand alone shells, so I didn't really need them.  

DH likes his on a wedge of lettuce sans shell. 

We really enjoyed our quick Mexican dinner at this fun table. The only thing missing were the Margaritas!

I am linking to Tablescape Thursday today.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Mikasa Leopard Dishes and Pink Polka Dot Tablescape

I know this is my second table in a row to use leopard dishes, but I wanted to show how versatile they are. I wanted to try pink polka dot and leopard.
I think I like the combo. What do you think--have I totally flipped?

The end settings have a gold and a pink glass and the center settings have gold/green glasses. I like to use different colors on the two ends. I originally used all green because I started with a very wild tablecloth (I will show that at the end of this post).
The little pink birdhouses with cheetah skin tops are whimsical name holders. I have found that people just love to see their name on the dinner table. 
It also alleviates guests standing around and asking where they should sit.

This is the tall candle in the center.

Here is the original tablecloth that inspired the color scheme.  I love this animal print/floral tablecloth!

Unfortunately it was just too busy (even for me!) and I had to take the whole table apart to swap it with the solid pink cloth you saw above.

Maybe I could use the leopard dinner plate and top it with a solid color............I do have some solid orangish salad plates shaped like a flower......I wish I would have thought to try them before I tore this table apart! 

I am Linking to Marty's Tabletop Tuesday.  So head on over there with me to see what everyone else has for this week.

May next table will be a Cinco de Mayo table -- I love working with those bright colors!