Stunning Tablescapes From New York’s Prettiest Party

The New York Flower Show Dinner Dance is always a standout in a season of pretty parties in the city. Benefitting the Horticultural Society of New York, the designers, bless them, were inventive and over-the-top, and if you look closely there are many ideas that can be adapted at home–interesting color combinations, place settings, plant varieties and props.

Beth Horta for Flower School New York
Beth Horta for Flower School New York

The evening’s honorees this year were La Grenouille’s Charles Masson and artist Hunt Slonem. Wow oh wow and they were, and are, wonderful.

Now may I show you to your table?

Elan Flowers
Elan Flowers

The venue this year was the Altman building in Chelsea, a location somewhat edgier than the usual Upper East Side glamour spot. I missed our old place at 583 Park, but hey it’s good to mix it up now and then.

I’ve never seen so many orchids.

Alaric Flower Design
Alaric Flower Design

The designer Michal Aram is noted botanical motifs in his designs for the house and table.

Michael Aram Inc.
Michael Aram Inc.

West Elm was nice enough to create a centerpiece you could see over. I love the yellow and blue, and the beachy-summery theme.

West Elm
West Elm

H. Hartley du Pont was one of the evening’s design chairmen, along with Mario Buatta and Lee Robinson. His table was inspired by the sea, with a turquoise-y tablecloth and porcelain sea urchins with tentacle-y things.

H. Hartley du Pont
H. Hartley du Pont, one of the evening's design chairmen, along with Mario Buatta and Lee Robinson

All green can be great.


But then again…

Renny & Reed
Renny & Reed

Renny & Reed is always a showstopper. Oh, those peonies! And the supersize scale of the centerpiece, the hanging votives, the turquoise tablecloth with the emerald chargers–great fun.

And a great show it was. The Hort raised money for its children’s programs and as a trustee I was happy about that.

Win a Rocking Chair…

Have you entered to Win a Rocking Chair? You still can by clicking here and leaving a comment. It’s a beautiful wicker piece by Lloyd-Flanders. Details here.


  1. Wow…what showstoppers. Each table is so beautiful and unique in design, and I am totally enamored with the all white of the Elan Flowers – a perfect way to raise money for charity!

  2. That was just a visual treat, I can only imagine what it would be like in person!! Thanks for sharing!

  3. I’m a pink girl, that first arrangement, Beth Horta, oh my! The orchids, Alaric, a fountain of pure magic and Renny & Reed with all those colors, a tropical island fantasy summer party! All so beautiful!

  4. Renny and Reed; my favorite. It reeks of a fun and happy time. All the tables are magnificent, but you would never see the other guests. I adore tall skinny vases with only candles below and pick up the floral colors in the napkins. Tablescapes are a high form of art and require great talent. When they are right a party takes on new meaning. Thanks for sharing and hope they raised some serious money for charity.

  5. I would love to enter to win the beautiful rocker. I would put it in my living roomm since my deck is not covered. I could sit and rock and relive all the times and all nights of rocking my 4 babies, plus I have also rocked all of my grandchildren. Warm and fuzzy, indeed.
    I also love the flowers and my orchid is about to bloom and I was just thankful it was still alive.

    1. Hi Laverne and thanks for writing! Always love hearing from you. I tried to answer you by private email but it was kicked back. Do I have your correct email? Love, Frances

  6. Oh good Lord I love the flowers, and for me, the bigger the better! Gorgeous! PS The Rancheros Visitadores are coming next weekend to Santa Ynez…lock up your daughters and your liquor…

  7. Hello Frances – Thanks for bringing a slice of New York to Brisbane, Australia. You always bring inspiration and lift the spirit! Kind regards, Kate M

  8. So beautiful and very impressive! Frances, would you mind telling me what are on the plates in the Beth Horta photo in addition to the napkins?

    1. Hi Frances! Beautiful name ;)… On the plates are the napkins of course with a napkin ring the details of which escape me, and the other object is a miniature moss terrarium that was made for each guest as a favor by the staff of the Horticultural Society. A lovely gift and virtually no maintenance! Thank you so much for writing, and for reading! Best to you, FS

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