Looking for ideas to take your home out of hibernation and entertain for spring? There were tons on display at DIFFA’s annual Dining by Design event at NYC’s Pier 94 a few weeks ago. Here, guest blogger Naomi Cooper reports on what she saw. For more inspiration, mark your calendar for Dining By Design here in Chicago in November.


Architecture firm Slade added a pop of color to the simple-line style that they are known for by taping up its tables and chairs in duct tape featured in an array of colors. Not a good idea if your table is an investment piece or if your walls are covered in prints, but a perfect solution for covering up the imperfections on a great flea market find. Try out the color blocking trend by applying strips to a white Parson’s table like one sold at West Elm.


Kravet used designs from its new fabric collection to transform its table into a real gem. There were jewelry boxes covered in lush patterned textiles and each one was filled with a place setting in a bright hue. The orange-leather trimmed table with grommets, smoked glass inlaid tabletop and orchid arrangements take it guests on a journey through the silk trading routes of long ago. If you are less of a jetsetter and more of a homebody, add a frilly table skirt and some other feminine touches and guests will feel as if they are seated at a dressing rather than a dining table.


Your eco-conscious guests will sing your praises and you won’t have to worry about washing dishes when you host a party where everything from your utensils to your centerpieces are made of paper. That’s what the New York School of Interior Design did with its table. You can find disposable bamboo, plates, serving utensils, flatware and more at Bambu. Create an arrangement of paper petals. Visit Paper Source for paper flower-making kits.


Former supermodel Cindy Crawford brings her laid back entertaining style to the masses with her new line for JCPenney. The collection’s simple lines and shapes, plus a color palette of Tiffany blue, cream, and chocolate brown work for both the host and hostess.


The black and white neo-classical place settings, lamps, and gold candelabras are perfect for a Marie Antoinette–themed bridal shower. All you need are some French macaroons in pastel blues and pink and white cupcakes with iced flowers in fuchsia and turquoise. This table was by Rodarte for Knoll Luxe Fine Textiles by Bradley Stephen.