There really isn’t much I enjoy more than gathering around the table with family or friends, and outside of major holidays (like Thanksgiving or Christmas), it just doesn’t happen often enough. Busy schedules, kiddos, babysitter scheduling, commitments, and, let’s be honest, exhaustion get in the way of long dinners and great conversation around someone’s dining room table. Since I pretty much look for ANY reason to host a get together or attend a dinner party, I proposed a Halloween dinner with some of my favorite friends.
We have the “dinner party” thing down to an art. No major house cleaning, menu planning, or (usually) table setting. Just good friends, good food and great conversation are needed. Lara hosted in her beautiful house and perfect dining room.
I gathered Halloween decorations I had on hand to decorate her table and we all brought a piece of dinner (a cheese and sausage plate for pre-dinner, a hearty risotto and big salad for dinner, and red velvet cake and cupcakes from our favorite bakery for dessert + a bottle of bubbly and a couple bottles of wine).
Designing a holiday “table scape” doesn’t have to be complicated! Shop your home and get creative with the pieces you have. This purple skull is a few years old but looks extra spooky under a glass cloche with some grey paper shred.
The purple skull inspired me to grab these inexpensive purple mums from the grocery store and with the addition of a few spider rings tucked in, it becomes positively creepy.
My silver chargers were a teeny bit tarnished – perfect for a Halloween party, right? And Lara had these awesome skull embroidered black napkins.
A length of black tulle running down the table makes a great base to layer on other elements on top of – like the ghost jars.
These black paper bats hanging from the chandelier add height to the table without blocking conversation.
All together, quite a table setting! (I should also note that all of this fit into a laundry basket and was set up in less time than it took to reheat the risotto and open the wine! It’s supposed to be easy!)
We set up dessert with a black lantern and the Elizabethan Crows stacked on cookbooks with a little bit of tulle bunched under the cake stand.
The EEK banner looks particularly charming in the window and went with Lara’s grey scheme SO well! Happy accident…
One other little detail that set the Halloween tone were these adorable spider straws – easy to assemble and an extra touch of cutesy-creepy.
No one had to slave over a stove or worry about timing, Lara didn’t have to decorate, no one stressed about shouldering the burden of a full-on dinner party and yet it was just as satisfying and conversation was just as hilarious, stories told were just as juicy and the Halloween decorations? An awesome excuse to break bread with some really great people. So, thinking about a Halloween party this year? Might I suggest a dinner party, instead? Just don’t forget the skull and spiders, ok?