A Surprise Lunch for Friends!

Can you pull together a quick table scape, for a kinda last minute lunch for a couple of wonderful friends??













Sure you can. It's pretty easy and I'll show you how.










Always start with a fun COLOR palette either in your table cloth, table runner, placemats, etc. I don't know why, but I have a thing for red polka dots and pink florals. They just make me happy!! Find colors that just make YOU happy!

Try layering. A table cloth is just fine, but maybe by adding a couple of layers on top of that table cloth like: fabrics, smaller table cloths or table runners, you will really add lots of color, texture and interest.










Don't be afraid to mix and match fabrics! Polka dots and florals?? Hey, why not!!

Next think about the dishes or plates you would like to use. Maybe you have some fun dishes or china that you haven't used in awhile. Get them out.. dust them off and give them a new time to shine!!

Now I personally do not have the budget or space to have all the fun printed dishes/china that I would like. So the answer for me is easy. Paper plates!! You can find them all over from inexpensive ones at your local Wallmart (they have darling polka dot ones) to discount stores like Tuesday Morning (where I got these floral beauties) or find super cheap solid color ones at the Dollar Tree or 99 cent store. Yep, ya just cant beat them. You'll have lots of colors and prints to choose from and no dishes to clean! If you think paper plates are too flimsy then try doubling them up and they will work just fine. I tell ya paper plates of today are not dull and boring anymore.

Tip: When you have a bright or busy floral or patterned dinner plate and salad plate, break them up a little by adding a solid color napkin underneath the salad plate to make it stand out or pop.

Plus using a charger can also add a lot to your table. I always say invest in a couple of colors that you will use over and over. My personal favorites are gold, silver and black. The flower charges used in this table scape are green flowers and I got them at Michaels for $1 ea. on SALE! I have also found chargers at Big Lots and Hobby Lobby for good prices also. Keep a look out!

Its also a good idea to invest in a basic silverware or gold flatware set. You will use them over and over again. Great ones can be found at T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, Ross or Home Goods.













You can use all kinds of glassware for your table scape or even paper cups (especially now beacuse they come in such fun colors and prints) for this luncheon I used gobblets. This time I decided to put my napkins (I used a solid pink and floral napkin combo. One inside the other.) tucked inside the glass and then I added a little embellishment to make it kinda special. Tiny little bud bouquets found at Michaels and gold chevron ribbon. It would have looked lovely with just solid gold ribbon too, but I had some of this chevron on hand and so I used it. I really love the whole mix & match thing!!










Now you don't have to... but it's kinda fun to have some kind of favor or treat for your guests. In this case my favor was our dessert! Haha!  I really didn't want to have to come up with a dessert, so my go to answer for that is either fruit or candy. Today it was CANDY all the way!! I found these darling polka dot paper cups at Tuesday Morning and they came in a little set with tiny chevron print flags. Can you see it stuck in the red cinnimon heart?? It sorta blends into the polka dot table runner in this shot, so you have to look carefully.

Anyway, I filled them with yummy Milk Chocolate toffee popcorn found at Trader Joes. It is really yummy! My friend Mary Jane told me about them and so I had to go buy some. They are topped off with a hot and spicy cinnamon red heart candy.

Why? You may ask? I don't know I just had them on hand, so I used them. Always use what you have as often as you can.










Now on to the rest of the table. This particular lunch was only for 3 people. (Small intimate gatherings are awesome!) For a table that usally seats 6 it looked kinda empty. So what do you do with that dead space at the end of the table? Well, you could set up your food at that end and have your guest serve themselves buffet style. Or you can do an interesting display. Instead of a centerpiece its a "end piece"! I just went around my house picking things up from here or there, and before you know it BAM!!  A cute display was born!! 

Tip: Don't forget to add things in different heights. Have use items that sit on the table, things sitting on stands or pedestals and then bigger items to the back.













This lunch was also a "thank you" lunch, so since my friends are quilters and sewers, my little gift to them was a small fat quarter bundle to take home. For those who don't sew you may not see the value or give a "hoot" about a fat quarter, but for those of us who do, a fat quarter bundle is a SCORE!! Am I right??










Now most of the time I just stop right there with my table decor, but this time I felt like going a little further. I had purchased a couple of lovely paper umbrellas at a wholesale store called Shinodas (for any of you that live in So. Calif. you may have heard of them) You need  to have a wholesale card to purchase, but they have every thing under the sun. One day while shopping these umbrellas called to me, so I bought 3 (pink, green and blue). What could I do they were calling to me!! 

Anyway, my hubby helped me tie the green one to our light fixture and I added a couple of mixed silk flowers I had on hand a "whaa-laa" there you go. A little something extra.













Alrighty! Now I felt I was getting somewhere! See how it all comes together! FUN right??










OK I'm done I thought!! But wait what food was I going to prepare for them to eat?? Well... thats a whole other blog post.

I hope I have helped you see how fun and easy it can be to decorate a table for a lovely luncheon. Next time you want to do something special for your family and friends. Let your creativity shine!! It will help them see just how much you love and appreciate them.

And remember to keep your eyes and ears open when shopping for fun paper goods, colorful table linens and sweet yummy treats.