Entertaining & Decorating
The dining room in Josh Hildreth’s Wesley Heights home has the unexpected combination of antique English dining chairs with seats upholstered in chartreuse leather. (Stacy Goldberg)
In recent years, the concept of “dining” in the home has consisted of grabbing a plate of food to eat at a kitchen island or on a couch or chair in front of a screen. Even when a home has a separate formal dining room, the table is commonly used for homework or, at this time of year, as a tax-prep command center.
However, according to the Washington Post, designers are indicating that dining trends are reverting back to the traditional dinner table. Designers say that their clients are getting tired of eating meals in the “great room,” an informal, open space that often accommodates casual eating and lounging. Some of their clients are annoyed with noisy, busy restaurants and want to do more entertaining at home.
A McLean dining room designed by Thomas Pheasant has classical details. The walls are upholstered in velvet damask. (Durston Saylor)
Bethesda designer Erica Burns says, “Everything is so casual these days, it’s nice to be a bit more formal in a room where you entertain or gather your family. The room sets the tone, since there’s no TV in there and hopefully no cell phones. It’s a space focused on conversation and eating.”
A separate dining room is also on many homeowners’ and homebuyers’ wish lists in 2017. In the January 2017 Home Buyer Reference survey, 73 percent of homebuyers said the dining room was “essential or desirable,” according to a spokesperson for the National Association of Home Builders.
A Potomac, Md., dining room designed by Erica Burns shows how she added interest to the Restoration Hardware side chairs by using brown velvet on the seats and front and a linen print on the back. (Anna Routh Photography)
If you’re ready to reclaim your dining room, be sure to follow these tips from designers:
New York designer Katie Ridder says she advises clients who are renovating or redecorating a dining room to add down-lights around the chandelier. Ridder says, “It’s nice to have light pointing down on the table as well as chandelier light and candlelight.” Her favorite source for dining room table candles? Creative Candles, where she stocks up on 24-inch tapers in Paris Gray and Chocolate.
Mix it up
There’s no need to be so matchy-matchy anymore. Burns suggests opting for a different style for the host chairs at both ends of the table to make a statement. Also, instead of the usual chandelier hanging over the center of the table, try two pendants.
Go for drama
A dining room is a great place to do something more dramatic. Washington designer says, “If a client said, ‘I want glazed turquoise walls,’ I’d say we probably should not do that in a room you’re in all the time, if you want to be wild or crazy, a dining room or powder room is a good place to do it.”
Lots of memorable moments take place in the dining room, yet it’s a space that’s often at the bottom of the list for refreshing or redecorating. It’s time to take back the dining room and make it fun and useful again.
The first day of spring is right around the corner and we’re ready to see the gorgeous flowers that the warmer weather is sure to bring. Inspired by the colors of the desert sunset, this tablescape, as seen on Style Me Pretty, features some of our favorite spring blooms like poppies, ranunculus, king protea, camelia and kalanchoe leaves. Our pillar candles tucked between the vivid floral arrangements complement the look perfectly.
First, let’s set the scene. This thriving oasis amid the arid desert almost makes you feel like you’re looking at a mirage, but rest assured, this little slice of heaven actually exists! The Oasis of Mara, a 9,000-year-old oasis surrounded by the Mojave Desert and Joshua Tree National Park made the perfect, scenic backdrop for the shoot. Photographer Oliver Fly says, “Inspired by the contrasting textures of these two environments, I sought to the capture the magic of the Oasis and the lush green palms of the oasis juxtaposed to the dry, spiky outlines of the Joshua Tree.”
For the table, the design team used a desert sunset color palette to contrast against the greens palms of the Oasis. Florist Hollyflora used glazed white ceramic containers to hold spring blooms like poppies, ranunculus, king protea, camelia and kalanchoe leaves. A clean, industrial feel came from the rose gold colored tolix chairs from Found Rentals and complemented perfectly the rose gold flatware from Casa de Perrin. Dinosaur Egg Geodes were mixed in the floral centerpieces of the table and added a hint of desert texture. Our pillar candles were the finishing touch to this dreamy tablescape.
Shop the look from this shoot here.
Photography: Oliver Fly Photography | Styling: Kelly Oshiro | Floral Design: Holly Flora | Wedding Dress: BHLDN | Wedding Dress: BHLDN | Jewelry: Trumpet & Horn | Hair + Makeup: Studio MM&B | Bridal Boutique + Veil: BHLDN | Calligraphy + Stationery: Nice Plume | Candles: Creative Candles | Furniture Rentals: Found Vintage Rentals | Hair Accessories: Orchidee De Soie | Location: 29 Palms Inn | Location: Joshua Tree National Park | Luxury Tabletop Rentals: Casa de Perrin | Model: scout model and talent | Model: Melissa Ziegler | Ribbon + Linen Rentals: Orchidee De Soie | Ring Box: The Mrs Box
If you’ve ever considered an at-home wedding, we invite you to let this inspiration shoot, featured on Style Me Pretty and designed by Luxe and Luna Couture Events, be your guide. Everything about this event was unbelievably stunning. The best part? It featured our taper and pillar candles for a simple tablescape we’re still swooning over.
