Three gorgeous table setting ideas

Is your table boring? Do you keep interesting dinnerware hostage in your cupboards?

I caught myself in the boring-table-setting tunnel, and I said to myself: “Wait a minute, where’s the fun, the style, the spark, the joy? I should know how to do this…”

We all have beautiful table runners, glasses and plates somewhere in the cupboards. I say it’s time to get them out so we can look at them while we eat every day, and feel like it’s a special occasion, even though it’s just another day at home.

I’ve got three ideas that I hope will inspire you to put together a gorgeous table setting!

First and most simple to recreate, it’s the organic look: white, brown, green. Simple shapes, natural textures and rustic touches.

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On a wooden table I’ve put a lacy plastic-coated placemat,  white ceramic plate and small plate with mushroom (West Elm, 2010 collection), Spanish terracotta tapas dish, French wine glass, green candle and bamboo bowl (Ikea), mismatching cutlery and taupe cotton napkin.

Here’s another one: a classic white and blue, revisited with lots of different patterns and styles, so it’s more fun and less formal.

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On a baroque blue and white tablecloth, I’ve used white china and traditional ceramic of Delft. On melamine silver tray there are Polish handmade mug and vase, and a blue sugar bowl by Danish brand Everyday Greengate. Next to the yummy apple pie my mum made for my husband, contemporary French cake server by Sabre.

Third and last: a gorgeous magnolia motive inspired me a clean and feminine table setting in white, pink and brown.

Magnolia table setting

This table runner was a lucky find in a Swiss supermarket. I love the floral pattern. I’ve added white china, simple classic cutlery, white napkin, a pink Moroccan tea glass, and a floral ceramic bowl by Italian design brand Seletti.

I hope you’ll feel inspired to use some of your forgotten table beauties now!

Buon appetito!

Nursery styling for a baby girl

Ok, this time I have a valid excuse for being absent from the blog: I just had a baby.

My baby girl and her 2 years old brother are keeping me occupied on a level I never experienced before. Time flies, and not because I’m having fun, but because I have too much to do and I just don’t like leaving things behind or for others to do. It might be slightly pathologic, but… TA-DAAA, that’s me!

Although there’s nothing more creative than creating a baby inside you and giving birth to him or her, I have been pouring more creative energy into shopping and styling for my baby girl.

When I had my first, Oliver, I was renovating, on a budget, and – let’s just say this – it’s not as much fun with boys! Clothes and accessories tend to be boring, repetitive, stripy mostly. But if you haven’t already, please check out my post about my little boy’s room here: ideas for neat, efficient and colourful ways of decorating for kids.

This time around I have a master bedroom big enough for a nursery corner next to the king-size bed, and it’s nice to create a lovely little place where she sleeps, gets changed and dressed.

Pictures have not been edited, because if I wait until I find the time to do that, I might end up posting when she’s one – please forgive me!

 

How colour coding will please your eye.

I am a colour coding activist. My husband rolls his eyes at me when I lay our grocery shopping at checkout organising it by colour. And even if I may come across as OCD, I do it whenever I can.

And wherever I can: the lingerie drawer, the glass cabinet in the dining room, my child’s toys in his room… And I would like to convince my readers to try and do it somewhere in the house and see the difference.

Even something as boring as a raw of detergents can be eye-pleasing:

colour coding detergents

Detergents out of reach but not out of sight? Colour code them!

More delicate and pretty glasses deserve to be organised in a gorgeous display cabinet, just like this:

colour coding glass cabinet

Rainbow effect in the glass cabinet.

And last but not least, a classic: colour coding for your library. My library is white so it offers the perfect blank canvas for the colourful books to pop:

colour coding bookshelf

Colours separated by white, a classic library styling.

Give it a try! Any attempt you would like to share?

 

Colour coding ideas

 

Contemporary bathroom styling

In this bathroom with dark wall and floor tiles (concrete look, chocolate colour), the white vanity is the stand-out piece and where the attention focuses.

I styled it in three ways.

ONE, objects are grouped at both sides of the basin. On one side perfumes and lotions, displayed on a mirrored tray, on the other side a bunch of white freesias and a potted orchid (not in bloom at the moment, just green leaves).

Bathroom styling.

Bathroom styling.

TWO, I added some colour and a provincial touch grouping lavender flowers in a manson jar, and leaving just the orchid leaves on the other side.

Bathroom styling

Bathroom styling, with lavender.

