Tuesday, February 1, 2011

A Valentine Memory

For this week's Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps on the Porch, I thought I'd share one of my early
tablescapes since it happens to be a Valentine one which brings back fond memories. No, not of the dinner party but that this was the 'scape that made me start thinking, "Hey, I really like setting pretty tables!"

I actually only took two pictures of it using my son's digital camera as I didn't even own one back then.  I've created some close-up pics of a few areas using the editing tool on Flickr so I can share some details with you.
I set this table quite a few years ago for a Valentine's Dinner we were having with two other couples. It is pretty simple compared with some of my more recent 'scapes but I remember having so much fun "playing" with it.

Back then, my centerpieces were not too elaborate and usually consisted of some fresh flowers and some type of candleholder.

This is one of my favourite Partylite pieces, a prism tealight lamp.  Unfortunately, it is no longer available and I cherish this one.  It was quite expensive but I managed to have enough in sales when I hosted a party, that I got it for free!

 Some red and white tulips and baby's breath make a good colour combo for Valentine's Day.  I like the drama created by using a black tablecloth with the red/white.
 I didn't have any red placemats so I ironed some napkins so that the corners folded down and put a lace placemat on top.  Back then, these gold chargers (from The Shopping Channel) were the only type of chargers I owned.
I didn't even own proper wine glasses or water goblets and used a mishmash of stemware.

I realized I enjoyed tablescaping long before I knew that was the word for it and long before forums and blogs where I eventually found out I wasn't alone in this unique hobby.  Before that, my friends and family thought I was a little strange when I would spend hours setting a table even when no one would be eating at it!
Okay, I'll admit it, a lot of them still do find it/me strange!

Do you remember when you first started to realize you were having fun setting tables?  Was it way back or did you think of it as a "hobby" you might like to try once you saw some 'scapes on Tablescape Thursday? Has it grown into a major obsession where you think "centerpiece" with any decorative item you see?  Do you have dishes stored under the beds?

I'd love to hear anything you'd like to share on how/when you started tablescaping or even if you are still just thinking about it!    For plenty of encouragement and ideas, head on over to BNOTP for TT!


Deanna said...

very sweet tablescape and well worth remembering!
Reds this time of year really warm my soul. Like it!

May you have a delightful valentine's day,
d from home haven

xinex said...

Love all the red and white and crystals mixed together. Very pretty and very romantic....Christine

Kathleen said...

Hi DD!
Isn't it funny how we never thought to take pics of all the tables we did back then! I have none! Just from when I started on Holidays.
Before that I thought I was nutty to set the table and enjoy it! :)
I love this table, and the centerpiece is lovely. The candle light is so pretty!
I love the fresh tulips and baby's breath, gives me hope for Spring!!

Anonymous said...

Very pretty Valentine table!

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

Wow everything is so beautiful. Love the crystal lamp. Very elegant.


Linda @ A La Carte said...

I love it and such a fun look back. I was thrilled to find others liked to decorate a table that no one was going to eat a dinner at. Oh well....call me crazy it hurts no one and gives me hours of fun.

Linda (More Fun Less Laundry) said...

I have loved setting tables for quite a long time, but I only RECENTLY discovered that others love it too and POST pictures on BLOGS!! Really that was one of the happiest discoveries I have ever made. It is so much fun to share and get ideas. And yes, I have dishes everywhere, hidden from my husband (does that make it an addiction?) and I do think about centerpieces and tablescapes more now that ever! Linda

Shirley said...

What a lovely table. I'm glad you put it on again as I didn't see it before. I never even knew what tablescaping was till I started blogging and following BNOTP with Susan!! Yes, now I have tons of dishes and have turned my craft room into just dish storage!

m'lin said...

How pretty! Yes finding a tablescape blog was a revelation!!! I so remember taking out all the "good dishes" and washing & polishing - and setting the table with all the pretties before holiday dinners with my grandparents. I so looked forward to spending the night (at grandparents) before the "event" so I could help make the table just so!!! GREAT memories. My granny would have loved these blogs!!

