Easter at home
Easter. There’s no better time to catch up with friends and family, enjoy an indulgent meal (or as many chocolate eggs as possible) and take stock of the little things that make you happy. For the second time around, we won’t be able to catch up with our loved ones in a ‘normal’ way – but by now we’re all experts in at-home revelry. Even so, to help you embrace the occasion, we reached out to illustrator Fee Greening for some seasonal table decoration ideas. Take inspiration from the beautiful arrangement she created, adorned with foraged flowers, OKA china and her iconic dip pen and ink drawings.
We’ve also curated some lockdown-friendly activities you can organise over the long weekend and our favourite Easter presents.
What’s on the menu?
Easter is the ideal opportunity to flex your culinary muscles (or order a takeaway, if you need a break from the kitchen). Dive into your well-thumbed recipe books for inspiration or venture online for new recipes, then plan an extravaganza for one, two or however many are in your household.
With small outdoor gatherings now permitted, providing the weather doesn’t take a turn for the worst, you could pack a picnic hamper and serve your Easter feast alfresco. Hosting may feel a little alien after the last few months, but if you have space and feel up to it, consider throwing your group of six their first garden party of the season – keeping things socially distanced, of course.
What’s on your table?
Once the menu is confirmed, fetch your finest wine (or mix up your favourite concoction), dress your table to impress and make place card settings (even if you just require one with your own name). For a sense of occasion, use your best crockery, barware, table linen, glassware and cutlery. Accessorise with bunches of spring flowers in pretty, pastel shades (think daffodils, crocuses and hyacinths), or go all out with a tree, complete with egg decorations.
For tips on crafting artistic menus and place cards, look no further than the bespoke ones Fee Greening designed for her Easter table, laden with locally-sourced flowers, OKA tableware and hand-painted eggs.
We asked Fee to share the inspiration behind her arrangement and how she brings creativity to the table.
“I can assure you that you won’t be finding me writing name places and menus at every meal, I’m far too lazy. But if there has ever been a year to celebrate seeing friends and family, it’s this one. I think a beautiful menu or place setting can really lend some magic to an occasion and make it more memorable. With name places, I try and think of symbolic motifs that will become a treasured keepsake, something I can imagine my guests using as a bookmark or tucked into a mirror frame back home,” she says.
Her hand-drawn insects nod to the critters found in her country garden. “I’m usually drawn to high-pigment colours found in nature: earthy browns, the terracotta of a moth, olive greens. The yellow table cloth reminds me of that almost fluorescent lichen you see on bark or a caterpillar, it’s very cheering. I picked up some duck eggs from our local farm shop and thought it would be fun to decorate them with wild orchids and ladybirds, I love how they pop out from the yellow,” she adds.
Fee is drawn to tables that “feel a bit thrown together” as everything “feels more relaxed this way and has a romantic charm”.
She also looks to nearby woodlands for unusual decorations and table centrepieces. One of her go-to shrubs is gorse: “I love the combination of its jolly yellow flowers and lethal spikes, I think it sits beautifully in the cabbage vase.”
What’s your Easter weekend looking like?
Although Easter is synonymous with good food and company, the entire holiday isn’t spent at the table. If you’ve been avoiding the many tasks on your to-do list, now’s the time to accomplish them. Painting your garden furniture – check; having a well-needed wardrobe clear-out – check; hanging your prints and pictures – done. What if you have finished all your chores? Well, in that case, you have four glorious days to embark on a film marathon, challenge someone to an epic game of Monopoly (either online or in-person), take up a hobby or listen to a new podcast. There’s no time like the present to try yoga, baking, mindful colouring, crochet or any other activity that has an equally soothing effect.
Spend your downtime calling or Skyping your family and friends. Depending on your pastimes and interests, you could host a virtual draw-along, a themed quiz or even a karaoke night. Virtual potlucks are also popular, as they offer a glimpse at the creations everyone else has been cooking up.
The Easter holiday will likely be one of the more low-key celebrations of the year, so take advantage of the calm before a plan-packed summer. Relax with a 1000-piece jigsaw puzzle or try your hand at a virtual pottery class.
What’s on their wish list?
If you’re in a generous mood (or the urge to treat yourself strikes), why not stock up on a few unique Easter gifts? Would your friends and family appreciate some new tableware? A vase for their spring blooms? Or something to brighten their scheme? Alternatively, if you have children – or very enthusiastic flatmates – consider buying a few small chocolate Easter eggs and organising a treasure hunt in your house or garden.
Photography: Tom Griffiths