Decorate Home Accents Parties Seasonal

Winter Table Place Settings

These winter table place setting ideas are a delightful way to embrace all of the simple beauty that a cozy winter day has to offer.

Winter Table Place Settings

Winter adventures always remind me of the simple delights of the days gone past. Visions of enchanting small towns nestled in a blanket of white. Quaint little frozen ponds surrounded by pine trees dressed in sparkling gowns of snow. Sleigh bells that jingle softly in the distance. I’m not sure why I paint those winter scenes in my mind, but they always comfort my soul somehow. So this January, I decided to create a table with all of those charming vintage images in mind.

I began with candles wrapped in sweaters sitting upon disks of wood surrounded by various sizes of pinecones for my centerpiece. I talked about how to make the sweater candles here.

Winter Table Place Settings

I added some mercury glass hurricanes for some icy sparkle.

Winter Table Place Settings

Each place setting has a ratan placemat (that I picked up last summer in Maine from a sweet antique store) I’ve seen similar placemats at TJ Maxx. I decided to use an antique pie plate as a charger beneath the bowl for added charm and a simple off white bowl with a blue line to match the blue and white mattress ticking tablecloth. (Next week I’ll be sharing a scrumptious white chicken chili to fill those bowls).

Winter Table Place Settings

And guess what? The tablecloth is fabric from Walmart!! Just left the edges raw and frayed. I love the look! Mattress ticking has always made my heart sing!

I used small silver frames as the place cards.

Winter Table Place Settings

And the napkin rings are merely a thin band cut from the arm of a sweater. So sweet and so simple.

Winter Table Place Settings

An antique sled leans against the fireplace adorned with vintage ice skates and a scarf. A subtle nod to the winter adventures I imagine to be taking place before gathering around this winter table.

Winter Table Place Settings

Who doesn’t love the idea of a cold winter evening spent cuddled up around a table that glows with candles wrapped in sweaters, bowls filled with pipping hot chili and friends all around? It’s a treat like no other when you gather people you love around a beautifully set table and relish in good food and conversation. You know, like they did back in the olden days. Without cell phones and interruptions. Just good old fashioned fun.

Winter Table Place Settings

Winter Table Place Settings


Here are the other posts about some of these winter ideas ::

I’ll be sharing delicious recipes for the winter dinner party next week!

Wishing you an enchanting winter weekend,



Decorate Home Accents Parties Seasonal

Winter Party Theme Ideas

These winter theme party ideas are simple and inexpensive yet will make your guests warm and cozy as you entertain during the winter months.

Winter Party Theme Ideas

I can’t tell you how much fun I’ve had lately as I’ve transformed my living room into an inviting, cozy, haven. It’s so delightful to come inside and snuggle into the warm comforting surroundings on these bitter cold days. Usually the winter months drag on endlessly for me. But this year, I’m just having too much fun all snuggled up. And you should too!! Why not invite some friends over to warm up with a magical winter dinner party after a fun afternoon of sledding or skiing!? You won’t believe how easy these party theme ideas are to make! Today I’m sharing my fireplace decoration ideas with you.

I embellished my mantle with a garland made of yarn pom poms. 

Winter Party Theme Ideas

They are so simple to make (I did a tutorial here).  I used a small and medium sized pom poms and tied them onto a piece of yarn.

Winter Party Theme Ideas

I just love how the garland turned out! Reminds me of little puffy snowballs.

The candles are made out of sweaters! Or maybe I should say candle cozies. I used the arms of sweaters and tall and short glasses that I picked up for a few dollars at a thrift store. Make sure you use children’s sized sweaters because the arms are smaller and hug tightly around glasses. Some of the candles have the top folded down as a cuff, others do not. I used different textures and patterns of a similar palette for an all over cohesive look.

Winter Party Theme Ideas

I didn’t even need to finish the edges of the candle sweater cozies. None of the sweaters unraveled and I thought the unfinished edge add charm.

I found an old window at an antique store and leaned it on the mantle. Gazing through window panes always reminds me of winter, not to mention it gives height and visual interest to the scene. I hung a scarf wreath (find the how-to here) in the center for another cozy touch.

