Posts tagged anke illner
Midsommer Garden Party Must Have: Lemon Tart and These Flowers

Hello dear readers! You know that it is time to shoot your next column when the strawberries taste the sweetest and the roses all around are in full bloom! Hello, this is Anke with a small midsommer table setting for two that could easily be enlarged to fit many friends, or even brought outside into your garden or on the patio.

Ah yes, summer time! And today I have prepared for you a lemon tart with roses and berries for the table. Everyone loves these hings! Sweet fruit and luscious flowers simply stand for summertime and are highly welcome at my home.

A Lovely Midsommer Garden Party Needs This Lemon Tart and These Flowers


I brought home bunches of different English roses from the local market the other day. The white ones are from our garden and I love how fragile they are. In addition, you can see pale pink Astilbe as I also wanted something light and fluffy in the big bouquet. There is a recognizable Astilbe trend where I live. You can get the Astilbe perennial plant in a pot in almost every flower shop. And you should know that they do not last very long as a cut flower!

A Lovely Midsommer Garden Party Needs This Lemon Tart and These Flowers


I chose a linen tablecloth in dusky pink on my small wooden table and the off-white ceramic plates and cups I bought in the Netherlands. The wine glasses have a delicate line of gold on the edge. I’ve also added gold-colored spoons and the bottom of the hanging vase/ candle holder is also gold. I like it when small details repeat such as a color, material or pattern. When I have impressive, voluminous flowers I like to let these be the stars on my table and keep everything around them simple.

A Lovely Midsommer Garden Party Needs This Lemon Tart and These Flowers
A Lovely Midsommer Garden Party Needs This Lemon Tart and These Flowers


I made a lemon tart following THIS recipe on Half Baked Harvest. Tieghan Gerard called it, “No fuss lemon tart ... super easy, yet delicious and pretty too“, which says it all! I was also inspired by her beautiful cake styling very much and tried the berry topping that she did by simply adding some cherries to the strawberries and raspberries. Have a look at her blog, it is one of my favorites!

Some sparkling Rosé Secco is a nice companion for the coffee and cake gathering.

A Lovely Midsommer Garden Party Needs This Lemon Tart and These Flowers
A Lovely Midsommer Garden Party Needs This Lemon Tart and These Flowers
Midsommer Lemon Tart


The hanging glass vase with golden accents usually hangs on our balcony holding a tea light. I think it is always rewarding to have a close look at the things we already own and use these in different ways, also when it comes to decoration, instead of buying something new. I use all my glasses for flowers, candles, drinks and food.

A Lovely Midsommer Garden Party Needs This Lemon Tart and These Flowers

I hope that you liked this column today, and have a beautiful summertime and enjoy your holidays! I hope to be showing a new column posting around August/ September.

All the best wishes -Anke

(Photography, Styling: Anke Illner)

Beautiful Easter Cake + Easter Tabletop Decorations

Hello everyone, with Easter approaching fast, I will quickly show you my table decoration for this year plus a delicious cake that you’ll love. But first, hi, this is Anke Illner back with another column for everyone who loves to set a table (and eat!). Let’s get started, shall we?

Delicious Easter Cake + Easter Tabletop Decorations


I combined long birch branches with dried hydrangea from our garden. When my husband cut back the hydrangea bushes the other day, I saved some twigs as I like the tender and fragile look of the faded tiny flowers so much. It turned out they look beautiful in my floral wall hanging (scroll down for that). Also, you can see some white and greenish ranunculus mixed in on the table.

Delicious Easter Cake + Easter Tabletop Decorations


My white tableware teamed up with some pieces from the Lyngby Rhombe Collection such as the tall vase, porcelain Easter eggs, platter and candle holder. In my opinion the delicate rhombe relief pattern suits perfectly on festive occasions like Easter and adds some elegance to your table.

Instead of a tablecloth. I used long sheets of transparent white paper on top of my white tabletop giving the overall style a look of lightness even on such a long table. White baking parchment is a good choice as it comes rolled up and you can cut it exactly the size needed. Also I like an irregular arrangement of the paper on the table, playing with the lengths.


