It’s ski season for the Buzz family! And, in honor of the family-loved activity, I’ve set a winter table in our lodge-theme game room.
A belated, but very happy New Year to you all! This is my first post of 2020. After the sudden and heartbreaking loss of my Sweet Scottie Dog (shared in DIY Christmas Cocktail Ornament Balls), I needed to take a break from blogging.
But, I’m trying to get back into the swing of things; taking part in Amber’s Cozy Winter Home Tours. There’s so much to see and bee inspired by when you get this group of 24 talented stylists together! If you’ve come by from Lora’s simple winter mantel decor ideas, welcome!
Now that the holidays are in the rearview mirror, that doesn’t mean we can’t continue to make merry with family and friends. Besides, spring is a long way off here in Pittsburgh! During the month of January, I transition Christmas decor and tableware to enjoy for the rest of the winter season.
So, let’s hit the slopes — I promise it’s a no-fall zone!
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Apres Ski Setting
a·près-skinounthe social activities and entertainment following a day’s skiingOxford Dictionary
Once I put Christmas-specific tableware away for the year, I continue to use my winter season, go-to dishes. Both dishwasher and microwave safe, the Pfaltzgraff pattern is good for everyday meals and entertaining on a cold or snowy day.
Motivation for the Downhill Dinner party theme and tablescape came from the luncheon plate depicting a skier.
You might recall the same dishes from 2018’s Casual Christmas Table & Bar.
But, rather than in the kitchen, I’ve set the winter table downstairs in the Ski Lodge Theme Decor in Family Game Room. Previously, it was the scene for a Welcome to the Apres-Ski Lodge Buffet.
With it’s lodge and cabin style decor, it’s the perfect setting for a winter table.
See the full-size snowshoes in the upper left corner?
All-Mountain Birthday Cake
The centerpiece was inspired by a cake for my son’s seasonal birthday.
Sorry for the poor quality of the picture. It’s a pretty old shot scanned into the computer — taken long before I started blogging. Glare from the candles and overhead light fixture don’t help! But, I wanted to show you where I came up with the idea for this winter table centerpiece.
Can you make out the sloped profile of the cake? Icing and sugar crystals imitate a snow-covered mountain; dotted with evergreen trees in an alpine setting. Little ski figures slalom between birthday candles to complete the Nordic scene.
Someday, I’m going to try to recreate the look using a coconut cake recipe. But, rather than baking a calorie-rich dessert, I decided to model a sugar-free ski scene for the winter table.
Winter Table Styling
First, I created a bed of snow for the winter table, using a furry white throw as a tablecloth.
Then I placed woodcut chargers at each of the four place settings. Another woodcut anchors the ski slope centerpiece.
To create some elevation, I used the smaller of two tree stump cake stands. They’ve actually worked well for multi-season tablescapes and party buffets.
A cupcake pedestal — positioned to one side of the cake stand — serves as the foundation for the mountain peak. Two white soft napkins are the base of snow in the centerpiece.
Next, I pulled out a few Department 56 accessories from Tour the Magical North Pole. They include fresh powder, ice, birch trees, and evergreens reminiscent of the mountain slope birthday cake accents.
Since I’m a pack rat, I was sure I had saved the little skiers. But alas, they were nowhere to be found. A good thing, as it turned out.
Because, that’s when I remembered the vintage skiers I had just packed up from Christmas. Originally, the cherished figures accessorized the magical Lionel train platform my dad made.
As the train approached the corner where the live tree stood, it entered a wraparound tunnel topped by a snowy mountainside — until coming out the other side. Skiers frolicked on the slopes.
I still have the Lionel train purchased for my very first Christmas. My parents gave it to me when my eldest son was born. Although I Decorate with Vintage Family Christmas Treasures, I thought the skiers were lost forever.
A few years ago, Sistah B surprised me first with one, and then a second skier she had saved. I was absolutely thrilled! Gold hangers turn them into Christmas tree ornaments. One day, I’ll pass one down to each of my sons.
Online, I found the figures referred to as Barclay “hollow-cast iron” or “metal lead dye cast.” The company also made similar scale ice skaters and sledders.
