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2005 Holiday Host Guide: Set & Match

Randi Danforth

As these ensembles demonstrate,the juxtaposition of seemingly divergent elements—New World with Old World, classic with contemporary, wood with silver—can produce the most intriguing tableware.

NEW ENGLAND MEETS OLD FRANCE
The clean, simple lines of the Chino sterling flatware from Massachusetts silversmith Peter Erickson offset the intense patterns of Robert Haviland & C. Parlon’s porcelain Chateau Or. Decorated with fleurs-de-lis, Renaissance angels, and poetry excerpts, the service recalls plates from the tables of the Loire Valley châteaux where French royalty once wiled away their summers.

Robert Haviland & C. Parlon Chateau Or porcelain Chenonceaux presentation plate, $140, Renaissance dinner plate, $75, Val de Loire dessert plate, $70, bread and butter plate, $50, teacup, $75, and teacup saucer, $25; John Hardy Dot silver granulated wine goblet, $395; Zelen onyx bowl, $75; Peter Erickson Chino sterling silver flatware, $1,300 for a six-piece setting; Argentia silver lioness, $1,150 for a pride of five lionesses; TableArt beige glass bead placemat, $38, napkin, $10, and silver napkin holder, $45 for a set of four.

SECRET SERVICE
Although Nymphenburg is one of Europe’s oldest porcelain manufacturers, Ted Muehling’s line, which includes the coral spoons shown here, as well as the Nymphenburg Incognito collection, demonstrates that the Munich company remains current. Designed by Khashayar Naimanan, a recent graduate of the Royal College of Art, the Incognito line derives its name from his placement of classic Nymphenburg motifs: The images adorn the underside of the white porcelain plates, where only the host—and whoever washes the dishes—will appreciate them.

DECANTING WITH DISTINCTION
The faceted, beveled stems of Lalique’s Diamant glasses and the similarly designed stopper of the matching decanter catch the light brilliantly. The Louvre decanter, which is part of another new collection from Lalique, is curvy, with a traditional profile. In contrast, the crystal and silver Troia pitcher from the Florence company Pampaloni presents a more contemporary shape.

CONNECTING THE DOTS
John Hardy’s signature dot pattern, a common feature in his jewelry designs, embellishes the rims of his silver goblets and salad bowl. For his utensils, Hardy has combined silver with such woods as palm and bamboo, lending to these table accessories an element of tropical exoticism that makes them suitable for the dinner parties he hosts at his home in Bali. The snail-shell shapes of the bowl and salt-and-pepper set by Ted Muehling—who, like Hardy, designed jewelry before turning his attention to tableware—were influenced by the rococo flourishes of Nymphenburg’s fine period porcelain.

BIGGER BLUE
With Royal Copenhagen’s Blue Fluted Mega, young Danish designer Karen Kjaeldgård-Larsen reinvigorates a classic pattern. She enlarges sections of the Blue Fluted motif, which was created more than 225 years ago, and repositions them on blank white porcelain pieces to form dynamic abstractions. Royal Copenhagen introduced the line in 2000 and every year adds new pieces. Each piece in the service displays a different design.

Tableware Resources Anichini, 888.230.5388, www.anichini.com
Argentia, available at TableArt, 323.653.8278, www.tartontheweb.com Armani Casa, 310.248.2440, www.armanicasa.com
John Hardy, www.johnhardy.com
available at Neiman Marcus, 800.937.6379, www.neimanmarcus.com
Lalique, 800.993.2580, www.lalique.com
Meissen, available at TableArt, 323.653.8278, www.tartontheweb.com
Noka Chocolate, 877.270.8209, www.nokachocolate.com
Nymphenburg, www.nymphenburg-porzellan.de
available at Moss, 866.888.6677, and
TableArt, 323.653.8278, www.tartontheweb.com
Pampaloni, available at Micucci, 877.642.8224, www.micuccicollection.com
Peter Erickson, available at TableArt, 323.653.8278, www.tartontheweb.com
Robert Haviland & C. Parlon, 800.993.2580;
Royal Copenhagen, www.royalcopenhagen.com,
available at TableArt, 323.653.8278, www.tartontheweb.com
Zelen, 323.658.6756

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Photo by Vicky Lam
Photo by Virgin Limited Edition
Photo by Sara Baldwin
Courtesy of Pangolin London with Amelia McNeil/Carter Wells/Race Furniture/Sanderson Ltd.