Each linen napkin is decorated with a small birch twig and a tiny white blossom made of flower tissue paper. The blossoms are easily made by simply cutting round shapes out of the paper, forming a blossom and „turning“ a little stem between your fingers. So make some more paper flowers and spread them on the table!

Delicious Easter Cake + Easter Tabletop Decorations


Easter Sunday without a sweet treat? No way! I made a Pistachio Cake following a recipe by Sally/ sallysbakingaddiction and I can highly recommend it! You will be rewarded with the most delicious, moist pistachio sponge. I enjoyed making this cake very much.

On top, I’ve decorated it with ground and chopped pistachios and chocolate Easter eggs. It may be nice to note that I did not use any food coloring but took the pistachios you find on the supermarket shelf with the baking ingredients because those are extremely green!

Delicious Easter Cake + Easter Tabletop Decorations
Delicious Easter Cake + Easter Tabletop Decorations


First I thought about making a classic wreath but decided upon imperfection instead. For a wall hanging like mine take one long branch, attach a string to both ends and tie twigs of different lengths onto the branch. Then attach Easter eggs or other pendants of your choice. Finally, add the voluminous pieces like ranunculus and dried hydrangea. I use raffia to tie.

Delicious Easter Cake + Easter Tabletop Decorations

I hope you like my Easter table 2019, maybe you found inspiration for your celebration next weekend. Many of the ideas shown can be realized almost last minute if you ask me.

HAPPY EASTER to all of you, dear decor8 readers! Love, Anke

(Photography/Text/Concept + Styling: Anke Illner)

March Dinner Party Inspiration in Blush Pink Linen + Fresh Flowers

SPRING IS IN THE AIR! (At least in Germany it is!) So let us welcome tender blossoms and sofa shades at home, what do you think? This is Anke, back with a new tabletop column for you after a winter break. I hope you are well, dear readers! Are you ready to be inspired for your next dinner party?



The materials and props that I chose this time around are glass, vases and tealight holders, as it helps to create a light and fresh feeling, which is exactly what we want after dark winter months, right!? You will also see fine linen.

These beautiful blush pink linen napkins (Serviette Leinen) are from Holly’s exclusive and limited edition for DEPOT (Germany, Switzerland and Austria) that is available only until 21 March, 2019 - and definitely my favorite styling item on the table. Besides the color, they are quite impressive with their wonderful texture.

Tiny three-footed pottery coasters (Untersetzer Holly) are on trend with a handmade look, also from the same collection, and hold coarse sea salt next to each guest’s plate.

And there is my white tableware of course, the perfect pieces which complement almost any tabletop theme.

March Dinner Party Inspiration With Pale Salmon + Fresh Flowers
March Dinner Party Inspiration With Pale Salmon + Fresh Flowers


A large glass vase is holding flowering quince while smaller vases are filled with Ranunculus, Tulips, Cloves and delicate blooming twigs.

March Dinner Party Inspiration With Pale Salmon + Fresh Flowers
March Dinner Party Inspiration With Pale Salmon + Fresh Flowers


Matching to the season, a delicious and eye-catching appetizer for guests is this Blood Orange and Fennel Salad with Buffalo Mozzarella, Pomegranate Seeds & Smoked Almonds. It is beautiful to arrange on a big plate and heavenly aromatic. I served fresh baguette with it.

March Dinner Party Inspiration With Pale Salmon + Fresh Flowers


As mentioned above I like the linen napkins a lot. It made me think how I could possibly use them apart from their intended purpose. I tried with knotting them together to a linen garland and was quite happy with the result!

