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Take the party outside: For a twist on a garden soiree, pair burgundy shades and creamy florals with modern table settings.

When landscape designer Greg Salmeri opens his Laguna Beach, California, house for one of his grand events, he's inclined to lean on the sprawling outdoor spaces to set the scene. Here, the owner of Los Angeles' Rolling Greens home and garden shops marries Mediterranean greenery (echium, Italian cypress, and olive trees) with wild wisteria and colorful natives that sweeten the deal for bees. Neighboring palm trees and ocean views leave no doubt that you're in Orange County. The look, balanced with a handpicked assembly of rustic European antiques, is at once traditional and out of the box for this time of year's obsession with cherry reds and evergreen. Follow his tips for taking the party and the decor outside, no matter the season.

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Seek out florals, foliage, and produce that give a sense of time and place, says Salmeri. (Look for winter bloomers, like carnation, dianthus, and sca-biosa.) Here, he worked with hues that are reminiscent of the holidays, but with slight variations to ensure a feel that's far from predictable. There are deep red carnations, purple artichokes, eucalyptus branches, feathery grasses, and an assortment of citrus and other in-season edibles.


"I haven't done a traditional holiday palette in I can't tell you how long," says Salmeri. This year he went with a tonal yet festive color-way, both in vases and blooms. The formal arrangements, packed along the center with hand-dipped candles in hexagon metal holders, are juxtaposed with the tabletop's worn surface and mismatched place settings casually topped with knotted napkins. "I love those moments when you can bring unexpected items together."

Go green

Salmeri and his team recently transformed a two-acre scrap-metal yard into his third store, called Rolling Greens on Mateo ( Located in Downtown Los Angeles' Arts District, the sprawling grounds include a shop and an event space, open now, and an arrangement bar, garden, and greenhouse are set to debut in spring 2019. The showroom is some 15,000 square feet and packed with new and vintage furnishings, plants, arrangements, decor, and gifts--with additional space for pop-ups.

Photographs by THOMAS J. STORY

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Title Annotation:In the Western HOME
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Dec 1, 2018
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