Kelli Delaney likes to transport her guests to fabulous journeys through her table settings. Last summer she created a tablescape inspired by the Silk Route by weaving blue and white ceramics with elements from the Italian Mediterranean like wrought iron pieces, monumental pottery and sprinklings of lemons.
For fall, Kelli is at it again. She’s taking us on a fantastical voyage to the India of Jackie Kennedy, the Italian rococo period and ending up on the wraparound porch of her Hamptons home. It’s all there on her table setting, a colorful and vibrant pastiche that makes the eyes travel.
She began with her vintage china — Versace Butterfly Garden collection by Rosenthal — a gilded and colorful pattern that recalls the rococo. “The pattern is so pretty and ornate and I knew it would marry perfectly with the stunning Kim Seybert pieces I chose to incorporate. I love the mix of textures, color, and materials incorporated into Kim’s designs. The ornate napkin rings and chargers become conversation pieces when guests sit down.”
Kelli entertains a lot with her husband Dr. Mark Kot. They can be anywhere from all-out big bashes to quiet casual affairs or as she describes “a fussy lunch for just one friend to make them feel extra spoiled.” She is the arbiter of all things Hamptons-related what with her digital guide and diary to all the chic happenings in this part of Long Island. With her extensive editorial background (having worked in various senior roles at titles like Allure, Glamour and Us Weekly), she’s created KD Hamptons, which has become an indispensable guide to the summer town.
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Kelli’s Top Entertaining Tips
My menus always include ingredients from Halsey Farm on my country road and the catch of the day from my favorite Montauk fishermen. For smaller size dinners I like to have the menu hand written and share resources. Farm to table and dock to dish entertaining is a way of life for a proper Hamptons hostess!
Flowers are my passion! I will cut from my garden to make arrangements: peonies, hydrangeas, roses, dahlias, whatever is in bloom. I also love to collaborate with all of the talented floral designers here in the Hamptons, including: Lilee Fell, Topiaire, East Hampton Gardens, and Arthur Gobalek. They are all so unique and inspiring!
No matter what the size of the gathering, I always offer my guests a full bar. Rosé all day may be a trend for some, but not for me. I want my guests to arrive and be handed their favorite drink and not be limited to what we have at the bar. A signature drink is always a must, this fall we have been serving Hot Toddy’s and Bourbon Old Fashions by the fire.
A curated, sexy playlist is a must! Also, make sure you have a great sound system that flows from indoors to the outdoor setting.