Charlotte Moss lets us in on a little secret in the introduction to her new book: There’s really nothing that new to say about entertaining. What is new are her experiences, which she beautifully shares in these pages. “Nothing complicated, no rules, no finger wagging—just ideas,” she writes in Charlotte Moss Entertains. And there are plenty of those, about everything from setting beautiful tables (which, she reminds, we can practice every day, not just for special events) to the specifics of her signature parties, such as the “Caftan Caucus,” the girls weekends she hosts at her home in East Hampton. Then there’s a chapter devoted to those difference-making details—flowers, linens, china, place cards, and the like. Not willing to rely solely on her own entertaining prowess,
Moss also takes us on a whirlwind tour of gracious party spaces in some of her favorite locations, such as Le Vieux Logis in France; Castel Monastero in Tuscany; and Ballyfin, the country estate–turned-hotel in Ireland.
Finally, Moss highlights 10 entertaining divas of the past, such as Elsa Maxwell and Betsy Bloomingdale, chosen because of their imaginative approach to bringing people together. “All of the women here, I think, would agree that the most important thing is just to make a plan, get dressed, open the door, let the party begin, and be yourself— your best possible self,” she writes. They inspire her, as she inspires us.
By Alice Welsh Doyle | Photography by Charlotte Moss
Featured book: Charlotte Moss Entertains (Rizzoli New York, 2018)