Creating a beautiful summer spread is easy with these 5 simple tips for creating a natural outdoor summer tablescape.
Our back porch is my favorite spot in our whole house. Last night around 10:00 p.m. I walked out there & for some reason I was surprised to discover how hot it was for that time of night. I know that might sound silly for mid-May in Tennessee, but just last weekend we had a cold front & I was back to wearing long sleeves & long pants again. But last night it just felt like summer.
And I think it is safe to say that the cold weather is fully behind us & summer is here!!
I can’t begin to explain how wonderful our backyard smells right now (aka the mountainside because we have no “yard” only rocks, dirt & a drop off). There are many bushes of honeysuckles growing beyond reach down the back of our property & wind carries the sweet fragrance up to & around our house. If I wasn’t so afraid of snakes & poison ivy I would probably go down there & gather a bouquet to eat!
But instead, I’ll just enjoy their scent from a distance & share with you these 5 tips for creating a natural outdoor summer tablescape.
1. Choose the Perfect Location
First of all, the location is key.
Some things to consider when choosing the location for your dinner party are the distance from the kitchen, & bathroom & the backdrop/view. As I mentioned above, my favorite spot outside is on our back porch. It can be a little scary if you are afraid of heights, as it is 3 stories above the ground, but it also provides the best view, especially at sunset, dusk & twilight, while still being near the kitchen.
Another option is to place your table below a large tree & hang twinkle lights or lanterns to create a more elegant outdoor atmosphere.
2. Decorate with Your Natural Surroundings
Since the beauty of nature is all around you, the most logical thing to do is to decorate with what naturally grows in your yard or garden. For example, I picked some branches to create leaf bouquets for the center of the table. However, if you have a field of wildflowers in your yard, you could pick a beautiful bouquet for your table, or tie a few up & place them next to each plate so each guest has their own unique bouquet.
And while you know I LOVE white, I wanted to make sure the sturdy & stylish Chinet® Classic White™ plates, napkins, & Chinet® Cut Crystal® cutlery were center stage on my table. Therefore, I created placemats for the plates out of green leaves simply by finding a bunch of big leaves & layering them underneath the plates. Then I added a single leaf between the napkin & the cutlery to make it stand out & bring balance to the overall appearance.
3. Create a Simple Gift
While the napkin, leaf, & cutlery balanced one side of the Chinet Classic White plates, the other side of each plate held a take home gift that also doubled as a plate weight to make sure they didn’t blow away before the guests arrived. That might not happen for most people, but we always seem to have some wind blowing up the mountain & that can be a problem for our exposed deck.
The easiest solution was to create these mini succulent planters that add more natural elements to hold down the plates until dinner time, & work perfectly as a little gift/favor for our guests to remember the night.
4. Save Time
I always feel like I’m running out of time before a party & I often feel too overwhelmed to tackle all of the dishes after a party. I’ve found that the quickest & easiest solution for any occasion is to use disposable dinnerwear, & Chinet Classic White plates, platters & napkins are perfect for summer entertaining. The most important part about choosing disposable tableware is finding something that offers premium strength so you & your guests don’t have to worry about spills & leaks.
Since summer meals often mean hamburgers & bbq (vegetarian style in our home), you want to make sure that you are using something that is strong enough to serve the heaviest, messiest meals with style. And on top of including all of these awesome features, Chinet Classic White products are also made from 100% pre-consumer recycled material that can be composted after use.
How wonderful is that?
5. Bring it Together
Finally, here are some extra mini tips to bring together your natural outdoor summer tablescape.
- Keep it simple. Luckily, nature doesn’t need anything elaborate added to it because it is already beautiful. Simply adding a few leaves, branches or flowers strategically on your table can make a big impact.
- Layers & balance. Creating layers builds height & is a simple way to make everything fit nicely on your table. At the same time, you don’t want your table to feel overwhelming &/or unbalanced. For example, to create balance on the Chinet Classic White layered plates, I placed the napkin, leaf & utensils on one side of the plate & the gift on the other side.
- Feel free to mix & match. Nature naturally goes together – if it’s growing in your yard don’t be afraid to get creative with it & use it on your table, just be sure it isn’t poisonous in any way.
With love, G
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