The team of vendors met at Porter & Ives’ cottage in rural Virginia for an editorial shoot inspired by the romantic elegance of the private residence. The bridal model wore a delicate beaded gown by Carol Hannah, antique Trumpet and Horn rings and an Old World-inspired crown by Anna Marguerite. For her bouquet, she carried an organic arrangement of flowers, filled with a medley of hues ranging from yellow to pink to dark plum. Above, she’s seen carrying one of our taper candles.
The styling team drew inspiration from nature to create a tablescape that felt like a countryside retreat. The table features organic flower arrangements and natural linen draped over the table, fresh fruit as well as both pillar and taper candles in natural beeswax.
Shop the look from this shoot:
Photography: Shannon Moffit Photography | Floral Design: Porter & Ives | Wedding Dress: Carol Hannah | Jewelry: Trumpet & Horn | Makeup: Real Doll Makeup | Accessories & Veil: Anna Marguerite | Candles: Creative Candles | Creative Direction/Styling: Luxe and Luna Couture Events | Hair Styling: Jewel Hair Design | Paper Goods: Letterlyn Studio | Private Home: Charlottesville
What’s your favorite Mardi Gras tradition? For us, the king cake is by far one of the sweetest. According to Eater, the tradition of the king cake originated in France and Spain and came to be associated with Epiphany during the Middle Ages. When it was brought to the New World (along with Catholicism and Christianity), the tradition evolved even further.
Now, especially in New Orleans, king cake and Mardi Gras go hand-in-hand. King cakes can be found in bakeries as early as January and are available through Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. Every king cake contains a trinket, often a plastic baby figurine, and the lucky person who finds the trinket in their piece of cake gets to be the “king” for a day. In addition, whoever gets the slice of cake containing the baby must also be the host of next year’s celebration.
The cake itself is a sweet, circular cake-like bread dough that’s twisted into a ring and decorated with icing and sprinkles in the Mardi Gras colors of purple, green and gold. While some variants can be made from cake batter or bread or pastry dough, most versions are shaped into a circle or oval to mimic the appearance of a king’s crown.
For our Mardi Gras soiree, we surrounded a traditional king cake with Cafe Au Lait taper candles for a perfect French pairing. How do you incorporate candles in your Mardi Gras festivities? Show us your tablescapes and tag us on Instagram!
Shop our tapers in Cafe Au Lait here.
In celebration of Creative Romance Month, we’re highlighting one of the most creative and romantic styled shoots of 2016, featuring our candles. Lisa Poggi and Gianluca Gasperoni headed to the dreamy resort of Casadamare on the stunning island of Zanzibar for this elegant winter wedding. The Italian-based team decided to venture out of their home country to the African island to create an intimate, ethereal ceremony.
The lovely couple exchanged vows surrounded by our thin white taper candles on the beach. The warm glow of candlelight on the beach provided a truly picturesque backdrop for the ceremony.
For the reception, the design team added some island vibes as a creative way to change up the aesthetic. After spending several days on the island, the team found themselves inspired by the color palette of their surroundings. Specifically, they found that the true colors of Zanzibar are the desaturated ones: greens that almost fade into grey, blues that are mixable with the yellows of the sand and browns that permeate the landscape.
Our pillar candles in varying heights and votive candles maintained the romantic look and feel for the reception. The table was adorned with lush greens, colorful florals, linens and dinnerware that spoke to the native culture of the island.
Click here to view the entire shoot.
Photographer: Lisa Poggi & Gianluca Gasperoni / Location: Casadamare Zanzibar / Design & Florals: Tommaso of La Rosa Canina Firenze / Planning & Production: Carolina of Tuscan Dream / Stationery: LetterInk / Plaids & Throws: LanificioB / Candles: Creative Candles / Wedding Dresses: Alessia Baldi / Jewelry: Sandra Castelletti / Models: Aleksandra Gelli & Federico Saggio
Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, so why not treat your sweetheart to a romantic candlelit dinner? Local chef Mary Berg of Delish! Catering and stylist Chadwick Brooks of Walter & Ferris teamed up on KC Live to teach viewers how to bake a flourless chocolate torte and style a romantic Valentine’s dinner table.
For your tablescape, Brooks recommends combining modern and vintage looks. Bright white dishes paired with red linen napkins will provide excellent contrast and a romantic feel. Brooks also included some fun, whimsical Valentines from Hallmark to the place settings just to add a little something extra.
A pair of taper candles is a classic way to dress up your dinner table. Brooks recommends Creative Candles for our wide range of colors, specifically our shades of red. The candles that were featured in the segment are a pair of 12” tapers in Red.
Red roses are another traditional choice for your Valentine’s tablescape. When you purchase your roses, keep in mind that the price varies by stem length and color. The longer the stem and the deeper the red of the rose, the more expensive they’ll likely be.
Shop our Valentine’s Collection here.
To view the entire KC Live segment, click here.