Lilies of the Valley
Various Tree Blossoms
" Oh, to be in England now that April's here! " is a wish that has been uttered from many hearts. It is indeed a beautiful month, for " in the jocund April weather daisies pied and violets blue and lady smocks all silvery white paint the meadows with delight." All nature is awake, and this month brings us a bewildering array of floral beauties.
A ribbon lattice-work forms a charming groundwork for vases of daffodils. The design can be arranged direct on to the table. At each corner where the ribbons join, a bow should be placed; the ribbon can be of the same shade as the flowers or of a contrasting colour
Daffodils in countless numbers are waving in the breeze, and are indeed so plentiful that we can use them freely. And now that the English ones are available, we can use plenty of leaves with them, which is a great advantage.
A beautiful effect of colour is produced by filling a deep blue vase with the palest of blush pink tulips
Daffodils look very effective arranged in majolica vases of an art shade. A very artistic table can be arranged by using turquoise-coloured vases, and arranging the daffodils loosely in them with a liberal allowance of leaves. Place them on a table on which is a tablecloth with lace insertion over a daffodil yellow slip.
Ribbon lattice-work, as shown in one of the illustrations, is also a charming groundwork for vases of daffodils. Ribbon to match the flowers can be used, or, if preferred, a pretty contrast may be employed. Pale rose-pink ribbons would strike a novel note. These lattice-work table-centres need not be made up, as it is quite easy to arrange one straight on to the table, so that the ribbons can be kept and used in other ways when required.
First, with four lengths of ribbon of equal size, arrange the shape of the diamond, then place the other ribbons across and across, hiding the edges under the ribbons that form the diamond. The design can be finished with a pretty bow at each corner where the ribbons join.
Use five small vases for this table, put just a few blossoms and leaves in each, and use them as here shown.
The wallflower, with its delicious scent and rich colouring of chestnut, madder brown, and cloth of gold, is deservedly a favourite flower for table decoration. It blends most artistically with yellow trumpet daffodils.
In the centre of the table place shallow bowl of silver or pewter; fill it with wallflowers of various shades and a few up-standing daffodils.
Around this, a little distance away, place a circle of small lead support hide them with moss, and fill them with daffodils and leaves, so that they appear to be growing there.
At each corner of the table arrange a smaller circle of daffodils in the same way, and in the centre of each put a silver or pewter candlestick with a daffodil shade. For the candle-shades cover asbestos frames with paper daffodils, and for the sweets cover souffle-cases to match.
Coffee-coloured tulips are effective on the table in conjunction with forget-me-nots. Mass the forget-me-nots in shallow bowls, and arrange the tulips to rise above them; place them down the centre of the table, and weave sprays of small leaf ivy in and out among them, crossing the sprays between each vase.
Flame-coloured tulips can be combined with creamy white hyacinths in a gilded table-basket tied with flame - coloured ribbons; if croton leaves are mingled with them, the effect will be Oriental and gorgeous.
Red-mauve lilac and sweet deutzia look well in a tall crystal vase. The vase should stand on an openwork cloth over a mauve slip. A ring of smilax may encircle it from which branch sprays of lilac in the form of a star
A vase is shown in one illustration that is of a deep blue shade, and is filled with palest blush pink tulips, the effect being decidedly beautiful.
Another vase is of crystal glass, which, filled with a red-mauve lilac (Charles X.) and sweet deutzia, will be pretty for a luncheon table, if an open-work cloth over a mauve slip is used. Put the vase in the centre with a ring of smilax round it, and from this smilax place sprays of the lilac so as to branch out like a star.
A very novel design is portrayed. For a centre a low, open-topped basket is used. This has been enamelled white, and soft yellow ribbons are threaded through it. The basket is then filled with moss and clusters of primroses, and leaves are arranged in the moss round the edge of the basket. In the centre a nest is placed; if a last year's a mirror as table-centre, and bank it round with moss and primroses, with here and there an upstanding daffodil and leaves. On the mirror place a Mrs. Puddleduck " and a brood of wee yellow ducklings. Among the flowers round the mirror place tiny nests filled with sweet eggs.
It will greatly delight the small guests if a little buttonhole of primroses or violets is placed for each, especially if the tiny posy is presented in the beak of a fluffy yellow chick. A safety-pin should be provided with each buttonhole, and the sight of the luncheon-table, with its circle of happy, flower-decked children, will indeed be a charming one.
A second scheme, for an Easter table for children is one in which an important part is played by a hare instead of by a bird. In Germany, the Easter hare is as well known and loved a figure as Santa Claus; but in Great Britain his appearance has the refreshing virtue of novelty.
Procure from a toyshop or confectioner as large a hare as possible, choosing one with a detachable head and hollow body that can nest can be found, it can be used, but it is not difficult to form one of moss and twigs, or a toy one can be purchased. The nest is filled with egg-shells, of which there should be as many as there are guests.
A new idea for an Easter table decoration. An enamelled basket of moss and primroses contains a nest with as many eggs as there are guests. Each shell contains a present, and is united by means of ribbon to a wee chicken holding in its beak a guest card.
A chicken also ornaments the basket itself
The eggs should be blown, and a small piece taken off one end. In each shell a little present should be placed, such as a lucky charm, and lengths of yellow bebe ribbon are fastened to the egg-shells with a little white of egg. The other end of the ribbon is tied in a wee bow round the neck of a fluffy chick, to whose beak has also been fastened a little yellow card with a guest's name upon it. These are placed so that each one comes in front of a guest place. A "just out" chicken is also placed upon the basket.
For the sweetmeats, enamel white some tiny baskets of a similar shape to the large one, and trim them with primroses and yellow bebe ribbon. Fill them with sweet eggs.
An Easter table that would delight children can be arranged very easily. Use be filled with sweets. As many smaller hares as there are guests must also be bought. These need not have hollow bodies or detachable heads.
Place the big hare in the centre of the table, standing on a carpet of moss, studded with primroses. Group the little hares round him, each facing a guest, and holding between its outstretched paws a dainty silver-covered chocolate egg, or, if preferred, a nest containing eggs. A pretty third alternative is that each hare should carry on his back a basket of eggs. Round the neck of each hare, large and small, should be hung a daisy-chain or a chaplet of primrose flower-heads, and from this collar a length of yellow ribbon should trail towards a guest, ending in a card. This card bears the name of the guest and some such device as:
"I am your hare, treat me with care."
By means of the ribbon, each child identifies its own particular hare, and at the conclusion of the meal the contents of the big hare are distributed amongst the party.