After you’ve attended holiday services, exchanged gifts, and watched umpteen holiday movies, Christmas dinner can seem almost anticlimactic. Give this special feast its due with a table setting that will bring the luster back to a meal shared with your nearest and dearest.
This lovely tablescape shows just how beautiful a simple look can be. Vintage grain sack yardage forms a runner that draws the eye to a centerpiece of pillar candles wrapped in old book pages and tied with twine. Fresh berries are tucked around the candles while pinecones punctuate the tabletop. Copper-wire starlights shimmer along the length of the runner. At each setting, pink Depression glass champagne goblets offer a signature sip garnished with pomegranate seeds and a sprig of rosemary. Rolled napkins are secured with ribbon-tied shipping tags stamped with seasonal wishes.
Rustic nature takes center stage on this holiday table. Atop a wide burlap runner, cut sections of aspen logs in varying heights form the focal point with fresh moss and pinecones tucked around the arrangement. Votive candles in jam jars and votive cups crown the logs. Each plate is grounded by a brushed gold charger and topped with white linen napkins tied in brown satin ribbon. A sprig of evergreen and a nametag complete the place setting.
Set your table with a woodland lodge look. At each place setting, Maple Chocolate Truffle favors rest on buffalo check or knit-blanket tea towels that stand in as napkins. Handled Mason jar mugs, simple white china and unembellished flatware ground the settings. Natural soy wax candles in tin cans follow the sinuous curve of a handmade evergreen garland. To make the garland, cut cedar, fir, boxwood, yew, or other evergreen and berry branches from your yard. Layer the greens in a visually appealing mix and wrap to secure to each other with green floral wire. Add berry sprigs on each side and a group of pinecones in the center. (If you don’t have a garden full of shrubs, many nurseries and big box garden centers are carrying fresh branches, berries, and assembled garlands this time of year.)
Another take on a country woods style starts with a black and cream buffalo check runner centered with mercury glass hurricanes, large pinecones and fresh greenery. Vintage green Cubist goblets from Indiana Glass bring color to each setting where plain white china sits atop chargers made from cut log sections. Ivory napkins are hand-painted with dry-brushed deer motifs.
Elegant rusticity in gray and white creates a serene tablescape. Plain white linens and china rest on pewter chargers paired with pewter cutlery and vintage clear glass goblets. At each setting, white tapers illuminate a small gift wrapped with vintage book pages tied with twine and topped with a pewter cross ornament. In the center of the table, mercury glass and silver vessels sparkle among natural branches and evergreen sprigs.
The glamour of gold brings elegance to this tabletop. Classic ivory and gold china pairs with modern stemware dipped in gold paint. Individual printed menus complete the chic presentation. In the center, a wood planter painted in a metallic finish is filled with a lively and textural arrangement of succulents. Air plants in the centerpiece are repeated at each place setting.
Traditional red and green never looked so artlessly pretty. The casual setting is grounded with a bargain burlap runner centered with an arrangement of red delicious apples and stoneware crocks filled with fresh moss. At each place, a mix of red and white china is framed with grapevine twigs on a background of inexpensive white and red placemats. Folded red or white pocket napkins, stuffed with a sprig of evergreen, support faux ivory-handled silverware. Red dot felted ornament favors, placed over pilsner glasses filled with fresh evergreen, act as place cards with hand-lettered tags tied to the ornament hanger.
Take advantage of a beautiful wood dining table by letting its warm hues set the tone for the place settings. Vintage pink transferware plates pair with brown napkins for a subtly patterned composition accented with plain cutlery and clear glass goblets. Unique place cards add a crowning touch. To make the little trees, cut a thick branch into thin sections. With a small bit, drill a hole in the center of the wood disc. Insert a sprig of evergreen into the hole. Cut a star from cardstock, write your guest’s name on the star and hot glue it to the top of the tree.
White linens and china, an all-white chandelier, and clear glass goblets provide a quiet backdrop for stunning red table decorations. A lush floral centerpiece of deep red roses, red and purple anemones, and holly berry branches in an opaque vase creates a dazzling focal point. On the plates, red place cards cut from cardstock in a folded holly-leaf shape guide guests to their seats. Overhead, glittery faux holly crowns the bobeches of the chandelier. Thin wire secures a draped beaded garland and red glass baubles to each arm of the chandelier.
The little ones deserve a special table for a special day, too. Make your kids’ table a fuss-free zone with a kraft paper table cover, sturdy paper or melamine plates, and plenty of activities to keep them busy. With a marker, outline placemats on the paper table cover and write up a Christmas Eve checklist beside each one. Clip an initialed place card to small paper bags ready to be filled after dinner with munchies like popcorn, nuts, trail mix, or snack mix (aka reindeer chow). Next to the plates, milk bottle drinking glasses with bright straws are wrapped in paper doilies and ribbon while a jar of sweets anchors the napkin. Make a bucket of goodies for each child filled with snacks, a gingerbread boy, small toy, and coloring pages rolled and wrapped with ribbon. Canisters of colored pencils flank a wrapped gift centerpiece.
To ensure that your holidays are merry and bright, use these guidelines when decorating with candles:
-Keep candles at least 12 inches away from anything that might burn. Be especially mindful of loose hair and clothing when around lit candles.
-Place candles in sturdy candleholders on flat, open surfaces.
-Extinguish candles before they get close to the ends. Only allow a candle to burn completely if it is in a container that will not conduct heat and is placed on a nonflammable surface.
-Never leave children or pets unattended with candles burning.
-Make sure candles are out before going to bed or leaving a room.
© Caruth Studio