A big part of an elegant lifestyle is learning how to be a good host. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party, an English-style tea, or a family brunch, each presents an opportunity to practice your networking and hosting skills! And now that the weather is getting warmer, one of those skills should be how to create the perfect summer tablescape.
#1 – Match The Tablescape To The Surroundings
The first step to a gorgeous summer tablescape is to choose your location. Will you host this meal in your dining room, garden, living room, or balcony? Whichever the area, pay attention to the surroundings. What is its particular style and color pallet? You’ll need to match your table furniture, linen, and tableware to it.
#2 – Use A Neutral Foundation
I recommend using a neutral foundation and then building up your summer tablescape ideas bit by bit on top. Having a white, off-white, beige, grey, or even a pastel, like lilac, as a base will then allow you to play around more easily with the flatware, china, centerpieces, and décor.
#3 – Add Pops Of Color And Style
This is where you can really let your creativity run free. Different colors of water glasses, centerpieces with seasonal flowers or bright citrus fruits, and candles (not scented) will then give depth and dimension to the neutral base. Just make sure the colors complement each other and don’t create too much distraction.
#4 – Match The Food To The Tablescape (Or Vice Versa)
This is where you can really tell the pros from the amateurs. If the food is big and bulky while your tablescape ideas are delicate and dainty, the clash will be quite obvious. The opposite is also true. If your outdoor tablescape is rustic and hearty yet the food looks like something out of a Viennese pastry shop, the clash will also be obvious. You can choose the theme of the tablescape or the menu first, as long as you match the other to it.
#5 – Embellish With Personality
What I notice the most when I’m invited to someone’s event is if it has elements of their own personality. It adds this extra touch that is so sweet and intimate that you remember it more than the overall beauty of the décor. For example, you can personalize the place cards with your own handwriting. Or add some décor from your home country. Or use the antique champagne glasses you collected at flea markets.
Outdoor Tablescape Ideas
If you’re going to host outdoors, there are some extras to consider that might take your outdoor tablescape to the next level:
- Use fairy lights or gas lanterns on or around the table
- Lay sprigs of fresh herbs on the table to give a similar aroma to the meals
- Consider a more casual picnic style setting, with woven baskets and cozy blankets
- Use a long garland instead of floral centerpieces
These are just some tablescape ideas for summer. The key takeaway here is to practice and to not be afraid of a little creativity. And if you’re the one who’s invited to a social event or dinner, here are my top tips for being an elegant guest.