Being in the throws of planning a wedding, dinner parties and eating arrangements have not been far from my mind of late. After all nothing brings people together like food does it? Throw a good dinner party – full of laughter, enjoyable chatter and tasty bites – and it will be remembered for a long time to come. Personally I can’t think of a social activity I love more these days than gathering a group of my favourite people together to eat, drink and laugh. And while I might have to leave the cooking to GB, when it comes to the styling I’m in my element – give me a table setting to own any day.
One of my first jobs (many many years ago) was waitressing in our local Italian restaurant at home, and that was where I first learned to properly fold a napkin. To fold a napkin dinner party style. It’s a skill I’ve never forgotten and even though I grew to hate waitressing, I never stopped loving that half hour of calm spent setting the tables each night, before the doors opened and the madness began.
I’m forever pinning quirky table settings and dinner party ideas to my pin boards and many an Anthropologie item can be found there (is there a more lust worthy lifestyle brand out there?) so when they challenged me to come up with a mood board of what my ultimate dinner party would look like, it really didn’t take me long to get inspired. With gorgeous homewear, pretty clothes and everything you could possibly need for entertaining, their website is the dream.
So what would my perfect dinner party look like?
Well for starters it would be somewhere warm. Alfresco dining is the best type of dining in my opinion – sitting outside on a warm summers evening as the sun sets, a glass of wine in hand and preferably a pretty view to look out on. I’d have all my closest family and friends with me and we’d be staying in a charming villa, somewhere close to the ocean but perfectly secluded. After a day spent in the sun, we’d come back, dust the sand off our feet, wash off the suncream, put on something floaty and kick back in a cute little corner of the patio.
In terms of styling I’d embrace the outdoor setting and set up a long trestle table and quirky chairs, something a little rustic like the tree trunk stools above would be perfect. I’d keep everything natural yet colourful, a real feast for the eyes with bright coloured details and Moroccan influences. Colourful cushions to sit on, striped tablecloths to lay everything on, bright bowls to eat from and rows of wild flowers lining the table.
Farmstead serving set | Cheese Knives | Patchwork Bowls | Deer Plate | Candle Holder | Cutlery | Bird Dinner Plates
Food would be wholesome and hearty. Easy, dig in, muck in, tear and share vibes. Minimal cooking, maximum enjoyment. There would be doughy tearing foccacia straight from the oven, tasty salads of butternut squash, feta and honey, boards full of meats and cheeses, chicken wings tossed on the barbeque and fresh fish grilled and ready. Big bowls of tastes would be laid out on the table ready for everyone to tuck in and fill their pretty patterned plates high. There would be fruity cocktails in large jugs to be passed around and carafs of wine to be poured and shared.
As the sun started to disappear, we’d light candles on the table and fill the space with lanterns and lights. We’d sit for hours into the night, polishing off the last of the food and chatting over large glasses of red. When it started to get chilly, we’d throw on a chunky knit and gather round the dying barbeque. I’d make trays of hot drinks in personalised mugs and bring out giant cushions and bean bags to relax on. We’d warm our hands on a cup of chai and breathe in those relaxing vibes of a holiday dinner party well done.
And of course, as the host I’d make sure to wear something fabulous. The draped skirt above has been on my wishlist for a while.
So that’s my ideal dinner party, what’s yours? If you think my idea sounds good you can head over to the Anthropologie blog on the 24th November and vote for me to win the ultimate dinner party competition. If you do, we can both win £100 of Anthropologie vouchers – too good not to right?