Table Setting

My blogger friends Maryann of Finding La Dolce Vita and Marie of Proud Italian Cook suggested that I enter this table setting competition sponsored by Barilla Pasta.

For many years, my friend Lauren and I would enter the Los Angeles County Fair Table Setting Competition in September. We would arrive early in the morning. We had one hour to set our tables, then spent the rest of the day at the Fair. The LA County Fair is one of the largest in the country. Some of our fair highlights include: sampling the Gold Medal wines, the garden and flower exhibits, betting on the horse races at Fairplex, barbecued corn on the cob, falafels, the livestock and my favorite – the piglets! The LA County Fair is fantastic, if you are in LA in September, definitely go! And make sure to visit the Table Setting Competition in the Creative Living Building.

The neat thing about this online competition is that I don’t have to schlep the entire table setting to Pomona California, or anywhere else for that matter. Set it up in the dining room, take some photos, then upload!

And let me tell you, schlepping your table setting is a process. Because you are using all your nice china and glass, you have to wrap everything just so carefully.

Now the inspiration for this table came from another blogger friend, Simona of Briciole. A while back she wrote a post about pears and Italian expressions. The theme for our Romantic Italian table is:

Cascare Come Una Pera Cotta
To Fall Head Over Heels In Love

No Italian dinner is complete without wine, tonight’s choice is a 1990 Barolo. That is a 750ml bottle – it is dwarfed by the over sized wine glasses and over sized candles, and humongous basket. It is neat to spend time setting a table when you don’t plan to cook. The creative energy is spent on the table itself. But if we were to cook, our pasta course would be a fettuccine with pears, gorgonzola, and candied walnuts.

Last weekend, my dear friend Peggy from Denver, was visiting me. We spent hours collecting objects from all over the house (and under the house; the “placemats” are terra cotta floor tiles) arranging our final setting. These are the photographs we submitted to Barilla. Win or not, we had a blast!
A special thanks to Peggy, Lauren, Maryann, Marie, and Simona.

20 thoughts on “Table Setting”

  1. Gorgeous! So beautiful! I knew you would do a fabulous job! Please keep me in touch about the contest, ok?
    Good luck to you, Lori Lynn!

  2. I am speechless: what you did is amazingly beautiful. Thank you for sharing this with us. How does the decision process work? Can we vote for you?

  3. Lori Lynn, I am in AWE!! Absolutely gorgeous, elegent and very romantic!!Your table is definately a winner!! I have to go back and stare at it for a while!!I’m going backnright now!!

  4. Hi Maryann – Thanks again. We had such a fun time!

    Hi Laurie – kinda neat to download a cookbook for free and for a good cause. My favorite of their table settings was the one with the lemon centerpiece…

    Hi Simona – thanks for the support. I think the folks at Barilla pick the winners. I’ll keep you posted!

    Thanks Marie – I appreciate your comment, especially since I recently saw YOUR table for the documentary filming! Your table was beautiful as well as was all that food you made! That is some feat.

  5. Please keep us updated with how the competition progresses. The setting is beautiful but more importantly, it is inviting. It begs to be sat at and enjoyed. I can actually visualize the meal, the laughter, the chatter. Great job my friend.

  6. My God! You must absolutely win! I’ve never seen anything so beautiful, and the photos, oh, the photos. I adore the theme, and I remember that post of Simona’s.

    The pear is so voluptuous, and the plate perfectly complements it.

    Best of luck, not that you need it! Exciting!

  7. Hi Cynthia and Lisa- thank you so very much. Tomorrow is the judging. No matter what, it was great to get the creative juices flowing and spend time with my friend Peggy.

    Regardless of what the judges think (you never know what they are looking for) my gratification has come from everybody’s comments…As always, I am truly appreciative. Thanks again.

  8. Lori Lynn This is absolutely gorgeous , I love table settings, please keep us update. And like Maryann I would keep my finger crossed

  9. Hi there my name is Jeena and I have started a food recipe forum that I thought you would like to join here Click here for food recipe forum

    I would love to see you on there to chat about food and cooking you can talk about anything you like and start your very own topics. 🙂
    or see my main food recipe website Jeenas food recipe site

    Hope to see you soon


    Jeena x

  10. Dear Lori
    Creating the visual impact is an art for mood setting and you are very good and creative. No wonder ‘taste with the eyes’ is the perfect blog name !



    Hi Anamika – thanks so much, I really appreciate your comment on the blog name. I knew the kind of blog I wanted to write, it took some time to decide on a name to fit it.

  12. Hi Everyone – well, it doesn’t look like we won the competition this time. No matter, we had a great time. Thanks for all your well wishes. If you want to see the winners you can click on “table setting competition by Barilla pasta” in the body of the post.

    Thanks again!

  13. Maryann…you are too nice. Say, if you ever come across another table setting competition, be sure to let me know!

  14. I love your table setting, no matter what. I particularly like the color choices, the pears and the lilacs together look great!
    The lilacs here in Vienna will bloom in a couple of weeks and then the whole city will feel be enveloped in the color and fragrance of lilac.

  15. Wow! Your setting is very beautiful, I would like to have dinner on this table. very interesting the fair you are talking about in LA. Maybe next year we will come back to California for holidays.

  16. Hi Francesca – I am so glad you went back in time to take a look at this post. Table setting is a hobby of mine.

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