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Courtney's Corner: Setting a modern Valentine's Day table

Courtney Lake is a Bay Area based interior design and the voice behind the lifestyle blog, Courtney Out Loud. A graduate of Stanford University, he worked in high-tech marketing and events before launching his successful interior design...

blue valentine

Ditch the normal pink, red and white color scheme for the most romantic day of the year. Raise your design temperature on Valentine's Day by creating the perfect tablescape for two with a mix of patterns and a blue hue.

Who says that Valentine's Day has to be all about white lace, pink champagne and red roses? Why not redirect Cupid's arrow and aim for a more updated and modern approach to the holiday by creating a romantic table for two inspired by the color blue? Sampling from the entire spectrum of the hue, we paired some smart purchases and even a quick DIY project to create a lush and layered vignette that will surely stoke the fires of desire.

Candles

Mixing patterns…

Have fun! Show your wild side by mixing patterns in your place setting. We layered a graphic cheetah-print charger with a more subdued but still fun animal print plate. We then finished it off with a salad plate in a traditional pattern.

Valentine's Day Place Setting

DIY chargers…

Make your own chargers with wrapping paper, spray adhesive, foam core and paint. Cut the foam core any shape you want (we chose octagon), but the final size should be about 13 inches from side to side. With a small craft brush, paint the edges of the foam core shape a coordinating color. Spray the foam core with the spray adhesive and carefully lay your wrapping paper to avoid air bubbles. Take a straight edge and trim excess paper. If you plan on using these for more than one service, apply a layer of protective sealant like Mod Podge to the entire surface.

DIY Placemat for Valentine's Day

Don't match silverware...

Notice something? The flatware doesn't match, and that is OK! Vintage mother-of-pearl mixes with family heirloom silver and everyday utensils for a look that is elevated but relaxed.

Flatware

Thriller, filler and spiller...

If you are going to attempt a mixed floral arrangement, make sure you have a "thriller" (lisianthus), a "filler" (pink roses) and a "spiller" (sunset heather). As a general rule of thumb, I like to have a 60/30/10 ratio for the combination of flowers. Tightly packed pink roses create the latticework for the purple lisianthus, while the heather is used to soften the edges. It's a formula that has worked for me repeatedly.

Valentine's Day Floral Arrangement

Ditch the vase...

To elevate your floral arrangement to another level, consider a nontraditional vessel for it. A bulbous low vase sprayed to match the table decor was used for the centerpiece. A secondary arrangement was made and placed inside a silver box. Simple individual centerpieces were made in small jewelry boxes and used as part of the place setting.

Valentine Floral Arrangement

Floral Arrangement for Valentine's Day

Coordinate your chairs to your decor…

We borrowed this simple yet stylish idea from a wedding we once attended. Silk sashes bought at an Indian sari shop add a splash of color to upholstered chairs in a nonpermanent way.

Chair Sash

Change of scenery…

Who says that Valentine's dinner has to occur in the dining room? Why not give you and your paramour a change of scenery and have dinner in another space in your home? What is typically the living room was changed into a dark and moody bistro for a special dinner for two, complete with mood lighting.

Valentine's Day

Use the above tips to set your Valentine's Day table, and you will definitely not be left feeling blue come dinner. Actually, truth be told, you may be stoking the fires for one red-hot night!

More articles on Valentine's Day

10 Printable celebrity Valentine's Day cards
Valentine's Day gifts for guys based on your relationship stage
Valentine love bug snacks

Photo credits: Photo by Adza
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