Sunday, February 26, 2012

Back to the Dining Room!

Not long ago, one of my friends told me that she did not have time to use her nice tableware, when her family was visiting.  I immediately blurted out that I was on a mission to get people back into the dining room!  Only then, did I realize that is why I write this blog.  The art of “dining” is becoming a lost art, indeed.

Making guests feel special by “putting on the dog” for them is truly gratifying. We do this, even for our young grandchildren.  When I was taking the photos of their birthday parties at my house in the last couple of months, I did not realize that I would be using them in a blog.  Please excuse the photography, but I am showing the photographs to make a point. We treat our children and grandchildren as honored guests, as I am sure all of you tablescapers do. 

Our grandson turned 10 in January.  He is a Star Wars enthusiast.  The Star Wars cake that I found at our local Publix was decorated with red and blue, so those were the colors for the table.

I used cobalt/navy chargers from Horchow and red “Louisa” Biltmore plates from Belk’s. The glass bowls for ice cream were bought at a Mikasa outlet store, before it was closed.  The sterling flatware is Gorham “Strasbourg”. I used ecru placemats and napkins that I purchased so long ago that I cannot remember where I bought them.

Here is the birthday boy blowing out his candles.

For our youngest granddaughter’s 9th birthday in February, we decided on a Fairy cake. Actually, I think the cake was a Tinker Bell cake, also, from Publix.

I managed to find a Fairy birthday card, too.  Perfect!

I used pink placemats from Big Lots and napkins from Dillard’s. The pink plates are Johnson Brother’s “Rose Chintz” accent dinner plates and the dessert plates are “Sunflower” by Clay Art. We used the Mikasa bowls, again, for ice cream and “Strasbourg” flatware. 

The napkin rings are from Kohl’s.

 “Ariana” iced beverage glasses from Mikasa were used for our drinks.

Since the granddaughter’s birthday is so close to Valentine’s Day, I added a small box of candy to each place setting.

Here is the birthday girl hugging her gift – a horse for her American Girl dolls.

Even though the oldest granddaughter had her last birthday in June, 2011, I decided to include pictures of the birthday party setting that she did for herself at my house.  On her birthday, I did a special birthday party for her on our porch and posted it on Tablescape Times Three. You can see that post HERE.

My granddaughter decided to set up her birthday party event as a buffet.

First she put down a Heritage Lace “Fancy Free” runner and used a glass cake stand, along with silverplate serving dishes.

She used J. C. Penney “Coventry” pink plates and pink flatware (no pattern name!).

The lovely rose high sherbets are “Fairfax” by Fostoria. Two more “Fairfax” pieces were used for serving, along with the silver.

The chocolate birthday cake with strawberries was a hit with her and she used it as her centerpiece.

Here is she is on her birthday – taken on my porch.

Thank you for indulging me in allowing me to show photos of my grandchildren, but the real reason I posted this blog is to encourage everyone to treat their guests, as though each one is very special. Also, to give children occasions to remember and, maybe – just maybe, when they grow up, they will spend their precious family times in the dining room!




  1. I love this some point in my life I too decided that my family was the most important guests I would ever my love of a beautiful table was born..not just on 'special' occasions. I made up my mind that if I didn't use it, I should get rid of I started using cloth napkins and setting the table..EVERY day....thank you for such an encouraging and inspiring blog..It makes me happy each time I see a new blog written by you..oh, yes..gorgeous grandchildren my lady..

  2. How gorgeous! Every table is beautiful and with each grandchild's theme. Yes, the art of pretty table settings is getting lost in things like this, although we do go out of our way for our two little grands, it's actually our daughter Sofia who does it specially. I like the art of tablescaping and the elements that go along, it's part of living beautifully. Yes, it's a shame people take it so lightly and do not put any effort to the beauty of it. You are very talented, I will go make a tour to see more. Thank you for your lovely visit and reminder. Have a nice Sunday.

  3. Oh, and your grandgirls are beautiful!

  4. Hi, Diane. Please tell me--where do I follow you?! This post is right up my alley. I completely agree with you. We set a "proper" table for every family meal, and if it's the slightest way party/special/--it's with full regalia, including linen napkins. I've told our children that I why would I save special things for non-family, when THEY are the most special, important people in my life? So the best for them. I hope you'll visit my blog; you'll see the baby's highchair set with Royal Doulton Bunnykins :). Our four-year-old granddaughter has known for a long time that "fork on the left, knife on the right." We're starting early around here! :)

    I have to tell you that the first thing that really struck me as I read your post was your grandson's attire--nice shirt. That means before he left the house his parents made sure he was wearing "proper" clothes for a party--no T-shirt, slogans, sports. And the girls were also dressed appropriately, which is only right, given that you're setting such a nice table for them. Recently I visited a blog where the child's birthday party was set beautifully, and every single person, including the birthday girl, was wearing a T-shirt. I felt really bad for the mom who'd worked so hard to set such a beautiful table and prepare such beautiful food. Completely agree with you. I hope you'll visit me.

  5. Have I been in a fog? I was wondering what happened to the threesome of tablescaping. I'm so happy to have found you and so pleased to have you be a part of Seasonal Sundays.

    - The Tablescaper

  6. Beautiful that you make each child feel so special, and for my family my mom always said that if not for our birthday we would not be here, so she always tried to make our birthday very special, a real celebration of that child. And I totally agree that the most 'important' person we will ever entertain is our very own families. Love this post!

  7. I'm with you...use the "good" stuff as much as possible! Especially for occasions with loved ones! Your granddaughter is very cute and under your tutelage is turning into a talented tablescaper!

  8. You GO, oldest granddaughter!!! Right on, young lady! She is really on a roll!!! She set up a beautiful, very tasteful buffet. She's got your genes, for sure! Carson and Ava's tables are fabulous, Diane! I, too, believe in giving children special treatment when holding a meal in their honor. That's how they learn to appreciate things that I fear are becoming a lost art. Your oldest granddaughter seems determined to keep it alive with her generation, though, so that's a good sign! Thanks for stopping by earlier. I've been gone all day...glad to be home! Have a good weekend!!!

  9. Your grandchildren are beautiful! I so believe in using our dining rooms and wonderful china and silverware for our families on a regular basis. My MIL's beautiful things weren't used for decades until I received we use them often. So great that you make special meals and times with your grandkids! They will long remember those special days!
    Thanks for sharing!
    Miss Bloomers

  10. I'm blessed to have a group of dear friends, all of whom appreciate the art of gracious entertaining. We have a ball, and we love to open our doors to invite others to our tables often. I'm blessed to have a daughter and daughter-in-love who also appreciate a well set table. It's good to know that all the family treasures will continue into the next generation. I love that your oldest granddaughter has obviously already learned a great deal about the art of entertaining. All the parties are delightful! Thanks for inviting us for a peak. Cherry Kay

  11. I totally agree that it is important to make our guests feel special, especially our family. Your tables and place settings were beautiful... as are your grandchildren. Thanks for sharing.