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Table Flowers Book Review

Floral designers are just going to love this new book by event planner Karen Bussen. This title makes planning a party so easy. “Simple Stunning Parties at Home-Recipes, Ideas, and Inspirations for Creative Entertaining.” Released by Stewart, Tabori and Chang, this features 120 lush color photos by William Geddes.

It covers all the details from flowers and table decorations to scrumptious recipes and ideas for party favors and gifts. In this title, the author presents 12 themed parties with everything you need to know from start to finish.

Bussen sets a gorgeous table, and flowers of all sorts help to make these parties a success. She rarely uses a standard centerpiece. Instead, she offers refreshing innovative ideas. For a sports get-together, she features a tray of wheat grass. For a summer food tasting with an herbal theme, she places a potted herb at each place setting. For a Zen get-together, she floats flowers in small bowls.

In the introduction, she provides background information and highlights from some of the parties and weddings she has planned. The photos showcase a long wedding table beautifully decorated with flowers.

In this title, Bussen has organized the events into chapters by the type of occasion. There are chapters for cocktail parties, casual suppers, and dinner parties as well as lunches and brunches. For each party, she selects a fun theme, which is expressed through the flowers, table decorations, and food.

The themes range from a Latin flavored cocktail party to a harvest table that would be suitable any time during the fall season, especially Thanksgiving. This title also features seasonal events as well, such as New Year’s Eve.

Bussen shows wonderful taste when it comes to choosing flowers. For the Latin fiesta cocktail party, the author uses tropical blooms of bird-of-paradise and protea along with deeply hued orange pillar candles accented with richly colored red peppers.

The author has simple ideas that are quick and easy from start to finish. For each themed party, she provides step by step directions with details on the décor, music, food, and drink. Throughout the book are boxes with additional tips and ideas.

The appendix has information on the sources the author recommends.

Bussen has written numerous other books. These include five in her “Simple Stunning” wedding series, which is also published by Stewart, Tabori, and Chang.

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