tablescape

building a unique holiday table and caring for the linens after

It’s that home entertaining time of year again and it’s time to bust out all the linens. I love building tablescapes for meals with friends and family (way more than the actual cooking) so I wanted to share a few tips on how I quickly create a layered tabletop fit for the holidays and full of style. I’ll also be sharing some quick pointers on how to care for the linens after the party and how Electrolux makes it easy.

1. Build a non-traditional color palette.

I always find I am way more drawn to tablescapes that veer off the obvious color choices for the holidays. Thanksgiving doesn’t have to be all browns and oranges, however I am loving ochre and rust, so by pairing a traditional color with a not so traditional color like pink, suddenly the table feels fresh.

2. Bring in a little vintage.

Just like how I love to incorporate vintage furniture into the spaces I design for a more storied and interesting result, a little vintage on your tabletop can go a long way as well. Whether it is a small set of some amazing vintage glassware or a set of brass vintage flatware (like I used above) these make a holiday table feel unique, aka extra special.

3. Layer on the linens.

During the holidays I like to make my home extra cozy with extra layers of blankets and pillows which translates to the tabletop as well. Tablecloths and cloth napkins are perfect to bring that coziness to a meal for holiday entertaining. I also added some extra muslin as a table runner which is the same color as the table cloth but adds one more subtle layer of texture. Some people my shy away from using table cloths and/or cloth napkins because of the maintenance but I’ve teamed up with Electrolux to share how easy they make caring for your entertaining linens can be.

WASHING:
When the party is over (or the next day if I am going to be realistic) I throw my linens in the washer and use the gentle cycle. With Electrolux SmartBoost™ technology the washer pretty much takes care of the rest. It automatically premixes water and detergent before the wash cycle begins which means a deep all around clean that effectively removes stains.

DRYING:
When it comes to drying, you want to make sure to take extra care of linens so they last over time. I like to pull them from the dryer right when they are dried through, or just before. You don’t want to over dry them. Another handy setting from Electrolux that makes sure you don’t even have to think about it is that they have a moisture sensor so as soon as the fabric is dry it will automatically switch off.

STORING:
I think it was Martha Stewart that recommended hanging table cloths and napkins over a cardboard roll that comes with a rug or carpet, to prevent creases, but who has easy access to that or the space to store it? Unfortunately not me, well I am sure I could find one since I do like to collect me some rugs, but my linen closet is smaller than a phone booth and my house has ZERO extra space so still a no go. Inevitably my linens get folded up and when I want to use them they are creased but by tossing them in the Electrolux dryer using the Perfect Steam™ setting, it gently removes the wrinkles and creases and is ready for the next shindig.

Happy Holidays!

Shop the Post: Wall hanging from Urban Outfitters // Linen/Cotton Table cloth from Ikea // Vase & Flowers by Moon Canyon // Base Plates from Anthropologie // Blush Pink Plate from CB2 // Napkins // Brass Flatware is Vintage // Brass Coupes also Vintage // Pink Chairs from Ikea

Washer by Electrolux // Dryer by Electrolux

This post was sponsored by Electrolux, as always all thoughts ideas and tablescapes are my own :). Thank you for supporting our sponsors!

sss + l&g wallpaper launch party

sarah sherman samuel x lulu georgia wallpaper launch partyLast week we threw a little party to kick off the launch of my wallpaper line with Lulu and Georgia and I truly felt like the belle of the ball. I have so many plates spinning at the moment that it felt really nice to pause, gather some friends and fellow female entrepreneurs and celebrate a project that has been on my bucket list for a long time now.  READ MORE

halloween the adult table

halloween dinner party // elegant and spookyI am a total holiday nerd, I think we’ve covered that before, so to me, Halloween is the mark of the beginning of my favorite time of year. And while I have never really dived into Halloween decor I wanted to have a little dinner party for a few girlfriends, so tonight is the night! What usually comes to mind with Halloween parties are of course pumpkins, skeletons, witches, spiders, ghosts etc. You know the usual suspects… but I wanted to to create something a little more unexpected, a table that is as elegant as it is spooky.

halloween-dinner-party2halloween dinner party // elegant and spookyI kept the palette dark and moody, used this cheesecloth like fabric for the table runner, black plates, black napkins, and found the deepest darkest blooms that my local grocery store had on hand. How perfect are these drippy ox blood colored Amaranthus stems? And speaking of blood… in lieu of a placecard, which also doubles as a favor, I filled glass test tubes with Compari for guests to take as a shooter or make a Compari tonic (just have tonic water, ice, and orange slices on hand).

halloween-dinner-party3-640halloween dinner party // elegant and spookyFor the floral pendant hanging above the table I twisted a coat hanger into a circle and used wire to wrap a few floral stems into a wreath. I topped it off with a crow to up the spook factor and hung it from the ceiling with black rope. For the floral arrangements on the table I chose three similarly colored flowers (Amaranthus, Quince and Scabiosa) and lemon leaf greens. It is a recipe that has saved me more than once. Keeping the flowers monochromatic makes it fairly effortless to create something beautiful and I’m all about the big impact with minimal effort these days.

