The Allure of Alfresco
June 16, 2009
There’s something about June that makes me long to dine alfresco with friends and family. I love to bring tablecloths and tableware outside, and sit awhile as the sun goes down. We dine later, we drink chilled white wine, and we enjoy the fine weather.
Here is a glance at some clippings from my inspiration file. These all draw me to the table in some way or another.
All you need is a simple tablecloth and napkins on a plank picnic table, united with some colored glass, and a bowl of fruit to linger long under this tree. Chairs and bench by Smith and Hawken. Country Living, July 2008
I am loving this fuchsia tablecloth mixed with green chairs in this pretty table setting. Notice the silver chargers and hydrangea napkins. How gorgeous are those French doors ? Source Perrier catalog.
I love the large blue floral on these pillows and ottomans in this home in the Hamptons. A great textural element is added with the use of wood beaded trim on the pillows. This cool mix of sky blue with dark brown sea grass is still fresh, even six years after publication. Traditional Home, July 2003.
This dining scene is just off the kitchen featured in House Beautiful’s Kitchen of the Month from August 2008. Look closely at the two tiered chandelier that hangs from the iron trellis, mixing pots of annuals with candles. The tabletop is zinc. Photographer: Reed Davis
This outdoor pergola is centered on a raised deck, and features a sisal rug and striped curtains which help define the space. I love the mix of crisp blue and green, and the whimsy added by the glass bottle chandelier. BH&G DIY magazine, Summer 2008.
This pink infused porch is pretty as a princess. The pillar candles are centered on a mirror and surrounded by bloom filled apothecary jars. How fabulous are those lanterns and parasols overhead? Can’t you taste that pink lemonade? Country Home, June 2008
Simplicity reigns here. The painted yellow benches and red farm table add just the right touch of color to this friendly front porch. The bowl of lemons is perfect, isn’t it? Home magazine, June 2006
Oh how I love the mix of peacock blue and coral. Sunset, June 2008
A perfect tented gazebo in crisp white is paired with lime green painted iron furniture and striped Adirondacks. A red beaded chandelier and red piping on the cushions completes the look. This space still looks fresh six years after publication. Traditional Home, July 2003
This mix of a white farm table and metal bistro chairs is a classic and stylish pairing. Linen table runners, terra cotta planters with topiaries, and pea gravel create a European feel. BH&G Flea Market Style 2009
A medley of bistro furniture and wicker surrounded by lush plantings feels comfortable and casual. Better Homes and Gardens, August 2007
I’ve been crazy about this covered porch ever since I tore it out of a magazine six years ago. Oh, how I love the stone floors, and the mix of an iron daybed, a white metal bench and distressed wood chairs. Together with the lantern fixtures and varied plantings, it all makes me want to move right on in. Traditional Home, March 2003
If I close my eyes, I can feel the ocean breeze as I sit on one of these simple teak stools. Crescent Lane catalog
Oh, how charming is this trestle table, set with a bench and wooden chairs that look like they just came from the house. The collection of lanterns will guarantee an enchanting evening glow. Country Living, March 2009
When your backdrop is as stunning as this brick, you don’t need much more than these simple white slipcovers and glass hurricanes. Traditional Home, April 2004
I am drawn to the use of blue and white here, in the tablecloth and the medley of vases. Somehow, the large birdcage just works in this setting. Source unknown
I hope you’ve enjoyed these spaces as much as I do.
Do you set an outdoor table in the summertime? If so, what special elements do you add to enhance your alfresco experience?