Kappa Kappa Gamma Tablescapes Was Delicious For the Viewing

Mary Hubbard, Mark Sikes and Beth Dike*

Those Kappa Kappa Gammas once again were ahead of the seasonal game by inspiring holiday entertaining with their annual Tablescapes festivities at the Dallas Country Club on Monday, October 16, and Tuesday, October 17. Even Tablescapes Luncheon keynote speaker Mark D. Sikes was taking cellphone shots at the scene at Tablescapes by Candlelight.

Thanks to 2017 Tablescapes Co-Chairs Beth Dike and Mary Hubbard, the fundraiser benefited Akola Project, Camp Summit, Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep, Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center, Genesis Women’s Shelter and Support, Seniors Pet Assistance Network, Town North YMCA, Visiting Nurses Association/Meals on Wheels and Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation.

Dunbar Road Design

Grandeur Design

Curated by Kristin Mullen

Forget Me Not

Diamond Affairs And Bella Flora of Dallas

Amy Berry Design

Stanley Korshak

Teresa Bristol

And while the folks in attendance like Tablescapes Founding Co-Chair Louise Griffeth, Debbie Oates, Peggy Sewell and the  Ford gals (mama Kelli and daughter Kelli) were pretty darn impressive, it was still the creative table settings that were in the spotlight. For this reason, the story was the collection of tables that can be found at MySweetCharity Photo Gallery.

* Photo provided by Kappa Kappa Gamma

2017 Tablescapes Sponsorships and Tickets Are Now Available For The Two-Day Kappa Kappa Gamma Fundraiser

The Kappa Kappa Gammas were donning their blue-and-whites on Tuesday, April 25, for the kick-off of the 2017 Tablescapes — Forever Blue And Beautiful — at Lori Martin’s University home. Gee, even the wallpaper in the dining room was blue and white.

Co-Chairs Mary Hubbard and Beth Dike revealed to guests like Louise Griffeth and Cynthia Beaird that the annual fundraiser would return to the Dallas County Club just in time to inspire hosts/hostesses on how to dress up their tables for the Thanksgiving feasts.

Louise Griffeth and Cynthia Beaird

Tablescapes by Candlelight will take place on Monday, October 16, followed the next day with the presentation by keynote speaker Mark Sikes and a seated lunch at the decorated tables throughout the club.

If Mark isn’t a household name, he definitely should be. In addition to doing Draper James in Highland Park Village, and being a part of Reese Witherspoon’s splendiferous world, he has also been an advising bud for Nancy Meyer.

Presented by Central Market, the fundraiser will benefit the following nonprofits: Akola Project, Camp Summit, Cristo Red Dallas College Prep, Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center, Genesis Women’s Shelter and Support, Seniors Pet Assistance Network, Town North YMCA, Visiting Nurses Association/Meals on Wheels and Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation.

Tickets are available now!

JUST IN: Dallas Interior Designer/Author Jan Showers To Be Featured Speaker For Kappa Kappa Gamma’s 2016 Tablescapes

Each year the Kappa Tablescapes is a festival of fabulously creative table settings that take up most of the Dallas Country Club to benefit area nonprofits. Held just before everyone goes in overdrive for holiday feasting, the table settings range from the whimsical to the most elegant look this side of Marie Antoinette. And it sounds like this year’s version is going to keep the reputation nicely in place on Sunday, October 17, and Monday, October 18, at the DCC.

Jan Showers (File photo)

Jan Showers (File photo)

But there is gonna be a wee bit of a change this year from recent Tablescapes. Instead of flying in an author or lifestyle guru like James Farmer or Alex Hitz, 2016 Tablescapes Co-Chairs Amy Burgher and Brittany Gaskill are tapping a local design expert — Jan Showers.

According to Brittany, “Kappa Tablescapes is thrilled to features one of Dallas’ top designer talents for our 2016 luncheon, who also happens to be an internationally-renowned interior design superstar. We are so fortunate to have such an inspiring designer, author, entrepreneur and style icon here in our city.”

