Sometimes all you need is a hearty dose of girly details. And this tablescape is just what I’ve been looking for. A vase overflowing with luscious peonies, a well stocked cocktail bar, and a few hits of girly graphics set the stage for an incredible summer affair. You might want to grab all of Waiting On Martha‘s  tips and tricks behind this fab set-up, beautifully captured by Rustic White, below. And, while we’re sharing secrets, most of these pieces can be purchased right here. For more inspiration, head over to the gallery!

From Mandy of Waiting On Martha… My personal style is “opposites attract.” From combining feminine and masculine, heavy and soft, to modern and traditional, I think combining opposites yields the most dramatic and yet surprisingly natural results. But sometimes I just have to indulge in the ultra feminine side of me, as is the case with my perfectly pretty summer table setting and coordinating bar cart! With just one look at this tablescape, it’s easy to see that living in the South has really started to impact my design aesthetic. The design for this shoot was inspired by vivid summer hues, quintessential Southern style and my favorite summer indulgence: key lime pie. I think it’s light, fresh, feminine, and perfect for summer!

When setting a table there are a few hard and fast rules I always adhere to:

- Think variation in color, pattern and height. I want my table to create interest at every angle and this is easily achieved by mixing colors and patterns, with elements at different heights. By simply placing a napkin between the charger and dinner plate or dinner plate and salad plate,  you can break things up and give your place setting definition.

-Don’t be afraid to mix patterns and shades of color. I would have never thought a chartreuse ikat placemat and kelly green greek key napkin would work well together, but I loved the result once I played around with it!

-Invest in round white dinner and salad plates. They’re easy and will go with everything. I rely on white plates as the starting point for most of my tablescapes. Just add colorful linens (I love festive napkins) and dessert plates for instant pop. 

-Go all out with your flatware. Forget about silver or stainless steel—go with gold or rose gold for something unexpected and unforgettable. I found my gold set at One Kings Lane years ago and the rose gold set featured in this tablescape is a recent purchase from West Elm.

-Don’t forget fresh flowers! In my mind, a table is just not a table without fresh flowers. My biggest resource for affordable flowers is a wholesale florist. Finding a great vendor and planning in advance are your best options for a beautiful, inexpensive arrangement!

Design & Styling: Mandy Kellogg Rye of Waiting On Martha | Photography: Rustic White Photography | Rope Vase, Muddler, Shaker, Pom Poms, Champagne Flutes, Elephant Cocktail Napkins, Shocking Pink Striped Straws, Citrus Plates & Mercury Votives all available at: Waiting On Martha