Going on Safari: A Safari Themed Table Setting

Welcome to the 254th Tablescape Thursday!

Recently, I received an e-mail from Laura who reads BNOTP. She and her daughter, Claire had created the most amazing tablescape for a birthday celebration. Laura’s hubby (Claire’s Dad) Paul, was turning 56 and they wanted his birthday to be memorable. They decided to create a table setting that pays tribute to where he served for several years during his military days: Africa. Today we’re going on an African Safari for Tablescape Thursday!  Hope you have your passport in order. Let’s go!

Laura said, “Every year my daughter makes my husband’s birthday cake and I decorate it. My husband is retired military and one of his previous assignments frequently took him to several African countries. He’d purchase gifts for our daughter, usually carved animals, whenever he went. When I saw a zebra cake in blogland, I was struck with inspiration—why not a safari tablescape for his birthday?”

Safari Themed Birthday Celebration


“The centerpiece came together after a quick raid of the hubby’s man cave where I got the mask and carved pieces.”

Tribal Mask Centerpiece for Safari Table Setting 2


“The African tribal mask took center stage among African busts and hand-carved animals that my husband brought back from trips to Africa for our daughter.”


“River rock from Dollar Tree surrounded the animals and busts to anchor the vignette.”

Carved Hippo in Safari Tablescape


“A chubby hippo peeked out from among the river rock. Hippos should be comfortable around river rock, don’t you think? Votive holders are from Pier 1.”

Carved Wood Hippo and River Rock in African Safari Table Setting


“I ordered a two-and-a-half yard piece of ultra-suede, hide print fabric from an online fabric store for the tablecloth.”


“The raffia-fringed placemats I already had and thought they were a great complement to the mask.”

The side view!_wm


Safari Themed Tablescape


“Dinner plate in zebra pattern is from Pier 1. Flatware is from Horchow. Napkins, napkin rings and salad plates are from Target.”

Zebra Striped Plates for an African Safari Themed Table Setting Tablescape


“I thought with the various organic textures that the table needed a bit of sleek metal. The silver from the napkin rings provided that.  Wine glasses are from Pier 1.”

Silver Napkin Rings in Safari Table Setting


Isn’t the cake Laura and Claire made amazing?!

Paul's birthday theme_wm


And check out the inside of the cake. It’s perfect for this safari themed birthday celebration!  Laura and Claire have some mad cake-making skills!

Safari and Zebra Themed Birthday Cake


Laura, thanks so much for sharing this wonderful table setting with all of us! I am just blown away by every little detail. I would love to have seen your husband’s face when he saw it for the first time.  It is just beautiful and so well thought out. What a great example of how we can use all the beautiful pieces and treasures we have collected over the years to create memorable table settings and celebrations for our friends and family.  Truly inspiring!

As I was creating today’s post for this wonderful table setting, I couldn’t help but think of the music that’s runs throughout the movie, Green Card. Do you remember that movie and the music?  The music would be perfect for a dinner party with a safari theme, wouldn’t it?

For future reference, this tablescape can be found under the Tablescapes/Themed/Safari category at the top of BNOTP.


Tablecloth fabric – Anatol’s Fabric, housefabricdotcom
Placemats – purchased years ago from Hobby Lobby, I think
Zebra dinner plates – Pier 1, last year
Salad plates – Target, last year
Flatware – Horchow, last year
Napkins & Napkin rings – Target last year
Wine glasses – Pier 1, last year
River rock – Dollar Tree
Votive holders – Pier 1, last year

Tablescape Thursday


If you are participating in Tablescape Thursday, please be sure to add your permalink below, and not your general blog address. To get your permalink, click on your post name, then copy and paste the address that shows in the address bar, into the “url” box when you link up.

You’ll need to include a link in your post back to the party in order to link up and participate.  That’s so visitors to your blog will be able to find the party and  the other Tablescape Thursday participants.

If you would like to use the Tablescape Thursday logo button in your post, just copy and paste it to your computer and upload it to your post as you would any photo.

Please, don’t add your post name/blog name ALL IN CAPS…it tends to create big spaces between the rows of links.

Thanks for participating…looking forward to your beautiful table settings!

Welcome! Thanks for coming to the party!

*If a post is sponsored or a product was provided at no charge, it will be stated in post. Some links may be affiliate links and as an Amazon Associate, I may earn from qualifying purchases. *

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  1. Susan,
    thanks for sharing this table. the browns are simply stunning. and I love the use of that fabric for a tablecloth..so much inspiration on this table..and a lot of talent too…love it!
    thanks for hosting this great party..
    Love, Mona

  2. What a fabulous table! The tablecloth is just brilliant. All the textures create such a fascinating experience for the eyes, and the cake! Wow! Thanks so much for sharing this with us!

  3. This table is simply amazing! I love all of the animal prints and African accessesories. What a special birthday that must have been – cannot get over that cake!!

  4. Gorgeous tablescape….love the animal print….and those zebra plates from Pier One…I bought some a few months ago and they are still one of my favorite sets!

    Thanks for hosting another wonderful party

  5. What a fun table and cake! She has wonderful accessories for a safari theme, and I love that fabric she used for the tablecloth. Such a great idea to use the river rock as a base for the centerpiece. I bet he was one happy birthday guy. Thank you, Susan and Laura, for sharing this inspiration. laurie

  6. Love this table. What great attention to all the little details. It absolutely turned out wonderful. I’m sure the husband was thrilled and this even was definitely memorable. Thanks for hosting.. xo marlis

  7. Linda Page says

    Laura created a marvelous tablescape for her husband’s birthday dinner. Everything was perfect. I’m sure he was very pleased. Thanks for sharing.

