A Simple Table for Two

30.10.15

Do you guys remember the workshops I gave at last year’s Engaged event? Last weekend was the third edition, taking place at the same location where I also had my own wedding, the industrial space Lijm en Cultuur in Delft, and for this edition I hosted four workshops spread over two days. My attendees were a mix of brides and wedding planners, all looking to seek inspiration and advice on styling and conceptualising a wedding from start to finish. Naturally, I shared images of my wedding but also got everyone thinking about identifying their own styles and building their ideas from a concept. I offered some styling tips and at the end they got to play with props and style a table setting for two using the tips they had learned.

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They were then asked to take a picture of their table and share it either with me or, if they had an Instagram account, post it there with the hashtag #engagedstyle so that everyone could learn from each other. While they played, I wandered around offering advice and critiquing each setting. There was also a little competition – the person who designs the best table setting wins a one-on-one styling session in my studio, where they (either a bride-to-be or wedding planner) can share their wedding plans or current project with me and receive advice and ideas in a two hour session. The winner will be announced on Instagram later today but after everyone worked so hard to create such lovely tables and share them for everyone to see, I thought it only fair that I share my table too.

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I wanted to show my attendees, many of whom are young brides (or couples) that you can do a lot with a little. I chose a muted colour palette with natural tones, textures and simple details.

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I love using linen because it’s textured while being simple too. I found this beautiful tablecloth recently in a gorgeous grey/blue and it set the tone perfectly. This as a runner on a rustic wooden table would also be beautiful. A simple smattering of candles of varying heights and sizes are dotted down the centre of the table, with little taillight candles resting in brass lids I had left over from little jam jars I had lying around in my props cabinet.

The VerTerra Dinnerware side plates are disposable and made from fallen palm leaves. We had these at our wedding for cheeses and dessert and they saved a LOT of washing up at the end, and plus they’re good for the environment and a lovely, simple design.

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Sometimes, the smallest, simplest detail can have the biggest impact. I simply draped a length of cotton trying around the cutlery and it just adds a little texture and has sculptural effect.

The dinner plates are simple white Ikea plates (they are their cheapest ones at about 50 cents per plate. I used white round plates as most wedding venues have similar and I wanted to show my workshop attendees that beautiful side plates can elevate your tables beautifully while still going for the regular white ones most venues offer.

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I pickled up these rosewood and brass knives in France at a secondhand shop we stumbled across and paired them with forks I inherited form my grandmother. These old cutlery sets can be found all over the place, but if in doubt, Hélène Millot Furnishings has an amazing collection for hire, as well as these thin brass candlesticks.

The napkins I tucked between the dinner plate and side plate and draped loosely over the side on the table. I like this as an alternative to the folded napkin you usually see.

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On each plate, I placed a piece of textured paper, a pencil and a little dried bouquet tied up with string. The idea behind this is that guests can write a little note to the bride and groom which can be collected and turned into a little book after the wedding. To make these little dried bouquets for each place setting, I went out into the forest and gathered some dried foliage and grasses, cut then to size and s=tied them at the ends with string. So simple, really lovely and practically free.

So that was my table! I am now going to go and pick a winner from the many tables made by my attendees, the results of which I will share on Instagram. Big thank you to the team at Engaged for having me again this year. It was another fabulous edition, which I am sure left brides and grooms of The Netherlands and Belgium with plenty of ideas to create beautiful their weddings.

Have a great weekend, guys!

Holly

Styling and Photography: Holly Marder for Avenue Lifestyle 

2 Responses to “A Simple Table for Two”

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