THREE, This is a more minimal styling, not so practical for everyday use of the bathroom. It’s good for a guest bathroom or for putting a property on the market. I used white Singapore orchids in a Murano glass vase, a small jar with volcanic pebbles, and a beautiful big candle in the shape of a horse chess piece (by Seletti). I hung a long Indian tassel to the door handle to add personality.

Bathroom styling.

Bathroom styling.

Academy Awards 2014 – My Oscars fashion

The Oscars night is more of an Oscars morning, if you live in Australia.

Hollywood’s Sunday night is Sydney’s Monday morning, so the best you can do is to keep an eye on a website covering the event: the arrivals on the red carpet, the show, and the winners. Unless, of course, you plan on catching the replay on TV, in which case you need to stay away from it all.

And then there’s the fashion. It’s the moment for designers and stylists to shine. Who cares about the actors, when we can comment on every single choice of outfit like a panel of experts!

Well, it’s easy to judge somebody else’s job, but how would I go?

Find here the two looks I’ve created for the night. And don’t even worry about the price tags:  when it’s for the Oscars, it’s all borrowed!

 

Best Female Actress in a Leading Role:

Oscars outfit in black and gold by StylingNotes

Aurelie Bidermann gold cuff bracelet; Jason Wu gown; Giuseppe Zanotti heels; Hedone Romane earrings.

 

 

Best Female Actress in a Supporting Role:

Oscars look red and gold by StylingNotes

Kennet Jay Lane ring; Bottega Veneta clutch; Gianbattista Valli gown, Casadei heels.

An Australian in Italy – chronicle of a shopping holiday

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A trip to Italy is for me like diving in a second life, where everything is familiar and doesn’t require much effort.

Every time I go back to my home country I seem to realise something new – which confirms the theory that you need to distance yourself from something to really see it.

Lessons I’ve learnt this time include:

Italians really are a bit crazy and unpredictable behind the wheel – including those grandmas driving at 25km per hour no matter what, and the younger ones who don’t see any problem in overtaking 3 cars at a time;

Italian families are so close together that everyone gets a say on any topic –  whether your latest purchase was worth the money, where you should go for dinner and where you should park your car before going to the theatre;

something must have seriously changed in my style if some Italian shop assistants spoke to me in English as I entered their shops.

My holiday in Italy also implies meeting friends for dinner and drinks, catching up with local culture and music, and enjoying the beautiful urban landscape that I miss so much: villas, castles, Roman monuments, and all the ancient details that make such a gorgeous scenery.

And, of course, there’s the fashion, and the shopping opportunities I make sure I don’t miss.

Here’s what inspired me this year, and what I bought.

garden door

Door to a public garden in Torri del Benaco

Il Laccio leather sandals

Il Laccio leather sandals

case

House with staircase in Verona

boats

Boats at Bardolino port

White cotton tank, TFR cropped jeans, Diesel scarf.

White cotton tank, TFR cropped jeans, Diesel scarf.

spiaggia

On a private beach in Riccione, sunbeds are aligned and ready for the next morning

Kontatto maxidress

Kontatto maxidress

gelato

My cone of “bacio” ice crem, at Gelateria Patagonia

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Walking over the beautiful Castelvecchio bridge in Verona

Neoprene clutch (at Il Laccio Verona), Zara maxiskirt

Neoprene clutch (at Il Laccio Verona), Zara maxiskirt

statua

Opera props stored in front of the Arena of Verona

Flavio Castellani jacket; Il Laccio high-heel sandals

Flavio Castellani jacket; Il Laccio high-heel sandals

tramonto

Sunset on a private soccer field

How to dress up your hands – A rings story

 

stylingnotes rings 1

Adorne blue and silver ring; Lovisa silver criss-cross  ring; Adorne Aztec silver ring.

 

stylingnotes rings 2

Adorne silver thick bends; Lovisa black ring.

 

stylingnotes rings 3

Il Tempo Boutique (Verona) brass and green crystal ring, Adorne gold cube ring.

 

stylingnotes rings 4

Livio Sartori rose gold ring with star cut-out, shell ring from The Rocks Markets (Sydney), Adorne rose gold band.

 

stylingnotes rings 5

Lovisa red and silver ring, stack of square and round stainless steel rings (stylist’s own), Adorne cube ring.

 

stylingnotes rings 6

Lovisa blue bird ring, Adorne gold open band.

 

stylingnotes rings 7

Lovisa gold and blue maxi-ring, Lovisa gold ribbons ring, Mo Resin Jewellery gold-leaf ring.

 

 

Stylist: Elena Scarmagnan, Styling Notes

Photography: Styling Notes

Nails: OPI “Nein! Nein! Nein! OK fine!”