March Dinner Party Inspiration With Pale Salmon + Fresh Flowers

I hope one or other of my springlike tabletop ideas is inspiring for you and if so would love to know which one! Have a good and pleasant time, dear decor8 readers!- Love, Anke

(Styling/Photography: Anke Illner, Fantastisch)

Table For Two: Pumpkin Spice Bundt Cake

Hi there, this is Anke with a new tabletop idea for you, dear decor8 blog readers. “Think big” is a popular motto in this day and age and there’s nothing wrong with it, but sometimes it can be relaxing and quite inspiring to think in a smaller dimension. For instance, what if you celebrate the holidays with only your very small family or just one other person. Is it not worth a celebration when less are involved? Do we need to set a lovely table and make something nice only when many guests will join us? Of course not! Why not do something nice for just you and someone you love? That’s also a beautiful moment, but even more, a last memory.

That is why I would like you to enjoy my TABLE FOR TWO story today. Maybe this is something you can do with a single friend who may be lonely this time of year, or maybe your elderly neighbor who has no one during the holidays. Invite her by for cake and coffee and make things look special.

Table for two

The wall decoration

I can’t help decorating with paper. I know I’ve made a lot of leaf-shaped paper table decorations in the past, whether it was a garland or confetti-like sprinkled across the table. This time I cut out big leafs using recycling print paper. It is was easy!

I did not even make a template as it is rather nice when the leafs turn out unique and freestyle. Fold the paper sharply and cut it so that it results in a leaf when unfolding. Afterwards I arranged the leafs on the wall with masking tape on the reverse sides starting with the largest ones.


The flowers

I shopped for these flowers at the farmers’ market recently and I went home with sunflowers, dahlias, chrysanthemums, asters and straw flowers. And though the sunflowers and giant chrysanthemums are the eye catcher in the bouquet, especially from a distance, I do have a crush on the little luminous yellow straw flowers looking like little stars. I guess I am trying to hold onto Fall. And for Americans who celebrate Thanksgiving this month, this palette is still on your minds so it may inspire you a lot to see the lovely oranges and golds.

Cake recipe

The cake

This cake screams EAT ME! I loved it and my family did, too. Even the neighbors got a piece. It’s a Pumpkin Spice Bundt Cake and the recipe comes from Julie Gransee’s blog Lovely Little Kitchen. The cake is moist and heavenly aromatic and simply soul food. Same with the cream cheese frosting. As an add-on I topped it with a crunch made of roasted seeds with maple syrup and coarse sea salt! Try it!

Roasted seeds

The colors & props

Warm earthy shades are beloved companions in fall/ autumn and rightly so. I ordered a beautiful beige colored tablecloth which sadly did not arrive on time for the shooting and picked my white linen one instead. At least the curry colored napkins looked particularly beautiful forming a contrast with the white surface. Besides my plain white tableware I decorated with a wooden cake plate, a  stone-grey ceramic candle holder and amber colored tiny jar.

I hope you like this slightly different column story of mine and see you again before Christmas, maybe back on the big table then!

With a glass of sparkling prosecco I am saying cheers to Holly celebrating her fantastic magazine news! I am looking forward to the first issue of Living At Home x Holly in January so very much!

Love, Anke

 (Text, Photography & Styling: Anke Illner)

4 Simple Ways To Decorate for a Garden Party at Home

Would you like to see 4 very easy and affordable ways to create an indoor garden dinner party for summer? Hello, this is Anke with another tabletop-column, cherishing the month of June and the color green! I love the rich green outside that come with summer season! Most of us like to spend as much time as possible outdoors during this time of the year, right? But as not all of us has a garden so thought about bringing the garden-party theme inside.

Indoor Garden Party Theme on decor8
Indoor Garden Party Theme on decor8

1/ Start with Flowers & Branches

First for this theme, I cut wild Mock Orange Bush (which is known under the name „Farmer ́s Jasmine“ in Germany because of its stunning citrus fragrance) and arranged the branches in a tall glass vase. The smaller vases on the table are filled with white Peonies, Nigellas, Grasses and Matthiola.

Indoor Garden Party Theme on decor8

2/ Simple Tableware & Linens

For a very natural look, I opted for plain white plates, small water glasses, and green linen napkins. Crystal glasses for the summery aperitif add a little nostalgic glamour. In addition, I decorated with just a few green accessories -- like a dark green little bowl with a floral decor and a rose-shaped candle holder.

