Valentine’s tablescapes from AB Event Hire

Round & About


Valentine’s Day isn’t just about a romantic meal for two, it’s about spending time with those we love, from our family to our best friends. It’s the perfect time to create a tablescape filled with love for your partner, family, best friends or for a Galentines brunch!

You don’t need to get your cupid’s arrow in a knot, styling a romantic table doesn’t need to be expensive and can be created using handmade decoration, hiring items, and using what you have at home.

Here are our top 14 tips for styling a dreamy tablescape for the 14th February

1 – Start with thinking of a theme. Having a theme can add instant fun or a luxurious element to the tablescape plus it helps with the décor decisions & keeping to a budget and helps keeps the table look cohesive.

2 – Create a vision board on Pinterest, it allows you to keep all your ideas in one place.

3 – There are endless romantic themes like, a classic red & hearts, or soft baby pink & pastels, a fun ‘Love Heart Be Mine’, an XOX with your Galentine’s or a Be Mine theme with someone you love.

4 – Linen always adds a luxurious feel to a table, but you don’t need to necessarily buy it! This can be hired for a fraction of the price. If you don’t want a full tablecloth, you could always use a runner down the centre of the table. This will add texture, a pop of colour without covering the whole table.

5 – Fold your napkins into hearts, you could add a little chocolate love heart on the napkin too!

6 – Do you have enough seats for everyone or chairs that match? You can hire extra chairs & benches. Have a matching set to give your table the extra wow factor. You could hang a little heart to the back of them. This is a great way to bring your theme into all areas of your Valentines tablescape.

7 – Love notes, on each place setting write a little note to your guest about something you love about them.

8 – Have a creative afternoon and make heart fan decorations for your special meal, these could be hung from windows, on the back of chairs or scattered on the table – check out our social media pages for full instructions.

9 – A special table is all about layers, use charger plates to give an instant luxurious feel to each setting. They can add textures and colours without overpowering the setting. These can be hired, there is no need to buy them!

10 – For a special table setting, use crystal glasses, and gold cutlery, something you might not have at home, these can be hired and even given back dirty!

11 – Remember to think about the height of the centrepiece, your guests need to be able to see each other, without a great big candelabra blocking their view! Use odd numbers of items, it creates a much more pleasing effect on the eye.

12 – No romantic table would be complete without flowers, you could go with traditional roses, pretty gipsofila that you can buy in the supermarket or even used little potted plants. Incorporate all the winter foliage and pretty winter flowers into your table set up. You can create a table runner, then add in elements like mini bows, chocolate hearts or even packets of love hearts!

13 – Fruit is a fantastic way to add a pop of colour to your tablescape, scatter strawberries or grapes around your décor or onto your plates. You could fill glass containers with fruit!

14 – At AB Event Hire we are conscious about the environment & stay away from one-use plastic throw-away items. Instead of buying new tableware, hire it in at a fraction of the price. Not only does it help reduce waste, but we can wash it up for you too! Use matching plates, cutlery, and glasses to create an instant cohesive feel to the tablescape.

For more information about how to hire items & tips on creating Valentine tablescapes, head over to our social media pages @ab_event_hire or our website AB Event Hire.

AB Event Hire is a family run wedding, event & catering equipment company. We are based in Woking and can supply you with all the items you might need to create a perfect celebration. Please get in touch with us, we would love to hear from you! Our telephone number is 01276 856440 and the office email is [email protected].

Show our planet some love

Karen Neville


Roses are red, violets are blue, ditch waste this Valentine’s Day, our planet needs you… as Dave Lamont from Plastic-Free Home explains

If you’ve left thinking about your partner’s Valentine’s Day gift to the last minute, there’s good news and a get out of jail card with your name on it waiting.

Every year in the UK we send more than 25 million Valentine’s Day cards and spend an incredible £650 million on gifts ranging from flowers to fragrances.

Here are a few ways you could mark Valentine’s Day a little differently this year…


If you are happy to live without them, job done. If you’re not, consider hand making a card. Not feeling crafty? Then aim to buy a card that’s printed on FSC (sustainable) paper, free of glitter and attachments and not wrapped in plastic. Even better if it’s from an independent retailer. The likes of 1 Tree Cards are also a nice option. Every card sold comes with a packet of wildflowers and sees a tree planted. Cards actually made from plantable seed paper are also a great option; we really like Eco friendly greetings cards & seed cards.


