sweet table

i have a white serving piece for everything: main courses, sauces, ice cream, even poached eggs. i love the way food looks on them, i like that you can dress up a table with all white pieces, or add colour to your linens and take the table in any direction you want. but when i think about a really special dinner, entertaining guest for a real occasion, i always think of an ecclectic table with rich colour, some ornate pieces, and things that are just more special than what you would might use every day.

and that’s one of the things i love most about holiday entertaining–this is the time to break out everything special. i am acquiring my own roster of special pieces slowly. james’ family has been giving me the sweetest birthday gifts: unique teacups and saucers–just one pretty setting of each kind. they have delicate but intricate arms or bold and bright patterns but they look gorgeous displayed all together.

once in a while i borrow a piece or two from my mom, like the small stacked sweets plates in the picture above. and while i can’t, and don’t want to, rush out and buy a bunch of pretty pieces (i want to acquire them organically, when i see something i really love), i am tempted by a few things right now…

  • i don’t know what spice or salt i’d serve in this pinch pot but i would love to bring that to the table. i think it’s beautiful (click on the larger view link), plus look at the story behind the artist…so nice.
  • i’ve been in love with these colourful etched glasses for years. i don’t even know where i would order them from anymore, but they still come to mind when i think about setting a nice table. i can imagine getting just a hint of all their colours on a candlelit table.
  • i have this dream that i will actually finish decorating just one room of our house. our dining room is the barest room right now! a side board or bar cart will appear one day, but i may order a personalized lucite tray for its top even before then. how gorgeous are these? and all the options…
  • in silver or gold, these candlesticks scream holiday or winter. but when i look at them in black, i think they’d be stunning on almost any table.
  • and back to white for just a moment. i see these cups and for some reason, i can taste and smell the amazing coffee sipped from them, served with gingerbread or some other spiced treat. maybe my all-white collection could stand to grow just a little more.

i love the aesthetic element that inserts itself into everything over the holidays. to me that’s what really sets entertaining at this time of year apart from others. everything from people, to food, to the table is dressed a little nicer, with a little more care.