20 Mar Our Top 6 Entertaining Tips Presented at Champagne & Chandeliers
By: Laura Nell Burton
Event Photography: Jessica Giesey
Christin and I were honored to serve as keynote speakers for the third annual Champagne & Chandeliers on Thursday, March 2, 2018.
We loved demonstrating to our audience how to create a beautiful tablescape using forgotten treasures to be found in their own kitchen cabinets. We also shared some of our secrets, including our go-to for affordable vintage linens (Ebay!) or new linens (Wayfair!).
We got up Cloche and personal about our backgrounds, and about why we founded Cloche Designs just one whirlwind year ago. Then, we presented our six favorite tips on entertaining:
- First, details are what collectively make your house feel like a home. So, buy household products you love. Next time you buy dish towels, dish soap or dish gloves, pick products that look beautiful in your kitchen—we promise it will bring you joy when you wash dishes.
Next time you buy a broom or even an ironing board, if you don’t like the ones at your local grocery store, shop Amazon and order one online that makes you happy. You’ll be delighted as you start applying this to every household purchase you make, one day you’ll look up and all the details you’ve personally curated for your family will be a source of every day beauty for you. And, your guests will feel that when they are in your home.
- Second, look to the colors that are already around you. For example, even though Christmas is traditionally red and green, if you have no red in your house, then maybe bright red ribbon on your wreaths or a red and green tablescape isn’t your most lovely design choice. Our Christmas designs are more of a natural extension of what our clients already have going on in their interiors. Here are some examples of Christmases we’ve designed in non-traditional colors to get your creative wheels turning.
- Third, use your stuff! Don’t save it for special occasions! Don’t think about the hand washing. And, it doesn’t have to match! Set your table with one dinner plate pattern and a different salad plate pattern. Or, maybe everything on your table is mismatched blue and white.
We love an eclectic mix of tabletop pieces, especially when each has a piece of history attached to it! That china your grandmother gave you—it has a soul! It doesn’t want to be collecting dust in your lonely, dark cabinet! She left it to you so that you could carry forward the love she put into the food that graced those plates! Think about her as you set your table, and you will be keeping her memory alive in those moments.
- Fourth, nothing should be too precious for your friends and family, especially children.
“Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” ∼ Proverbs 22:6
At my last Christmas party one of my besties had a rock stuck in her shoe that made tiny divots all over my kitchen floor. I had a repairman inspect it who reported nothing could be done. Well, now I have a memory of that magical night in my kitchen floor. And when I see those divots, that’s what I choose think about, and I’m filled with joy! If someone spills red wine on your rug, and it won’t come out, turn the stain into a joy-filled memory. Life is too short to worry about spilled red wine and broken dishes! That’s why Replacements.com was founded.
- Fifth, if flower arranging overwhelms you, select different shapes and sizes of blooms in one beautiful color. Then go out into your garden or walk a nature trail and gather up clippings from a fig tree, a foxtail fern, a pittosporum bush—really anything green that is beautiful in your eyes. Bring your outside inside. Get creative. It’s naturally free and you’ll have such a great sense of satisfaction.
- Finally, pick one recipe and perfect it. Know it by heart. You’ll be so confident, that you won’t be stressed (because being a stressed hostess dampens the mood for your guests)! Our Cloche go-to recipe is BBQ short ribs. It’s a crowd-pleasing, no-fail recipe we make in the crock pot. If you don’t already have a go-to recipe, message us on Instagram with your email address and we’ll share ours with you.
We hope our six tips help you curate lovely details in your own kitchen and home. Before we sign off we want to say a special thank you to the 2018 luncheon chairs Christy Hinchey, Ann McAlister and Emily McMurray for inviting us to serve as your keynote speakers. We loved every minute!
Cheers to Champagne & Chandeliers!
Laura Nell & Christin