Although they are bigger than the birthday cake decorations, I think they work well going downhill on the winter table centerpiece. Plus, these ski figures have special significance to my family.
When talking to my mom about the skiers for this post, I found out they were actually purchased by my grandfather to decorate dad’s childhood train platform. So, they are a quarter century older than I thought! More importantly, they were part of my father’s magical Christmas memories. Having lost him just last May, makes the skiers all the more of a family heirloom.
This gal is a vintage skier — just like me — especially at my age! Hope I hold up as well lol!
Last year, during a Breathtaking Breckenridge, Colorado Ski Trip, hubby and I had a wonderful time. It was the best I’d ever skied!
Breckenridge was originally a gold-mining town. It’s charming historical district has well-preserved period buildings, along with fabulous restaurants, bars and shops — offering great apres ski activities.
This winter, we’re heading to a weeklong Terrific Telluride, Colorado Ski Vacation with family and friends. I’ll be hitting the slopes and spa LOL! Have you ever been? Tips to share?
After setting the scene and constructing the centerpiece, it was time to add tableware for the Downhill Dinner. Layered on top of the woodcut chargers are the Pfaltzgraff dinner and skier luncheon plates.
Flanking the chargers is copper-color, twig flatware I often use to set a winter table; including Moose Toboggan Ride.
Blue snowflakes, brown deer, and stylized evergreens decorate the rim of the dinner plate and other dishes.
Although the pattern is called Nordic Christmas, I like how well it works for styling a winter table all season long.
Mugs also are decorated with an evergreen tree. Perfect for a warm cup of hot chocolate, cider or mulled wine.
Vintage blue glasses (Libbey) sit adjacent to the mugs. Evergreen or snowman wine charms decorate each stem.
The blue of the glasses complement the snowflakes on the Nordic plate rims. Come February, I incorporate the glasses into another winter table — Presidents Day with Liberty Blue.
Skiing in a Glade of Trees
Napkins folded in the shape of an evergreen add a little dimension and interest to the winter table.
A reversible, green and white snowflake print works perfectly in the alpine ski scene.
Made of a thick, double-knit fabric, helps the folded napkins to stand upright on the winter table.
Although I used the pewter-finish snowflake rings to top the trees, they weren’t necessary to hold the napkin fold together. Search online for DIY instructions and video tutorials to quickly and easily fold your own tree-shaped napkins.
An Enchanting Winter Woodland Tablescape for Christmas also incorporates the same napkin fold. It’s one of 19 Napkin Folds for All Seasons, Holidays & Occasions that easily add interest to any table setting.
Evergreen-shape candles in pewter holders also flank the ski mountain centerpiece.
Are you ready to hit the ski slopes with a virtual seat at my Downhill Dinner winter table? Just avoid the trees, lol!
Next up on the Cozy Winter Home Tours is Terrie’s unique drop cloth wreath. But, bee sure to visit all two-dozen stops!
You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!
Follow The Yellow Brick Home • A Stroll Thru Life • Common Ground • Our Southern Home • County Road 407 • Calypso in the Country • Celebrate and Decorate • Virginia Sweet Pea • My Thrift Store Addiction • The Crowned Goat • First Day of Home • Bluesky at Home • White Arrows Home • Thistle Key Lane • The Tattered Pew • Belle Bleu Interiors • Le Cultivateur • Cloches and Lavender • Lora Bloomquist • Debbee’s Buzz • Decorate and More with Tip • Have a Daily Cup of Mrs. Olson • Welch House 1900 • Let’s Add Sprinkles
For more winter table ideas and inspiration, don’t miss Polar Bear Frolic in Sleigh Ride, Building a Snowman, and Five Snowman Centerpieces.
I regularly participate in: Metamorphous Monday, Turn About Tuesday, Centerpiece Wednesday, Whimsical Home Projects, In Link Party, Share Your Style, Tablescape Thursday, Thursday Favorite Things, Crafty Creators, Fabulous Friday, Saturday Sparks, Happiness is Homemade, and Love Your Creativity.
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So cute Debbee! Your centerpiece is total fun, what a great winter theme idea! Love the napkin trees too, happy skiing!
