How to create a foraged tablescape
It’s so beautiful here in Sonoma County today. The sun is shining, birds are chirping, and bulbs are starting to peek their heads out from the moist winter soil. There are definitely hints of Spring in the air.
Last year at this time we had no idea of what to expect. The thought of a pandemic and being in lockdown mode seemed so foreign. I remember feeling nervous, but also very grateful. If we had to shelter in place, this wasn’t a bad place to have to hide from the world, in fact, it was down right amazing. We hadn’t been living in the home for very long so there was a sense of freshness and new beginnings. Although, the front door seemed like a revolving door as trades people, sporting masks and protective gear, continued to travel to and fro trying to finish things up in the main house.
Our two adult kids were home, due to college lockdown and lost employment, so I was determined to make our Spring Easter/Passover feast something special, yet simple. I love setting a table scene for each occasion but shopping for table decor and florals wasn’t an option at the time. So, I decided to go simple and use what I had on hand, and what I could forage from the farm.
CHEMICAL FREE COLORED EGGS
First, I took our farm fresh eggs straight from the coop and hardboiled and de-shelled them. Next, using beet, blackberry, and spinach juices, along with turmeric, I gave them a beautiful natural coloring. I took an old silver serving piece from the original owners of this house, and topped it with a small bed of Spring lettuce. I layered on the colored eggs in the center, and then it was just a matter of taking the foraged fern leaves and beautiful little wildflowers and tucking them in and around. The wildflower blossoms played so beautifully with the patterned china.
I ended up making these adorable candle holders. I took old Hanukah candles and stuck them into limes and put them in the center of small white ramekins. I had an old bouquet of flowers that I took the buds off of and tucked them in to add some color and keep the limes from falling over. These candle holders added an important flicker to the scene, and the limes and blossoms helped to support the overall color scheme.
SETTING THE TABLE
I started with a fresh white table cloth as my base. Using another tarnished silver piece left behind, I began to repeat the theme to make it cohesive. I brought in old family silver flatware, black and white plaid placements I almost threw out during the move, original wedding china, and old stemware. For the centerpiece, I took a yellow “honey bells” that was slated to be installed in the garden. I simply stuck it in a pot I had on hand and adorned it with another plaid placemat. I sprinkled more wildflowers and other foraged stems and ferns around the table. This wasn’t a cast of table scape items that would have been designed to be displayed together, but in a time of uncertainty, the old pieces brought a sense of stability and endurance, while the delicate foliage and wild flowers brought an air renewal.
This was the most simple table scape I had ever created. However, in someways, it was one of the most special. It felt so good to sit down with the loves of my life during a time of turmoil, and celebrate each other and the bounty of foraged items from the farm. It wasn’t fussy, it wasn’t formal, it was just right, at the perfect time.
I hope this post inspires you to get out into nature and create something healthy and beautiful for you and for those you love. Beauty doesn’t need to be expensive or new, sometimes it just needs to be a gesture from the heart.