Firstly, there are very few things as evocative of summer- or for us monsoon & winter- as eating outdoors. An outside bar, an open air pub, our high way dhabas overlooking a lush green hill- food certainly taste better with the sky to umbrella over one.

Secondly, there is something about glassware that fills me with wonder. Can be the signature happy clink of two glasses raised as a testimony to good times or the inherent sparkle combined with the effect of light. Can also very well be the fact that sand, soda and ash- three seemingly, regular natural materials can create something so beautiful. The amazement is real and the sight of it is absolutely smile inducing.

And yet, I quiet don’t know what it is that evokes such sentiment. Much like love!

So, sitting in the middle of a pandemic stricken city, cooped up in a 550 sqft apartment for more than 5 months, when I wanted to travel the labyrinth of experiences and relive one which combines good times, lunching under the blue sky and a sense of wonder, I combined two things that I love dearly. A tiny balcony full of plants and a few tinted glassware!

I made our balcony mimic the great outdoors and brought out those lovely colored glasses and votives by Glass Forest to spark joy, in our makeshift alfresco dining. And can I tell you, the glassware certainly did lend oodles of magic to our humble setting.

If you want to recreate the magic of alfresco dining in your home here are a few things to consider. I will also tell you a little about Glass Forest- one of our country’s best when it comes to Glass decor, installations and everyday essentials, where you can whet your appetite for all things glass.

Get your coffee on, notebook out~

How to recreate the magic of alfresco dining in your apartment balcony

Get a table and Surround it with plants and flowers: If your balcony is the only patch of space that helps you blur the boundary between indoors and outsoors, get as many plants as you can! That alone sets the perfect mood for your outdoor dining. Your table must sit in a place where in the plants form a backdrop.

Go bright: Depending on what colors you like, add in some bright element to your alfresco table. It can be bright cushions, bright tealight holders, glasses or fruit napkin holders like a bright lime or pomegrenate. We added pink glasses to hold our floral display as well as for drinking. We also added votives in shades of purple and light blue. And for our napkin press (haha, I’ll not call it a holder or a ring) I added tiny pomegrenate which we would eat as after lunch dessert!

Take inspiration from the bistro setting: Small balconies require bigger creativity and we love how our bistro style chairs add oomph to this space. Keeping with #TrumatterStyle our furniture is white but if you would like a bit of color, try light pastels to make your balcony come alive with joy.

Try a pedestal table where in you can tuck the chairs when not in use, or a foldable garden chair and table when you want some floor space

Get the Alfresco Glow with glassware and candles: Little candles flickering through tinted glass is outright dreamy alright and where else to etch those dreams if not in your alfresco dining? Add many candles in glass votives and to let the flicker continue, add serveware in glass to make your dining glowy, elegant and dreamy.

And while at it, add interest with textures in glass to elevate the play of light an glass! For example? add dark tinted glass votives for a soft glow and textured plain glass for sparkly bright glow! Compare the two images below!

Create a canopy with lights: Fairy lights, garden bulbs, hanging lanterns or even lampshades grouped into one make for a fab canopy when you want to convert your balcony into a alfresco dining area and they look absolutely fab! We have a few fairy lights running through out our balcony roof!

So in short, its Table & Chairs + Plants & Flowers + Fun accessories like cushions, runners + Twinkling Candles in Glassware + Garden lights. And there you have it! A recipe for that perfect alfresco dining area right in your balcony! Cool right?

Which brings us to the Glass Forest- A fine place for all things pretty and Glass

Allow me to introduce you to Glass Forest- a place where they weave stories with glass. And I cannot help but notice how very different their products are from what you’d generally see. The form is fluid and feminine, it’s warm and inviting- qualities you’d often not associate glass with.

And its probably because they owe their inspiration to nature. Natural landscapes and surrounding form a major part of Glass Forest’s inspiration and their constant endeavour to find a balance between tangible and intangible; innovation and human sensibilities is what give birth to designs that are detailed. But most importantly, as they say, “it is drawing emotional attention to the often overlooked yet pleasing elements of routine life” that makes it a product that’s both beautiful and relatable.

A personal favorite from Glass Forest- The Koi Pond installation

The subtle, calming form of a ripple captured beautifully in hand blown glass and interrupted with playful forms of Koi fish. So very reminiscent of a perfectly curated Koi pond that adds the much needed zen to your day. The very best of dynamic form in stillness is this!

Read more about Glass Forest and their gorgeous products here

Leaving you all with a bit of inspiration and a bit of wonder today!

Love, Rukmini

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