Sunday, February 16, 2014

A Touch of Lipstick Red for Valentine's Day

The week of Valentine's 

was busy around here.

Lots of chocolates and 

fun times spent with friends.

This stack of red and white stripe plates,

a sweet surprise from a girlfriend 

for my January birthday,

 was the inspiration for our

Valentine's table this year.

An impromptu stop at Sur La Table

yielded these pretty new napkins.

The beautiful woven texture, red stripes, and 

fringed edges make me think of vintage French linens.

They fit in perfectly with

my theme of black and white 

and touch of lipstick red.

My go to woven ruffled placemats,

MacKenzie-Childs Courtly Check chargers,

Black dinner plates from Dollar Tree,

Red and white striped salads by Grace's Teaware,

All stack up for a pretty Valentine Dinner Party

with a group of girlfriends.

Small heart shaped boxes 

filled with chocolates were

transformed with chalkboard paint

to use as place cards 

as well as sweet take home treats.

La Rochere 

Napoleonic Bee Glassware

Tossed Green Salad

Spinach and Artichoke Lasagna

Made at home by my personal in-house "chef".  

Hot Garlic Bread

Light Dessert

Lemon Petite Fours 

Camomile Tea and Almond Tarts

Served with 

fresh raspberries and .   .   .

A dollop of 

sweet whipped cream!

Little cinnamon hearts 

on the side for a touch of spice.

The following morning

I hosted my CAMEO group

for our monthly antique club meeting.

I saw this idea on Martha Stewart.

You take dried Calimyrna figs, cut lengthwise, 

and they look like little hearts.  

Tasty, healthy, and oh so cute!

Several of the ladies are gluten intolerant, 

so I like to serve gluten fee choices

such as this camomile and almond tart

that I picked up from a local bakery.

The pretty little petit fours, 

while not gluten free,

are a secret I learned from a friend.

You can buy a box of 24 of these at Costco 

for about  the cost of one petite four from a bakery.

They are "lemonylicious" and no one is the wiser!

Sometimes I add a little added flourish on top.

As a take home treat for my CAMEO friends,

I bought mini heart boxes at Michaels,

used the chalkboard paint again,

then placed a decadent chocolate heart inside

on a nest of red and pink crinkle paper.

All in all it was a

"sweetie pie" of a week here!

Hope your Valentine's Week 

was filled with delights too.



The summer we married, my husband was in graduate school, and I was employed as a teacher. We took a portion of our savings that summer and purchased a sailboat. We christened our Catalina 22, “Hyacinths For The Soul” after Saadi’s poem. Our "Hyacinths" provided years of pleasure.


  1. Food, friends, and love...sounds like a great week!

  2. What a sweet sounding and looking week!! You know how to do it up, big! Beautiful table, serving pieces and treats look scrumptious!

  3. You have been busy creating joy:)
    That first girl♥♥
    How cute is she? and then her beau?

    So thoughtful..everything so cute cute cute..le chef so nice to do that for you..
    Wonderful uplifting post Sarah.Great job oon the hearts and Thanks for the lemony Costco recommendation:)

  4. OH MY GOODNESS! I guess my invitation got lost in the mail?!;>) What a beautiful table you set and what wonderful treats and take-homes, Sarah. I can tell you LOVE pulling things all together for special people in your life. How lucky they are! xo Diana

  5. Everything looks great Sarah! Lovin' your new red and white striped plates and it sounds like you had a fun week-enjoy:@)

  6. What a great tablescape - love the black and white checks. I am such a fan of McKinzey Childs. Such beautiful dishes and how wonderful they all look together.
    The food looks so yummy. You are the hostess with the mostest. I'm sure your girl friends were very impressed. And by the way HAppy Belated Birthday.

  7. Beautiful table...amazing food...and LOVE those napkins!!

  8. Hi Sarah! What a wonderful menu and pretty table! Your courtly check always makes me smile...just beautiful! That salad looks so elegant in that gorgeous bowl. Have a great week!
    Miss Bloomers

  9. Dearest Sarah,
    What a lovely and elegant presentation for both events! A very special treat for the eye and for the tastebuds.

  10. Such a beautiful tablescape with the red, white and black, and your food looks Valentine delish!

  11. Sarah,
    I crown you "Queen Of Hearts", dear friend!!!
    Lovely tablescape and I adore those "chalkboard heart" place cards!!!
    I'll be watching for some "thrifty" buys next time I'm shopping at Sams's! Thanks for the tip!
    Have a wonderful week ahead!!!

