Well, it’s officially February, officially still very much winter, and the holiday that (some of us) love to hate if officially almost here: Valentine’s Day.
I’ve always struggled with this day because, while the idea of it is so lovely, the reality of it is a bit obnoxious. Overpriced flowers and restaurants, and the pressures or expectations of having a perfect date night (let alone a date at all) all gets a little ridiculous year after year, don’t you think?
So, why not throw traditional ways of celebrating right out the window (as we are wont to do around here) and go for something different?
Inspired by a theme that felt appropriate to Valentine’s Day while being totally crazy and fun, I wanted to put together a party inspired by two things – that mad mad Queen of Hearts (in true Alice in Wonderland style) and a traditional game night with friends!
Taking a color cue from decks of cards, we went with plenty of red and white with touches of black and blue to set the scene. We personalized pill boxes and flasks from Mark & Graham with ‘eat me‘ tags and ‘drink me‘ etching as a nod to the traditional tale.
I wanted the table to feel a bit like falling down our own rabbit hole to the past – a little vintage and a lot of playful! Mixing plenty of pattern with solid colors in between (like the white dishes and goblets) created the perfect effect.
For the place settings, we printed out names and then went over them with a white pen to get that calligraphy effect without having to perfect our own skills, attaching the names with a gold spiral paperclip.
The vintage goblets and glassware we found at Watson Kennedy here in Seattle were the perfect addition to the table, bringing that vintage effect, while also being super unique – I love using vintage pieces in a tabletop when I can! And the kitchy, patterned flatware topped it all off.
Naturally, we had to imagine a menu for our guests, and I happen to think that strawberries and Valentine’s Day go hand in hand (champagne, anyone?), so we decided on a dessert fit for a queen – a simple, heavenly strawberry angel food cake!
Can’t you picture friends gathered around a table like this, playing poker into the wee hours of the night? The more guests – friends and lovers – the merrier!
photography by belathee // art direction and styling by cassandra lavalle for coco+kelley
get the look :: blue dishes b by brandie // white scalloped dishes // gold chargers // monogrammed napkins // boxwood topiaries // striped tapers // pill boxes // flasks // vintage candlesticks, goblets, glassware and flatware from watson kennedy // tablecloth courtesy of pedersen’s // dress courtesy of lublu kira plastinina