Thanks Jenna, hopefully I’ll continue my good fortune on the slopes and not end up in traction, LOL! I’ve really gotten into napkin folding this past year — it’s fun, easy, and impresses guests. Next year, I’m going to use the tree fold for my Christmas Day brunch.
I love your ski-themed tablescape! The skiers from your dad’s Lionel train display are fabulous and they look wonderful on the centerpiece that you crafted. I love your Pzalzcraft ski dishes, they are perfect to use and enjoy in winter. The tree napkin fold is the icing on the cake for your pretty tablescape. Love it!
Glad you enjoyed the scene Paula. I’m stumped why the Pfaltzgraff pattern was so short-lived — maybe people aren’t into the matte finish that I like so much? I think I’m going to move forward with investing in another couple of settings as they get so much use and even the guys like it.
This is just so incredibly cute! I’ll be pinning a bunch of these photos…All winter our family travels back and forth to Vermont for ski weekends so this really makes me smile. I will have to show this tablescape to my son who is obsessed with skiing. We can’t even keep up with him anymore! Also, I am so sorry about the loss of your sweet dog. Our pets become members of our families so my heart just breaks for you. Sending hugs. Shelley
Thanks so much Shelley. It must be great having such relatively easy access to amazing ski slopes! I’ve never skied Vermont but my eldest son who lives in NYC goes there one or twice yearly. Haven’t been able to keep up with either of my sons in years — like since they were about 8! They have no fear and love speed. Me, I’m very cautious. Nice thing is they and my husband are very patient with me. When we ski more locally, the guys take the black diamond and I do the blue, or they just wait for me at the end of the run.
Appreciate your kind sentiments about Fibber McGee. He joined our household just as the nest emptied, and filled it up with affection, love, play, humor and activity. I never imagined this would be so hard.
Love it! Your ski themed decor makes you feel as though you’re in a ski lodge. Your dishes and slope are perfect with the skiers.
Thank you Cindy. The game room decor transitions from ski lodge in the late fall through winter, to cabin by the lake the rest of the year. Nowadays, the table and chairs are more commonly used for playing board and card games vs dining. Or, I set it up as a beverage/snack buffet while we watch movies or sporting events.
I am so sorry about your sweet scottie. That’s terrible. Your tablescape is amazing. Those dishes are fabulous and fun. My mom had a whole skating and skiing scene with those figurines. Oh, how I wish I had them. Adorable.
First, thank you Katie for you condolences about my Scottie boy. It was especially hard losing him right before Christmas.
So glad you enjoyed the tablescape. How neat your mom had skiing and skating figures! I just looked them up and see ’em on eBay — adorable. Hope you at least have pictures? It wasn’t until my sister and I were reminiscing about childhood memories that she recalled saving them. You’d think they were made of diamonds and gold the way I love them LOL!
I don’t know what to pin first Debbee! This winter skiing tablescape is super cute. I love the way you created snow and how you added the vintage skiiers and the branches too. The place settings are perfect. I’m so sorry to hear of your beloved Scottie dog. I know first hand it’s a heartbreaking loss that I wish we never had to go through. Take all the time you need healing and remember to be good to yourself. Sending you hugs, CoCo
CoCo, you are so sweet. Fibber McGee loved the snow — after all, he was a Scottish Highland Terrier! Problem is, he only had 4 inch legs, so “low clearance” for any accumulation over about 2 inches. Sometimes, he’d go leaping into freshly fallen snow to end up stuck in place. I’d bring him in and he’d be encased in snow up to his armpits. He’d look like Santa with a white beard and eyebrows. Happy memories of my playful guy.
Love, love, love your dishes and that centerpiece is amazing. What a fun post and perfect tablescape.
Aww thanks Marty — I had a lot of fun putting it together. Surprising friends with it this weekend.
Very clever! I love how it ties to your family which is how we should decorate our homes! Personal to us. Love it! Especially the story of the skiers from your sis.