Indoor Garden Party Theme on decor8

3/ Affordable & Pretty Wall Decoration

Another idea that is easy, quick and affordable is this wall decoration. I searched through all of my favorite magazines for green, garden, and countryside-themed pictures and attached them to the wall in my dining room using masking tape. The result is a big green mood board which beautifully emphasizes the theme of my indoor garden party.

Indoor Garden Party Theme on decor8

4/ A Signature Summer Drink/Aperitif

Next, how about a toast with a Peach, Thyme & Elderflower Cooler? You can pour some elderflower syrup in a carafe, then add just-sliced peaches, thyme twigs and fresh elderflowers. Top with sparkling wine and some sparkling water. Cheers to summer!

Indoor Garden Party Theme on decor8
Indoor Garden Party Theme on decor8

Let me wish you a beautiful summer season with many memorable moments with your loved ones outside in the garden, on the balcony, at the lake, by the sea or indoors in your dining room!

I will see you again here at deco8 in August when I return from our annual family vacation!

Love, Anke

(Photography, Styling, Text: Anke Illner)

6 DIY Easter Tabletop Ideas and a Gorgeous Cake Recipe

Hi, dear decor8 readers. This is Anke, would you like some Easter inspiration for your celebrations this weekend? Great, because I've prepared some easy DIY-ideas for your cherished moments with family and friends that will take you mere moments to pull together.

Easter Brunch Tabletop on decor8

1. Branches

A big bunch of branches makes a beautiful eyecatcher on your Easter table. You can decorate them with paper (ornament) hangers or, yes, of course, Easter eggs! Maybe you would like to opt for apple, cherry or peach-twigs. If so and you want them to bloom in time for Easter make sure to cut the ends and change the water every day. I chose velvety willow catkins I found on the farmers' market.

Easter Brunch Tabletop on decor8

2. Colored Eggs

The spectrum of possibilities to color eggs is huge. I actually like the natural method using vegetable juice very much and I saw beautiful results on pictures posted on the internet.
But I couldn't resist a tutorial with nail polish in Living At Home Magazine. To get the marbled look one basically drips the polish in a bowl filled with water and lets the blown out eggs turn on the surface. I combined my green-colored Easter eggs with natural brown ones as I find the rich brown color very pretty.

Easter Brunch Tabletop on decor8

3. Place Cards

Those of you who have read my column before know that I appreciate decoration ideas that do not consume a lot of time, money and nerves but still impress. This idea popped up in my mind when I was beating the eggs for my Easter cake. Just fill eggshells with paper shreds to kind of create small Easter nests. Print the names of your guests onto paper and cut into narrow strips. Arrange the strips in the nests and finally embellish with a tender twig or flower. Done!

Easter Brunch Tabletop on decor8

4. Cake + Recipe

Easter is just the perfect occasion for an opulent cake if you ask me! For my layer cake, I combined two different recipes. I took one from „Style Sweet CA“ for the Vanilla Bean Butter Cake and one from „Not Without Salt“ for the Blood Orange Buttercream and I can highly recommend both!

Easter Brunch Tabletop on decor8
Easter Brunch Tabletop on decor8

5. Cake Top Decor

Though it may not surprise you that decorating the cake with flowers and chocolate Easter eggs was my favorite part. Make sure you only use flowers suitable for foods. I chose ranunculus.

6 Easter Tabletop Ideas

6. Flower Posies

I always love little flower posies scattered around on my tabletop and side tables. Here are simply pussy willows, tulips and ranunculus, but they definitely give a very Easter feeling, don't you think?

Easter Brunch Tabletop on decor8
6 DIY Easter Tabletop IDEAS and a gorgeous cake recipe

I am wishing you happy Easter holidays with your loved ones! Hopefully with sunny weather to go for a walk or an Easter egg hunt!


Love, Anke

(Text, styling, photography: Anke Illner)