At this time of year, Roses and other popular flowers are typically flown in from the southern hemisphere. They’re then delivered to your door in a refrigerated van. And, unless you’re very lucky, this time next week they’ll be on their last legs having gone through several pints of water. Consider if you can live without flowers this Valentine’s Day, or why not opt for a long lasting house plant (ideally grown in the UK) or something for the garden instead.


The cacao used to make chocolate typically have come from South America or Africa and may not be Fairtrade or sustainably and ethically produced. The majority of chocolates will also contain Palm Oil and of course they are often heavily packaged. Decide if you can skip the chocolates this year, or at least hold tight until Easter. If you can’t, consider eco-conscious options like Divine Chocolate, Tony’s Chocolonely, Beyond Good and Traidcraft Online Shop.


Most scents are a concoction of dozens of synthetic chemicals, many of which are derived from Petroleum. Worldwide, over 4,000 different chemicals are used to produce fragrances and many of these are bad news for our bodies (some can be toxic), not to mention the planet. There’s nothing romantic about any of that. If you’re still on the lookout, aim to find a fragrance that’s made ethically and sustainably from 100% natural ingredients.

Gift an experience

Don’t splash out on generic or novelty Valentine’s Day gifts. Instead, plan a day out or a short UK break (revisit somewhere special or explore somewhere you’ve always wanted to go) go out for lunch, afternoon tea or dinner, see a show or head to the cinema, do something sporty, book a surprise experience (the possibilities are endless these days), offer to do something nice for your other half like cooking a meal or chores around the house, have some photos professionally taken, great creative and write a poem or song, paint or make something. You get the idea!

Whatever you do, don’t forget who and what really matter this Valentine’s Day. And remember to show our planet a little love if you can.

Win! A portrait of your pet

Liz Nicholls


Love your kitty? Adore your doggy? We always knew that we Brits loved our pets passionately. But the last year has deepened our appreciation for our animal companions!

April is National Pet Month, and National Pet Day is on 11th April. To celebrate, we’ve teamed up with Surrey artist & pet-lover Bri to offer you the chance to win a portrait of your pet…

Artist Bri had planned to launch her drawing and painting workshops for beginners in March 2020… until the world put a stop to that! She jokes: “Timing has never been my speciality but this takes the mick!”

Keeping motivated

Bri decided to offer free pet portraits to local people… “This was an exercise to get some practice and to bring a smile to people’s faces,” she tells us. “I know how important a pet’s company is: I live alone with my dog. She’s my best mate, haha! And I couldn’t have been more grateful for the distraction she gave me. Also, she was a legal reason to leave the house! I thought pet portraits would be nice to keep me motivated as I was unable to tutor. I’d never done a pet portrait before but after I put up a couple of posters I was inundated.”

Hundreds of responses

Bri completed almost 50 portraits, 31 alone last April. “When I first thought about the type of work I could offer free to encourage people to commission me, pets were the subject I thought would attract most interest,” she says. “But hundreds of responses and the copious positive feedback was on a scale I didn’t imagine! It proves we’re a nation of animal-lovers. From dogs to cats, and the odd gecko thrown in, we love our pets. It’s particularly worthwhile to hear how someone got genuine happiness from seeing a pet who perhaps isn’t with them any more celebrated in paint.”

Rebranded as The Isolating Artist, Bri evolved to virtual workshops. “Online teaching is a fantastic way to communicate in what otherwise would be an impossible situation, but classroom tutoring is the best way to learn to draw and paint,” says Bri. “I hope soon to bring together a beginners’ art group. I want to introduce students to the fun of art and give people a chance to be creative, to look at the world differently. If there’s anything we need after all this it’s to leave the house so what better reason than an art class?”

As for influences, Bri says: “As a kid, art was the only thing I was any good at, so that was a natural inspiration. I remember coming across a book about Francis Bacon at school. It changed my opinion on how I should draw and paint; something I’ll never forget seeing for the first time”. Bacon remains one of Bri’s favourite artists, alongside Frida Kahlo, Vincent Van Gogh, Egon Schiele, Edward Hopper and many more.”

Visit to find out about Bri or sign up for an art class.

WIN your pet’s portrait!

We want you to share your love for the pet in your life. Share a picture, poem or photo of your beloved animal companion on our social media channels. Tag Round & About (our links below) and #petportrait in your post and Bri will select the winner who will be immortalised in portrait form! Deadline: Tues 4th May.

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