Mary Lillie Memory Club Luncheon – A Pretty Purple Celebration

mmc invite

It all started with some pillows from Joss & Main.  I quickly got hooked on the orchid trend and from there the “party room” decor and color palette for the luncheon grew.  I didn’t want the room to look a scene from the chorus of “Purple People Eater”, so I decided that aqua blue would be my accent color along with the golden glow of candles and my super-“fancy” gold, sequined Tahari Home throw pillows from TJ Maxx.

couch collage

We call this room the “party room” because it is pretty much party ready at all times.  It is open and bright and the white wood plank walls and beamed ceiling creates a blank canvas for any party decor.  After de-winterizing the room, I transitioned into the bright purple color scheme, but, of course, left my mainstay accent pieces in place.  My ginormous “H” is probably one of my favorite purchases to date.  The main wall in the party room is so expansive and needs something, but I didn’t want to clutter it up with a collage, which I am generally prone to do, so a single initial wall plaque in an large size gives this wall dimension and keeps it nice and simple.  I had the “H” custom made by the Rustic Shop on Etsy.  The other wall hangings in the room have antique gold accents, so the shop owner worked with me to custom make the color I needed.  I really think it is the statement piece of the room.

overview collage

So as I mentioned it started with the pillows, so when I decided to get some special ladies together for a luncheon, my color palette of purple and aqua was already in place, so I just built on it from there.  Never one to shy away from a printed invitation for any get together, I found a beautiful purple plum watercolor floral digital fill-in invitation by DBN Graphics on Etsy that I could print and send and then use again later (which I did for a bridal shower that I will soon tell you about).  I went back and forth on what to call it, because I wanted to give our little group a name, but needed something sweet that represented who were are.  My grandmother had a group of ladies that got together EVERY Friday for lunch, wine, and shopping and they just called themselves the “Friday Group”.  All my life I wanted to be invited to Nana’s “Friday Group” and not until they were all dead except for Nana and her bestie Pat did I finally get an invite.  Call it morbid, but if some people had to die off to get me on the list then so be it…..ha ha!!

Anyway, my grandmother’s friend “Patsy” is by far one of my most favorite people in the entire world.  She and my grandmother were a “hoot” together, so being around her makes me feel close to my Nana.  She hosted my mom, sister, and sweet niece Lillie for lunch at her “fancy” condo, but I was unable to join due to some last minute work/mommy stuff, so I was dying to get our new group back together again.  I also invited Ms. Ann, who sat with and took care of my grandmother for about three years before she passed, who we all built a very special relationship with during that time.  There will be lots more to come about Ms. Ann in the coming months, because she has agreed to put up with our family a little longer and nanny for our sweet Baby Baker when he makes his worldly debut.  Because of all the special people coming, who all loved and cared for my Nana so much, I decided that we should be called the “Mary Lillie Memory Club”, so we were.

place setting collage

Now that you know the how and the why of our little gathering, let’s get to the fun stuff – the details!!! The purple and aqua combo is such a fun color palette to plan around.  As soon as I get a party in my head and especially the color scheme, it’s like the world of color begins to revolve around the ones for my party.  Every other color just falls back and suddenly purple and aqua items jump out shouting a big “pick me” and I just can’t resist.

With the dining table in the “party room”, I wanted a patterned purple runner for the table to continue on the color scheme.   I had what I wanted in my head, but wasn’t exactly sure where I was going to find out or how much I was going to have to pay for it once I did, so I called in a member of the creative Thompson troop and asked my seamstress sister to make one for me.  I found this awesome Premier Prints Nicole Slub Thistle Purple fabric on and with the help of Beth’s sewing machine and mega talents, my table runner vision was complete!  From there it was just a layering game to complete the table.  Feeling ever so lucky that it not only complemented the color scheme, the gorgeous vase for the centerpiece is something that is very near and dear to all of us, because it belonged to my grandparents.  It is worth a post all on it’s own, so I will fill you in on those details later.

A trip to Old Time Pottery helped to complete the place settings with the lavender plates, purple tea glasses and aqua blue wine glasses (and only added about $30 to my expense).  I think it is absolutely essential to keep at minimum 12 silver and 12 gold chargers on hand in your entertaining arsenal.  You can pick them up at almost any craft/hobby store and I think most of mine even came from Dollar Tree, for, you guessed it, $1!

After digging through my craft boxes, I found the pretty “place cards”, which are actually paper coasters, but fit in nicely with the tablescape and color scheme already in place.  I used a purple Sharpie to write in each guests’ name and placed them in little metal place card holders that I also use as food label stands.
glasses collage

After completing the tablescape with the patterned purple runner, purple tulip centerpiece, mercury candle votive holders, silver chargers, lavender plates, purple water glasses, blue wine glasses and cute place cards, I felt like it needed one last texture to pull it together, so I used little wood plates for the salad and after that I felt it was truly complete.

coffee table collage

I placed white tulips in my lovely purple Threshold vase that I found at Target that I put on a tray on my chicken coop coffee table with a pretty blue candle in a glass hurricane and the most heavenly scented Pomegranate & Currant Paddywax candle that I picked up at Festivity on Bandywood in Nashville.

For GREAT and unique home decor and accessories, there is a little gem of a place called Southeastern Salvage in Nashville, where I found this blue wood lantern.  I used one almost identical to this in a photo shoot last summer from a home design store and it was $150, but this, my friends, was THIRTY BUCKAROOS!!!!!  And, of course, fits PERFECTLY with my color scheme.  I usually always have some form of blue going, so it will transition from pretty purple to my bright Easter color palette I have planned to the beachy oasis that I intend to transform the room to when I am big as a whale pregnant and longing for my ocean homeland this summer!!!!


Throughout the last week I posted the menu from the luncheon, but here it is in it’s entirety.  You can find all the links to the recipes below, but this menu really came together well with a good bit of ahead-of-time preparation and minimal last minute rushing-around to get it on the table and still left time to visit and relax with our guests.

I think you can tell that we had a “grand” time at the Mary Lillie Memory Club luncheon.  It was such a special day with special friends and family and I really look forward to hosting these ladies again.  Not sure what color palette will be on the agenda, but I will be sure to share!

tulip collage

Now you didn’t think I would miss an opportunity to fill EVERY room with fresh flowers, now did you?!  Whole Foods Market had GORGEOUS parrot tulips on sale for $8.99/10 stems, so I placed flowers in the family room, kitchen, our bedroom (of course), and the bathrooms.  When Pat saw the purple tulips in the bathroom, she exclaimed “My goodness, purple tulips in the bathroom….I tell ya”.  It made me giggle, but those little touches definitely don’t go unnoticed!!!

And now for the menu:

sweet potato bruschetta

Sweet Potato Bruschetta

beet salad3

Roasted Beet, Lentil and Grapefruit Salad with Goat Cheese & Walnuts

herbed chicken and tomatoes

Herbed Chicken & Tomatoes over Angel Hair Pasta


Breyers Tiramisu Gelato

Party Resources:


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