Winter Party Theme Ideas

Now if that mantle doesn’t say cozy, warm and snuggly then I don’t know what does!? I love that a few simple DIY’s made this winter scene affordable and enchanting at the same time.

Winter Party Theme Ideas

How to make the winter party theme ideas ::

Stayed tuned for the table setting tomorrow as well as yummy recipes and a fun cocktail next week!

Wishing you a day wrapped in warmth and love,




Decorate Parties

Halloween Decorations :: Centerpiece

Halloween Decorations don’t have to be expensive or fussy. White pumpkins and black ribbon bats make a perfect simple yet elegant Halloween table centerpiece.

Halloween Decorations Centerpiece

Black and white seems to be a favorite theme of mine as far as Halloween decorations are concerned. A few years back I shared a black and white table with carved polka dotted  pumpkins that glowed eerily over a black web tablecloth. This year I went with more of a whimsical feel with black ribbon bats that happily hover over mini white pumpkins. I love to create a seasonal centerpiece each month for my table so that it can be enjoyed it all month long. Dinners seem easier and it motivates me to usher my family into the living room to sit down for a meal shared around the table rather than squeezing around the island for a quick meal.

Halloween Decorations Centerpiece

These black ribbon bats seem to be flying throughout my entire home this Halloween! I fell in love with them as I hung them in my foyer from a branch  to greet all of our guests and now I can’t stop making them.

Guess I’ve gone batty! Ha.

They’re just so simple and sweet that I can’t resist them. The centerpiece bats were made with black ribbon folded in half, cut along the bottom with a few curved cuts and then twisted tightly in the center with a black floral wire (that I found at my local Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store).

Halloween Decorations Centerpiece

Then I just pushed the wire into the mini white pumpkin. How easy is that?

Halloween Decorations Centerpiece

The rest of the centerpiece consisted of a gathering of multi-sized mini white pumpkins (from Trader Joe’s) an antique silver tray and cake plate stand with a few silver votive candles tucked about.

Supplies for Halloween Decorations for your centerpiece :

  • different sizes of white mini pumpkins (real or artificial)
  • 3 inch black ribbon
  • black floral wire
  • silver tray
  • silver cake plate stand
  • silver votive candles

Our crisp Autumn days will be ending with warm savory meals shared around a festive centerpiece during the month of October. Yours can too with these easy Halloween decorations!

Wishing you many meals shared around a beautiful centerpiece!


Decorate Fetching Finds Home Accents Inspire Parties

Fabulous Find Friday ::: Antique Enamel Bowl


Have you ever fallen in love (whilst antiquing) with something that you don’t necessarily need but just HAVE to have? 

It’s the story of my life. 

But most of the time that something that I don’t necessarily need quickly becomes something that I can’t live without once I get home. 

This antique enamel bowl is one of those things…


When I first laid my eyes upon that smooth, perfectly white, flawless surface I just knew that I HAD to have it. 


But once I ran my finger along the perfectly painted forest green edge, well then, I knew that there was no turning back. 

And guess what? 

I’m so very delighted that I acted on my impulse! This dear antique enamel white bowl has served me well.

It makes a positively precious container for all of my herbs that I keep beside my kitchen window. 


When entertaining, it makes the most delightful (leak free) beverage tub.


After a long day of antiquing, it makes the perfect foot bath in switch to soak my aching feet.

*Not pictured*

And then when I may or may not purchase a plethora of pretty flowers?


It adoringly displays those as well.  

If you don’t already own an antique white enamel bowl, (or twelve) *ahem* well then, I strongly suggest that you do. 

You won’t be sorry.

Happy Friday All!




Decorate Inspire Parties

Setting the Thanksgiving Table

One of my very favorite things to do as a little girl was watch my mom scurry about as she set our dining room table. The dining room always meant a special occasion. Whether it was a holiday, a birthday celebration or the ladies coming over to play cards, the dining room was always dressed in her finest to entertain the guests. I can still hear the doors of the enormous antique hutch pulling open and the old china dishes gently clanking as she would try decide which pattern would best suit her theme of the evening.

