Monday, June 11, 2012

Simple Summer Al Fresco Dining

We love eating on the deck in the hut as much of the year as possible.  Strangely, this year we have managed to only eat there a couple of times.  So, when Wonder Hubby told me last Thursday we were having dinner guests Friday night, I was glad the weather was going to be good for dining al fresco.

I had seen this picture in a Pottery Barn catalog and knew I wanted to do something similar.

I put together this simple yet elegant summer tablescape and I really like the way it turned out.  I really wish I had 6 burlap place mats to use with this look (hint, hint spare daughter, I need two more to go with the 4 you made me Christmas, wink!)  but alas I had only 4 (which I would have used but Mini vetoed the idea) so the table is sans place mats. 

This tablescape gave me ideas for a couple more for the summer season....gotta get started on those :)

I love the simple color palette and organic materials.  I am still loving my square Food Network plates Wonder Hubby got for free at Kohl's, even after 3 yrs.!  The glasses were a yard sale find from my dad, wish they were depression but are only Whitehall....but they work just fine.

I used a bit of burlap left over from the Coastal Bedroom redo last fall as a runner.  The pier was a Christmas gift from my Dad for that bedroom, I said this before but he has a pretty good eye for things :)

The shells were collected over the years on various beach trips. Even the crushed shells that filled the bottom of some of the votives were collected and a darn good copy of the PB ones! 

The napkin rings are another of my Playing with PVC creations.  I blogged about some of them here.  Since I was trying to mimic the PB photo a bit, I needed to use some rope and had none.   I dug out my trusty twine and used it and some PVC and ta da....napkin rings.  I may make another set and add shells but I was on a limited time frame so I went with simple!

There is, however, a negative to using twine

Your napkins can get a bit hairy....I discovered this oh about 3 minutes before guests arrived, yikes!

Nothing like a box of matches to throw off the whole thing huh?

I would love to show you pictures after dark with the whole hut illuminated with my candle chandy and other candles......but I got so caught up with good food and good company that taking pictures completely slipped my mind.  Isn't that how a good dinner party should be?  Thanks for stopping by, I hope you will come back soon.

I am joining




  1. your table looks lovely! I am sure your dinner guests thought so too!

  2. It is so pretty to see this table all lit with candles. it really sets the mood. I just love the subtle color pallet and the burlap (even if you would like a few more placemats.) Dining outside is one of the great pleasures of life if you ask me!

    I've got this pinned, Love everything about it!

    1. Lynn, thanks so much. I do love some candlelight...Wonder Hubby doesn't, however, like the candle cost! lol Thanks for visiting.

  3. Shanee, I'm so glad you found me-now I'm your newest follower :) I think your table looks amazing-it definitely reminds me of Pottery Barn!

  4. I really love this from beginning to end. I keep forgetting to get some PVC and have the husband cut some little portions so I can try this napkin ring thing. I have wanted to do it since you posted your first one. I just love it. I wouldn't even mind the hairy napkins because it' so cute.

    I'm pinning this for pinspiration!

  5. The table setting looks Fabulous.. I bet everyone was ooooing and ahhhhhhing when they saw it..

    tip for anything Twine:-) spray it with scotchguard before you use it- 2 light coats, let dry-- no more hairys...

  6. This is a beautiful table setting for an alfresco dinner! The neutral colors are great and your centerpiece vignette is fabulous.

  7. I love your table! The colors are great, I would love to sit outside at that table. What are you grilling? :)

  8. Love everything about this look! My mil has those glasses and they are perfect-hold just the right amount of ice and beverage. Now I wonder what you served!

    I'm following!

  9. Found you via Savvy Southern Style. Gorgeous table! Thanks for sharing.
    WhatMeegan Makes

  10. I love the PVC napkin rings -- even WITH the hairy napkins :) The whole table looks amazing!

    Charlie @ Match Made On Hudson

  11. Truthfully, I like your tablescape better than Pottery Barns! Their's was a jumble, you simplefied it making each piece stand out more and it made a better whole.! I have some of the same piece that you do in your tablescape, so you have inspired me to make a similar tablescape for this weekend. Good Job!

  12. Hi darling, your table is so pretty and inviting. I know you wowed your guests. hugs ~lynne~

  13. So many special details in your wonderful seaside tablescape. The napkin rings are a great idea. I wonder if you could spray them with a sealing coat or even a spray varnish or lacquer and stop the shedding....brainstorming ...don't know if that would work or not. Sand in your bikini...twine hairs on your all kind of works together, doesn't it? I love your table. Thanks for inviting us for a peak. Cherry Kay

  14. Beautiful and inspiring. What a perfect inspiration photo and I love your take on it. How pretty to just use the naturals and create a table that looks just like a beach scene. You can tell we all love the beach.

  15. Oh my I think you hit a home run with your PB knock off.. It turned out fabulous. I love your table!!! The dishes are great and whitehall is okay by me.. Your centerpiece is spectacular.. love it all. have a great week, xo marlis

  16. I love it! All the natural neutral shades look so good together! Thanks for sharing!

  17. Looks like you had a lot of fun putting this table together!

  18. I love everything about your table!! I think you did PB better. I like the natural tones and the mix of shapes and textures. thanks for sharing your tip on the napkins rings, those are really cute.

  19. Beautiful table and so beachy. Every element is perfect, love it all.

  20. Great table. Your wooden top with it's slanted wood planks adds such interest to the neutral shades. It's neat how Pottery Barn can give us inspiration and then we just run with it!

    It would be great to have you share this post at Seasonal Sundays.

    - The Tablescaper


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