The timing is just perfect. In addition to her numerous collection of accolades and awards, Jan “is launching a complete lifestyle collection for Kravet Couture, as well as lines for Michael Taylor Designs, Moattar, Inc., and Kyle Bunting. These lines will complement her longstanding signature furniture and lighting collection, available at showrooms around the country.”

Tri Delt Jan commented, “I am so honored and thrilled to be a part of Kappa Tablescapes 2016 because it is one of the most prestigious events of the fall season, and one so many look forward to year after year. We are also very excited to showcase furniture and accessories from my new lifestyle collection from Kravet couture, along with pieces from my own furniture collection, antiques and vintage from our showroom in the Dallas Design District.”

Tablescapes (File photo)

Tablescapes (File photo)

This year’s beneficiaries include ACT Advocates for Transformation, Austin Street Center, Connecting Point of Park Cities, For the Nations Refugee Outreach, Interfaith Family Services, Mercy Street, MD College and Career Pathways and Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation. Since the first Tablescapes in 1995, more than $2.2M has been distributed to more than 78 Dallas County beneficiaries.

Amy said, “Over the past 20 years, this group of women has worked diligently to raise over $2.5 million benefiting more than 70 local charities and organizations. We are extremely proud of the philanthropic role Kappa Tablescapes plays in our community.”

Now, it’s up to you to pick whether you’re gonna attend Monday’s Tablescapes by Candlelight or Tuesday’s Tablescapes Luncheon. But why choose? Why not attend both? Tickets are available now!

Kappa Kappa Gamma’s Tablescapes Set New Highs With Table Fashions And Alex Hitz’s Boldface Namedropping

There wasn’t much time to recover from the Saturday, October 18 Cattle Baron’s Ball. But no excuses would do Sunday or Monday, since the annual Kappa Kappa Gamma Tablescapes two-day fundraiser was underway at the Dallas Country Club. Showcasing the extremely talented professionals and should-bes, the event takes place just before the holidays really go into overdrive. The settings inspired hosts and hostesses for

Sunday, October 19 — Candlelight

The evening was the stuff that mega-advertising firms hope for when trying to promote a new convertible. The humidity was low. The breeze was just enough to make long hair flow perfectly. The temperature was ideal for bare shouldering it.

Holt Haynsworth and Lyn Barlow

Holt Haynsworth and Lyn Barlow

Within the Dallas Country Club, there was not a pore or line in sight thanks to the hundreds of glowing candles. And these candles were perfectly poised on dozens and dozens of beautifully decorated and dolled up tables. The King’s Winter Feast boasted shields, swords and antiquities in north grill. Holt Haynsworth’s table was a scene from Colorado with Aspens, a glass top covering decorative moss and photos from past shoots in the main grill. (Holt told his mom Lyn Barlow that he was unleashing his inner feminine self to create the table.) Junior Villanueva’s table in the gallery had stumped some, but clever guests like Jill Rowlett immediately figured it out. It was an upside down tree with roots reaching to the ceiling and tulips and tree limbs pointing downward with the leafy branches covering the table.

Junior Villanueva's presentation

Junior Villanueva’s presentation

And while guests queued up for the buffet and silent auction in the main northern side of the ballroom, the vast majority checked out the tables throughout the clubhouse. For within 24 hours, they would be a Kappa Kappa Gamma Tablescape memory and its proceeds would be going to Catch UP and Read, Child Care Group, Contact, Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center, Dwell With Dignity, Mosaic Dallas, New Friends New Life, Promise House, VNA/Meals on Wheels and the Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation.

No sooner had the last guests driven away from Candlelight, then the tables were redressed in preparation for the sold-out Monday luncheon in which guests attended a lecture by bon vivant Alex Hitz and then dined at the tables. And, yes, a lot of candles had to be snuffed out.

