• Bring the Outdoors In With This Alfresco Tablescape

    FROM THE Summer 2016 ISSUE
  • Bring the Outdoors In With This Alfresco Tablescape

    FROM THE Summer 2016 ISSUE
  • Bring the Outdoors In With This Alfresco Tablescape

    FROM THE Summer 2016 ISSUE


The teal color of the hand-blown Murano Glass in the chandelier.

The Details

Designer Marlene Freeman designed this table for an earlysummer meeting planner luncheon which took place in the Rittenhouse Home Showroom in Newtown. To give her guests the light and airy feeling of being outside, she kept the basic theme of the table neutral complemented by a pop of color—teal. The other colors on the table come from nature: the weathered wood coaster accented with nickel handles that appear to be branches; the porcelain peony wine stoppers and the glycerin-preserved hydrangea centerpiece.

Mixing vintage pieces from her personal collection with new, contemporary pieces, you’ll see that some settings feature soup bowls adorned with peacock illustrations upon a white beaded plate, while others are set in the reverse. Freeman chose the chargers because they reminded her of peacock feathers, and the vintage Christofle silver is decorated with a Marly flower pattern on both sides of the flatware.

Crystal candlesticks, the crystal decanter and even the cut on the teal water pitcher reflect light, carrying on the light and airy feeling of being outdoors.

Despite the fact that this table was set for a luncheon, you’ll find lit candles. Freeman warns that you shouldn’t hesitate to use lit candles in the daytime, as they shouldn’t only be reserved for a darkened room or nighttime use.

Freeman combines myriad elements ranging from color to style, yet skillfully keeps the overall look cohesive so that it doesn’t overshadow the star of the show—the food.

Design Tip

“Dress your table the way you accessorize your outfits to give your guests the feeling of being pampered versus sitting down to eat pizza out of the box,” Freeman says.

Choosing a career in the event industry is not for the faint of heart. Let’s face it: Event planning is stressful. The last-minute changes, demands from clients and surmounting urgency of a quickly approaching event can make it difficult to maintain a healthy work-life balance.

As a new mother, I’m right there with you and need just as much help developing a healthy work-life balance. In my experiences working in events, I’ve found the following to be helpful ways to care for my mental health, despite being in a stressful profession:


Kehoe Designs Event Producer Mathew Lahey set out to create an in-house showcase for “Knees Deep,” the company’s latest design series, which challenged the Kehoe team to take a deep dive into forecasted style trends, he found a unique opportunity to take risks and push boundaries.


Shelly Tolo shares the genius behind her winter tablescape with NWM+E

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