During the course of Project Refresh, I edited, pared down and simplified, with my mantra being, less is more. But, I have to admit that sometimes, when it comes to setting a table, I just have to have layers!

Inspired by a fresh, new color palette of white walls and a soothing driftwood gray reminiscent of our gorgeous Atlantic Ocean, I had so much fun dressing this table.

  • For the base, I began with unusual placemats that I found at HomeGoods. They add an interesting texture that reminds me of a fisherman’s net.
  • Folded vintage tea towels with knotted fringe, make terrific napkins, and when placed under the chargers, provides a nice change of pace from the usual placement.
  • The lovely undulating grain and color of the wood veneered chargers from Terrain, resemble tidal ripples on a wet, sandy shore, and their scalloped edges, like tiny waves, echo those of the white soup bowls.
  • Clamshells serve as unexpected saltcellars, and a garland of oyster shells found at TJ Maxx vining through the center of the table tie the look together.

For more inspiration, check out the all new Nora Murphy Country House Style 2016 Design Issue!

Happy decorating!

Love, Nora


  1. Kate on October 13, 2016 at 8:43 pm

    When my daughter and I toured your house, we LOVED the dining room!…and the table setting! It was one of our favorite places in your home!

  2. Janet on October 14, 2016 at 12:35 pm

    Dear Nora, the tablescape is so you! You have a gift. I just read that you used to work at Ethan Allen. Definitely one of my favorite stores. Nora where did you get the beautiful white bowls? I have seen you use these in other settings. I love them!
    Thanks, Janet ????

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