WHAT THE F*** IS CHINOISERIE!?!
Lately, Jen has been droning on and on about doing a Chinoiserie table. Chinoiserie this, chinoiserie that. I think she just likes using big words. But I finally had to ask – what the hell is chinoiserie and how do you spell it!?!
I swear I had never heard that word before, but as soon as she started describing the Chinese designs featuring branches, birds, flowers and nature I knew EXACTLY what she was talking about.
NO BLUE AND WHITE PLATES HERE
The most well-known Chinoiserie pieces feature a blue and white pattern when seen on plates and pottery and extravagant red, black and gold when painted on furniture. However, Chinoiserie designs are varied, colorful and timeless. They’ve been a design go-to since the 17th century.
Until now, I never knew that this pattern had a formal name! So, if this is new to you, no judgement here.
I was leaning towards the blue and white motif, perhaps with some mandarins since blue and orange are amazing together. However, when I began my search for the perfect Chinoiserie pieces, I came across the Chelsea salad and dinner plates at CB2 and fell in love.
A PINK AND ORANGE COLOR SCHEME FOR A LITTLE SOUTHERN CHARM
I decided these delicate Chinoiserie plates could easily take on a bit of southern charm if I played up the blush pinks and oranges. Then I anchored this soft, sexy palate with a bright nutmeg napkin from World Market and scattered some mandarins around for some Asian pops of color.
MAGNOLIAS AND MANDARINS AND SO MANY LAYERS
With all that southern design magic, I just couldn’t resist shooting this table under a Magnolia tree. True, featuring a table under a Magnolia is a bit of styled-shoot cheating, but you can’t argue that it doesn’t looks fabulous – so definitely take this dinner party outside if you have the opportunity
Even though I love fancy things, I wanted to make sure this table still felt relaxed. So, I used a soft pink linen tablecloth from Hearth and Hand. Then I put my charming little salad plates on top of Visto matte blush dinner plates and seagrass chargers from Crate and Barrel. Fancy and fun – a little bit like me, when I put in the effort, ha!
A FLORAL ARRANGEMENT SWEET ENOUGH TO EAT
I am always guilty of buying way too many flowers for my arrangements. I believe in a more is more approach, so you will often notice that I design a lot of tight, textured florals. This one in particular features dahlias, peonies and even a few mandarins.
I could not be more in love!
However, I understand you may not want to spend this week’s paycheck on flowers. To get this look, simply buy a single bouquet of big showstopper blooms, then fill the rest in with greens – even if they are from your own back yard. Pop a few skewers into mandarins to add to the mix, and voilà – pure dinner table magic.
WHAT’S FOR DINNER?
So, if you want to really to take this table theme to the next level, we recommend a menu that matches. Start your evening with a Mandarin Muddler. Wow your guests with a beautiful orange glazed pork and grilled romaine salad. Then follow with Banana Cream Whoopie Pies for a sweet southern finish. Are you hungry yet? I know I am.