Easter is a great time to get together with friends and family for a lazy and laid-back lunch. Celebrate in style with our beautiful table-setting ideas
Pretty cushions can revive tired interiors, giving a new lease of life. Add a splash of colour by photocopying favourite fabric prints and creating a collage on your wall.
Left: Olive tree, €125, and wooden eggs, €3.50 each, all Formality. Ribbons, from left: pink taffeta ribbon, €1.45 per metre; flower ribbon, €4 per metre; striped ribbon, €3.90 per metre, and printed ribbon, €1 per metre, all A.Rubanesque. Felecia chair, from €435, Inreda. Cushion covered in Hollyhock blue on oyster linen, around €193 per metre, Bennison
The perfect end to a spring brunch, Ladurée macaroons are light, colourful and totally delicious. Tablecloth made of Glimmer (F5960/09), €83 per metre, Osborne & Little; Ladurée macaroons, €1.50 each, exclusively at Brown Thomas; pewter cake stand with glass lid, €79, Eden Home & Garden; East of India ribbon, €5 for a three metre roll, A. Rubanesque; spoons, stylist's own
Sweet smell of success
Nicole Dunphy fell in love with sweets in Jim's shop in Limerick, where she used to take ages deciding how to spend her 15p pocket money. Bazooka Joes were a favourite. Today, after starting a business in the midst of a recession, she runs her own sweet company, Pandora Bell, which sells the wonderful sweets in beautiful packaging. Think honey nougat, handmade lollipops and salted butter caramels. Dunphy's ethos is simple: "I only sell the absolute best," she says. "All the products use timeless recipes and the highest quality ingredients. No tricks or marketing slogans. Just good stuff." The recipe is a winner. Recently in the office, when we were all on best behaviour, two chunky bars of delicious honey nougat lasted seconds. Pandora Bell uses only the best ingredients in its confections and the nougat is rich in honey and full of nuts.
All set Tablecloths are the perfect way to show off beautiful big floral patterns. Team with vases in different shapes and sizes and accentuate with an eclectic mix of tableware.
Tablecloth made from Lilac original on oyster linen, around €193 per metre, Bennison; green bud vases, €10 each, The Conran Shop; glass vases, €18 each, and Muscari flowers, €5 for a small bunch, both Unique Flowers & Interiors; raspberry jam, €10.99; button plate, €10.95; glass butter bowl with lid, €14.95, and floral melamine cups, €5.50 each, all Avoca; embossed teapot, €25; fluted jug, €20, and toast rack, €24, all Eden Home & Garden; cutlery, stylist's own
FOOD FILE Move over Tupperware and Anne Summers: the new craze is Jamie Oliver parties! Not content with dominating your TV and cookbook shelf, Jamie now wants you to hold house parties in his name. He won't be there, you understand, but he's happy to send along his funky new Jme lifestyle ranges for your kitchen, dining room, bathroom, garden and children. He's even got his own fragrances! A quick flick through the Jamie at Home spring catalogue reveals a very tasteful collection indeed.
To become a consultant and make a potential 15pc of the sales, all you have to do is contact a local consultant. Linda Gillett, who became one to help top up her income, has hosted six parties in Ireland. "Each one got an enthusiastic response from food fanatics," she told us. "I bring the range with me to the host's house, set it up, play an introductory DVD with a special hello from Jamie himself and demonstrate some key products. It can be a nice little earner."
A. RUBANESQUE 01-672 9243 AVOCA 01-286 7466; www.avoca.ie BENNISON 0044 207 730 8076; www.bennisonfabrics.com BROWN THOMAS 01-605 6666; www.brownthomas.com CAKES & CO 01-283 6544; www.cakesandco. com EDEN HOME & GARDEN 01-764 2004; www.edenhomeandgarden.ie FORMALITY 01-280 8071; www.formality.ie INREDA 01-476 0362; www.inreda.ie. JAMIE AT HOME Linda Gillett, 086 059 0070; www.jamieathome.com MARKS & SPENCER 01-679 7855; www.marks andspencer.com MEADOWS & BYRNE 01-280 4554; www.meadowsandbyrne.com OSBORNE & LITTLE 0044 207 352 1456; www.osborneand little.com PANDORA BELL 061 339 300; www.pandorabell.ie THE CONRAN SHOP at ARNOTTS 01-805 0400; www.conranshop.co.uk UNIQUE FLOWERS AND INTERIORS 01-275 1737; www.uniqueflowers.ie.