home depot

Halloween Entertaining: Not-So-Predictable Tabletop Decor

Halloween usually conjures up images of cotton spiderwebs, orange and black decor, and anything bloody, gory, or just plain scary.  Well we don't think that your Halloween Entertaining Experience needs to be so literal this year.  Why not inject a little style into your decor?    

A beautiful tablescape is achieved through layering.  By maintaining a fairly neutral palette and varying the textures, finishes and contrasts on the tabletop, we created a dramatic, spooky effect without being so literal about the theme.  Now we will show you how to do this yourself!

Getting ready for a party doesn't have to feel like work, get your friends and kids involved, not only will they enjoy creating this beautiful piece of art, it will speed up the process and allow you to work on other things!

B helped us layout the greenery and twist this awesome floral accent (don't go looking in the Halloween aisle, its in the floral section) from Hobby Lobby to look like spooky twigs, or long spindly witch fingers!  By not going straight to the Halloween section when you walk in the store, you force yourself to think more creatively on how to evoke the theme rather than spelling it out.  Only a few items on our table are from the Halloween section which means that not only will you deliver classier, more original decor, but you can reuse most of these pieces throughout the year! 

Once you lay down the greenery and "witch fingers" its smooth sailing.  We sprinkled in some  Metal Tapered Candle Holders and some Lanterns from World Market with their Tapered LED Candles.  I had never used LED candles until now because I have always been a fan of the aura and smell of a burning candle, but let me tell you they are awesome!  Not only do you not have to worry about messing up your beautiful table decor with melted wax or kids playing with the flames, but they last forever and emit an extremely bright and authentic glow.  Can you tell I am sold?

When shopping for tabletop decorations, or anything really, it is important to keep an open mind and stay calm, cool and creative.  You will have a hiccup, so its best to go in prepared to think on your feet.  Notice the taupe napkin at the heads of the table, and the coppery colored ones on the sides?  This was not planned, it was because Hobby Lobby only had 4 of each color, and see how beautiful it turned out?  I wouldn't have wanted it any other way!  

You probably also noticed the vampire teeth at the heads of the table and the skulls on the sides, another happy accident.  Stores like Homegoods can be awesome, but also discouraging because you'll often find something amazing, but to no avail, will another one be found in the store.  True to form, we found these amazing Skull Place Holders, but there were only 4 in the pack.  Luckily we didn't get discouraged and remembered the vampire teeth garnishes we had planned for our drinks (post coming up Monday) and we got extra to use at the heads of the table.  A little lipstick on the teeth and what an awesome placeholder!

As darkness approached, the table atmosphere took on a whole new life.  Its important to remember what time of day you will be entertaining and decorate accordingly.  If you are entertaining at night, try to incorporate as many candles into your table top decor as possible, it really creates an entirely different feel than overhead lighting.

See what I mean?  The night became magical, and a full moon really topped it off.  We hope we have inspired you to go out and create your own magical Halloween table setting outside the predictable parameters of the holiday's decor!

Below is a list of the items with links to where you can purchase them.  We already had the table cloth, but if you don't have a nice neutral tablecloth, or want a more casual look, I think a roll of masking paper would be a really nice runner and add to the organic textures.  Home Depot also has some great canvas drop cloths, which would make really awesome floor length table cloths for a great price!

Skull, Happy Halloween Banner, Tapered LED Candles, Twig Flatware, Black Square Dinner Plates, Metal Tapered Candle Holders, Owl Candle Holders, Lanterns, Cloches,  White Square Dinner Plate,  Skull Place Holders, Vintage Tabouret Guest Chairs, Head Chairs, Faux Sheepskin

Designers' Pick, Our Favorite Stores for Decorating the Home

When decorating your house, half the battle is knowing where to shop.  I can't tell you how many clients I have who have great taste, but just lack the knowledge of where to go buy the things they see in their head.  

Despite the popular belief that all designers shop at the Mart, ADAC, or only order straight from the vendor for their clients, I am here to tell you that a lot of items are not sourced this way.  In order to purchase this way, designers must meet a price tier of minimums, shipping costs and storage fees.  

For the designers who run a smaller business or have clients with smaller budgets, retail actually is more cost effective for both parties.  So I am here to tell you where to get the goods, for the best price and the best designer look.

Home Decorators Collection:

A lot of people don't know it, but this little gem is actually an entity of The Home Depot.  Having backing by one of the largest companies in the US gives them the ability to order a lot of stock and extend great prices to the customer.  Their regular sale rotation and free shipping deals allow you to jump on or easily wait for a great deal.

This catalogue company does most of their business online, however they do have a showroom off of Northpoint Parkway in Alpharetta as well as a few others around the country.  Home Decorators Collection is a great source for the large item portion of your decorating adventure ( i.e. furniture, rugs and lighting, and bath vanities).  

Don't be overwhelmed by the thousands of options in rugs, furniture, and lighting.  Sometimes the website can be a little confusing, but stick with it because it is totally worth it.  For example, the table pictured in this shot is...wait for it... only $310.00!  With multiple style options, and deep discounts, it is a no brainer for the stylistically traditional mom and her modern daughter to shop together to decorate their respective homes.

Home Decorators Collection Strengths:  Furniture, Rugs, Bath Vanities, Mirrors, Lighting.  All Styles

West Elm:

West Elm is my go to for the modern to transitional client.  While the store offers many options, there are even more online.  In my opinion West Elm is best for pillows, textiles, accessories, lighting and mirrors.  

Lighting is also a great value for the look, you can score some really unusual pieces without breaking the bank, with table lamps like this one for only $69.00.  Rugs and draperies are also a great way to add some spice to your space from West Elm, especially when you are looking for a world beat or graphic stylistic flair.

The furniture at West Elm, is also very nice, but for the price point, in most cases you are not getting the most bang for your buck.  Which leads me to our next place to get a deal... IKEA.

West Elm Strengths: Bedding, Draperies, Rugs, Decor Accessories, Lighting.  Style: Modern, Transitional, World Beat


I use Ikea for multiple levels of clients, anywhere from the DIY client who just wants a few a-la-carte selections, to the entirely custom, full service client.  Ikea is a great resource for furniture staples, like seating and tables to really affordable draperies and lighting.  

Another thing that I hit up Ikea for on a personal level is kitchen wear.  Believe it or not, Ikea has great knives and their kitchen organization tools are top notch and extremely affordable.  If you are like me and only purchase white dish wear so that when one breaks you don't have to match the set perfectly, Ikea is an endless resource for white dish wear and serving pieces.

IKEA Strengths: Kitchen accessories, basic furniture pieces, inexpensive draperies.  Style Modern, Transitional, some Traditional


Last but not least is Ballards.  This is a great resource for all things custom (well semi-custom).  Not only is their website very user friendly, but the price points are very competitive on custom upholstery and drapery. 

Ballards Indoor/Outdoor Sofa

Ballards Indoor/Outdoor Sofa

My favorite part of using Ballards for upholstered pieces of furniture is how they show very piece online, in a neutral fabric.  This way you can really compare the bodies of the sofas and chairs, and then select your fabric.  The selection of fabrics is quite robust for furniture and draperies.  Its also a plus to notice whats rated indoor and outdoor.  A surprising amount of furniture is indoor/outdoor which is a real plus for those who have munchkins running around.  All in all Ballards is winning the custom upholstery category for selection and price.

Ballards Strengths: Custom Upholstery and Draperies.  Style: Traditional to Transitional, Rustic Chic.


Hope this helps on your next decorating endeavor!