Guest blog: Winter Entertaining

We’re trying something new here on the blog this week, inviting our frequent collaborator and friend Wendi Goad, of Sweetness & Light Floral design to share her expertise on winter entertaining and creating the perfect design for your table!

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The best parts of holiday entertaining are having your friends and family together to share stories, enjoy great food, and sip festive drinks! I love every little bit of entertaining from the prep to the final guest heading home, and here are some of my favorite floral driven tips on how to make your event sparkle.

Pick something seasonal that inspires you as the thematic tie for your whole event, whether it’s Rudolph, snowflakes, or even gin, you’ll find that you can creatively riff on just about anything you love. Don’t worry if you don’t think of anything right off the bat, when you get to the store to start stocking up on supplies, keep your eyes open for anything that piques your visual interest.

Since I wanted to create something that would work for just about any event this season, I stuck with colors that were more “winter” and less “holiday.” I went to the grocery store (in this case Trader Joe’s) to pick up materials that everyone has access to. This is where the theme will be key because chances are really good that you won’t be able to get exactly what you need to recreate the centerpieces you found on Pinterest, but if you have a clear vision you’ll be able to sub in whatever you find. When shopping, make sure to get a nice assortment of greens, mass flowers (kale in this case), filler flowers, and accent elements (twigs/sticks here).

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Create your base of greens in your vase, figure out the lines and the shape you want to create, and allow the floral materials to maintain their natural feel by working with them instead of forcing them into your vision. The bend of each snap dragon in the tall arrangement is what enhances the asymmetrical lines of the piece. Use a critical eye when arranging, if you don’t like the way a stem fits, don’t use it or try it in another spot. There is no recipe for arranging, because each batch of flowers is unique so have fun and know that the more natural it looks, the better.

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Think of new ways to use pieces you already have to create an eclectic assortment that is truly you. In this case, I had the tealights and moss which really enhance the colorful and festive hues. I used a table runner to anchor the design and create a clear boarder between the tablescape and where the appetizers and drinks will live during the party.
Have fun while you are getting the house ready for guests. Pump up the music and remember that everyone is coming over for you; the flowers will be perfect because they are pretty to begin with, the food will taste great, and the drinks will keep the conversations flowing and laughter unavoidable, so breathe deep before answering the door for your first guest and enjoy!

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-Wendi Goad, Owner