A Wheelhouse Picnic


Boating Picnic

Our weather has been typical of summer with

 late afternoon and evening pop-up storms,

so picnicking under the cover of the dock is the

 next best thing to a floating picnic on the pontoon!


I packed a Wheelhouse Picnic for

light and easy summer dining. . .


Also one that’s casual and make-ahead

that can be enjoyed anywhere.


An antipasto platter with marinated artichokes, olives,

assorted meat and cheese and Marcona almonds.

Life preserver not required  :)


Some crackers and fruit. . .


And some wine.


Wheelhouse \ Wheel”house’\, n. (Naut.)

The room on the bridge of a ship from where you steer. . .


. .  .providing you with control and a clear view of what is coming ahead.


Area of expertise, a particular skill.


and Chardonnay :)





Wheelhouse Picnic Details:

Dishes/Food Network™ Cafe Red & Blue Dinnerware, Kohl’s

Goblets/ Dollar Tree

Flatware & Napkins/ World Market

Napkin Rings, Chargers/ HomeGoods

Buoys, Appetizer Boats, Galvanized Tray/ Pottery Barn, several years ago

Flatware, plates, chargers and napkin rings not required for Wheelhouse picnic but I couldn’t resist :)

The Novel Bakers return September 8th for Picnic Week

with themed picnics, recipes, inspiration and guest bakers!

Pack a Picnic: Recipes and Inspiration for a Portable Feast!

Until then if you’re looking for picnic

inspiration you can find some HERE.


“A picnic is more than eating a meal,

it’s a pleasurable state of mind.”

~ DeeDee Stovel, Picnic


Wishing you Smooth Sailing & Happy Picnicking

in your wheelhouse the rest of the summer!


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  27 comments for “A Wheelhouse Picnic

  1. August 13, 2014 at 6:54 am

    I love everything about this party. The fabrics, pillows, accessories, tabletop…nice job!

  2. August 13, 2014 at 7:21 am

    Wish I had been on this cruise. WOW!

  3. August 13, 2014 at 7:26 am

    Delightful and fun, interesting to learn what a wheelhouse is, awesome pics of the fruit and antipasto, and love the quote.

  4. August 13, 2014 at 7:39 am

    Anchors Aweigh Mary! My favorite parts of all the nautical fun is the life preserver charger and the Chardonnay! I could snuggle into those pillows with a book and nibble all day! How do you keep Chloe and Gracie from noshing on the marcona almonds and salami slices? What a perfect spot for a picnic, rain or shine! Everything you have brought to the party is perfect for dining in the Wheelhouse!

  5. August 13, 2014 at 7:42 am

    I want to come to your picnic!LOL! Your way of decorating for occasions is so artful! And inviting?

  6. August 13, 2014 at 7:46 am

    I need you, Mary, on the boat now. I’d give you total responsibility for table setting, but we’d have to create a special place to stow all the accessories.

  7. Elizabeth
    August 13, 2014 at 8:44 am

    Beautiful presentation, as always!

  8. August 13, 2014 at 8:50 am

    You found Wheelhouse wine!!!?????? You never cease to amaze me. Every thing here is perfection; the pillows and blankets, the dishes, the food, even the cORK! I so want to picnic with you on the pontoon!!!!

  9. August 13, 2014 at 9:02 am

    I was shocked to see a prepicnic for picnic week since we all know how much work they are! So glad you have time to truly play again :-)

    Love the details and then quiver when I realize how lazy I have gotten! It’s always picture perfect here, which is fabulous AND challenging in such a tiny space in time… I injured my foot which put a serious crimp in my picnic this week, you can only imagine the cold sweat I feel when I see you sharing an early picnic before the slew of many more to come, HEAVEN HELP ME!

  10. linda kemp
    August 13, 2014 at 9:45 am

    You are so clever. You make it all look so easy…just lovely.

  11. Debbie
    August 13, 2014 at 10:09 am

    So lovely. Wish I were there!

  12. August 13, 2014 at 10:36 am

    Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful! I like everything about this! I am a little envious of the space you have to serve. I love the idea to place a serving platter on a life preserver. I love your fabrics, your dishes, and just everything! Thank you so much for sharing this lovely picnic…and who doesn’t love an antipasto platter?

  13. Vanessa
    August 13, 2014 at 10:56 am

    Soooo Beautiful! Thanks for the inspiration!!!

  14. Merlene
    August 13, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    You really like red, white & blue!

  15. August 13, 2014 at 3:16 pm

    You’re something else…not only to find the anchor and wheelhouse fabrics and coordinating with related items, but to find Wheelhouse Wine Cellar wines is over the top! As usual, your attention to detail is amazing!

  16. Dianne
    August 13, 2014 at 4:22 pm

    Where did you find the anchor and wheel fabric?

    • August 13, 2014 at 4:55 pm

      They’re towels and came from HomeGoods a couple of summers ago.

  17. August 13, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    Oh, how I fondly remember the days of picnics on our sail boat! Thanks for the summer inspiration and the link to more picnic inspiration. I’m off to visit………..

  18. August 13, 2014 at 9:40 pm

    I truly wish we were “boat people.” Really, really, really wish it! So many of our neighbors are, and they are out there every chance they get once the weather gets warm enough. Us? We’re landlocked. It’s crazy. Why live by a lake if you’re not going to get out there once in awhile??? I think we win Strangest People Award for this neighborhood! :-)

    That 2nd photo just really got me. Gosh, that’s pretty! The ripples on the water, the land off in the distance, the expanse of blue sky…just plain cool!

    I think every occasion should be a special occasion, so I’m on board (pun intended!) with you including all the extras like chargers and napkin rings! You’ve also given me a kick in the pants on what to prepare to nosh on for an informal cul-de-sac gathering coming up. Simple, delicious, to the point…can’t beat that! And wine! Let’s not forget wine!!! :-)

    Beautifully done, Mary! Enjoy these last lazy, hazy weeks of summer!

  19. August 13, 2014 at 11:05 pm

    Love love love the life preserver charger!!! Fabulous post!! Everything looks great!

  20. August 14, 2014 at 3:43 am

    Love it all! The meal looks delish. I am going to remember to do corks in a lantern. Especially loving the wine label!

  21. August 14, 2014 at 8:07 am

    You changed your background colors, didn’t you? I love it! The brown and mint is lovely and goes so perfectly with your natural backdrop. It gives more opportunity for your tables to shine, as well… :-) Great choice!! I love your picnic setting too. Very much enjoy the weathered reds and blues, fabulous ropey flatware and a wonderful spread! The antipasto looks delicious!


  22. Ann
    August 14, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    Mary, love your post. I too am a boater. I got several ideas for our next picnic on the boat.

  23. August 15, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    Perfection, perfection!…you have every detail right down to the bottle of wine!…I love riding on my brother’s boat in the late afternoon with wonderful food that my sister in law prepares…such a great way to enjoy the day and life for that matter…Your presentations are always magnificent…thanks for taking us along for the ride.

  24. Bev
    August 15, 2014 at 8:40 pm

    Lovely photos…your food and your table look divine. Still not typing much due to rotator surgery…

  25. August 15, 2014 at 9:24 pm

    Mary, your “wheelhouse” is your attention to details. They are perfection, especially the antipasto served on a life preserver charger and finding the Wheelhouse wine! We have friends who keep a boat at Charleston so I must find that wine for them.

  26. franki
    September 14, 2014 at 12:46 pm

    I salute you!!! franki

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