  12. What a great post! So many pretty things to look at! The table is beautiful, and lunch would be right up my alley! I will look for those at Costco, great to keep on hand!

    I used to have a teacher's luncheon every year. I had to give it up, so many dietary concerns, no gluten, vegetarian, diabetic, etc. It wasn't fun anymore. The gluten free gal couldn't even eat the soup as the broth I used for the base had gluten in it.There is a you tube video going around called The Dinner Party that addresses all the issues, very funny, but sadly true!
    We had 8 more inches of snow last night on top of the foot we got earlier in the week. So cold, nothing is melting. Can't wait for it to get into the higher 30's, there is no place to pile the snow anymore!

  13. How thoughtful of your friend to present you with the Grace teaware with red and white stripe plates. I found my tea set at Home Goods. I was searching for more of another set of china when I acquired the tea set. You mentioned your birthday is in January and coincidently so is mine. Your dinner party with your friends was very special for Valentine's Day. The menu is fabulous and the food looks delicious. Thanks for the kind comments while visiting my blog!

    Have a grand week!

  14. How thoughtful of your friend to present you with the Grace teaware with red and white stripe plates. I found my tea set at Home Goods. I was searching for more of another set of china when I acquired the tea set. You mentioned your birthday is in January and coincidently so is mine. Your dinner party with your friends was very special for Valentine's Day. The menu is fabulous and the food looks delicious. Thanks for the kind comments while visiting my blog!

    Have a grand week!

  15. I am glad that I wasn't the only one that did a non-traditional table for Valentine's. I love your MC inspired table, Sarah! I never think to check out Dollar Tree, I go past it when going grocery shopping. There prices have to be as good or better than the thrift stores, too! I have a sweet tooth lately, so your dessert table really appeals to me...yummy!
    Have a great week.

  16. How beautiful, Sarah! I love it all, but especially all the little touches that make it all so original. Your friends must have been delighted when they saw the table.
    I will have to check out our Costco for the little lemony treats!
    Do you know, your posts are once again showing on my side bar!

  17. What a wonderful week you had, Dara, and you had some mighty happy party guests, too I am sure! Great party favors and wonderful goodies and food. Loved all the dishes, too!



  18. Beautiful table, delicious food, great napkins! xo

  19. Wow, Sarah, back to back parties! Very smart! Your table for the dinner party looked amazing -- wonderful dish stack, and I love the chalkboard valentine boxes -- so clever! The food looked gorgeous and delicious, too. (And doesn't Sur la Table have the BEST napkins? I have some that are ancient and still look great.)

  20. Oh I adore the lipstick red plates and new napkins, so fun and festive stacked with your Courtly Check for a Valentine's celebration! Sadie even has a Courtly Check toy too! ♥

    Your dinner looks delicious and I know your friends loved the personalized sweet heart boxes. The fig idea is so clever (that Martha :) and I wish we had a Costco close by, I see the best buys and treats from there.

  21. Sarah, I’m thrilled I’m getting your new posts in my mailbox again! You were busy last week but your back to back parties I’m sure were a hit. The red and white strip plates are so pretty as are the matched napkins. Such pretty desserts too, love the figs! I know Sadie must be saying Happy Valentine’s Day to her mommy, she’s adorable. My compliments to the chef too.............

  22. Oh that Sweetie Pie captured my heart. I love the figs, the lasagna looks SO good and your tablescape is nothing short of amazing!

  23. Well, didn't you just have the most luscious Valentine's Day ever!!! Not to mention the sweet joy of your birthday when you got those plates! What a nice friend you have!!!

    I've never heard of Calimyrna figs, so this has been a bit of an education for me. Meanwhile, I could just dive in head first to that Brie!!!

    Happy Belated Birthday, and enjoy your week!

  24. Hi Sarah,
    Your chalk painted heart boxes turned out so cute! I'll bet all your friends were thrilled with your thoughtful touch. Your dishes and new napkins are beautiful. Doesn't food look outstanding in the CC serveware? Aren't you a lucky girl to have your very own personal "chef"? What a gem he is!! xo

  25. Sarah, what a lovely gift from one of your friends. Love the cute lipstick girl.
    Your table is so pretty and whimsical as well. The layered dishes look so pretty. You have been busy. I am sure your guests were in for a treat with so many goodies. I have looked at your blog with three browsers and I still do not see your background.

