Set an inviting spring table

28 March 2016

Eating alfresco always feels special. ‘For parties and formal occasions, I like decorating my big table outside,’ says food blogger Yvonne. ‘Actually, I love any excuse for getting the family together and eating!’ If you feel the same way, try following her easy outdoor decorating ideas…

Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family Yvonne loves eating outdoors with friends and family

‘I like to keep things really simple when I decorate the table. It can still look impressive!’

Yvonne, food blogger, Belgium

Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too Colourful foods can be decorative too

DECORATE WITH FOOD

‘Food can be so decorative and beautiful,’ says Yvonne. ‘Adding pomegranate to salads makes them look fantastic.’ Liven up any table with a rainbow-coloured meal, and get your guests excited about the look, as well as the taste, of the food!

Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things Put a fresh twist on everyday things

FRESH TWISTS

Add unusual extras to everyday things. Drop a few fresh mint leaves into a bottle of water and then leave in the fridge for an hour or so to chill and infuse with flavour.

Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme Use patterns to add a hint of colour to a neutral scheme

KEEP IT SIMPLE

‘Our colour scheme, based around shades of white and cream, gives our home a timeless tranquillity,’ says Yvonne. ‘I add hints of colour or classic patterns – like floral or gingham – to make the style feel individual.’

Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast Little touches make for a memorable feast

PLAYFUL PRESENTATION

Pop a few surprises onto the table – lime wedges in a jar, flowers in a teacup – for a memorable touch. And, if you have any leftover limes in your jar, just put on the lid and keep in the fridge!

Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics Cover your table in complementary fabrics

MIX AND MATCH TEXTILES

Instead of covering your table with just one cloth, try layering a few complementary fabrics, in different sizes or with different patterns. And remember to add comfy cushions to hard, wooden chairs.

Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles Mix modern function with traditional styles

VINTAGE AND MODERN

Mixing traditional-looking products – like plates with ornate edges – with simple modern serveware helps the table feel laid-back and natural. ‘It’s less formal if it doesn’t look too perfect!’ says Yvonne.

Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting Make your own flower arrangements to lift a table setting

GARDEN FLOWERS

Experiment with making your own flower arrangements, freshly plucked from the garden. ‘Flowers always make for a beautiful display, they smell lovely, and they can really lift a table setting,’ says Yvonne.

STEP OUTSIDE

Yvonne loves gathering friends and family for an outdoor feast in the garden. Watch her video for more ideas on how to create the perfect alfresco setting.

A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne A portrait of Yvonne

‘Old lengths of wood rested on IKEA trestle legs are a great way to make a table for lots of people. And it packs away easily if you need to save space’

Yvonne

MADE BY

Photography: Chris Everard
Styling: Sam Grigg