Tuesday, August 18, 2009

When I worked at Vogue Entertaining Guide

Often when I set my table I remember the wonderful years I spent working at Vogue Entertaining Guide magazine styling table settings. My job as Editorial Associate then was to source wonderful items and style the photographs for the pages in the magazines. I quite often styled the boardroom table settings for all the Vogue functions.

I styled stories in many private homes and gardens, table settings in ski lodges, outback and on country farms and in restaurants and well known hotels with famous chefs. It was fabulous fun and the young foodies and chefs of Australia were just coming out when I was there in the 80's.

Firstly, always find a wonderful backdrop to set up the table, a garden, a beautiful veranda, a corner of a courtyard filled with flowering plants or a fabulous view.

Must use wonderful china with good design with lovely shapes and interesting items on the table

and always work with beautiful lighting

Although I do all of my own photography now, I didn't take the photographs for Vogue back then, we hired many different photographers for each different job and I my job was as the director and stylist at each photo shoot. Always looking through the camera lens and checking the angles and positions, I worked closely with some of the most amazing food photographers in Australia and overseas. We did have lots of fun together and I also learnt many skills from these great guys over the years.

I also had the fun job to create the "Entertaining Ideas" pages in each issue, ideas for entertaining and food and I would spend weeks searching through gorgeous shops, wholesalers and antique stores for interesting items to feature in my stories. (I really did have a good job back then). Our office was always filled with new products, food items and table setting items. I was also the Christmas shopping buyer for the Editor in Chief and many of the girls at Vogue. We had so many fantastic products in our office that it almost looked like a department store on some days.


The debutante ball that I am working on at the moment is for over 600 guests, many of the details and 'how to' come from my days from Vogue and years of working on large events. Many mothers ask why I bother to go to such much detail. Well, I love it and it's the only way I know how to do it. I really admire people that create beautiful settings on their tables and produce beautifully styled food. My mother in law always had the most beautiful settings for our family dinners and she would set her table days before the dinner.

She's gone now and I do miss those dinners.

Welcome to all from Susan's Tablescape Thursday Party. You must visit Susan's blog at Between Naps on the Porch, she is celebrating her 1st anniversary this week.