Monday, October 20 – Luncheon

Caroline Williams, Charlya Ward and Christine Flanagan

Caroline Williams, Charlya Ward and Christine Flanagan

Christine Flanagan, Martha Ward and Caroline Williams

Christine Flanagan, Martha Ward and Caroline Williams

Tablescapes Co-Chairs/Sisters Christine Ward Flanagan and Caroline Ward Williams had everything in perfect order. For the pair it was a three-generation occasion with mother Charlya Ward and grandmother Martha Ward on hand.

Monday morning guests returned to the club that is usually closed this one day of the week. They started arriving at 10 a.m. to view the tables with their finery and meet some of the designers.

Louise Griffeth and Junior Villanueva

Louise Griffeth and Junior Villanueva

At 11:30, they gathered in the ballroom to recognize Debbie Oates as the Platinum Key Honoree and Charlotte Anderson for being the recipient of the Fraternity Alumnae Achievement Award. However, Tablescapes Co-Founder Louise Griffeth had something up the sleeve of her brand new very Kappa Kappa Gamma dress (It was covered in key prints). She had managed to get floral genius Junior Villanueva to sit in the audience. The man who along with his Garden Gate crew create magnificent masterpieces in vases or ballrooms shies away from the applause and limelight. Instead, he prefers to let his handiwork be out front.

As Louise addressed the filled-to-capacity ballroom, she nervously admitted that she was treading on thin ice in calling attention to Junior. But once she did it, one and all rose to their feet to show their appreciation for his talent and his being a part of Tablescapes for 20 years.

Then it was time for natty Alex to regale the crowd with stories of being raised by jet setting parents in the south and France. Like a Page Six column, his talk was peppered with anecdotes and names like

Alex Hitz

Alex Hitz

Eating baked potatoes with so much caviar that “this half Presbyterian damn near blushed” in a duplex built for a silent movie star with a fountain for champagne in the bathtub (“Now, look at you. I say that in Dallas and nobody bats an eye.”);

  • “Lobster Mimi at Carolina and Reinaldo Herrera’s lush 91st Street house. The recipe she got from Mimi, her formidable mother-in-law. Here’s a pieces of news, ladies, even Carolina has a formidable mother-in-law.
  • “A surreal sour cream soufflé at Bill Blass’ country house in Connecticut on the bleakest, ugliest of February afternoons;
  • “A summer blackberry tart in “gorgeous Carolyne Roehm’s not to-be-believed, be believed garden in Connecticut full of super ripe, not to believed blackberries straight from that garden.
  • A coconut pudding with caramel sauce “one Christmas Eve at Susan Godwin’s palatial Fifth Avenue spread… If the coconut pudding didn’t get you, the apartment would.”
  • “Hands down, the very, very best chicken pot pie ever, which had sultanas in it. You and I might call them raisins at Louisiana belle Marguerite Littman’s house in Chester Square in London. She told stories about her very best friend Tennessee Williams. It seems they were sitting at the pool one day when a very, very, very skinny girl walked by. Marjorie looked at her and said “Anorexia nervosa.” To which, Tennessee responded, “Why, Marguerite, you just know everybody!”
  • Short ribs with Betsy Bloomingdale.
  • For the last seven or eight years of her life, Elizabeth Taylor had Alex spend Thanksgiving with her and “her family.” He told his audience that after being part of the holiday feast with Taylor, he advised that “I do hate myself for what I’m about to say…please, always remember if you hire a caterer to do a Thanksgiving dinner, please make sure that they do not specialize in tahini, couscous and lamb kebobs.”

