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Eat With Your Eyes….My Exhibit at Como House

I am really excited to share some of the inspiration and details of my Eat With Your Eyes Exhibition which is now open at Como House. I was thrilled to have been invited by the National Trust to participate along with some other designer colleagues.

The Brief:

The brief for the exhibit was to create a tablescape inspired by an object from the National Trust’s library. To be honest, other than Christmas Day and the odd dinner party, styling a table isn’t something I often do but I was up for the challenge! After doing some research of the varied and wide range of items in their archives, this beautiful 1860 ceramic Cantonese teapot and tea caddy caught my eye.

Ripponlea archives

I decided to pay a visit to Ripponlea where they are housed to see them in person (on the top shelf below). I have always been a lover of Chinoiserie style and the colours really are gorgeous.

Ripponlea Archives

It was then that my ‘Shang High Tea’ story started to evolve. I decided to incorporate the Chinoserie theme, along with the fuchsia and green colours to create a modern day table, celebrating the High Tea ceremony. I set out to find the perfect backdrop and fabric for my tablecloth and looked no further than this Yangtze River from Schumacher. Depicting a Chinese river scene, it features the same fuchsia and deep green colours.

My exhibit at Como House

To create a more luxe finish to the tablecloth, I added a green bullion fringe to the hem.

My exhibit at Como House

For the seating, I selected lacquered white bamboo chairs and had the cushions manufactured in a Diane Bergeron green spot fabric.

Eat with your eyes exhibit at Como House

I have always loved the botanical designs in Portmeirion tableware and truth be told David Jones had it on sale so I snapped up some key pieces. The colours work perfectly with the tablecloth.

Eat with your eyes at Como House

I layered them on a white rattan placemat and green leaf plates from Hutch Table Accessories. Brass cutlery creates a sense of luxe and I found this very cute tiered cake stand to co-ordinate.

Eat with your eyes at Como House

Given the exhibition runs for 10 weeks, any food items and flowers needed to be artificial. I could just imagine the ants marching in and loving the ‘macarons’ and ‘sugary cakes’!

Eat with your eyes at Como House

For the flowers, I love the tones in these faux peonies. The fabulous artist Carolyne Hallum created the perfect canvas depicting the tablescape to add a vertical element.

My Eat with your eyes exhibit at Como House

Finally, I had my initials monogrammed on the napkins in a pagoda, reflecting the Chinoiserie theme.

Eat with your eyes exhibit at Como House

For anyone interested in seeing my exhibit at Como House, The Eat With Your Eyes exhibition runs until August 4.

A big thank you to my sponsors:

Grant Dorman

Elliott Clarke

Diane Bergeron

BQ Design


Hutch Table Accessories

Carolyne Hallum Artist

Xavier Furniture

All photos by Suzi Appel Photography.

Belinda XO
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