August 10, 2019

set the table with antique rose china

collecting: rose patterned plates and dishes 

How to set a beautiful table using your favorite collection of plates.
I’m often drawn to flea markets, thrift stores and yard sales. The thrill of the hunt never ceases to excite me! Certain pieces just seem to speak to me, and vintage china always seems to be on my radar while I’m out treasure hunting. 

Recently, I’ve been drawn towards china patterns embellished with beautiful roses and it’s become one of my favorite things to collect.These vintage patterns are feminine and flirty, and best of all, they work beautifully for a romantic table setting.

Easy to find.
The next time you visit a flea market or thrift store, be on the lookout for pretty pink rose patterned plates. You can often find them in small sets, which is my favorite way to acquire them, but unique individual plates are also quite practical and fit in nicely if they’re in the same pink color palette. 

My favorite patterns are made in England and made of fine bone china, but I’ve found gorgeous German examples that are quite unique and look like they’re hand-painted.
Mix and match for fun.
Just like any collection, mixing and matching is made easier when the plates have a common design or color. Dinner plates, salad plates and bread plates all layer beautifully with each other, and especially look lovely in coordinating but mismatched patterns.

I’ve found that collecting different size plates also helps when arranging them together at a table setting.

I’ve found that collecting different size plates also helps when arranging them together at a table setting.

Accessorize with Pink.
To get more bang for your buck, tie the whole table together with pink accents.

Adding pink glassware, napkins and flowers will naturally accentuate the pink rose pattern on the china, and capture everyone’s attention.

Think pink when setting this kind of table!

Include feminine details.
What’s the easiest way to turn an ordinary table into a romantic table? The answer is feminine details. Of course our rosy plates add feminine charm, but go ahead and add one or two more girly elements, just remember not to go too over the top with frills and such.

To keep this table from looking stuffy, an eyelet table runner does the trick and adds a little whimsy to this whole look.
Incorporate modern elements.
A few modern elements help keep the table from looking a little too old-fashioned. As romantic as roses are, a pitcher of pink peonies adds modern flair to the table, while the colors of these fresh flowers work perfectly with the roses on the plates. 

Vintage bamboo flatware offers the perfect contrast against the pink tye-dyed napkins and both these elements add a much needed dose of fun to this tablescape.
Collect what you love.
Vintage or new, rose patterned dinnerware is fun to collect, but if your passion is collecting another type of china, you can still keep these tips in mind when setting your table.

The same rules apply for other fun collectable plates like transferware or cabbageware. Just remember to mix and match, accessorize with a fun color, add a modern touch and incorporate feminine details. 

Your table is sure to be a hit with your friends and family!

ciao! fabiana


While I’m here today, I wanted to share some of my "Tablescaping Essentials" with you. I have a whole page on the Amazon website with my favorite picks for setting a beautiful table.

Quite often time is of the essence, and I have last minute projects or events to work on, so I turn to Amazon for one or two day delivery. You’d be surprised at how many amazing items they have to offer! And I'm constantly updating this page with my new favorites. 

You can check it out here, at Tablescaping Essentials.

This article originally appeared on Romantic Homes online.

August 9, 2019

new look: the tommy bahama island grille

Tommy Bahama Island Grille in Corona del Mar Plaza has opened its new light and bright remodeled Restaurant & Store just in time for summer. The welcoming space reveals the brand’s latest design concept developed especially for coastal Newport Beach.

Tommy Bahama has been a mainstay in the Newport Beach community since 1998 and this dramatically redesigned space with its fresh indoor/outdoor feel is the perfect fit for the Orange County lifestyle.

They’ve even revitalized their iconic menu to include new favorites but have kept several island-inspired favorites from the original menu. The expansive bar and dining area is accented with blonde wood ceiling beams and panels that are a much brighter version of their former space.

Ocean-worthy blue and cream colored tile add dimension to the bar and a tiled floor. The bar has been repositioned as a focal point of the space with seating on all four sides and includes adjacent high top tables.

Serving delicious, native California cuisine, Tommy Bahama Restaurant provides a relaxed environment to refuel and recharge from shopping. Locally sourced foods include Carlsbad mussels, California pistachios, golden state avocados and farm raised chicken from Orange County.

On the patio, cozy fire pits with lounge seating are available for casual drinks and light bites. An upper level raised terrace offers seating with a view of the pretty surroundings.