  8. This table made me smile!!! I have done African themed tables since I have a whole Africa room! My FIL was a pilot and got me started on my collection of African things. I also have animal print dishes and those same wine glasses!!!! LOVE the tablecloth, am going to go research that. Thanks for sharing this, Laura and Susan!!!! OH, and that CAKE is amazing! Would love to know how they did the icing!!!!! XO, Pinky

  9. Oh my, what an awesome design. Laura and Claire have a real knack for pulling a theme together…Not only lovely, but so personal. Am sure they had one happy “Birthday Boy!” Thanks for sharing!

  10. Mary from Virginia says

    What talent and imagination! Such a different and well put together table setting. We have friends who visited Africa last year and they said there is nothing like it. Good for Laura coming up with a creative tablescape. I hope her family enjoyed the party!

  11. Absolutely smashing birthday celebration!! Creativity rocks! franki

  12. Peggy Thal says

    Fabulous table and such a fun birthday party for your hubby. We are a military family too(retired) with lots of memories and many separations. Thanks for sharing!

  13. Pamela Krugman says

    Absolutely one of the most creative tablescapes I’ve ever seen. You outdid yourself! Thanks for sharing it!

  14. From the tone of your writing, it sounds as if you really enjoyed setting this table up, Susan. It’s always a pleasure to see tables that have heart in them and that use artifacts, gifts or memorabilia with memories attached.

    I haven’t been shopping in quite a little while, so I had not seen those Pier 1 zebra plates. I really like them! I like the goblets a lot, too!

    Your friends did a bang up job on that cake!!! WOW!!! To do the outside is one thing, but then to have the inside look so cool, too…great!!! Enjoy your weekend, and thanks again for hosting!

  15. Susan, thank you for sharing this creative table! Laura and Claire must of had great fun planning and orchestrating this one. I find it touching that they wanted to honor their husband and dad with a special, meaningful tablesetting. Also impressive that Claire likes to make her dad’s birthday cake. It looks creamy and delicious! Fun details with the animal print cloth, the fringed placemats, and the authentic bits from Africa.

  16. Laura and Clair did a beautiful job on the Safari birthday tablescape. Impressed that they pulled together so many perfect elements to complement the mask and Nubian carvings. The cake is outstanding! Thanks for inviting us for a peak. Cherry Kay

  17. Wow that was a fun table! I loved all of it but the cake was a show stopper! The masks really made a statement and I like how she made the tablecloth with the animal hide fabric too. Great job!

  18. This tablescape is the most amazing setting I have ever seen in blog land!!!!!!!!!!! I love the animal print glasses and plates, totally fabulous and the two ladies did a unique, clever and magazine worth African themed tablescape for their husband and father! I’m sure he felt very loved and special. The cake is a work of art..wow, they’re so talented too. Thank you Susan for sharing this awesomeness with us!!
    PS: I can’t seem to be able to link to the party today, although I’ve been doing a great job all this time with your instructions. “it says that there’s no BACK LINK, but I do have it, as always!!! I have problems with my thumbnail, even though I have AD LINK too! Thank you honey and I’m sorry to bother you again!
    Big hugs,

  19. Ok, dear Susan….don’t worry, I’m partying with you!!! I don’t know what happened, I tried it once more and FINALLY! Crazy! Have a great weekend, lovely lady.

  20. Love that the interior of the cake matches the icing matches the tablecloth. Most creative!

  21. How creative! What a great treat to honor her husband! Can we get the cake recipe?

  22. ann pauley says

    does this woman have a blog site? she did a fantastic job!
    ann p.

  23. Sandi Lee says

    Love the safari theme-thanks Susan for hosting it for us. Everything was so unique and the cake was the best!!

  24. What a creative tablescape! I even spied a little zebra in the center. The cake is gorgeous, wonder how she got the inside to match…maybe cinnamon?
    Thanks for hosting Susan.

  25. I feel like I’ve visited out of Africa -wonderful!

  26. Wow, what a creative and fun table! Laura and Claire did a great job with the theme they chose…I’m sure the “Birthday Boy” was very pleased!

  27. I love it! Especially the wine glasses and the cake. I have a “small” collection of giraffes.

  28. I’ve been out of touch for far too long…..I took some time off since Tom came back from his year-long deployment to Afghanistan. I’ve missed you/all the wonderful BNOTP tablescapers!!! I may even go back and advertise again, so I’ll be in contact soon! MANY blessings to you, Lana

  29. This is absolutely stunning and I am in love with that tablecloth.

  30. WOW that is one interesting and cool table!! I love it! That birthday cake is perfect and I really like the table cloth you used too. What fun!

  31. Jennifer Knights says

    You don’t happen to still have the giraffe print glasses and possibly be willing to sell them? I had a set and several broke. Have been looking to replace them but can’t find the glasses anywhere.

    • yes, I do still have them but I’m not interested in selling them since I do use them. Sorry I couldn’t help but I hope you are able to locate them. I purchased mine in the gift store at Giraffe Manor so you may want to try and contact them via email or phone. Okay

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