Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Where You Go, My Heart Follows

Welcome to our 2023
Valentine's Day Tablescape Blog Hop

Thank you to Rita, our amazingly organized and 
talented leader and author of the beautiful Panoply
Rita has once again organized a group of 20 bloggers to offer
inspiration for creating your own holiday table and ambiance.
You'll find links to each at the end of this post.

"With Love"
My Chef was a quiet romantic, a kind and generous soul.
He didn't much care for contrived holidays,
but he had impeccable taste and was a master at giving gifts. 

"There is nothing more beautiful on 
earth than to be loved by you."

Our dear friend who introduced me to my guy 47 years ago 
sent me this beautiful bouquet of flowers for my recent birthday.
The pair of paper maché zebras hang on our Christmas tree each year,
and sparked an idea for my non-traditional Valentine table.

I often build a tablescape around the flowers I intend to use.
The vibrant colors within the bouquet and a package of 
paper napkins were my inspiration for this table.

A recent email from Caspari Inc. inspired me to set my own 
table for two using Caspari Scalamandré Zebra napkins 
paired with animal prints and rich textures.  
I felt as if I needed something new and fresh, 
and of course something with a touch of whimsy.

I simply cut a circle from a paper napkin 
and placed it under glass plates with fluted gold rims.  

Like Caspari's inspiration setting, I used gold square chargers, 
topped with rattan chargers that hold the glass plates. 
I love to mix textures on a table.

This wonderful textural stack was placed atop  
a favorite Crown Linen Design table runner.
I'm an avid fan of these exquisite linens 
detailed with touches of embroidery.

Big, bold tortoise stems, a gift from 
an Instagram Bestie, were perfect for this table.
Thank you, @suzannezinggstyle.
I added a fluff of zebra napkins for added color.

The tortoise glass ice bucket has been on our bar cart for years.
I love to use ice buckets at the table for splits of champagne.
They are the perfect size and fun to have at each place setting.

We bought our Arte Italica pewter and crystal Verona flutes over twenty years ago.  They are classic and elegant, handcrafted in Italy.  
You can still find them today at Arte Italica.

Adding in the animal print napkin by Vietri
and the bamboo flatware provided even more 
dimension and texture to the mix.

"Away from you, be it day or night, 
I only have thoughts of you."

Caspari, Inc shared that this iconic design dates to the 1940s, 
having been a freehanded image designed by 
Franco Scalamandré's wife, Flora Scalmandré, created for  
 Gino of Capri Restaurant on the Upper East Side in NYC.  
Sign up for Caspari, Inc's newsletter 
and follow them on Instagram @casparistyle

I shopped my house to use what I had.

So tell me.  What do you think?
Thumbs Up or Thumbs Down 
on a non traditional table for your valentine?

Wishing each of you special times with those you love.
Make every moment count!

Happy Valentine's Day from
Sarah and Sadie!
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Below is our list of talented tabletop 
stylists ready to inspire.   Enjoy!
Home is Where the Boat Is - Love Birds' Bed & Breakfast
My Hubbard Home - Vintage Inspired Rose and Gold Valentine's Table
Everyday Living - Colors of Love
Pandora's Box - A Galentine's Table
Living With Thanksgiving - Let Me Call You Sweetheart
The Little Yellow Corner Store - A Glamorous Winter Snowman for Valentine's Day
The Painted Apron - Hearts and Flowers
My Thrift Store Addiction - Cupid's Valentine Dessert Buffet
Belle Bleu Interiors - A Day for Love
Red Cottage Chronicles - Fire and Ice Valentine's Tablescape
Hyacinths for the Soul - Where You Go, My Heart Follows  (You Are Here)
Thrifting Wonderland - Start With Flowers Tablescape
Corner of Plaid and Paisley - Sweet Valentine Tablescape


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. What a fun, and unexpected, table setting for Valentine's Day. Love the originality of it. Happy week to you! xo Diana

  2. Such rich colors for a unique table....the ice bucket is very pretty and your theme is so colorful. Clever idea to use a napkin under your plate to add color! And as always, Sadie is so sweet to see!