New menu items include:

·         SANTA BARBARA HOT SMOKED SALMON Grilled Sourdough, Mt. Tam Triple Cream, Red Mustard Greens, Capers, Red Onions, Heirloom Cherry Tomatoes

·         CHAR-GRILLED ARTICHOKE Herbs de Provence, Lemon Tarragon Aïoli

·         “NASHVILLE” HOT CHICKEN SLIDERS King’s Hawaiian Bread, Cajun Dry Rub, Island Slaw, Garlic Aïoli, Siracha, House-Made Pickles

·         GRILLED MISO AVOCADO TOAST Heirloom Cherry Tomatoes, Jicama, Red Mustard Greens, Pumpkin Seed Gremolata

·         SPAGHETTI SQUASH BOWL Roasted Mushrooms, Lemon Garlic Broth, Roasted Corn Salsa, Bloomsdale Spinach, Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pumpkin Seed Gremolata

·         ZA’ATAR & HERB CRUSTED AHI TUNA Beluga Lentils, Chile Oil, Roasted Carrots and Romanesco, Avocado Green Goddess

·         PRESSED HERB CHICKEN & “BRIE” SANDWICH California Free Range Chicken, Mt. Tam Triple Cream, Vine-Ripe Tomatoes, Garlic Aïoli, Green Romesco, Fries

Cajun Blackened Fish Tacos

Za’atar & Herb Crusted Ahi Tuna

Kona Coffee Crusted Rib Eye 

Ahi Tuna Bowl

Piña Colada Cake

Tommy Bahama Restaurant, Bar & Store
Corona del Mar Plaza
854 Avocado Ave
Newport Beach, CA 92660

Restaurant Hours & Phone
Open: 11:00 AM daily

ciao! fabiana

P.S. I’m on a mini-summer vacation for August, so you’ll be reading condensed versions of summer-inspired blog posts this month.

August 7, 2019

featured designer: alison pickart

I was recently introduced to the lovely style of designer Alison Pickart. This gorgeous kitchen was already on my radar, and when I visited her website, I was hooked!

Alison appreciates thoughtful architecture and designs her rooms with the “bones” of the house in mind. This California designer specializes in kitchens, so take a look at some of my favorite looks form Alison... 

ciao! fabiana

P.S. I’m on a mini-summer vacation for August, so you’ll be reading condensed versions of summer-inspired blog posts this month.

August 6, 2019

the cutest little frozen yogurt pies

How about an adorable and healthy frozen yogurt dessert recipe? And best of all, these mini pies require no baking!

You may already have all these ingredients at home... 

Two-Yogurt Frozen Mini Pies
Serves: 12

1 cup graham cracker crumbs
¼ cup butter, melted
1 tablespoon sugar
Paper liners
Cooking spray
3 containers (5.3 oz. each) Blueberry Flavor Greek Yogurt
3 containers (5.3 oz. each) Strawberry Flavor Greek Yogurt
Whipped Cream
1 cup strawberries, stemmed and sliced
1 cup blueberries

In small bowl, place graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter. Mix until well blended.

Place paper liners on regular muffin tin and spray with cooking spray. Add 2 tablespoons graham cracker mixture and press evenly on bottom of paper liner.

Add 2 tablespoons blueberry Greek yogurt per liner. Place in freezer for 30 minutes.

Add 2 tablespoons strawberry Greek yogurt per liner. Place in freezer for 2 hours.

Peel paper liners. Spritz each mini pie with whipped cream. Garnish with strawberry slices and blueberries. Serve immediately. (150 calories each.)

ciao! fabiana

recipe courtesy of Kroeger

August 5, 2019

laura ashley's back

When we bought our first home years ago, I remember the extra bedroom was set up as a nursery and was beautifully wallpapered in a periwinkle blue and white patterned Laura Ashley wallpaper.

It turned out to be the perfect décor when we had our first baby, a boy, a few years later and at the time I really fell more in love with that beautiful Laura Ashley wallpaper.

It was a simple ticking stripe in the bedroom and the bathroom was done in a bright yellow coordinating mini-print. Laura Ashley was big in the 90’s, but after we moved from that home a couple of years later, Laura Ashley fell by the wayside in my mind.

In fact, the name Laura Ashley hasn’t popped into my head until I recently received a catalog and was astonished to know that they're still around!

For those of you unfamiliar with Laura Ashley, she was a Welsh fashion designer and businesswoman who originally made decorator fabrics and wallpapers in the 1950s, and later started designing clothing in the 1960s.

The Laura Ashley style is characterized by romantic English designs. It was Little House on the Prairie chic way before shabby chic was around.

She translated her memories of the Welsh countryside into fabrics and created that relaxed English country look that still appeals to us romantics of today. Here's a look at some of my favorite vignettes from the catalog...



ciao! fabiana

P.S. I’m on a mini-summer vacation for August, so you’ll be reading condensed versions of summer-inspired blog posts this month.

Photos by Laura Ashley


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