Tablescaping helps you turn dinner into an occasion

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You can cut your own garden flowers and greenery to make a centerpiece for your table – and then keep on getting creative.

“Adding nature to your table will enliven your guests’ experience as they take their place for a meal,” said Tobey Nelson, owner of Tobey Nelson Events and Design in Clinton, Washington. “A table that is embellished with beautiful natural elements can turn a pleasant dinner into a special occasion.”

“Add a few stems of lovely greenery such as ferns or hosta to smaller vases along or around the table,” she suggested. “Place a sprig of an herb such as rosemary or a blossom on a napkin or plate to bring your tablescape alive.”

Maybe you have small pots of succulents or herbs on your patio? Incorporate them too, Nelson said.

“Sometimes a creative idea for the garden works nicely on a table setting, too. Think sweet little teacups planted with succulents, or small terra cotta pots with little herb plants,” she said. “These work well to beautify your table and make cute patio decorations through the summer – or great little gifts for your guests.”

No need to relegate cutting flowers to their own patch in the garden, she continued.

“Weave them into your landscape. Plant a few cosmos between shrubs,” she said. “Peonies, a popular garden plant, are great as cut flowers, and their foliage is beautiful in a vase. Lots of vines are great in arrangements.”

Tablescaping with plants from your own garden adds a personal touch to the dining experience.

“A lot of times you can personalize by using native flowers that emphasize the area in which you live,” said Kaleb Norman James, who owns a wedding and floral design company in Kirkland, Washington.

“Or something that a bride and bridegroom can display at their wedding dinner that they’re proud of – flowers that tie in to who they are, where they’ve been or what they’ve done.”

Even the smallest details count.

“I love to look into the elements that may be overlooked,” James said. Rarely does he use a plain white napkin, for instance: “Look for color or patterns or some type of decorative element like a flower.”@body Living:

Tablescaping is more than a floral centerpiece, he said. “It’s tying in a lot of different pieces. The flatware, glassware, linens, table numbers and place cards that fit a theme.

“Try to add some additional custom things on top of that,” James said. “Fruit or something depicting the season. Little trays with grapes flowing onto the table. Or berries in silver compotes or bowls.”

In winter, add candles, geodes and crystals for a glamorous touch, he said.


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