Couldn’t agree with you more Traci! Our live tree is decorated with ornaments the boys made long ago, and the other is topped with a vintage angel my parents bought for their first Christmas. No magazine cover, designer trees for me! I also change family photos yearound with the seasons — at Halloween I even have b/w shots of my sisters and I in costumes my mom made. And, along the hallway in the gameroom where the winter table is, is artwork the boys made that I also rotate seasonally (How to Create a Kid Keepsakes Gallery). Sometimes, it pays to be a packrat, LOL!
What a fun table to sit at! So many fun things to see. Fun idea.
Cindy, you’re welcome to have a seat at my table anytime!
Debbee, I love tablescapes, and this one is both adorable and beautiful! I love your dishes and your centerpiece is amazing! How I would love to sit at this lovely table on a winters day and enjoy a delicious meal!
Shannon, it’s always a pleasure to share tablescapes with you! Since most of the table hops have a holiday-specific theme, it was fun having the opportunity to share a winter styled one.
Deb, I love the table setting!!! you amaze me, what a cute idea…
Hi stranger, hope you are doing well in a much warmer climate? Miss those days when you could preview my tablescapes in person.
I am so sorry for the loss of your sweet fur baby. I have been there and it is heartbreaking. I’m glad that you are back to blogging again. I very much enjoy your blog posts. I belonged to a ski club when I was younger and loved it. The table is so fun and beautiful.
First, thanks for you thoughtful sentiments on my boy. You made my day hearing that you enjoy Debbee’s Buzz! You must be a far better skier than I if you belonged to a ski club — I have always played catch up with my guys.
This table setting evokes the fun and the majesty of skiing in the mountains. Love the fact that you incorporated special family Christmas ornaments which add beautifully to the scene…the dishes and the tree napkin fold are the perfect finishing touches. I know you are still aching over the loss of Fibber McGee as he was a special member of the family…keep him always in your heart and do try to thoroughly enjoy your ski trip!
Well thanks Alayne, that was exactly what I was going for when setting the winter table! Appreciate you kind thoughts for me and Fibber. I confess to still welling up with tears many times during the course of the day. Still, I’m deeply thankful to have had him in my life.
Debbee, this is too cute! All of your little vintage skiers are amazing and make for the perfect apres-ski tablescape. This little personal touches on a table that have meaning to your family make it so special. We haven’t skied as a family yet, but I’m hoping to introduce my young boys soon. Also, I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your sweet dog. That is so devastating. Much love, Crissy
We started our boys when they were 3 and 6 and didn’t even use ski poles. They took to it immediately and very quickly it was difficult for me to keep up with speed, enthusiasm and skill. Our first ski trip out west quickly followed to the cowboy town, Steamboat, CO. All our trips created fabulous family moments and memories. Wishing you the same. Chrissy, I also very much appreciate your condolences for Fibber.
Debbie this is so darling. The skiers and the plates are so special. Perfect for a winter day. I don’t know how you manage to find so many fun things. Your collections are fabulous. I look forward to seeing more.
Thanks Linda. All those “fun things” were accumulated over a lifetime. It’s just that I’ve only been sharing via blogging for two plus years.
first of all Debbee, I want to tell you how sorry I am that you lost your little guy. I know how hard this is and to struggle to do small tasks, let alone blog. It’s good that you were able to take some time away to grieve. Your tablescape is so wonderful and full of detail. that cake is so fun, I can see why you’d want to replicate that on a tabletop. so fun!! Hats off to you and skiing, I’m the one sitting by the fireplace at the Lodge! haha.
Adding to the difficulty was that I already was playing catch up to ready for Christmas. But, at least the holidays provided a distraction while my adult sons were home. Now that it’s January and decorations are packed up, the house feels so empty without Fibber’s outsized presence. I’m trying a new gym, an OSHER painting course, and volunteering at Animal Friends. New is easier than past routines without Fibber. Thanks for your understanding and kind words Debra.
Crossing my fingers (and toes!) that I’ve still got my ski legs for this year’s big trip. Gonna limit myself to skiing only 3 days across a weeklong vacation. I’m careful and insistent to only do what’s in my comfort zone. No trying to keep up with the athletes in the fam! One of the best parts of skiing is all the apres ski activities. We made sure the house we rented has a huge fireplace to gather together in front of.