Lynne (lynnesgiftsfromtheheart) said...

I love all your reds with the crystal, so romantic..you always set a beautiful table. I would love to be a guest any time..
hugs ~lynne~

Marlis said...

I started setting tables when I was first married. Before Martha Stewart! And it just keeps growing.. i looked around and I decided some pieces have to go but you know.. i don't know which i would let go.

Your table is quite lovely. I think black tablecloths are so dramatic and your table is perfect!

Entertaining Women said...

I think that I have been tablescaping forever...I learned that there was a term for it probably 7 - 10 years ago. I've kept a photo archive of my designs for years...just never knew that there would be an outlet to share them. I. Love. It! I have found that my tables have become better designed as the years have rolled along. Carolyne Roehm's books have been an inspiration for me...A Passion for Flowers, Carolyne Roehm at Home, A Passion for Parties, and Presentations. Highly recommend them! Thank you for sharing your charming design. Cherry Kay

Marigene said...

What a lovely table...everything really stands out on the black tablecloth, love it.

Becky said...

What a fun way to think about it. I have been doing this since I was a little girl and would set up tea parties for my dolls, complete with centrepieces. Then I majored in Home Ec in college and one semester my group did nothing but set tables. And I still love it! Thanks for the trip down memory lane.

Yellow Rose Arbor said...

Love the black, red, and gold! Very pretty! I have always enjoyed setting tables. Years ago I would only buy two sets of everything to use.


Alycia Nichols said...

It's a goodie! That Partylite lamp is really pretty. I am SO partial to lamps on a table, and that one is beautiful! The florals you used "back then" may have been simpler, but you still made them look lovely! There's still enough baby's breath in there to fluff them out nicely, and the red of the tulips...astounding color!

Maria said...

Hi! It's wonderful to see the tulips! With all the snow we're having, tulips are just the right thing to bring in the house!
You set a very, very pretty table!

The Quintessential Magpie said...

I think it is a lovely tablescape, and how I adore your red tulips! They are beautiful and just whisper, "Happy Valentine's Day!" They are one of my favorite flowers. I love your pretty tealights and plates, too. And yes, DD, I have plates stored EVERYWHERE, and I just bought some more today. Shhhhhh... don't tell my husband. ;-)

Happy Tablescape Thursday...


Sheila :-)

The Tablescaper said...

I wish I had photos of some of those early scapes. Great table.

- The Tablescaper

Debbie said...

Your post reminded me of all the tablescapes I have done and never took pictures. We are making up for lost time now ;o) I see you love Partylite as much as I do! I plan on using your "cloche" idea for a tablescape in March. I could spend hours at your blog!

Tricia@The Dull and the Dutiful said...

I've always loved dishes, and I learned to set up for parties from my mother who often entertained her church circle or the faculty wives. It has been such fun to join the Tablescape Tribe in Blogland! I love your pretty table -- mine this week is also red and white.

Pattie @ Olla-Podrida said...

I love the setting overall, but was happy to see that you'd used an apothecary jar as a part of your centerpiece. I bought a trio of them to use at Christmas and now see them everywhere (Martha S has them on her counter with pink candy in them). I know I'm going to have a lot of fun with them.

Barbara said...

That was very much my path to tablescaping too. I really didn't know what it was or that others did it but I sure enjoyed it. Lovely table. Fun to revisit!

Chari at Happy To Design said...

Hi sweet lady...