With strict orders to respect the schedule, he concluded the talk telling them “to give people what they really want” and five tips to a perfect party — Five Ways To Entertain Well (as if any of these gals needed advice):

  1. “Never skimp on anything. “Don’t you go skimping. If you serve a frozen pizza, fried chicken or caviar, make sure it’s the best of what it is and there’s plenty of it.
  2. “When entertaining, make a schedule and stick to it. Serve dinner on time. And don’t wait on anybody. If people are late, it’s their problem not yours. Do not punish the people who come on time and reward the people who come late. (Applause)
  3. “Make an effort to get every detail right, but do it before the guests arrive. Do not be fussing around the kitchen making everybody nervous. Parties are first and foremost about people and then food and then everything else. And never stop smiling. Trust me, trust me. Nobody wants to see your freaking out in a cold sweat and popping Xanax.
  4. “The higher the monkey climbs the pole, the more he shows his _____. In other words, don’t be pretentious. Keep it simple. We know you’re rich and of excellent quality. Simpler is always better.
  5. “If all else fails, and make sure you don’t miss this one, just call up the Dallas Country Club.”
Jean Liu Designs and Pomp Party

Jean Liu Designs and Pomp Party

Then the crowd en masse left the ballroom for their tables for a luncheon of red pepper soup, chicken chasseur served with broccoli polonaise and fall rise blend and a chocolate mousse with whipped cream and pecan shortbread cookies.

All 54 tables were filled to the hilt except one. It was the Jean Liu Designs and Pomp Party in the main foyer. There was good reason for its being guest-less. It was made for guests, whose birthdays were still in the one-digit range.

MySweetCharity Photo Gallery Alert: Tablescapes

As the holiday feasting is approaching, it’s time to make your table a “fashion plate”. Sorry about that. Couldn’t resist.



And the Kappa Kappa Gamma’s Tablescapes created a two-day wonderland of magnificent table settings that inspired and had mouths watering at the Dallas Country Club on the evening of Sunday, October 19, and the next day for lunch and a lecture by world-class bon vivant Alex Hitz.



Alex Hitz

Alex Hitz

Even the Chi Omegas, Pi Phis and Thetas in the audience were “Kappa Adjacents” for the two days.

For your consideration, check out the two pages on MySweetCharity Photo Gallery of some of the 54 table settings and peeps browsing around.

BTW, there wasn’t a paper plate or napkin in sight.

Grovel Alert: Tablescapes By Candlelight

20th Anniversary Tablescapes*

20th Anniversary Tablescapes*

The Kappa Kappa Gammas’ Tablescapes Luncheon Tuesday, October 21, at the Dallas Country Club is sold out.

The luncheon is going to be spectacularly gorgeous with Alex Hitz speaking. Boy, does he have a story to tell! He spent part of his youth in Europe, but learned about cooking from the family’s Southern cook, Dorothy Williams. Combine that with his parents’ love of French food, and no wonder he authored “My Beverly Hill Kitchen: Classic Southern Cooking with a French Twist.” How he found time to do that, plus co-produce several Broadway shows including the revival of “The Sound of Music” in 1998, develop real estate and design clothing, is amazing.

If you bump into Alex, here are a couple of questions to ask him:

  • What type of food does he serve guests at his numerous dinners?
  • How do the oversized doors of his Los Angeles home play a role in his parties?
  • Who said: “’A host is like a general; calamities often reveal his genius.”
2013 Tablescapes (File photo)

2013 Tablescapes (File photo)

Ah, but Monday night’s Tablescapes By Candlelight is the secret deal. There’s more food that a Swedish smörgåsbord. It’s much more easy going with men-folk all around. The feel in the rooms really sets the mood for the upcoming holiday season. And let’s be honest — everyone is prettier by candlelight.

2013 Tablescapes (File photo)

2013 Tablescapes (File photo)

But according to Kappa organizers there are just a few spots left for Monday evening.

You already know that the two-day event is being chaired by Christine Flanagan and Caroline Williams and presented by Central Market. Proceed from the events will benefit Catch Up and Read, Child Care Group, Contact, Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center, Dwell With Dignity, Mosaic Dallas, New Friends New Life, Promise House, VNA and Kappa Kappa Foundation.

