I absolutely love to be outside! One of the things I love to do outside? Alfresco dining. So as soon as it is nice enough to sit outside at the table on our back deck we do just that. In fact one of the areas I always clean first is the deck. Even if we have to sit outside wearing a sweater you will see us out there.
During one of our first meals this year as I looked at the plates and table cloth, inspiration struck. I really liked the way everything went together and thought - Since I have been asked how to mix patterns and make them look great together - I should do a post about just that and my summer table can be the starting point!
So how do you mix patterns? One of the first things to keep in mind - keep your color palette the same in all the patterns you want to put together. Keep to a few colors - in my pictures you will see 3 main colors and different shades of these colors. The palette I choose - shades of blue, white & green - was inspired by the colors in the tablecloth.
Here is what I started with. You can see the table cloth behind the plates and napkins.
Next, lay out all the elements you want to put together like I did. This way you will get a good idea if they compliment each other. I ended up not using the plate on the left - the one with the white background and green design. When I was collecting everything for this post I thought it would work with all the other patterns and colors but once I laid it on the table I didn't like the way it looked with everything else. Since I love the beach and it is summer I decided to include starfish.
DESIGN IDEA If you were hosting a dinner party the starfish could serve a dual purpose - they can be the place card holder and also a little gift for your guests.
DESIGN IDEA Notice how folding the napkin gives a different feel to the how each combination looks. Adding the starfish also changes the appearance. If you were using a mix of patterns that included a floral theme, adding a flower would make a nice extra accent to your settings.
These plates are a combination of ceramic and melamine and the napkins are paper. So it doesn't really matter what the items are made of. Cloth napkins can work too! I just "shopped" my house for these items and since we all tend to buy things in the colors that we are partial to, you can "shop" your cupboards and put together a great combination too.