Gracious Entertaining: Extending Hospitality in Blue and White

Blue and White Table

When friends come to call for the weekend, a freshly cut bouquet of blue and white hydrangeas offers an amiable greeting. A tableau arranged with coordinating transferware presents the evening’s menu to best effect, while alabaster textiles edged in delicate azure embroidery transform guest quarters into sanctuaries of relaxation. Throughout the visit, this charming colorway will evoke calming allusions to sea and sky at every turn.

Blue and White Table

“No other palette, in its many hues, is as enduring as blue and white,” affirms Lexington, Kentucky–based designer Nancy Iliff, noting that the pairing has found favor in many cultures throughout time. Among the many colors featured in her home-décor shop, Linens Limited, the classic combination is a perennial top seller.

Blue and White Table

It is an affinity Nancy shares with her clientele. “My own collection of eighteenth-century English delftware always makes me feel good when I walk into the room,” she says. Dutch ceramic tiles frame the fireplace in her abode, and cabinets flanking the hearth showcase an assortment of tin-glazed earthenware objects.

Blue and White Table

Whether creating a personal haven or extending a sense of welcome to loved ones, adding elements of blue and white lays the foundation for gracious moments not soon to be forgotten.

Blue and White Table

Melissa Lester, Associate Editor, Victoria magazine

View a birthday celebration in blue and white at Melissa’s blog, and find more inspiration from this beloved colorway in our hardcover volume, Living with Blue & White, available at

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  1. Thank you for sharing this. I particularly enjoy entertaining with blue and white and will be sure to check out Melissa’s blog as I have enjoyed her creativity for many years.


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