* Graphic provided by 2014 Tablescapes

MySweetCharity Opportunity: Tablescapes

According To Kappa Kappa Gamma Tablescapes Co-Chairs Christine Flanagan and Caroline Williams,

20th Anniversary Tablescapes*

20th Anniversary Tablescapes*

“Kappa Kappa Gamma Alumnae Association will celebrate the 20th anniversary of our signature fund-raising event, Tablescapes, on Tuesday, October 21, at Dallas Country Club. Our featured speaker, Alex Hitz, best-selling author of “My Beverly Hills Kitchen: Classic Southern Cooking With A French Twist”, will delight us with his entertaining philosophy. “Give people what they really want when you entertain-comfort food with nothing trendy or pretentious or precious. They can diet the rest of the week,” he says.

“In addition to Alex’s amusing presentation, dozens of designers, florists, decorators and stylists will decorate the luncheon tables with their signature style in celebration of twenty years of raising money for worthwhile charities in Dallas. We are thrilled to announce Central Market is the 20th Anniversary Tablescapes Presenting Sponsor.

2013 Tablescapes (File photo)

2013 Tablescapes (File photo)

“The 2014 Tablescapes beneficiaries are Catch Up and Read, Child Care Group, Contact, Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center, Dwell With Dignity, Mosaic Dallas, New Friends New Life, Promise House, VNA and Kappa Kappa Foundation.

“The unique, two-day event includes a Private Patron Reception with Alex for our top level donors, Tablescapes by Candlelight, a festive evening with cocktails and light bites honoring sponsors and beneficiaries and a preview of the designers’ incredible creations. Tablescapes culminates with the speaker followed by a lovely luncheon among all of the decorated tables throughout the club.

“Kappa Tablescapes Luncheon reservations, Candlelight tickets, raffle tickets, Alex Hitz’ book and other merchandise may all be purchased online at www.kappadallas.org .”

* Graphic courtesy of Tablescapes

MySweetCharity Photo Gallery Alert: Kappa Tablescapes

_MG_2055The Dallas Country Club was an allergist’s dream of the Garden of Eden thanks to the Kappa Kappa Gamma’s Kappa Tablescapes. For two days (October 21 and 22), the sorority filled every nook and cranny with amazing table settings with more flowers than Holland.P1010357

But it was well worth the itchy eyes and sneezing noses. Check out MySweetCharity’s Photo Gallery for a record-setting collection of photos.

Debbie Oates Is Busiest Woman In Dallas Fundraising For The Next Three Days

Debbie Oates (File photo)

Debbie Oates (File photo)

Do not get in Debbie Oates’ way this week.

Not only is she the Platinum Key Honoree for the Kappas two-day Tablescapes extravaganza Monday night and Tuesday lunch, she’s chairing Baylor Health Care System Foundation’s Celebrating Women on Wednesday and a patron party Tuesday night.

On Thursday, let’s give her permission to take the day off.

Sold-Out And Grovel Alerts: Tablescapes Luncheon Sold Out, But A Few Tickets Remain for Tablescapes By Candlelight

Amy Davis and Alicia Wood*

Amy Davis and Alicia Wood*

Forget the Rangers and the Cowboys. The nonprofits are on a non-stop winning streak. Another one just knocked it out of the ballpark. Those girls with the keys (aka Kappa Kappa Gamma) have just reported that the October 22nd Tablescapes luncheon at the Dallas Country Club is sold out!

However, Tablescapes Co-Chairs Amy Davis and Alicia Wood say there’s still a chance to see James Farmer at the Monday night Tablescapes by Candlelight on the eve of Tablescapes. It’s quite an event in itself with cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, opportunities to see the fabulous table creations by area designers and to chum it up with adorable James. What a sweetie he is.

Honoree of the event is Debbie Oates.

You can get tickets online, but they’re going quickly.

Perhaps Ron Washington and Jason Garrett should ask the Kappas for some advice.

