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Annapolis Home Magazine invited Jennifer “Jenn” Baker to set a holiday table for us. The inspired owner of Welcome Home, a specialty kitchen and table store at 64 State Circle, Jenn shares that she is a designer by passion, not education. In fact, she admits, “A lot of electrical tape was used in the creation of the florals!”
During our photo shoot on the State House lawn, she explained that because she has a form of muscular dystrophy, she has used a wheelchair for over 20 years. But she finds that operating a business from a wheelchair has certain advantages and, in fact, inspires her unusual design approach. First, she assembles a “scene” on the floor to gain a top-down view. Then, she moves the setting to the table and looks directly across. These are great techniques we can all try. No wheelchair necessary!
In the following Q&A, Jenn shares the sources of her inspiration.
AH: What is your secret to a beautiful table?
My overall approach is to create something beautiful when you look across a room but something captivating when you sit down at the table. I believe great design is all in the details. You’ll see that in the tiny touches of color, the rich textures, and the mixed materials.
AH: What is at the heart of your creation?
We chose modern table linens as the backdrop for more traditional florals and tableware pieces. We added a touch of nostalgia with vintage ornaments from our family collection. For the table linens, we selected the 190-year-old French heritage brand Garnier-Thiebaut. We love the soft wisps of the ferns in greys, greens, and touches of lilac and plum dripping over the edge of the table and the modern grey sketch border.
AH: How did you choose your colors and flowers?
Given the transitional nature of our table linen choice, we opted for a simple color palette for our florals: red and white. Our greens were cut from our home on the Eastern Shore and feature evergreens and magnolia. The large format of the lilies and the simple pop of tonal reds added by the mums are a modern expression and help to convey the essence of holidays when paired with the table linens. The flowers are lilies, mums, and baby’s breath, all from Acme Markets. For the garland extending the length of the table, I secured branches and leaves using paper clips and electrical tape.
AH: Tell us about textures and mixed materials.
For tablescape accents, we opted for traditional pewter pinecone salt & pepper shakers and pewter feather napkin rings. Our taper candles in rubbed gold metal, alongside green tree stumps in ceramic, added a winter touch. Our candlesticks were made by our favorite craft candle maker, who uses fallen birch logs to add a touch of texture. Tableware is by Casafina of Portugal. I have a fun fact to share. The yellow pattern is our actual personal dinnerware.
See something you love from our photo shoot? Do not worry. Most items are from Jenn’s shops in Annapolis and Chestertown. Keep in mind that Welcome Home is the sister store of Chester River Wine & Cheese Company in Chestertown, Maryland, operated by her husband, John Laucik. Here, you will find fine wines, cheeses, and craft varietals to serve your family and guests.
Tablecloth & Napkins: Garnier-Thiebaut, France | Woven Plate Chargers: Calaiso | Tableware: Casafina of Portugal | Pewter Napkin Rings + Salt & Pepper Shaker Sets: Vagabond Vintage | Candlesticks: Greentree Candles of NY | Glassware: La Rochère | Taper Candle Holders: Creative Co-op | Stags: Homart | Ornaments: Vintage Laucik—Family
© Annapolis Home Magazine
Vol. 14, No. 6 2023