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Episode 511: Midsummer Night's Dream
Midsummer Garden Table
Take your seat
When planning a garden party for you and your friends, the idea is to create a dreamy environment for a casual, relaxed evening.

Are your garden chairs made of wrought iron like ours? Try to soften them up a bit with a cover treatment. Using white fabric, create covers to fit on the back of each chair. For seat covers, create a "T"-shape, then slip it over the seat of the chair, attach the ties, and observe the beautiful tailored look.

The look we are aiming for works best with a glass-topped table covered with a white table cover. Place an outdoor light on the ground directly underneath the table, plug it into a garden power source and it will create a really nice light coming up.

Heavyweight frosted glass show-plates are perfect as the foundation for each place setting. Clear glass plates look great placed on top. To complete the look, try to find wine glasses with frosted stems. The combination of clear and frosted glass will make your glassware match perfectly with your dishware. At each place setting, place down a white wine goblet for that Chardonnay, a red wine glass for that Merlot and a champagne goblet for that essential bubbly.

Cutlery should consist of a simple, stainless steel pattern. For napkins, white linen works best, treated with some complementary ribbon such as our two-toned white organdy and organza. Don't be alarmed by the combination of ivory/white tones; when the sun sets, the colours will blend together nicely.

Put your centrepiece together quickly and inexpensively, using a crystal bowl as a foundation. Fill it with water and add some Dendrobium orchid buds. Although we chose to keep it plain, you can also add food colouring to the water to give it a hued look. Add floating candles, preferably white for this evening, to the arrangement. Be careful to lower your candles carefully into the water; if you drop them in, the wicks will get wet.

Many people would agree that a backyard isn't complete without a nice bench with big, comfy cushions on which to sit. A couple of side tables help to complete the look. Add a large glass vase filled with Casablanca lilies to each table, as well as a hurricane lamp containing a tall, white, pillar candle.

As your guests start to arrive, and dusk begins to fall on your midsummer garden setting, you will see how picturesque your dream can turn out to be when it becomes a reality.