So cute! I live in Steamboat Springs and this is perfect!
Hi ya Morweena. Wow, you live in a beautiful, wonderful place! Steamboat was the first trip out west we ever took with our sons to ski. Loved it! You might enjoy reading, Steamboat Springs Sky High Hot Air Balloon Festival.
Debbie, I know how sad it is to lose a beloved dog, and my heart reaches out to yours. This tablescape is such fun, and I, too, especially like the napkin folds. It’s amazing how all of the small details put together make such a remarkable setting. Thank you for sharing!
Appreciate the sentiments Marge — thank you. Glad you enjoyed the winter table! Tried hard to make sure it didn’t look too Christmassy since I primarily use the dish pattern during the holidays. I think the blue in the dish pattern, glasses, etc. help? Give the napkin fold a try, it’s really easy. But, depending on the fabric of your napkin, it might not stand as my trees do.
Deb, This table is awesome! I love the fluffy tablecloth with the log slices, and your little skiers are a treasure. I’ve never seen napkins folded like that; what a great idea! Pinned!
Thanks Lora! You were a hard act to follow in the cozy hop! The Christmas tree napkin fold is something I’ve wanted to try for a while. This past year, I’ve gone a little bonkers trying out all kinds of different napkin folds to accompany tablescapes — including a skeleton bone, bird of paradise, olympic torch, rose, apple, and lots more. All were surprising easy and guest loved ’em!
I love the theme! What a creative centerpiece. I’m sorry to hear about your dog. I understand, because I have a “Mommy’s Baby Doggie” that I love so much.
Thanks so much Kristie. I’ve really gotta try to recreate the actual ski mountain cake sometime. Appreciate you kindness about Fibber McGee. Even at ten (relatively young though for a Scottie), I still called him “puppy” all the time. People were always shocked when I told them his age because he had so much energy, was playful, and loved his toys like a little kid.
Wow Debbee this is so fun! Love how you created the ski slope as a centerpiece and the dishes reflecting the same! That napkin fold is the best!
Gotta give credit to the baker who created the cake for inspiring the centerpiece Liz! I’ve really gone a little crazy this past year plus in trying all kinds of napkin folds, LOL — but every single one was surprising easy. All the other versions I saw of the Christmas tree fold though, are lying flat on a plate. All comes down to the napkin fabric.
Debbee, this is too cute–what a fun idea! You’re table features so many whimsical touches, and I love it! Stay cozy, Cecilia @My Thrift Store Addiction
I had a lot of fun styling the table Cecilia — it was a good distraction from the post holiday blues and grief I was feeling at the time. Plus those skiers brought back lots of happy memories of my dad (this was our first Christmas since he passed in May).
What a great post, but Debbee, I have to ask, HOW MANY SETS of dishes do you have? I have just seen a lot lately! Not whole sets, probably, just some settings???? Your decor is perfect for winter and I love the skiers (My grandfather had HO trains and my son would have been 4th generation if he’d kept up with it; video games too over! Don’t think I’ve seen this Pfaltzgraff pattern before; I tend to like their stuff.
Good question Kathy — I confess I don’t know! Sometime, I’ll have to do an inventory. No, they aren’t all full sets. I probably have 7 sorta “sets” of patterns with 6-12 place settings. All but 2 of those I’ve had for decades. Now, I tend to only buy an accent plate with maybe a few coordinating serving pieces. No more new dishes though, cause there’s no room for storage! That’s why it was fun to create a new ski tablescape with the Pfaltzgraff dishes I’ve had for over 20 years. If you read, Casual Christmas Table I show more of the pattern and give a little background.
Lionel are O so they are pretty big. One day my eldest son will get that set. For younger son, over the years at Christmas, we gave him another car to a Lionel circus train. He’s always loved elephants and that car is one of my favorites. That set is now about 20-ish years old. My dad later built multiple HO and then N scale platforms, scenery and buildings from scratch. When he died last spring, we couldn’t keep the platforms, but did save the trains and buildings he and mom crafted.
Debbee I am loving your skier theme! It’s fun how you tie in your family’s love for skiing with your decor. I live in Colorado and wish I was able to ski more. Have fun in Telluride this year. There is so many fun things to do! Stay warm and safe!