It has been a while since I pulled a table together just for a fun night with the girls and bloody cheers to that. x

Happy Halloween.

Shop the Post:
Plates from CB2 // Black Napkins from Pier 1 // Flatware is vintage // Vases from Dwell Studio // Table is a DIY (see the post here) // Black Halloween Fabric // Crows // Test Tubes // Wine Glasses

Photos by Sarah Sherman Samuel

Custom Printed Anniversary Dinner

pattern mixing \\ custom printing products \\ anniversary dinner \\ sarah sherman samuelRupert and I just celebrated our 7-year wedding anniversary while we were on our family vacation in Michigan. We were able to sneak away for dinner and a movie night while my parents watched Archie but we got extra nostalgic thinking about our honeymoon and those exotic pre-baby vacations we used to take.

We looked through photos and I busted out the journal/sketchbook I kept at the time and we reminisced about what has to be our favorite tropical getaway to date. Flipping through the pages got me thinking about doing something with all the doodles and memories from that first trip as a married couple and I knew I wanted incorporate them into a gift for Rupert. I worked with Shutterfly to create a custom mini collection of home goods for an intimate dinner-night-in with Rupert, using those prints and patterns from our honeymoon in the South Pacific.

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Simple Spring Entertaining

tropical inspired table tropical inspired tableWe are still not quite finished with the pergola, it needs paint and wire run between the beams so the bougainvillea can grow over the top, BUT it hasn’t stopped us from already having a few gatherings with the new set up. People often think you need to have a ton of different sets of dishware for frequent entertaining or that you need an entire prop closet to set a beautiful table. Of course it helps, but for those of you that don’t have access to Martha Stewart’s prop room, I’m sharing a few tips to create a simple al fresco table inspired by Target‘s spring line.

tropical inspired tabletropical inspired tabletropical inspired table1. Use what you have. I have two sets of dishware, one white and one black and I don’t think you need much more than that. If you are trying to start your own personal entertaining prop closet, I would say get a full 12 piece set of white before getting anything else. It lays a clean foundation and it’s easy to completely switch up the look with less expensive items. For flatware…  I have one full set of modern gold, and a similar in stainless, but a while back I found this vintage 100 piece brass set and it happened to be a perfect match for Target’s “Summer Safari” collection, reinforcing the tropical vibe I’ve got going. When it comes to linens, no matter how casual the party, I still like to use cloth napkins if I can. Of course with my collection, I don’t have a shortage on those, but if you are just just getting started, I’d recommend choosing a simple pattern, like the black and white dot, that can go with almost anything but brings visual interest to the table. And finally, glassware, I use stemless wine glasses for everything. For water, wine, juice, cocktails, for everyday and for every gathering. I have like 30 of the same simple shape.

2. Skip the florals. Instead of a floral centerpiece I used these oversized vases to create a no fuss sculptural focal point.

tropical inspired tabletropical inspired tabletropical inspired table3. Nature’s placemats. No placemats? No problem. To add just one more layer to the table I picked up some Monstera leaves for an inexpensive and disposable charger/placemat. It takes only about 2 seconds to throw these down first, but the visual impact is huge. Ferns would also work if you live in a woodsy area, you could just snip, snip, snip!

tropical inspired tableand finally #4. Bring the inside out! That is usually the other way around but creating an outdoor room is easy. Bring out your favorite pillows (I am obsessed with these macramé-esque ones), a cozy throw, and hang a mirror (art or a wall hanging could work too). This instantly creates a personalized outdoor space that makes dining al fresco even more special.

I’m so looking forward to many more dinner’s under the bougainvillea this summer. x

From Target: Large Vase // Small Vase // Wicker Mirror // Throw // Pillows // Stemless Wine Glasses

Napkins by Sarah Sherman Samuel // Flatware is vintage // Table from Modshop // Rattan Chairs are Vintage from ModernHaus

Photos by Sarah Sherman Samuel

This post is brought to you by TargetStyleShop the new Home collection in stores and online.

New Years Dinner

New-years-eve-dinner3-640Happy New Year! I blinked my eyes and 2015 was over!

I decided to wait until the final holiday (Bachelor Premier Monday, of course) to get back to work, so here we are…. happy Tuesday. :) To celebrate the new year we had a few friends over for an intimate dinner in the still completely naked studio. I brought in our old dining table from storage, rented a few white chairs, put on my sparkle pants, and threw together some decor from things I had around the house (aside from the sequin table cloth and noise makers which I ordered the day before thanks to good old Amazon Prime. I really never have to leave the house… ever).

New-years-eve-dinner5-640New-years-eve-dinner8-640Honestly, I wasn’t planning on sharing the party because zero planning went into it, but as timing would have it with Archer’s schedule, I had to set the table early in the day as I invited our guests to come over just as I was putting him to bed and his bedtime routine starts around 6ish, sooo it was still light out, and the studio was so bright, the ridiculous gold on gold on gold was glistening and my DIY wall hanging turned out even better than what I had in my head. It would have been a crime not to take a few snaps and now I get to share just how simple it can be to set a New Years Eve worthy table.
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