It seems like the holidays have just come and gone, and now they’re back once again. Between November and December, there are countless occasions for pulling out the good China and inviting loved ones over. The perfect holiday table may be your goal this year. In fact, it’s a great way to impress your guests while showing your appreciation for their part in your life. Use these top 5 tips when you set the table this holiday season. Both functional and aesthetic guidelines will thrill everyone.
Use Stacking Methods
The number of dishes that you use during any occasion can be as many as five or six for each person. No table is big enough for every plate at the same time. However, you don’t want to be constantly running between the kitchen and the dining room for those particular dishes. Try a stacking method as an alternative.
Neatly stack the dishes and bowls that are necessary for each guest at their seat. By placing the large items near the bottom and moving upward, you create a focal point for each guest. When it comes to glasses, don’t employ the stacking method. At the most, place two glasses at each seat so that water and champagne might be served with elegance.
Accent With Color
Your dishes may be bright white with napkins boasting a cream color. Although these colors are elegant, they don’t have any accents that excite the mind or eye. It’s the holidays so play with bold colors on your table. Try a bright-green glass or red, bread plate. Other accents might involve centerpieces or candles.
Pick one or two colors as your accents. Mix them up across the table so that the overall presentation is a warm and inviting one. If you use too many colors, the area looks busy and unsightly. For a simple place setting, try all-white dishes with red bows tied around the napkins. It’s not necessary to create an over-the-top holiday table if it’s not your style. Simply use one, bold piece to bring the decor together.
Label Each Seat
Don’t be afraid to control your holiday table with place cards. These decorative cards can be handwritten or printed out with each person’s name. You might place all of the elder, family members at one table while the kids reside in a separate area. For a fun spin on the standard card, add a trivia question to the back of the name. These questions might break the ice at a gathering where many family members are from out of town.
Ideally, the place cards should be added to the side of your stacked dishes. They should be big enough so that they aren’t missed by the visitors. At the end of the night, the place cards become memorable souvenirs to take home.
Pick Simple Flatware
If you’ve ever been to a very elegant dinner, the table may have been set with a half-dozen utensils to choose from. These confusing settings will only intimidate most guests. Simplify your flatware by offering just the basics, such as one knife, fork and spoon.
As the courses move forward through the evening, swap out the utensils as necessary. Everyone will always have the required spoon or fork without much thought about which utensil is the proper one. Clear out the dinnerware on a regular basis too. By simplifying the entire meal, everyone relaxes as they focus on the socializing instead of the proper, dining methods.
Runners Rule Over Tablecloths
Huge tablecloths used to be the norm for holiday dinners, but runners are quickly becoming favorites. Runners give the table borders for your place settings and centerpieces. Your visitors will know where to place their glass without creating spacing issues with the dishes in the middle.
You’re able to show off your beautiful table with a runner as well. If any spills occur across the table, they’re rapidly wiped up without leaving an unsightly stain. Your visitors will appreciate the nearly spotless cleanup so that their mistake isn’t a blight on the evening. Pick a runner that has some texture to it, and your guests will be impressed at the sight of it.
Inevitably, your invited guests may bring a few friends. Be ready for this possibility by having a few extra servings ready in the kitchen. You might pull together a place setting that’s hidden in the wings for those unexpected guests. When you’re prepared for nearly every possibility, your holiday will be a relaxing event.
Author: Jessica Kane is a writer for SIlver Superstore, home of the internet’s best flatware.