  26. This table is adorable! Love all you special touches and you know I love anything 'frenchy'!! The little candy boxes painted with chalkboard paint is brilliant!! Glad you had a wonderful holiday!

    hugs, Linda

  27. Wow! every detail is a delight! From the gorgeous MacKenzie-Childs check chargers, frenchy linens down to the scrumptious food...absolutely gorgeous! And I really love the stack of red and white striped plates, a sweet gift indeed! I adore your collection of beautiful china, Sarah! Always so exquisite! Thanks for sharing with us:) Hugs, Poppy

  28. It sounds like so much fun! What great chalkboard favors!

    Happy day to you!

  29. You were busy ~ it all looks amazing!
    Sweet idea on the little heart boxes with a chocolate treat.

    Take care,

  30. What a gorgeous tablescape and delicious meal, Sarah! My compliments to the chef! I love your idea to paint the heart tops of the heart candy boxes with chalkboard paint. Happy belated birthday!

  31. Two days of fun with friends! You really know how to entertain! The dishes, food, desserts and favors were wonderful, I took a long time looking at the details. You have lovely ideas for presentation.

    Did I spot a little favor with my name on it?! :)


  32. What a sweet blog you have! I just want to say thanks for all your kind comments...I can't imagine what care went into making cookies for thirty year after year after year...Audra from Me Oh My Couture

  33. the red and white striped dishes . . . the beautiful napkins . . . the yummy food . . . everything looks lovely.

  34. Wow, a whole week of fun, friend and fabulous food. Love it. I adore those red stripe plates too. Thanks tons for linking to Inspire Me. Hugs, Marty

  35. Oh, Sarah! You are the hostess with the mostest! Your table is gorgeous and the food all looks so good. I'm sure your girlfriends just jump up and down when they're invited to your home.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  36. I was lucky to get a preview of the festivities ;P
    Sarah, the dessert table is so cute, too. Neat trick about the figs, and your party favors or so cute in keeping with your theme. Your fur baby makes me smile. Love the Courtly Check bone!

    I now everyone enjoyed the party. You are the most thoughtful hostess! Oh, and I do love the French linens. They truly complimented your table setting well!


  37. Dear Sarah Anyone who gets invited to a party at your house is in for a treat! The food looks amazing and I just love that little girl in the first photo. Have you tried the Waterlogue app yet? If so come and join my party tomorrow.

  38. are those really from the upper crust on burnet? costco is amazing . pretty post. And lemon is the nicest thing about winter!

  39. Ahhh…where do I begin? I love that your doggie also enjoys MC…..the stack of dishes are lovely….all of the food looks delish (my invitation must have been lost in the mail!)…and your lovely MC serving pieces - I am drooling! Cute idea to paint the boxes and personalize them! Lucky friends to be able to have all this shared with them!

  40. oh goodness Sarah, everything looks so wonderful I don't know where to begin! First of all I love the red lipstick theme! Your papier mache girl is fabulous! All the ME boxes and your wonderful MKC collection, it's all so much fun. The chalkboard boxed chocolates for treats are so perfect, and I will be on the look out for those lemon bites, thanks for the tip!

  41. Sarah, you have done such a wonderful job on your Valentine table! The gifted dishes and all your extra touches are fab! Each of your desserts is delicious looking and thoughtful too.
    I am sure you had a great time.

  42. Sarah, I love those red and white plates, and they look so great with the black and white checks. How clever of you to paint the heart boxes with chalkboard paint. And oh, those napkins - they're beautiful! I want to come to one of your V'tine parties. laurie

  43. Wow, wow, wow!!! Those are great pieces and so much treats!

  44. You always layer your dishes so fabulously Sarah. Everything looks just wonderful! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  45. What a fabulous and gorgeous post dear Sarah! I'm sorry I missed it, but it was when I went to visit my daughter and her girls. I love all the food and the beaqutiful things you have displayed here. Great Valentines party and the striped red plates from your friend, just perfect for the season, or even for C'mas time!

  46. Just WOW girl you did really good!

    Cathy's Cupboard Calamity<:)

  47. Oh Sarah, I would have loved to have been at that meeting! The figs are an adorable touch and I just love your baby in the last photo with her own McK/C bone!

    Great to have you at Seasonal Sundays.

    - The Tablescaper

  48. Love your table! What a fabulous job you did as hostess!

  49. I got it too, and I have been recreating bouquets in my portfolio, and a few pictures of cyclist. It's pretty fun. thanks for the pretty post

  50. Sarah, I must be the most awful ever. But, I definitely wanted to get by to tell you how much I enjoyed this post. Your table setting is fabulous, and I love your tip about the Lemon Bites.

    Happy Pink Saturday then, now and always. I appreciate your friendship and support.♥


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