Katie’s House: Holiday Table Setting

Don’t you love it when you see something inspiring and it snowballs into a creative whirlwind?  That happened to me this weekend with this photo I saw over on the blog Making it Lovely:

Gold Leaf

The navy wall is probably what drew me in initially, and I love the way it offsets the other colors in this picture, but it’s that gold leaf sitting on the shelf that got my mental gears turning.  Let’s get closer:Gold Leaf zoomSince sharing images of our favorite holiday tables last week I’ve been thinking about creating my own, and this leaf was the perfect starting point.  I went and sifted through my crafting stash and pulled out some sheets of black poster board, a utility knife, a pencil and a cutting mat.  I used the inspiration picture as reference for drawing the leaves with a pencil, then used the utility knife to make the cut outs.

Red House West//Holiday Tablescape

Once I had six leaves cut out I put a sheet down in our carport, waited for the wind to abate, and then I gilded them with Krylon metallic spray paint in Gold Leaf.  I let the paint cure for 24 hours before bringing them inside.

Red House West//Holiday Tablescape

Red House West//Holiday TablescapeI wanted to set off the gold of the leaves with a dark tablecloth, so I purchased a canvas drop cloth from Home Depot and a bottle of RIT Dye in Navy Blue from the craft store.

Red House West//Holiday TablescapeI’ve never dyed something this big and heavy before, and it was kind of a nightmare.  I ended up needing three bottles of dye (and approximately a zillion gallons of rinse water) to get this color, and it’s still not as dark as I originally planned.  I was too afraid to put the dye straight into the washing machine even though the directions on the bottle assure me I can – any dye veterans out there who can put my mind at ease?

Once I’d cleaned up the tidal wave of blue, I assembled my tableware – glasses, plates, and flatware – all of which was gifted, thrifted or borrowed.  I made the candles in blue and yellow goblets from the thrift store using the teacup candle tutorial but, since I don’t like perfumes mingling with my food, I left out the fragrance.

Red House West//Holiday Tablescape

I really love the nubby, organic texture of the dropcloth – Mera thinks it looks like handmade paper.

I’m not a fan of tall centerpieces – nothing stifles a dinner conversation quite like having to peer through a a decorative hedge  – so I kept it low and pretty simple.  I love the story of Persephone and pomegranates, and at this time of year I start to really need the promise that from these dark nights we’ll emerge back into the light.  I cut a couple pomegranates in half and set them out along with two ceramic ones my mom brought back from Crete.

Red House West//Holiday Tablescape

Red House West//Holiday Tablescape

I’m not sure just what the greens I used are, but if you hear any stories about a lady purloining berried greenery from the edge of the grocery store parking lot, they ain’t true.

Red House West//Holiday Tablescape

Red House West//Holiday Tablescape

Red House West//Holiday Tablescape

Making these leaves was really fun, and I think they’d look beautiful hanging in front of the window as decoration too.  If you’re feeling real fancy, you could even make little ones to use as place cards.

And in case you missed it, Julia over at Cuckoo 4 Design did a feature last week on Mera and her glorious herd of creatures – definitely go check it out.  If you’re one of our new readers who found their way over from there, welcome!  Check back in on Wednesday for a fun post from Mera about holiday attire!

26 responses on “Katie’s House: Holiday Table Setting

  1. y2knina

    That feature on Mera is fantastic. Oh, those doggies! But best of all: “is your a**hole frozen?” Priceless. I’m somehow hanging that up in my office.

  2. Carol Crump Bryner

    I love your leaves! And the table looks just wonderful. I’ve never seen napkins done that way. And the feature on Mera was great. Thanks for letting us know about it.

    1. k80bennett

      Thank you! I really like the texture of the drop cloth – and I’m thinking of maaaaany projects that would benefit from that handmade paper look too. Happy Thanksgiving to you too!

  3. Stacey at Dohiy

    This is lovely! Rit dye is fine in the washing machine — done it many times (top loader). But that technique doesn’t tone your arms like doing it in a bucket does! So pros and cons on both sides.

    1. k80bennett

      Thanks so much! They actually didn’t take too long (except for waiting for the paint to dry) – just the length of an episode of Serial 🙂

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