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Holiday Entertaining

Tips and Tricks for easy hosting

Autumn Table Setting

Gathering with the people we love is a gift whether we find ourselves eating off paper plates or fancy dishes. Even so, adding beautiful accents fosters meaning to the moments shared and can be just as easy to pull together. In this tablescape I used touches of the outdoors with real leaves, pinecones and grapevine wreaths. These simple additions add personality and warmth to any autumn table. Follow these directions for how to prepare outdoor accents (because dirt and bugs are the only ones not invited to the table) and you will have a stunning tablescape that costs you only a leisurely walk around your neighborhood and a passing chat with a neighbor, if you are so lucky.

How to: Preserve Pinecones

Bake pinecones to remove any tiny critters, dry up the sticky sap, and give the pinecone a beautiful glossy finish. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and lay pinecones in rows allowing space as they expand when baked. Place in the oven for about 30 minutes. If pinecones were gathered on a damp day, it might take longer. Keep a close eye and pull them out when the house smells of pine trees and your pinecones go from a matte to glossy finish. To use simply scatter around the table or use as place-setting card holders as I have done here.

How to: Preserve Leaves

Gather fallen leaves and test for dryness. Look for mostly dry, not brittle or limp. If too limp or fresh then press between books on parchment paper for a few days before proceeding. When ready to begin, prep the space by placing leaves in a single layer on wax paper. Brush one side of the leaf with a thin coat of Mod Podge using a foam brush. Let dry for 30 minutes or until the white coat turns clear. Flip leaves over, brush the other side and let dry again. Use leaves by scattering them around the table or frame as art for the gathering space.

How to: Write Place Cards

Handwriting guests' names on place cards gives an extra personalized touch. Start with writing the name with pencil (an eraser is your friend), then trace with a thin tipped sharpie. Finally, go over all the down strokes with a thick tipped sharpie to create a hand lettering effect. Watch the how-to video on IG @silvertoothhome. Happy Gatherings!

How to: Create a Gorgeous Charcuterie Board by Grazing KC

A Charcuterie board is an easy way to create an eye-catching, delicious spread for guests to nibble on and enjoy. Sarah with Grazing KC is sharing an easy shopping list and tips on how to build a beautiful board.

Shopping List:

3-4 fine cheeses (a variety of soft and hard)

1-2 cured meats (like salami and prosciutto)

2-3 season fresh fruits

1 dried fruit



1 Jam/honey/mustard 

1-2 types of crackers 

Fresh herbs for garnish 

  1. Cheese—Build the foundation of your board with cheese. Add your softest cheese as a full block and pre-cut your hard cheeses by crumbling or slicing.

  2. Charcuterie—Fold salami into quarters and lay the salami throughout the board building around the cheese.

  3. Color—Add pops of color such as fruit and olives throughout the board.

  4. Crunch—In the remaining gaps on your board add crunch such as nuts and crackers.

  5. Garnish your board with fresh herbs and enjoy grazing!

Food Stylist: Sarah Juenemann of @GrazingKC 

Shoot Credits:

Chocolates by Panache Chocolatier in Park Place Leawood

Location: Amigoni Urban Winery

Wine: Amigoni Wine

Charcuterie Board: GrazingKC.ORG

Stylist: LeAnn Parker

Photography: Janie Jones