How I use inspiration to create my tablescapes
When I write a party post, most of the time my goal is to show you pretty pictures of something I created. Sometimes the purpose is to teach you how I achieved a certain look so you can be inspired to try it yourself. This post falls in neither category. Today I want to show you how I find inspiration and then translate it into my own conception.
A few weeks ago my husband came home from work and announced, “by the way, we are hosting a wine and cheese tasting party in a few weeks”. Um, excuse me? “Don’t worry about it, there will just be around 30-50 of our closest friends eating cheese and drinking wine so we can raise money for a temple in Israel”. Wait. What? Thirty to fifty people in our house? In a few weeks! Say what! Of course I had no problem with it once I got my mind wrapped around the idea. I mean our house is set up to host events, and I do love wine and cheese. Plus we hadn’t had a big party in at least a year. So I got excited about it and immediately began to search for my inspiration.
For every party I throw there is something that inspires me. Sometimes it is a certain sensibility I want to convey, like when I threw my dad his 70th birthday party we wanted a “Napa” feel to it. Other times I am obsessed with a color or a particular flower. For Ella’s first birthday I used the matryoshka doll plates as the source for the colors in the flowers and other party decor. But I felt stuck with this party. So I decided to break out my old stand-by inspirational mecca- Pinterest. I am a huge fan of Pinterest and I often turn to my boards to get ideas for decor, fashion, and cooking. But this time nothing I had pinned struck my fancy. So I decided to type “wine and cheese party” into the search engine. And that is when I saw this photo:
It was perfect. It had everything I needed- a fantastic layout, a rustic nod, and lots and lots of wine and cheese. After deciding this was my inspiration I took a longer look at the snap. I realized I really responded to the bowls of fruit, the use of grapes as both a garnish and a pop of color, and I liked how everything was layered on different platters and bowls. So off I went to Home Goods to see what I could find that would go with this provincial theme. I ended up purchasing a few wooden crates to prop up some of the cheese plates, and I found a cool old looking wine holder to add height to the display. Here is how the table turned out after I arranged all of my goodies:
Looks good, right? You might not be able to tell that I used the first picture as inspiration, but when you get a closer look you can see the similarities.
Notice the use of a wooden base to give a continuity to the whole display? They did something similar in the inspiration photo. You can also see the bowls of fruit and the use of grapes in both images.
The inspiration photo didn’t have a wine holder, but I think this one really gave the table some eminence and whimsy. I also found some plastic wine carafes that I used to hold tea roses. Though there were no flowers in the original scene, I adore roses and almost always include flowers on my table. Just because you use something as inspiration doesn’t mean you have to copy it exactly. As a matter of fact the whole point is to find images that enhance your imagination so you can create something entirely of your own making.
I decided to use more baskets then platters or wooden bowls, mainly because I had a few in my possession and because that is what I found when I went shopping. I don’t try to get bogged down in getting the exact same items from my inspiration pictures, I use them as a stepping stone to elevate my own ideas. I thought the baskets looked good with my dining room, and they went perfectly with the rustic effect I was attempting to achieve.
My point for this post is for you to understand that creativity doesn’t always spring from my brain like Athena from the head of Zeus. Most of the time I use something that sparks my fancy and then take that idea and create something entirely my own with it. Einstein said, “the secret to creativity is hiding your sources”, but I am not sure I agree. I don’t see why anyone should hide what inspires them because you never know what will inspire someone else. And I want this blog to be an “inspiration for living”. Personally, I think being inspired is akin to breathing! I don’t know what I would do if I wasn’t inspired by things! So tell me, what kinds of things inspire you and how do you use those them to influence your creative endeavors?