I find myself doing the very same thing as I set the scene for special occasions.

There was something so magical about watching her work. I loved seeing all of the old dishes and glasses that had been passed down for generations and hearing the stories of who had eaten on them before me. I was in awe of the delicate tablecloths and napkins neatly folded in the drawers waiting for their turn to grace the table. Her eyes would sparkle as she gathered the candles and glass globes of all shapes and sizes to use in her centerpiece.

It was a delicious feeling…

watching my mom weave the atmosphere of an evening with her creativity.

I guess that must be where my passion for setting the table began.

My mom would always have the most lovely of centerpieces.

She would retreat to our yard in search of beloved objects from nature to incorporate into her creation.

I chuckled at myself as I used a cluster of heirloom pumpkins for my centerpiece while setting a Thanksgiving table the other day.

A warm smile spread across my face as I decided to collect some additional leaves to tuck around the pumpkins as little reminders of my Grateful Garland.

It’s really such a gift to have memories of watching someone I love take such care and relish so in creating a table for all to enjoy.

I feel like I get to relive that feeling each time I set a special table.

I had all of my mom’s inspiration in the forefront of my mind as I created the place cards for the Thanksgiving table.

I decided to use pears embellished with chocolate initials to greet each guest.

I just melted some semisweet chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and poured the melted chocolate into a small baggie. Then gently squeezed the chocolate into a corner of the bag, snipped off the very teensy tip of the bag and piped chocolate initials onto each pear.

It’s easy and inexpensive.

And makes a darling,

not to mention edible way to make each guest feel special. And that’s what it’s all about isn’t it?

The memories that I cherish most, aside from watching my mom set the scene, are of those special dinners enjoyed with family and friends in our dining room, sitting around those beautifully set tables.

It’s all about the gathering of special objects and the love and care woven into a special meal.

And, wanna know a secret?

I’m not even hosting Thanksgiving this year. I just felt inspired to show those that I love what they mean to me. The little blessings in my life that make my heart complete.

We don’t need a holiday to do that do we?

Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving that fills your heart as much as your belly.


Decorate Inspire Parties

A Grateful Garland

As Thanksgiving gracefully approaches I find myself settling into a quiet place. A peaceful place that always seems to surface this time of year. My little darlings have fallen into their stride with their new school year routines and I find myself falling into a rhythm as well. We gather inside more often as the days grow darker and a chill takes over the air. We share dinners around the table rather than dinner on-the-run and my soul just takes a sigh as I savor the moments that I have with my girls who are blossoming into lovely young ladies right before my eyes.

I find comfort and quiet in the chores that accompany the change of seasons as I put my flower beds to rest for the winter.

I get lost in raking the leaves and marvel in how my once full yard has become so tidy so quickly.

I’m fascinated by each leaf …

engulfed in their beauty and individual shapes.

My mind wanders to the pile of blessings I’ve collected in my life. Blessings that come in so many shapes and sizes and sometimes go unnoticed until I stop long enough…become quiet enough to really see the pile.

Only then can I take a running start and jump right in.

I stood quietly and thanked the good Lord above for my pile of blessings. I made a quiet vow to remember these blessings and continued with my work. Later that day as my mind continued to swirl, I was astounded by the many blessings in my life that  had gone unnoticed. It was then that I decided to make a “Grateful Garland” as a way to remind myself  and my family of all that we have to be grateful for.

I hung a rope on my fireplace mantel and washed and dried some leaves.

I got some wooden clothes pins,

and a gold marker.

I then began to write the things for which I’m grateful on each leaf…

then clipped them onto the rope.

It was a beautiful reminder of the many blessings in my life. Each leaf seemed to capture and somehow express the very essence of what I was writing on it. Whether it was small or large, perfectly shiny or dull and haggard around the edges…perfectly symmetrical or slightly imperfect in some way, each leaf gently reminded me of the many different blessings that come to us in so many different guises.

Sometimes it’s the tiniest of blessings that can bring about the most.

A Grateful Garland.

I think I’ll be making another one with my family this Thanksgiving.

Wishing you a pile of blessings big enough to take a running jump into.





