dining al fresco.

I absolutely love to dine outdoors, how about you?

dining al fresco

Some of my favorite travel memories revolve around restaurants with gorgeous patios such at the Indian Jewel in Prague which is situated in a courtyard that has been around since medieval times.  I also fondly remember dining at a sidewalk cafe in Copenhagen alongside the canal in Nyhavn.  All of the chairs had little wool throws on them so that you could wrap up as it got chilly when the sun went down.  Our server easily switched between English at our table, German at the table next to us and French at another which impressed me to no end.

Mr. Q and I try to dine on our own deck whenever we can.  Of course, this being Minnesota, there are only about five months out of the year when this is possible.  I did take a cue from the Danes and I have a wool throw for each chair, so that helps extend the season.

dining al fresco 2

I’m always drawn to those photos on pinterest or in magazines that show a dining room table set up outdoors.  They always look so romantic.  Check out my ‘dining al fresco’ pinboard {here}.

But the reality for me is that whenever I try to plan something like that the weather doesn’t cooperate.  Last Friday I had some people over for dinner.  I had pictured a gorgeous evening on the deck, but instead we ended up inside.  Not only was it in the 90’s and awfully humid, but that weather led to the possibility for severe thunderstorms.  Somehow high winds and lightening kill the romance of outside dining.

dining al fresco 3

It’s far easier to set up a dining table outside strictly for a photo shoot.  You can just wait for a lovely sunny day and get everything set up just right.

french market tote with ironstone

It helps if you just happen to have a freshly refinished dining room set that you want to share.

dining al fresco 4

This is the completed dining set that I mentioned earlier in the week.  I’ve only pictured it with 4 chairs, but there are 8.  You saw most of them on Monday.

chairs after 1

There are also 3 leaves.  So it can be expanded when necessary.  Mr. Q and I tried adding the leaves last night just to be sure everything worked well.  That table gets to be quite long with those leaves added!  The 8 chairs will be just right.

The client who purchased the Inglenook sideboard from me has dibs on this set.  She’s coming to see it tonight.  She’s worried that the darker wood top on this table won’t work with the lighter wood top on the sideboard.  The table top looks darker in these photos than it does in person though, so I’m hoping she likes it.

dining set 4

If it turns out that she doesn’t think it will work, this set will be looking for a new home.  I’ll be sure to add it to my ‘available for local sale’ page if it becomes available.  Stay tuned!

Meanwhile, my sister and I are headed out to our favorite Minneapolis neighborhood tomorrow for their annual garage sales.  The Nokomis neighborhood is where both of our parents were born and raised.  Hope I find some fun stuff to share with you next week!

Linking up with Friday’s Furniture Fix.

21 thoughts on “dining al fresco.

  1. I love the Nokomis sales! Have fun! Make sure to stop at the store, “Junket” while you’re over there, it’s too good to miss. It’s considered part of the “Minnehaha Mile” which has maybe 10 awesome shops to visit. About the table vs. the sideboard…I always think a bit of mismatching makes for an interesting design whether it be wood or metals, so I hope she likes it, it turned out beautifully!


  2. I don’t know if anyone recalls the opening credits for the TV show “Brothers and Sisters,” but that ethereal outdoor dining table, surrounded with mismatched chairs, tucked under a tree with a spreading canopy of leaves and strung with lights, is the standard for alfresco dining that is firmly lodged in my mind. I cannot contrive to recreate the vision on my own suburban patio but that doesn’t stop us from eating out every chance we get. I hope your client can visualize this lovely dining set in her home. It’s scary bringing a new painted piece into the mix but it usually manages to “belong” to the room.


  3. Love alfresco dining and as expected your staging is perfection Q! I actually viewed that Pinterest board of yours yesterday. Since I am follower I get alerts when you are pinning. Thie table has nice detailing and looks amazing. But three leaves is fairly unusual, at least it is here. Two tends to be more standard so this is a great find. As long as the pieces blend they do not need to match. Much more interesting don’t you think? I never saw the show” Brothers and Sisters” so if anybody has a photo of the closing credits please do share. Happy shopping tomorrow!


    1. I found a photo of the credits but don’t know how to include that in a comment. Hmmm. Try googling the show, it was one of the first images that came up when I did.


  4. This is beautiful, and I already heard that Sue brought it home. So great I can think of you every time I go visit Sue.



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