During most of my single years living here in Chicago, my mother and grandmother labored under the delusion that perhaps all I needed in order to find love in the city was….a picnic set! I think they envisioned long, romantic Victorian-style picnics by the lake, me with a parasol and a long lace dress. On more than one occasion, I received the picnic set to match — gigantic wicker baskets lined with fabric and overflowing with floral patterned plastic dishes and cups. Dreadful.
Happily, both my single days and those picnic sets are nothing more than a memory these days. But recently, I was inspired to revisit the land of picnicware and I’m happy to report that things have evolved tremendously.
During a recent visit to my sister and brother-in-law’s home in Charleston, they took me for a sunset cruise in their small fishing boat. We brought along some wine and cheese for munching and the ride was so pleasant and relaxing I remarked that if I were them, I would plan to regularly pack a picnic and spend weeknights eating dinner on the boat. Of coure, doing so would be much simpler if they had a little picnic set specifically for the boat.
So, upon my return I did some shopping online in search of the perfect set. After sifting through a number of sites featuring a wide array of wicker/floral offerings and utilitarian camp-style backpacks, I finally stumbled upon the Metro Melrose set. Available in red or lime fabric, this basket is fully insulated, spacious enough to pack plenty of food and drink, and features a side compartment complete with melamine plates, cups, silverware and fabric napkins for 4. And, refreshingly, the set features a bright, modern geometric print in cheerful colors….no Victorian florals in sight.
Even if you don’t own a boat, this set would be perfect for anyone who frequently goes to the beach, attends outdoor concerts…or even for a romantic picnic in the park. I’m still on the hunt for that parasol.