* Photo provided by Tablescapes

MySweetCharity Opportunity: Tablescapes

Amy Davis and Alicia Wood*

Amy Davis and Alicia Wood*

According to Tablescapes Co-Chairs Amy Davis and Alicia Wood,

“The Dallas Alumnae Association of Kappa Kappa Gamma celebrates Dallas’ top creative talent and designer with its 19th annual Kappa Tablescapes on October 21 and 22, 2013 at the Dallas Country Club.  Guests will view the spectacular tables and floral displays of our talented Dallas designers and experience Southern Hospitality at its finest as we present A Time to Entertain: From Farm to Table with James Farmer.

James Farmer (File photo)

James Farmer (File photo)

“Tablescapes is actually a three day design festival and not a single event: the Sunday private dinner with James for our largest supporters, Tablescapes by Candlelight- the Monday evening cocktail preview and then the Tablescapes Luncheon where James will be our featured speaker. We are expecting 1200 people to attend over the three days.

“The Sunday evening private dinner, a new benefit for our top level donors, will be inspired by James’ book “Porch Living.”  He is helping the chef at Central Market, our presenting sponsor, create a the Southern menu for the evening.  James will also be designing the event that evening and carrying this over to the Tablescapes events at DCC for everyone to enjoy.

“Tablescapes by Candlelight is our evening cocktail preview party where all of the beautiful designs are awash in candlelight.  Guests enjoy open bar and a full cocktail buffet while enjoying the creativity of Dallas’ best design talent.  The Tablescapes Luncheon is like a fantasy party where you are seated at one of these fabulous tables after hearing from our speaker James Farmer.  Many of the designers are taking a cue from his garden-to-table lifestyle so we expect an incredibly lush event.

Debbie Oates will be receiving the Key Honoree award for her contributions to Kappa and the Dallas Community at the Luncheon.

“The generosity of our supporters had enabled us to raise and distribute more than $2,100,000 to more than 60 beneficiaries in Dallas County.  Eight very worthy agencies listed below have been selected as recipients of Kappa Tablescapes 2013 proceeds.  Additional information regarding this year’s recipients may be found on our website at www.kappadallas.org. Please join us again in giving back to our community as Kappa Tablescapes 2013 presents the very best in Dallas design!

  • Camp Summit
  • Human Rights Initiative
  • Foundation for the Education of Young Women
  • Rays of Light
  • Heroes for Children
  • Vickery Meadow Learning Center
  • Vogel Alcove
  • Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation

“Tickets to the Luncheon and Candlelight are available at http://www.kappadallas.org/.”

* Photo provided by Tablescapes

Southern Living’s Lifestyle Guru James Farmer Will Be At Kappa Kappa Gamma’s Tablescapes In October

James Farmer (File photo)

James Farmer (File photo)

If you met author James Farmer when he was in town a couple of years ago, you know what a cutie he is. . . and how very talented he is when it comes to making the ordinary spectacular! Well, you just know that those Kappa Kappa Gamma sisters weren’t going to let such looks and talents escape their sights.

Debbie Oates (File photo)

Debbie Oates (File photo)

So, KKG-ers Amy Davis and Alicia Wood, who are chairing this year’s Tablescapes fundraiser, lassoed him for the two-day fundraiser at the Dallas Country Club that will honor Debbie Oates.

As usual, the timing couldn’t be better. With the holidays approaching, Tablescapes will showcase exquisite “tables and floral designs created by more than 50 Dallas designers, event planners and boutiques.”

Guests will have the choice to

  • check out the finery by candlelight at the cocktail buffet on Monday, October 21,
  • see the arrangements in the light of day for the Tuesday, October 22, luncheon, when James will be the keynote speaker, or
  • both.

Presented by Central Market, Tablescapes will benefit Camp Summit, Foundation for the Education of Young Women, Heroes for Children, Human Rights Initiative, Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation, Rays of Light, Vickery Meadow Learning Center and Vogel Alcove.

A couple of suggestions:

  1. Buy one of his books.
  2. Get your reservations in ASAP because there are only 10 tables left for the luncheon. Yipes!