Setting The Table With Caitlin Chapman

setting the table

Setting The Table With Caitlin Chapman

If anyone knows how to entertain outdoors, it’s California lifestyle blogger, Caitlin Chapman. From airy linens to neutral ceramics, take a peek at the elevated aesthetic she created for a recent spring gathering.

How would you describe your hosting style?

Living in California, my hosting style hopefully reflects the enjoyable mix of outdoor and indoor living that we do here. I want everything to be a combination of comfort and style, casual yet with an attention to detail. 

When you know you want to throw a dinner party - where do you start in terms of planning?

The first thing I think about is the food. I love going to the farmers market and seeing what's in season that week. What I find will dictate the menu and what is served. Setting the table is next, which is the most fun! I really enjoy taking the time to visualize how the table will look in terms of linens, plates and glassware.  

Tell us more about the Year & Day pieces you used for this get together. 

This was a celebration of spring and almost everything I used was Year & Day! The neutral tones of the dishware and linens provided a perfect backdrop to the beautiful spring produce and flowers that are in abundance right now.

The linen tablecloth and napkins in Moon from the new collection were the starting point for this get together. The color is a creamy shade and the linen has just the right texture and heft to allow everything to seem special and yet still casual. The dinner plates are the ideal size and make the food look amazing. I used the Low Serving Bowl for salad but it can be used for so many things such as a pasta or vegetable dish, as can the Oval Platter.

Wine glasses are important to me and the ones from Year & Day are the perfect size and can be used indoor or out. They are elegant yet sturdy - the best combination!

Any favorite recipes of late?  

All things asparagus, peas, green garlic and strawberries! I recently posted my Spring Peas with Buratta and Mint. I’ve been making a lot of asparagus dishes since it is such a short season. I simply saute them with green garlic, butter, lemon juice and zest. 

I also recently upgraded my ice cream maker and have been experimenting with making different flavors of ice cream. A new favorite is my honey ice cream and served with honeycomb and sea salt. 

Can you tell us about a special memory or something that you’ve always kept with you from a dinner party - either your own or one you attended? 

Most of my memories are in some way connected to and through food. For my own dinner parties, I keep a little journal of who attended, what the occasion was, along with the menu and any cooking notes. It’s fun to look back over the years and see how my cooking and entertaining have evolved.  

Who would be in attendance at your dream dinner party? 

I can think of so many people I would love to have but first and foremost would be Alice Waters. She is one of the most important founders of California Cuisine and I love everything she stands for. Also Sally Schmitt if she were still here. She was the original owner of The French Laundry and a true inspiration of a woman who balanced cooking professionally and having a family. And David Sedaris would most definitely need to be there for his hilarity. 

What music is playing?

It depends on my mood for the evening! I have a few go-to playlists that feature jazz musicians such as Miles Davis and the Roy Hargrove Quintet, as well as Stan Getz and Ella Fitzgerald. 

Dishes before bed or in the morning?

I aspire to do all the dishes before bed, but sometimes after an epic meal, I have to relinquish the idea of everything being neat and tidy and just resort to soaking and stacking and doing it all in the morning. I feel at the end of the day this is a sign of a good night!

Get Caitlin's Look 

Moon Everyday Tablecloth

Moon Outdoor Core Set

Matte Steel Flatware

Moon Low Serving Bowl 

Wine Glasses