Ohhh what fun...to see one of your earlier tables! It's beautiful!!! I love how you ironed down the corners of the napkins for placemats...that's a GRAND idea! There are so many pretty dinner napkins available and they are a bit less than buying placemats! I think they turned out beautiful! Love your place settings! Ohh...and your fresh floral bouquets are lovely...perfect for a pretty Valentine table! And...of course I love your crystal prism tealight candleholders...they are GORGEOUS! I oooh and aaah over them every time you used them! Well dear lady, thank you so much for sharing your beautiful table with us! You know, I have always loved to make a pretty table but I must admit that my interest and knowledge has grown leaps and bounds since I have started blogging! There are just so many great ideas and creative people in blogland...such as yourself! You always inspire me with your fabulous tables, my friend! Thank you!!!

Warmest winter wishes,
Chari @Happy To Design


I love all your setting! The little crystal lamp really caught my eye right away, it's gorgeous and what an accent light is on a table. You're china is fantastic. You're such a creative blog lander, I love everything you do, it's a sure thing to visit you! I wish a happy Valentine's full of love!
Hope you can visit me, I'll be honored. Thank you much.

Party store said...

I like your blog,Totally interesting concept about the valentine to a very special for you and your love.Give more pictures related to this topic.Thanks for sharing this wonderful detail.
Valentines decorations | Valentine’s party

Anonymous said...

A friend of mine shared your blog with me when I started sharing pictures of my tablescaping with her. I didn't know it was a hobby or others shared it much either! How fun to get ideas from others. My husband says I must of got the genes from my Grandmother who used to enter tablescapes in the State Fair through the garden club.

I always enjoy coming here and seeing what fun ideas you have!


Dreamgoddess said...

DD, thank you for sharing the table that got you started! It was fun reading about it. It's always so much fun to see your tables!

I think what started my tablescaping was seeing all the gorgeous tables, especially Judith's pink Christmas table, over at Holidays. There are some really talented ladies there. After that I was hooked and I've been doing tables ever since then.

Sue (Someone's Mom) said...

I've always loved to make a table look pretty for special occasions and I love working with flowers. I certainly didn't do it the way I do now until blogging and BNOTP. I thought I had a lot of dishes/things but now I have a room devoted only to tablescaping things. So, I'd say my interest has grown! Isn't it fun to see how our style has changed over the years. This is still a very pretty table.

Cindy said...

Another beautiful tablescape...all the red and crystal, it just sparkles!!!
It's Cindy at Dwellings-TheHeartofYourHome(you follow my blog). I haven't been able to contact you for something special I've needed to show you...Blessings,Cindy

we three dogs and me said...

I laughed when I answered yes to all your questions.Your valentine table was beautiful way back then. I cannot even compare to your talent but I have fun because I like cutsie. It's so much fun.

Denise said...

I think I started as a little girl. Learned it from my mother. She often did a simple tablescape (Never used that term, though.), even on the weeknights, even though she worked outside the home.

I learned to love dishes then. None of my "real life" friends are as taken with tablescaping as I am, so I am so glad that there is a place to share creations on the internet.

I can see why you love the candle holder. It IS beautiful.

Sherry said...

Beautiful! Love the layered plates and red tulips.

Debi Jean said...

Found this late My MIL has been using my tablescapes on her blog and I finally feel vindicated as my DH her son has been nagging me about the amount of dishes I have since he met me
I even purged for him 2 years ago and let 5 sets of dishes go at a yard sale for $5.00 each ( Of coarse mine are not the fine china but the fun stuff for each season) I still have 10 sets of Christmas/Winter dishes alone
NOW I have an excuse to buy more dishes LOL
I have been setting a nice table all my life as it was a chore for my allowance back then . My Mom always fondly comments about how out of 4 daughters only 1 still sets a "proper table".
I DO NOT COOK so when I was hosting all the football sunday brunches as a single military nurse I would have the beautiful table set when they got there and serve drinks (Wine beer etc) first so they did not notice how uneventful the food was LOL
NOW my DH works nights so I can never entertain here so it is wonderful to have a place to show off my dishes in cyberspace and see everyone elses ideas. I decided that HOME GOODS is a place I want to come to my town because everyone seems to find the nicest things there for cheap

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