{then there was the day i spray painted a pineapple gold. yes, it’s real. it was kind of awesome}

“babe, i think you’re going overboard”, said pat.  ”what makes you say that?”, i asked, surprised by his remark as i looked up at him from my spot on the floor in my office, surrounded by glitter paper and my embossing heat gun as i embossed 14 custom menus for our sunday supper with friends, and applied glitter paper to the back of cheese labels for the cheese plate. me - overboard? never always. :)

with wedding season over for the year, i still have a few projects coming up but things have definitely slowed down a bit. but the eternal planner in me is always looking forward to the next event - whether it’s dinner with friends, a road trip, or 2013 wedding prep - so a few weekends back we decided to host a get together with some of our friends from the area, to celebrate the end of one season and the beginning of another, and toast to kindred spirits. i guess i did go a little overboard, but the freedom to plan my own party got the best of me and i wanted to show our friends how much we truly appreciate them, through a pretty but comfortable tablescape, homemade food, and good conversations {oh, and plenty of champagne, of course}. if there’s one thing i’m a stickler for it is serving good champagne. life is too short to serve andre at a party, unless that party happens to be a 9am pregame party in your college years. that’s the only time when it’s kind-of ok to serve andre. but i’m getting away from the post now and talking about champagne….

so anyways - we had 6 couples over for a sunday dinner. i set up 2 8′ tables in our front “patio/yard” area and hung cafe lights to create a warm ambiance. the tablescape was relaxed and super easy to replicate - here’s how you can achieve something similar on your own :)

{instagram shot, obvi}

1 :: cinnamon stick place cards :: i tied golden bakers twine around a single cinnamon stick, with a place card i printed with each guest’s name in my new favorite font. by pre-placing name cards for guests, it takes the awkward “where should we sit?” question out of the equation, but does add a little more prep work in the beginning. i tried to spread the group out evenly so no one felt like they were in exile away from their closest friends, and the conversation and laughter was constant from all angles of the dinner table. the cinnamon sticks were used as stirrers in the homemade apple cider that came later in the evening. so yummy (and the house smelled awesome!) the place cards set the tone for the fall theme i was going for, and were place on top of tea towel napkins, folded and filled with the before-mentioned menus.

2 :: golden coasters :: i had a ton of extra coasters lying around and thought they could make for a perfect pop of gold if i sprayed them and added them to the tablescape. they were super easy to do - and of course i had a ton of leftover gold spraypaint lying around from this year’s gilded weddings - all i did was put down a sheet of cardboard, and sprayed each side of the coaster, leaving about 10 minutes in between each side to let them dry. super easy and super cute.

3 :: kraft paper runner :: this was a total “whoa i have this lying around in my craft closet?” score. i didn’t even realize i had some but as i was cleaning up from the wedding season, it emerged from the shadows, just in time. i used simple white tablecloths and added double-sided table to the bottom of the kraft paper, asked pat to hold one side while i ran it across the entire length of the table, and cut the other end. it added just the right amount of natural color to the tablescape and provided a space for the decor items in the middle.

4 :: golden pineapple :: this heavy fruit is the symbol of hospitality and was my latest canvas for the gold spray paint. i loved how they came out, though, and two of our guests took them home as the “prizes”. it was pretty funny actually - everyone was like, is that a real pineapple? i’m totally going to spray a few more and put them on our mantle or on our doorstep for the holiday season. i also added a few artichokes and lots of tealights to keep things natural and not too overdressed.

{i totally snagged this from edyta’s instagram}

{see, we didn’t even take any professional pics! i love that the only documentation was via instagram}

as our guests headed out for the evening, i handed them each a little treat - a little berry basket with a few muffins to enjoy for breakfast the next day (or on the way home as a few guests did haha). it was a fun surprise for everyone and i was thinking it could be a really cute wedding or shower favor idea, especially for fall/winter weddings to add to the cozy atmosphere.

all in all it was just a nice night, know what i mean? i was talking to one of the guests the next day and we agreed it was nice to not have it be a “shoot” for once. we could just enjoy the company, eat the food and be ourselves without having to “retake” a shot of someone putting down a place card or eating a bite or laughing. not too fussy, maybe a little overboard (hehe), but overall it was just a real, authentic, good time with great company. with all the craziness in the world, nights like these are what bring me back to reality and remind me of what life is truly all about. thanks to everyone who joined us!

  • kirstie@bonhomie says on November 13, 2012 Reply

    Everything is beautiful - I especially love the pineapple!!

  • Lena says on November 13, 2012 Reply

    Fabulously over the top–I’d expect nothing less!

  • Ana Kamin says on November 15, 2012 Reply

    Love you idea of golden Pineapple! And no, it’s not overboard. People often use to grab their food and forget to enjoy it. So from time to time it’s nice to eat at a pretty styled table. There is no rule that tables should only be pretty for Holidays. :)

  • Phebe says on November 26, 2012 Reply

    The world just got smaller, is that Natalie Bowman?!!! I had the pleasure of meeting her in New England for her friends wedding—uber small world! Here’s hoping I’ll meet you one day too. Oh and GREAT gilded pineapple haha I love how we both spray everything gold!

  • Calder Clark says on January 16, 2013 Reply

    adorably documented + beautifully designed. kudos!

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