  3. Wow, Sarah! I am all in on this one, especially because it ties back to how your love story began with the connection between your friend who gifted the zebra ornaments and your floral arrangement. Simply wonderful, how you pick and choose from your wares to make for an unexpected presentation on a theme (and this isn't your first time doing such!). I love the Scalamandre pattern Caspari interpreted, from which you were inspired. Handsome details of the leopard print, black bamboo, and tortoise all enhance and bring a masculine element to the table, something I love doing too. Your copper hearts I'm guessing were love tokens in the collection of your beloved Chef. I know this year will be hard for you, with grief crashing occasions when you least expect it to, but I love how you're carrying on with a continuous nod to the undying spirit that can't be quenched. Thank you, Sarah, for bringing your talent to us and sharing your precious memories and collections.❣️

  4. Hi Sarah, I'm a huge fan of nontraditional colors and decor so thumbs up from me! I always enjoy seeing your charming collections--pinned!

  5. I think it has to be what inspires US on the spot:) I love your herats.Such a sweetheart..and yes impeccable taste:)

  6. A big thumbs up Sarah and I pray for days such as this to ease your loss. I can honestly say, I have been there and holidays can be rough. But I was told I am a strong person...especially since my bout with Pancreatic cancer but many times we are strong on the outside but crumbling with-in and then...we keep on keepin' on. Your table is lovely and Sadie is precious as usual and I love the zebras and storyline with them. I hope my IT issues are resolved soon and I can join you wonderful ladies for the next hop.

  7. Dearest Sarah,
    You write here above: "My Chef was a quiet romantic, a kind and generous soul".
    Hoping that your Chef still IS...!

  8. I love this out of the box idea! So fun to see your creative take on a romantic Valentine’s Day table. Zebras! Who would’ve thought but I love it! Great post!

  9. Sarah, I love your non traditional table. It is so you! Charming and delightful full of curated items full of memories. I think of you and your chef often and admire your spirit to continue on and enjoy life. You are very creative and have a sweet sweet spirit. I adore Caspari napkins. I visited the Charlotte N.C. store once and it was wonderful. The zebras added the perfect finish to your centerpiece.

  10. Very fun table Sarah. I say a big thumbs up. I know you miss your chef. I hope time eases your pain. Your heart will always be full of love and sweet memories. Love the zebras , so darn cute. The napkins are wonderful. I am not familiar with Caspari, so thank you for sharing. Sadie is such a cutie, I know she gives you great comfort. xo

  11. Thumbs up Sarah! I LOVE this!! I am a huge animal print lover and the zebras paired with red and gold for Valentine's Day is adorable! So many pretties, I love the individual champagne buckets and the way you put the napkin round under the glass plates, so smart! I love that you are embracing your memories and sharing thoughts about your beloved Chef. I know Sadie is a great comfort also. Your table is beautiful, fun and super creative!!

  12. This is the sweetest tribute to your Chef, Sarah. I'm welling-up reading it. I do like the nontraditional style of your Valentine's Day table. I think Sadie approves, too! The zebras are fabulous, and so are your flutes. They are so unique! Your zebras that your friend gifted you are very cute, and again, unique. I like your theme! You have the sweetest soul, and I'm so happy to "know" you!
    Happy Valentine's!
    Ricki Jill

  13. Definitely, thumbs up! Sarah, I have loved animal print for 50 years and think every room should have a little animal print, after all, it is considered a neutral. Cuttting the napkin and placing under the glass plate is genius. I remember the gorgeous Scalamandre from years ago when I was in business. The tortoise glassware is so pretty from the talented Suzanne! I love everything about your table! Sharing memories of your beloved Chef warms my heart and I know you treasure every beautiful gift he gave you ♥️

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  15. Sarah, this is a very unusual Valentine’s Day table!! You have a wonderful story behind your choices. Love all your animal print pieces and how you but the cut napkin under the plate! It looks fabulous!! I hope you and Sadie enjoy your Valentine’s Day❤️

  16. Thumbs so up I’m getting a cramp! Bravo my friend! Love the print showing thru the glass plates, elegant , artistic and creative, just like you!! Love you, Bonnie @bonniechasedesigns

  17. Good morning Sarah, I’m sorry I’m late to visit, my day was derailed early yesterday morning. 😊 I saw your beautiful and colorful table yesterday on my phone but didn’t have time to leave a comment. You know I adore the whimsy of your paper maché zebras…such a fun jumping off point for your table with the inspiration of the Caspari napkins. I adore your animal theme with cheetah napkins, bamboo flatware, handsome tortoise stems and bucket and gorgeous bouquet! Your wonderful hearts are such sweet and cherished gifts from your beloved hubby. Last but not least is sweet Sadie’s adorable photo. I’m so glad you were able to join us in the hop. Happy Wednesday ♥

  18. So wonderful to be remembered with flowers from a Friend, Sarah. Love the way you incorporated your gift into the tablescape and such a great idea for using the napkins as a center for your plates. It brought the entire look together. Thanks for sharing.

