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Bari Lynn is already a familiar face from her appearances as Good Morning America's home design contributor, and next month HarperCollins is bringing out her new style book, Eclectic Living. To mark the occasion, F&W asked her to decorate the table for Test Kitchen Associate Director Marcia Kiesel's butterflied leg of lamb dinner. Lynn gave us three easy ideas for setting an elegant table. First, make a centerpiece out of unexpected items, such as weathered finials or an antique garden urn dripping with Spanish moss or piled high with fruit. Second, mix different but similarly colored china patterns on the table. And finally, give plain table linens a personal touch by applying a favorite image--a photo, an etching or a drawing--using heat-transfer, a process similar to ironing decals onto T-shirts; she describes the process in detail in her book. "Be inventive," she says, "and you may surprise not only your guests but yourself too." --Eric A. Berthold
Published September 1998


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