So much natural beautiful and great towns in Colorado Kelly. We’ve heard Telluride is a real gem. I’m glad we are flying into Telluride and won’t have to be concerned about driving/weather conditions.
Cute table and elements, Debbee. I’m so sorry about your furbaby. :'(
Are you and Will still skiing? Hoping I still have the level of success by renting ski equipment this year — and I’m gonna wear a helmet for he first time. Appreciate your condolences about Fibber; sure do miss him and our connection.
Debbee your tablescape is so cozy. Using the vintage skiers in the centerpiece is beyond brilliant. Love every detail. So sorry about your Scottie dog. We still miss our westie so I appreciate what you’re going throught. Glad you’re back blogging!
I love that picture of you with your fur baby Michelle! Missing Fibber in particular, but also being a doggy mom. Sometime in the next year, I’ll likely be ready for another Scottie. Glad you liked the winter table; I just moved the ski mountain centerpiece up into the kitchen.
Debbee, this is a great winter table. I love the skiers, the dishes, and the tree napkins! Hubby and I skied when we were younger, but no more. Good for you girl! Hugs, Jann
So nice to hear from you Jann! Not sure how many more years I’ll be risking life and limb on skis LOL! This year, I do plan to wear a helmet. I don’t like how they muffle sound, but found they were much more comfortable to wear than I thought. My son’s friend who is joining us in Telluride is a beginner, so I’m hoping to have company on less challenging terrain. Although, she is extremely athletic and fit, so I doubt she’ll be going in the slow lane for long!
I’m so glad you’re back to blogging, Debbee and your table looks amazing. Thank you for sharing at Party In Your PJ’s!
Good to bee back Ann. Thanks for stopping by for a seat at the table.
Debbee this is absolutely so creative and I loved reading about your skiing adventures! I have a set of vintage lead skaters and sledders very similar to yours that I adore. I didn’t end up getting around to putting them out this year but seeing yours makes me excited to use mine again next year. I love your winter lodge theme! Your tablescape is full of magical winter wonders. The wood chargers add a wonderful warmth mixed in with the snow and ice. So fun!
Thank you so much for joining the winter home tours!
Thanks so much Amber! Did you find your figures second-hand or were they in your family? I just found out exciting news from my mom — the figures were actually purchased by my grandfather for my dad’s Christmases when he was a kid. After I was born, dad retrieved them from my great-grandmother’s attic. Can’t believe I never knew that! Makes them all the more treasured now; especially after losing my dad last May. Wish so much he could have seen the table.
So many nice items in your ski theme decor! Pinned! I especially like the vintage skiers. The skier plates are really cute. I don’t remember ever seeing that Pfaltzgraff pattern. I’m visiting from Happiness is Homemade. I shared #50. 🙂
Thanks for stopping by Allyson! Nobody seems to have seen the Nordic Christmas pattern. Not sure why it had such a limited run — I love it!
This table setting is so incredibly fun! I love all the detail you’ve put into it – like the skiiers and the fluffy table cloth. The plates are gorgeous too! Pinning. Love, love, LOVE!
So glad you enjoyed it Alexandra, and thanks for stopping by!
such a beautiful styled table. Everything is perfect and makes the table unique. I love it Debbee!
I enjoy all the thought that you put into your tables. Love that you used pewter on this ski table. I think it’s an underrated metal that I don’t see used very much. But pewter brings such a warm feel to a table, softer than silver or gold.
I have matching Nordic pattern hurricanes, but went with the pewter so I could use the tree-shape candles. I’m with you on pewter Sandra. I’ve always been partial to it and have a number of other serving pieces. But most of my pewter has a distinctly colonial, Paul Revere vibe to it.
Totally love your skiers and the vintage look to your table. What a fun party setting for young and old. Thanks for and sharing on AAHome
Glad you enjoyed it Sandi! Just found out the skiers were from my dad’s childhood Christmas tree platform making them even more special.
So clever, Debbee. I love all the details!
Ann, you are always such a dear to visit and leave a comment. Much appreciated!