Entertaining at home this fall
Fall is one of my favourite times of the year. It’s the beginning of the festive season with a lineup of celebrations right up to Christmas. This season may feel different from previous years due to the global scenario, and many people around the world are going to choose to have smaller and more intimate gatherings instead of big ones. Here are a few tips to help set the mood, bring in some cheer and make your home feel warm and inviting.
Use floral arrangements around the home. I love freshly cut flowers, and they are a great way to infuse warmth, charm and beauty into your home. In Hong Kong, we have so many floral vendors at our wet markets who have the most beautiful variety of flowers.
Here are a few simple tips if you want to create an arrangement for yourself – First, choose your colour scheme. Then select one big flower as the main floral for your arrangement (for example spider lily, hydrangeas, peonies etc.). Then choose another slightly smaller floral bud as a filler such as a morning breath or daisies and lastly use foliage/greenery to give it height and texture.
I start my arrangement by pruning the extra leaves and then adding the bigger flowers in. Then interspersing with smaller buds and greens. The idea is to have the taller blooms more on the outside. Play around till you are satisfied with the way it looks. You can also add fruits such as mandarins into your floral arrangement to give it a different look.
You can buy fresh flowers from most wet markets in the city, and of course the flower market in Kowloon. However, if you to outsource the flowers, there are a plethora of brands out there like – Ellerman, bydeau, The Floristry, Hayden Blest and Lover Florals.
GET CREATIVE WITH DISPLAY
Also, I’m going to give you a simple trick, if you don’t have too many vases at home, use one of the ginger jars that you may have at home as a vase! You can also learn to decoupage from Art Joy by Shraddha who decoupages existing old bottles and up-cycles them.
Try using an old rustic watering can, or pretty jugs instead of a plain glass vase and see your flower arrangement come alive.
Set the mood for your gathering. I love having music playing in the background when I entertain. It shouldn’t be very loud but more as pleasant background sound, and I always have a music list made in advance.
I also use scented candles around the house to set the mood. If you have flowers that have a beautiful scent, make sure your candle compliments the smell and doesn’t clash with it. Some of my favourite shops for candles are Diptyque, Shanghai Tang, Anvi HK and Candles Up HK.
FUN TABLE DECOR
Decorating your table is the easiest way to set the mood for a party, intimate dinner or any kind of a social gathering. It doesn’t have to be very elaborate, and you can use things you already have at home to pretty up your table. Tea lights, candles and floral arrangements are some of the easily available props you can use. When you do use these, use them in odd numbers as it is visually more pleasing to the eye and creates balance on the table. You can also use varying heights on the table. If you are doing a sit-down dinner table, remember that the centre pieces have to be below eye level so that the people can see each other over it and have a conversation. If it’s a buffet table, have your tallest element in the centre and then gradually utilize shorter pieces towards the edge.
Depending on the season and the festival you can also add unusual fun aspects to your table. Think small pumpkins for Fall, snowflakes for Christmas, marigolds scattered for Diwali. You can also add elements such a fall leaves or fruits such as lemons in a bowl for decorating. There are many brands that sell all kinds of table settings from ethnic to modern designs in different price ranges, like Good Earth, Indigo HK, Pink Lotus HK, Adorn Creations HK and Nico Bar.
AMEESHA LATHIA KAPADIA
Ameesha Kapadia is the creator of the home accessories brand The Pink Lotus HK in Hong Kong. With an accidental introduction to the world of home accessories, this former stylist quickly realised that her love for colour and symmetry translated from fashion to home. You can contact her on her Instagram account @thepinklotushk