Decorate Inspire Parties

Setting a Black & White Scene for Halloween

I decided to do something different for Halloween. I made it a black & white affair.

But don’t worry.  No ball gowns or black ties necessary unless of couse it’s part of your costume.

This year I’ve decided to go black and white for an upscale look without all the fuss.

I’ve got a few simple tricks up my sleeve for a beautiful table in no time flat.

My inspiration came from the plethora of pumpkins that I’ve collected throughout the house during the fall season.

I have a pumpkin problem, what can I say? I adore pumpkins.

My table uses white pumpkins with polka dot holes drilled through them as the centerpiece. Years ago I saw Martha Stewart talk about using a drill to carve holes in pumpkins and I have found it to be my very favorite way to “carve” the magical orbs that I seem to collect every year. What I really love about this centerpiece is that they end up giving off a most lovely glow of orange, a subtle accent of the traditional color of the holiday.

Look how easy it is to make this beautiful centerpiece.

Begin with a white pumpkin or pumpkins.

I cut the hole in the bottom of my pumpkin to keep the sweet integrity and character of the pumpkin.

Scoop out the seeds and toast them if you like. My dear friend Amy of She Wears Many Hats has a wonderful recipe for toasting pumpkin seeds click here to get it.

Once you’ve cleaned out all of the seeds, you’ll need an electric drill and a one inch drill bit.

Now it’s time for the fun part. Mwahahahhahahahaha.

Simply drill as many holes as you like all over the surface of your pumpkin. (But don’t drill too many or you’ll be able to see the candle inside.)

It’s easy and slightly messy, the slower you drill the less pumpkin you’ll have flying all over your kitchen.

Or if you were in a mad dash like me, you’ll have pumpkin flying all over your kitchen, in your hair, on your shirt, up your nose…

Next grab a glass votive and a candle,

put it on a small plate (to protect your tablecloth) light the candle and place the pumpkin over the top. Nothing tricky there, right?

Aren’t they just precious?

Next I wanted the table to have a subtle Halloween feel. I found this fabulous black web tablecloth that I found at my grocery store but you could even use a black tulle to give a similar effect.

I placed it over a soft grey tablecloth to accent the webs.

Next I set the table with some festive black & white dishes.

I used chipboard letters painted in black glitter paint as the place cards.

I found some black & white glasses to add into the mix for some blood red kiddie cocktails with black plastic spider ice cubes. Or an adult version.

A black boa wreath with a crow perched in the middle makes for a spooky decoration that can hang on a door in a window

I just hot glued the black boa to a styrofoam wreath and wired the crow in the center.


Doesn’t get an easier than that does it?

In no time at all, my dining room has been transformed into a festive, sophisticated, black & white Halloween treat.


Elegant meets easy.

Dinner anyone?

Wishing you a spooky but splendid Halloween!



Decorate Desserts Inspire Parties

Scary Stories & Cute Cupcakes

You know what’s scary?

Halloween is less than a week away which means that Thanksgiving is four weeks way which means that Christmas is eight weeks away.

I can’t breathe.

You know what else is scary?

My eldest daughter will turn 14 the day after Halloween which means that she will turn 16 in two years which means she’ll be leaving for college two years after that.

STOP the madness. 

Do you see how my mind works?


My morning was scary too. I had my cup of coffee, made breakfast, packed lunches, fed the animals, made sure that everyone had their vitamins and got ready to workout. Seems rather normal right? Well then as I waited for My Yanni to finish up a business call before heading to the gym, my mind started whirling through my to do list. Before I knew it I had grabbed the white pumpkins to be used as a centerpiece for an upcoming post and had just started to carve them when I thought, “I should have different clothes on”.

This is where things began to unravel.

I had dashed to the closet to grab a sweatshirt. Somehow that turned into trying on clothes and more clothes then shoes and boots and then I noticed a dust bunny & cob webs on my hardwood floors which made me think of Halloween and…the pumpkins waiting in the kitchen.


Halloween is less than a week away.

Tomorrow is Sweet Cheeks Halloween party at school. Her very last Halloween party of elementary school which means it’s MY last Halloween party of elementary school.