  19. Thumbs up for sure, Sarah. I love it. The flowers are wonderful -- I much prefer what you did to the typical Valentine roses. The colors are great. And so, too, are all the touches. Love the zebras, the ridged gold plates and the beautiful silverware. What I love most of all is that this Valentine table is a true valentine with loads of beautiful memories of your dear Chef. It's all about love Those silver hearts are exquisite. Sending loads of love this holiday.

  20. Well of course your table setting is a thumbs up Sarah! This is a very romantic setting, and just perfect for memories too. I felt like I knew your chef Sarah, from the first time you pulled a photo of him to show to me in Nice! I've always enjoyed hearing your favorite traditions of selecting and gift giving. No doubt, you two had a special love. There is so much to love in this setting, no valentine's but you don't need them, love is spoken in a different language here. Details and non tradition always speaks volumes. Happy Valentine's Day Sarah and Sadie.......

  21. I'm all for non-traditional ways to celebrate a holiday. Your table is a vivid example of the life you and your husband shared. I just recently lost my husband. We were married for 34 years. This Valentine's Day will be hard on both of us. I will keep you in my prayers.

  22. Hi Sarah. Your lovely Valentine's Day table really captured my heart and soul. The use of something unique for the occasion really captures my attention. I love your choices of patterns/prints and textures for the table (cheetah, tortoise and, of course, your lovely inspiration print, the cute, adorable zebra. I was captivated by the gorgeous red, zebra print. It was playful and yet, so very elegant, especially matched with the gold in the plate stack. Adding the rattan and bamboo flatware really beautifully contrasts with the other textures. Your bold and stunning floral centerpiece is the crowning element to bring the colors together and apart for the pop of rich and striking color. The special gold hearts warmed my heart. I love it all! It is great to blog hop with you, Sarah.

  23. Sarah, I am so delighted to have discovered your blog, and what a beautiful post to be my first introduction. There are so many thoughtful details here - the German hearts are just exquisite. I can only imagine how bittersweet it was to set this table - what a heartfelt, heartwarming tribute to your Valentine.

  24. Your table may not be traditional, but it is lovely and obviously styled by you with thoughts of your love. I am so impressed with the Scalamandré patterned napkins! I have revisited that pattern many times wanting to use it someplace in my home, but knowing that it does not fit in my home. This is a great way to incorporate it at least into a tablescape sometime! Thank you for the inspiration!

  25. Sweet Sarah, I love your Valentine's Day table. I made me smile this evening. I know there is a lot of love at this table. The gold hearts are such a special and treasured gift to have. The Scalamandre napkins make such a pretty theme for your table, and those zebras are adorable. The tortoise accents make such a lovely compliment. Your floral arrangement caught my eye right away. I adore color, and your arrangement is stunning. I have so enjoyed my visit, sweet friend. Sorry, I am so late commenting. It has been a crazy week. Wishing you a wonderful week ahead! Shannon@Belle Bleu Interiors

  26. Sarah, definitely 2 thumbs up!! Genius idea to put the napkin under the clear plate. It really is a showstopper! I can't stop swooning over the beautiful flowers! Simply stunning. Your zebra and touches of animal prints do give me a feeling of love and romance. Your stemware is lovely. I have my eye on some pretty gold rimming glasses from Arte Italica. It has been a pleasure joining you in this hop!

  27. I often think the most successful tablescapes are those that are the most personal. They are interesting, sometimes quirky, and usually tell a story. Your Valentine's table is all of the above. And creative too! I love tablescapes that mix textures, eras, colors. The flowers are gorgeous. Enjoy your Valentine's Day!

  28. It's Honora, Sarah - can't figure out how to comment when I come over from Facebook. I love this whimsical, non-traditional Valentine's table! Everything comes together so beautifully even though the components are disparate - just goes to show that when you stick with what you love it will all, always, come together.

  29. Definitely a thumbs up Sarah! I love your artistic flair for combining textures, colors and designs. This is a beautiful and fun table!

  30. I say thumbs up on this beautiful table setting, Sarah. It is whimsical, fun and yet elegant and stunning at the same time. I know you miss your soulmate as I do mine. Thankfully we have our memories of a lifetime of love. ❤️


Thank you to each of you who take the time to leave a comment. I read and appreciate each and every one and will respond to any questions. Your notes are the only way I know who has stopped in for a visit.