Festive Table Designs Brighten Lenox Hill Festive Table Designs Brighten Lenox Hill Neighborhood House’s Spring Gala

“The Future Starts Now” theme inspired designers’ opulent contributions to the annual event
By Lauren Epstein
April 22, 2019

Friends and supporters of the Lenox Hill Neighborhood House gathered at Cipriani 42nd Street for the annual Spring Gala benefit on April 18. Inside the grand hall, guests dressed in their black-tie best were stunned by more than 40 opulent tables created by some of the design industry’s most celebrated figures. This year’s event theme, “The Future Starts Now,” breathed life and inspiration into the extravagant, meticulously set tablescapes. “This is our 125th anniversary. And since we’re celebrating our past, and have a new building going up, we decided to theme [it] ‘The Future Starts Now,’” says Spring Gala chair Diana Quasha. “It’s interesting to see that [the tables are] all about planet Earth, minerals, trees, water, and women! [They] go into another realm of social consciousness.”


Andrea Stark presented a tickle-me-pink table for Stark Carpet with a baby carriage centerpiece that “The Power of She.” A leopard-print rug was cleverly repurposed as a tablecloth. Paige Boller of B+B Interior Space placed a towering blue tree sculpture with feather branches in the center of her table, titled Rooted.


In another interpretation, South African designer Mally Skok had her 87-year-old mother, Emmie, in mind when she designed her table. “My mom lives in the moment; she loves her life,” Skok explains. “I thought about this bubble of home and family and making good moments that create the future. You’re making your future every single minute.” Skok used her Emmie tablecloth to establish the table’s colorful palette and set each place with cheery, watercolor-painted plates and bowls from her South African–inspired Robberg collection. Skok was also the only designer to make her own chairs specifically for the gala—a set of relaxed, round-backed chairs produced in collaboration with Dowel Furniture.


Charlotte-based designer Catherine Austin thought of Italian Futurist artists when she heard the event’s theme. Austin let the painting Dynamic Hieroglyphic of the Bal Tabarin by Gino Severini inform the table’s color scheme, then focused on the idea of movement. “This is what I do with my clients,” says Austin. “We find the artwork and pull the colors out of the artwork to establish the interiors.” A tower of undulating, wispy flowers by John Lupton and Andrew Thomas mimicked the flowing patterns in Severini’s work, as did the brush strokes on a tablecloth by Lindsay Cowles Cocktail hour, table viewing, and mingling was followed by a three-course dinner. Later, Rachel Orkin-Ramey of Christie’s conducted a live auction for guests and supporters of the Lenox Hill Neighborhood House.