So I made cupcakes. Just because.

Makes perfect sense doesn’t it?

Stress+ multi-tasking-like-a-deer-on-roller-skates = easy-cute-cupcakes.

Makes perfect sense to me.

To save time I used a boxed cake mix and pre-made icing and decided to embellish the little cuties with some fun ribbon flags.

I happened to have some ribbon with “Happy Halloween” written on it, but you can use any kind of Halloween ribbon that you’ve got.

Just cut the ribbon into 2 inch length pieces, dab some hot glue to the back edge and wrap them around the tip of a toothpick.

Make some cupcakes and frost them…

And stick the flags in.

So festive and darling.

Now you’ll even have time to dust up all of those cobwebs hanging around your house.

Or if you’re like me, decide that they make the perfect Halloween decoration.

Speaking of Halloween decorations, I didn’t even get to tell you how I haven’t had the time to put up all of my beloved Halloween decorations. Or how I accidentally took my dog’s allergy pill last week.


Now THAT’S scary.

Which reminds me.

Oh never-mind.




Decorate Inspire Parties

Trash to Treasure


I love to go antiquing.

There is something so magical and medicinal about rising early with the sun, grabbing a cup of coffee and forging out in search of treasures just waiting patiently to be found.

It’s all about the hunt.

The anticipation…mixed with imagination that just sets my soul on fire.

I LOVE it.

I also love to piddle around in my flower beds. When I stumble upon a treasure that I can enjoy outside amongst my flowers beds I am filled with glee!

Last summer I found this chandelabra while antiquing and I shared how easy it is to make when talking about Dining Al Fresco in Style.

Today I’d like to share another cherished find.

A flower cart. A rusty…metal…flower cart.

But it’s not just any ordinary flower cart.

With a little imagination, a simple sanding,

and some spray primer and paint, you, my friends, can have this…

a darling, charming entertaining cart. It’s got wheels for easy transportation, two shelves to fill with all sorts of goodies and can be enjoyed for entertaining inside or out!

I even found that enamel bowl while out treasure hunting…

Oh and that sweet vintage glass holder too! I switch out the glasses to match whatever color palette I may be using!

Antiquing and treasure hunting has become a hobby of mine.

Go ahead…venture out with an open mind and a full imagination!

The possibilities are endless!

Happy Hunting!


Decorate Eat Inspire Parties

Tickled Pink Raspberry Spritzer


It’s officially the first day of summer at our house which means…

long lazy afternoons chasing butterflies…

countless hours spent slathered in suntan lotion while hanging at the local pool…

lemonade stands…

Popsicles that melt down your arm before you can eat them…

dusty Jeep rides to the cabin….

early morning Farmer’s markets gathering fabulous fresh fruits and vegetables…

pitch black bottoms of feet…



and staying up late and getting to sleep in.

And ya know what? We are all just tickled pink about it! In celebration of the occasion I whipped up this fun little drink. I was inspired by these gorgeous raspberries that I spied at the market.

I decided to make a fun fizzy sweet treat that would tickle our tongues as well as our tum and welcome in the smoldering days of summer with a refreshing sparkle.

This is what I did.

I made some raspberry pink lemonade.

I just love to cool off with lemonade on a sweltering hot day.

Wouldn’t you just love to jump in and swim around for a bit?

Next I added some berry juice. Any berry juice will do.

And for the final touch and sparkle, a little effervescence to make it feel like a special occasion,

I added some sparkling raspberry seltzer water…

that just screams celebration doesn’t it?

It’s summertime.

Sit down,

put up your feet for a spell,

and enjoy a moment of sweet and sparkle.

You deserve it!


Tickled Pink Raspberry Spritzer
(serves 6-8)


4 cups Raspberry pink lemonade
1 cup berry juice (I used Juicy Juice)
2 cups sparkling raspberry seltzer water

What to do:

* Pour raspberry pink lemonade into a pitcher.
* Pour in berry juice.
* Add sparkling raspberry seltzer water (be sure to add right before serving to ensure proper effervescence).
* Stir and serve over ice with a few fresh raspberries.