Is anything better than al fresco dining poolside style? I don’t think so. I love this casual summer dining idea!
Today I created an al fresco poolside dinner setting. I love that I was able to reuse things from around the house to make this wonderful summer entertaining area. You can do this too!
To be honest, we don’t dine poolside often enough. Why is that?
I have no idea!
I am so happy I set this table poolside because we are going to do it a lot more this summer! Al fresco dining poolside, here we come!
How to Set an Al Fresco Dining Table
Al fresco dining refers to a meal taking place or located outdoors and in the open air. It’s by far my favorite way to dine!
So why not set a table in a fun area of your backyard? I like to challenge myself to do something different when setting a table in our backyard. I always look for a different location and sometimes I even try something entirely different.
This time I set a table on the ground next to our pool!
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Setting a Low Table for Dining
I really wanted to set a different table so I opted to put a low table on the brick surrounding our pool. Isn’t it perfect for al fresco dining?
We carried our coffee table from the back porch and set it up next to the pool. I love that we can sit here, next to the pool on these comfy cushions, and enjoy the water view.
Of course, comfort is also very important. I don’t own any cushions that are specifically to be used for sitting on the ground. I do, however, have cushions on my outdoor furniture.
So I borrowed the cushions from my outdoor seating area and used them for cushions on the ground. Kinda smart, right?
Easy Table Setting Tips
Once the table was set with comfy cushions, it was time to actually set the table. I decided to use a color palette that captured the colors surrounding the table.
- one – I made some placemats that highlighted the colors of our pool and love how they came out. The DIY is below and these are very easy to make! The green Linen/Cotton Napkins are ones I have had for years.
- two – I used some plain white 11″ Dinner Plates (everybody needs a set or two of plain white dishes, right?) and topped them with some blue and white salad plates that I picked up years ago. The green water glasses are the ones I use all of the time!
- three – I added some of my mixed silver and silverplate utensils and some vintage blue and white side dishes. I planned to grill French bread tonight so these are for olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
For my flower arrangement, I kind of borrowed the flowers. I already had some grocery store flowers arranged in our home from earlier in the week. Most of the flowers still looked perfect so I reused them, with a few flowers from my garden, for the centerpieces.
I love that the flowers technically were reused and didn’t cost me anything to make. Isn’t it great that you can create this amazing dining experience without the setup costing anything extra?
Always shop your home first and use things you already have. Use a table that you have never used for dining. Grab some cushions or pillows for seating if you want to use a low table. Just be thrifty and creative and you will love the end result.
How to Make the DIY Reversible Placemats
I made these placemats because I wanted some extra color on my table. I love how easy they are to make and I have made round ones before too. Next, I will make some rectangular placemats for the summer.
What You Need to Make Six Reversible Placemats
Step By Step Instructions
- Draw around the outside of the cardboard template on the fabric to make six squares of each fabric. Add an extra 1″ (approximate) allowance, and cut out twelve total squares of fabric.
2. This is what the cut outs should look like.
3. Fold along the line and iron down the seam allowances on all 12 squares.
4. Pin one square of one fabric and one square of the other fabric, right sounds out, together. Repeat for all six placemats.
5. Sew around the outside edges of each placemat. Iron flat.
Aren’t they awesome? I love the way they add color to this table.
Frequently Asked Questions
One interesting aspect of al fresco dining is its historical significance. The term “al fresco” is derived from the Italian language and means “in the cool air.” It originated in the 18th century when it became popular for wealthy Europeans to dine outside in gardens and open-air spaces, particularly during the warmer months. This trend was influenced by the desire to enjoy nature, socialize, and escape the formalities of indoor dining.
Al fresco dining gained prominence in various cultures over time. In France, for example, it became an essential part of the café culture, with sidewalk cafés becoming iconic gathering places for locals and tourists alike. In many Mediterranean countries, dining outdoors is deeply ingrained in their culinary traditions, where people enjoy leisurely meals under shady trees or by the seaside.
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