The Art of Entertaining

Host in Timeless Style with Tips from Lifestyle Expert Leslie Lehr

As the holiday season approaches, the time for gathering and entertaining is upon us once again.

Opening one’s home to family and friends is a joyful undertaking, but at times can feel stressful – until now, that is. We sat down with lifestyle expert Leslie Lehr of Leslie Lehr Living to get her invaluable insights on how to entertain with ease. Read on to explore her favorite Wisteria Tabletop & Dining pieces, get to know Leslie, and learn everything you need to know about hosting smarter, with style.  

Leslie's Wisteria Favorites this Fall - Featuring Pieces from our Italian Tabletop Collection

Q. Your tabletop content seems to be a staple of the Leslie Lehr look. Can you share tips with our audience about how to set the perfect tablescape?

A. My guide to create & set the perfect tablescape is to begin by taking inventory of your entertaining pieces to establish a style. I love to use my collection of china, silver, crystal, and vintage table accessories when I entertain for any occasion.  I have learned a few simple tips to style my table with vintage pieces while giving it a pop of personality.

My rule to set the perfect table is to mix heirloom pieces with playful items - the Sogno Bowl and Dessert Plate from Wisteria paired with my vintage Flatware, my grandmother’s monogrammed Napkin Rings, Sapphire Fresca Wine Glasses, and block print table linens would be the ideal example. To complete the tablescape I always use seasonal florals to create centerpieces. To honor the time of year, I will include fresh produce to enhance my centerpieces. In the summer you might find fresh lemons or cherries arranged in the bouquets and on the place setting.  

Q. What drew you to the pieces you chose for this tabletop display, and how did they inspire you to create a look that aligns with your lifestyle brand?

A. I was absolutely enchanted by the Sogna Bowl and Dessert Plates with the crisp white porcelain, blue flecks, and gold rims. The plates and bowls are stunning by themselves, or mixed with other pieces from my tabletop collection. I could imagine countless alfresco, casual, and formal table settings with the natural shapes and the playful design of the Sogno collection. I plan to use my collection of neutral contemporary and heirloom china to mix and match with my new Sogna Bowls and Plates.

The vivid Sapphire Blue Fresca Wine Glasses are the perfect addition to my glassware collection due to their fluted design and size. The Confetti Drinking Glasses will add a pop of pizzaz on the bar and table setting. Their unique shape and festive color will make any occasion a celebration.

Q. You call yourself the “go-to-girlfriend for the modern-day superwoman.” What led you to create this tagline and how does it encapsulate Leslie Lehr Living?

A. Over 90% of my clients are women that have full time careers inside and/or outside the home. They are wives, moms, actively involved in their community, activities, and nonprofits. These women are modern day superwomen who do it all while enjoying great style, home décor, and entertaining. My clients hire me to style and create order in their home, work, and play. This relationship tends to grow into more, I become a “go to” girlfriend to help them with events, flowers, gifts, glam, fashion, home décor, and furnishings.  

Q. In your own words, how would you summarize your design style?

A. My style has been influenced by my geography – I have lived on both coasts and in the southwest. I love to mix contemporary styles with a dash of tradition. My favorite décor and my company, Leslie Lehr Living, is inspired by my values: I guide my clients by finding beauty in order, living simply with a pop of personality, and creating systems that allow for sustainability and living with less.

I am passionate about hues of blue, shades of white, timeless classics, with a pop of personality. I call my style Chinoiserie Chic, however the trendy name for this style is Coastal Grandma.

Q. Where does your love for the blue & white look come from?

A. I have always loved the color blue, it evokes a peaceful and refreshing emotion for me. Bright white makes me happy and calm. I think the colors together create a timeless elegance that compliments all design and fashion styles. One of the key values of Leslie Lehr Living is to live your best life with les(s). This means eliminating the physical and mental clutter, which for me means knowing what I like and celebrating it. I surround myself with my favorite colors, home accessories, furnishings, and fashions.  

Q. What are some design trends you think will never go out of style?

A. The design trend that I believe will always be in style are timeless classics. Pieces that are handmade and high quality products.  Furnishings that can last the test of time while allowing personalized touches with a pop of flair. An example of this from the Wisteria collection would be using the Gustavian Buffet as an Entry or Dining Room as a console, styled with three Chinoiserie Ginger Jars in a variety of sizes, and to complete the look I would hang a Wisteria framed piece of art above. 

Q. What dining room furniture pieces are must-haves to create a functional and stylish dining space?

A.  A beautifully crafted dining room table is the first piece of furniture I begin with to create the ideal space. Style and versatility is important to me when I select a table for the room that celebrates the everyday and special occasions. The Gustavian Extension Table is a timeless and elegant Swedish style which compliments most décor elements. From intimate dinners to large soirées, the Gustavian Expansion Table can accommodate both occasions and more.

Following the dining room table are dining room chairs to create a space that will offer style and function. I look for chairs that are made with high quality craftsmanship and attention to detail. The key to finding the ideal chair is strength and design. The Gustavian Dining Chair in white would be my must-have for a timeless dining room. The shape and texture represents a classic piece that will work in harmony with many design styles.

Q. We at Wisteria have a passion for bringing unique offerings, quality products, and global design to American Homes. Can you tell us about your experience/relationship with the Wisteria brand?

A.  I was first attracted to Wisteria twenty years ago when I saw their catalog - it was filled with beautifully curated artisanal home accessories and furnishings from around the world. While living in Dallas, Texas I was fortunate to have the Wisteria Warehouse Store near my home.  That was the time I began my Wisteria chinoiserie blue and white ginger jar collection. Since then I have moved multiple times and my Wisteria ginger jar collection has continue to grow over the years. What I love about the timeless home décor pieces I have acquired from Wisteria has relocated beautifully with each home and style.  

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All lifestyle imagery included courtesy of Leslie Lehr.