New On The Blog

At Lisa Lou’s we believe no table is complete without a decorative charger! These underplates, along with napkin rings, are the go-to accessory every tablescape needs. They can dress up, or dress down, the simplest of dinner plates. Just as we can change the look of a black dress by the accessories we choose, we can do the same to basic pottery with the chargers and napkin rings we use.

What is a charger plate and why are they used? Drop into any boutique that sells place settings, and you will see tables decorated with, what appears to be, exceptionally large dinner plates. Chargers, sometimes called an underplate or service plate, can set the tone for your entire look. This is the one piece in your setting that will stay on your table throughout most of the meal, and it is the item that will be most visible to your guests once they are seated.

“I don’t know what to say when I enter a room full of strangers!” I hear this quite often from people, including some you would never suspect had any type of social anxiety. Knowing how to engage in small talk is an essential tool we need to increase our soft skills. But before we learn a few tips, we need to change our psychology.

A duck on water. On top, it appears to glide gracefully over the pond, but underneath you see webbed feet paddling energetically towards its destination. When hosting a party, we may feel more like the duck under the water than the duck on top of the water. Throwing a gathering takes time and can be stressful, but our goal should be to reduce as much of these feelings as possible. Is this realistic? It can be if we get our priorities right.

When I read the words, “But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord,” I am reminded that as a spouse and a parent, our homes and families come under our leadership. We cannot control whether those under our roof accept Christ, but we can control how we act within those four walls.

Have you attended a party where you were enjoying (or maybe not enjoying) a conversation with the people around you, but you needed to remove yourself to speak to someone else? How do we graciously extricate ourselves without seeming rude. Here are a few tips to help you exit a conversation with style.

4. No one wants to hear your conversation. When you must speak on the phone in public, remove yourself and take your call in private. If you cannot find privacy, step at least ten feet away so you minimize the chance of disturbing others. No matter how private we try to make our call, our body language speaks volumes. Patrons enjoying a dinner out do not want to be disturbed watching someone throw their arms around while arguing on their phone.

​I am convinced we need to start thinking of our phones as a human persona. I do not care if you make it look like your spouse, mother, or college roommate. If we were to add eyes, a nose, hair, and a big smile to the front of our phones, we might begin making the connection that every time we converse with someone via text or email, we are allowing them to become a part of whatever we are doing.

  • Prostrate on the ground praying earnestly for those in his life.

  • Living on 3 hours sleep for months to build something special to improve the lives of thousands.

  • In all his busyness, never making me feel I come in second. Even when it means sacrificing himself.

  • Lisa Lou

What is a Charger and Why Use One?



What is a charger plate and why are they used? Drop into any boutique that sells place settings, and you will see tables decorated with, what appears to be, exceptionally large dinner plates. Chargers, sometimes called an underplate or service plate, can set the tone for your entire look. This is the one piece in your setting that will stay on your table throughout most of the meal, and it is the item that will be most visible to your guests once they are seated.


The easiest way to think of a charger is to equate it to accessories we wear. I can put on a solid white or black dress and completely change my look based on the scarf I choose, the earrings I don, or the purse I carry. I think of my dress the same way I think of my dinner plate. My dinner plate represents the base, just like my black dress represents the base. Hand me a simple ceramic dish, and I can turn it into something fabulous with the right charger. As a side note, napkin rings hold as much design influence as do underplates. If I have these two accessories, in a snap I can change the look of any table.



The charger has a functional use, too. The reason it is sometimes called an underplate is that it sits, under, the soup, salad, or dinner plate. A charger protects your table or tablecloth from food spills. It also serves to keep plates warm throughout the meal. And because food is never eaten directly from a charger, these decorative pieces are produced from a variety of materials, meaning the style choices are endless.


The word originated from the word chargeour and was used in 11th/12th century England to mean a large tray that could carry heavy items. These entertaining items were typically seen holding sizable portions of food in the center of a table.


We can even go back to the King James version of the Bible and see where the decapitated head of John the Baptist was placed on a charger, “And immediately the king sent an executioner, and commanded his head to be brought: and he went and beheaded him in the prison, and brought his head in a charger…” (Mark 6:27-28 KJV).


As dining styles evolved, so, too, did the charger. Today, they serve other uses in addition to elevating the style of the dining table. They are perfect for displaying a selection of candles, protecting your table from a damp floral arrangement, or serving food. You do not have a cake stand? No worries. Pull out a charger (just make sure to avoid toxic chemicals by using only chargers safe for food!).


We will dive into the etiquette of chargers, and how to use them in another post. For now, happy tablescaping!


Together with you,

Lisa Lou