As the warmth of summer envelops our days, we are drawn to the simple joys of outdoor gatherings and casual al fresco dining. More than just a place to eat, a summer table is a haven for creating memories - a place for indulging in the pleasures of good food and even better company. From weeknight meals with family to leisurely lunches and weekend dinner parties, how you style your table can help to set the tone for these memorable occasions. With a few thoughtful, creative touches and a sprinkling of your own personal style, you can transform your table into an inviting place to entertain your guests. Read on for inspiration on how to create a visual feast and bring your table to life this summer.
Setting the Tone
Setting a summer table is not simply about arranging cutlery and plates; it's about crafting an atmosphere that resonates with the occasion and your guests. To create a thoughtfully arranged table, start by considering the feeling you want to evoke, the occasion and time of day or night. Summer typically lends itself to a more relaxed style and is an opportunity to be playful and infuse splashes of colour or vibrant greenery. Once you’ve decided on the tone, the rest of your styling will flow a little easier.
Laying the Foundation
The base of the table is essential, and choosing handwoven natural fibre placemats, coasters, table runners, and trays sets the stage for a tactile and visually pleasing setting. Not only beautiful, these pieces offer a practical foundation for your table styling, providing an opportunity to create designated place settings and a way to protect your tabletop from scratches and spills. The neutral tones and intricate textures of handwoven tableware offer a timeless style that can be used throughout all seasons, year after year. As an added bonus, each piece in our collection will bring a touch of artisanal charm to your table, while telling a story of ethical crafts(wo)manship.
Styling with Nature
An easy and affordable way to elevate your summer table styling is to weave the beauty of nature into your design. Begin by venturing into your garden or local green space to pick fresh foliage, vibrant flowers, or opt for the simplicity of twigs and branches for a rustic touch. For a casual occasion, arrange vibrant sprigs of foliage or flowers in several small vases to add a flourish of greenery and infuse vitality to your table. To build on the idea of using natural fibres, consider placing vases in a selection of small baskets such as the Small Jute Basket - Tall Square, Small Jute Basket - Short Square, or the Dhali Basket in Small or Medium. For a more formal occasion, large bold foliage in taller vases will bring visual flair to your table setting and mirror the lushness of the season. You might also like to embrace the art of foraging by incorporating found driftwood, seed pods and other treasures from nature, to create an organic and eclectic centerpiece on a woven tray. These natural elements not only imbue a sense of the outdoors into your summer table but also evoke a relaxed and earthy feeling.
Playful Pops of Colour
Aside from the use of flowers, colour can be effortlessly infused into your summer table setting with a linen tablecloth and napkins or dinnerware. The addition of coloured cutlery such as brass or antique bronze, is also an opportunity to introduce a unique touch and personality. For a playful twist and a burst of freshness, add colourful fruit such as lemons, limes or pears to your table palette. They will look equally eye-catching whether scattered randomly, strategically placed at each setting, arranged on a woven tray or in a tall glass vase. To create a festive touch, you might like to try this with pomegranates or lychees.
Creating Magical Moments
Transforming a simple table into an enchanting space can be achieved by adding one or two special elements, and this is a great opportunity to think beyond the tabletop to create a whimsical dining experience that engages the senses. If you are styling for a daytime gathering, consider weaving a jute garland or a string of clay beads along the centre of the table, or hanging some from overhead amongst a foliage arrangement. Candles in votives and lanterns will cast a warm glow for evening meals, creating an intimate ambiance at the table and - if you are dining outdoors - feel magical when placed in the surrounding area. Something as simple as fairy lights bundled in a glass vase or strung delicately above the table can create a sense of wonder while providing ambient light for your guests. Intertwining garlands, adorned with fairy lights or natural foliage, will weave a touch of whimsy into the table's design, adding to the overall atmosphere.
Adding the Essentials
Embracing the essence of summer doesn't always require a complete tableware overhaul; sometimes, the most cherished gatherings unfold around the familiarity of existing dinnerware, glassware, cutlery and linens. While the allure of beautiful handmade plates and bowls undoubtedly elevates the dining experience, the art of styling extends beyond the need for new pieces. In a world increasingly conscious of sustainability, making do with what we have becomes an inspiring choice. By infusing creativity into the arrangement, mixing and matching textures, colors, and patterns, you can transform your table into a canvas of summer delights. It's a reminder that the true magic lies not only in the pieces we use but in the thoughtful curation that we bring to our gatherings by creating a warm and inviting atmosphere.