Danielle Rollins loves dishing about memorable parties. In her book, “Soiree Entertaining With Style” (Rizzoli, 2012), the lifestyles expert takes readers behind the scenes of the elaborate at-home parties that have become her forte.
This weekend, she brings her elegant-yet-practical style to the 10th annual Lauritzen Gardens Antique & Garden Show. It's her first speaking engagement since taking the summer off to spend with her three children.
“I'm excited to be back in action,” she said in an online interview.
Rollins will give a floral arranging demonstration on Saturday; Sunday, she'll share her tips for gracious living and stylish entertaining. “Double the pleasure, double the fun,” she said.
In between her scheduled appearances, she'll more than likely shop the show. “My kids have to remind me before every preview party that this is NOT a shopping expedition. But I can't help myself,” she said.
“I am always on the lookout for reasonably priced art that I want to own for no other reason than that I love it,” she said. “My dining room could use a series of framed prints, and I'm fanatical about anything that's astrological or chinoiserie inspired, or features birds. Antique crystal, china, place card holders, silver serving pieces and cachepots for flowers are other great finds at a show like this.”
Rollins “thrives” on solving home entertaining conundrums and inspiring people to try something new and different or revive something they once enjoyed.
In anticipation of the Lauritzen Gardens show, we asked the new “it” girl of home entertaining to share five ideas for stylish tabletops using — what else? — antiques:
» Vintage china
“I adore vintage china. I like it when used alone or mixed with something more contemporary. The layered, curated and collected look always has more charm and warmth. Vintage china has a certain patina that you just can't get off the shelf. Even if it has a crack or chip, it gives the table setting some character and a sense of history. It's an heirloom, maybe just not yours — that is, until you take it home.”
» Silver pieces
“Loving cups, cocktail shakers, an ice bucket, saltcellars, candlesticks, goblets, julep cups — you name it. I can't get enough of the shiny stuff. Sterling or even a good silver plate — les objets de la table — lends just the right amount of sparkle to any entertaining experience.”
» Vintage linens
“I go for the ones that are slightly 'loved.' There is nothing more chic than a well-pressed, slightly frayed cocktail napkin. It has witnessed many good times, rather than being stuck in a drawer its whole life.”
» Antique glassware
“It's usually perfect for stretching your collection. I especially have a weakness for antique and vintage champagne glasses, and I love colored crystal anything.”
» Vintage side chairs