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Tabletop Lifestyles Forum

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ellabee

Posts: 306
Registered: Dec 2007

iconnumber posted 06-06-2010 03:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ellabee     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Could I make a request that this forum name be changed to 'Tabletop Forum'?

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Scott Martin
Forum Master

Posts: 11321
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 06-06-2010 04:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
why

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ellabee

Posts: 306
Registered: Dec 2007

iconnumber posted 06-06-2010 09:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ellabee     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
1 - "lifestyles" is marketing-speak. In introducing a non-silver forum, I'd think you'd want to minimize the commercial connotations.

2 - Why not? What would be lost by removing it? The forum is about non-flatware and non-silver tabletop items.

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Scott Martin
Forum Master

Posts: 11321
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 06-07-2010 09:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I appreciate your input and would welcome others to comment.

Some back ground:

All those many years ago when, June & I starting learning about silver .....and now looking back, I realize our interest in silver had a major affect on our lifestyle. As we learned to appreciate the silver metal crafts, arts and history it changed and influenced so many things. For example: what we eat, what use (flatware, glassware, china) to have a meal, our table etiquette, what we use to prepare a meal, our furnishings, our circle of friends, antique braces for my pants, mutual interests, etc., etc.

Without our realizing, discovering silver had an major lifestyle affect on so many areas of our lives, both individually and together.

What lead to this forum started in the Moderatorsí Forum.

quote:
Since today there is little pattern sterling made, silverplate is diminishing all being replaced by stainless steel flatware, I feel we might get a new younger membership if we added some Lifestyle forums.

How to organize the following into lifestyles forums I am still pondering. Some of the lifestyle topics:

* Stainless Steel Flatware
* Entertaining at home
* Graceful formal table settings (demystify the confusing tangle of platters, spoons, forks, knives, plates and glasses that gives formal dining preparation such a formidable reputation.)
* table etiquette
* Cutlery basics
* service plates
* linens
* Folding Lines
* Glassware
* China
* floral arrangements
* Business dining
* Breakfast, Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Supper,
* Afternoon Tea
* Cooking and cleaning is easy
* Simple menus for elegant entertaining
* Kitchen simple recipes & elegant entertaining
* etiquette and customs around the world.
* The history/evolution of table etiquette.
* etc etc.

When we are out, it is amazing how uncomfortable many persons are about table etiquette. The economy has more people eating at home but they are not inclined to entertain at home. Why? Our casual research says most donít realize how simple, fun and economical entertaining at home can be.

We are thinking by helping a newer audience to get comfortable and relaxed about the above, no matter whether stainless, SP, Silver, etc, it should help bring a newer audience around to our way of thinking.

Moderators, your ideas, input, concerns, would be nice to hear.



This Moderatorsí Forum discussion was refined with the help of WEV, swarter, Dale and June and is what lead to Dale volunteering to moderate these two new forums.

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Dale

Posts: 2132
Registered: Nov 2002

iconnumber posted 06-07-2010 12:51 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dale     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
In some ways, ellabee, this forum will deal with commercial items as what we are trying to do is find out how people are dining and entertaining now. In some ways I feel like Rip van Winkle. When I started in the antique silver business some years ago, the tabletop trade was dominated by independent jewelers who maintained bridal registries. Over the years, these stores closed and I was involved in closing up many of them. From this experience, I came to have the feeling that Americans were no longer entertaining and dining in the traditional way. That we had become a nation where people ate fast food from paper bags. Locked into the antique show bubble it was very natural to feel that way.

As the antique show world changed, and eventually collapsed, I began to get out more. When I first went to Bed Bath and Beyond, I was astonished. There were hundreds of quality tabletop items at reasonable prices. And people were buying them. The designs were interesting. This startled me out of the idea that dining was a thing of the past.

And that is what I see these forums doing: introducing silver collectors to the new world of dining that is going on right now.

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Dale

Posts: 2132
Registered: Nov 2002

iconnumber posted 06-07-2010 01:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dale     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Part of the change involves learning a whole new terminology. Using words that do not appear in our traditional silver vocabulary.

For example, tabletop is the term of art used to refer to everything that goes on a dining table. Tabletop is divided into three categories: tableware, serveware and cookware.

Tableware refers to what we would call place settings. And it includes flatware, dishes, glasses and linens.

Serveware refers to what we would call serving pieces. And it spans all the mediums that can be found.

Cookware is the interesting one as it seeks to make pots and pans suitable for a dining table. It appears now to be the practice to include foods in the dish they are baked in.

And sad to say, the marketing of these items is done by lifestyle. This is the current term of presenting tabletop items.

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Dale

Posts: 2132
Registered: Nov 2002

iconnumber posted 06-07-2010 01:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dale     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Much of our discussion has been dominated by talk of the decline of the traditional silver companies. Of the group, only Tiffany at the top end of the market and Onieda at the bottom appear viable as businesses. The rest are in a death spiral.

But in a market system, if there is interest and demand, new companies will come into the market. I have so far identified two of them. Both these companies are major makers and dominate their field. And both are less than 20 years old.

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ellabee

Posts: 306
Registered: Dec 2007

iconnumber posted 06-08-2010 12:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for ellabee     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I am very, very interested in tabletop topics. I, too, have developed a strong interest in linens, china, centerpieces, and other table setting and entertaining items while learning about and collecting silver flatware.

I appreciate the background from Scott and Dale (and it might have been a good idea to include that early on in introducing these forums). That doesn't change my reaction to the word "lifestyles", which I find tacky, impersonal, commercial, and off-putting. It isn't a word that a community of enthusiasts and collectors use with each other; it's an invented word that companies use to do marketing. I don't want to feel when I come to this forum that I am being marketed to, or that I am talking with people who have primarily a marketing mindset.

Maybe my reaction is unusual; I'd be interested in hearing what other members think. Whether I'm alone or not, it won't change my interest in the forum as a whole.

It won't decrease my interest in the actual subject at hand. If the forum title stays as is, I won't keep harping on it. I will cringe a little every time I see it, but if there are threads to which I have something to contribute, I'll participate.

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Scott Martin
Forum Master

Posts: 11321
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 06-11-2010 12:50 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
suggested via email:

My Silver Tabletop Life Forum

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Scott Martin
Forum Master

Posts: 11321
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 06-11-2010 03:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A lurker's suggested variations via email:

My Tabletop Life Forum

    PS. Lurkers please post your suggestions...its easier on me. Thanks

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samanthajaye

Posts: 1
Registered: Aug 2005

iconnumber posted 06-12-2010 02:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for samanthajaye     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Don't forget the term "Tablescape" either.... this includes the flowers, candles, placecard holders, and any items of interest that you add to create a unique table environment.

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ellabee

Posts: 306
Registered: Dec 2007

iconnumber posted 06-15-2010 03:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ellabee     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
There is nothing conveyed by the term "tablescape" that can't be expressed with the existing perfectly good English "table setting". It's right up there on the tacky-o-meter with "lifestyles".

My suggestions for the forum name: Tabletop Items or Table Setting.

Would welcome other contributions.

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ahwt

Posts: 2124
Registered: Mar 2003

iconnumber posted 06-15-2010 04:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ahwt     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
"Tablescape" has a nice ring to it and conveys the broad vista that is possible in decorating a table. Google ‚Äútablescape‚ÄĚ and one can see that it is a word that has become part of our language. Maybe if the traditional silver companies had updated their expressions they would still be part of the market.

That said, I am usually slow in adapting to new words or phrases ‚Äď still cannot see how people can say ‚Äúso and so went missing‚ÄĚ. The TV reporters now even say ‚Äúso and so went dead‚ÄĚ.

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