The smell of Christmas ham.
Leaving out cookies & milk for Santa.
The warmth of a mug of cocoa on a snowy night.
Isn’t it funny how food can take us back to happy Christmas memories and festive celebrations?!? The very smell of certain dishes can awaken memories of laughter and family and fun that usually are tucked way back in our minds (behind our grocery lists – must buy bacon – and the worry about our house needing to be cleaned, our mouths not being clean enough, and our hair not being clean at all). And who wouldn’t want to bathe in our past Christmas’ especially if it gives you an opportunity to eat? So that is what this post is about – preparing our tables for our holiday festivities.
I threw together five different tablescapes that can be modified to fit your personal holiday scheme. Each one shows simple and easy ways to create a festive mood….but keep in mind that these don’t show food serving dishes which could be added or you could create a buffet to actually keep your tablescape feeling light and clutter free. I know you’ll miss having your shoulders squished by Aunt Gertrude and your left sleeve constantly in the sweet potato casserole…that is just the price you’ll have to pay to eat at a beautiful Christmas table 🙂
First up we have a very chic table setting of green & white & silver. The centerpiece is just a long white bread bowl with some green apples and some silver ornaments set on a white fur rug from Ikea. And the silver is just played up by the drape of silver ornaments from our chandelier.
To create a silver ornament cluster of your own just cut four ribbons of various length and string ornaments onto it. Fold your ribbon in half and slip your smallest ornament through one of the ends. It will end up on the bottom as your ‘support ornament’. The rest of your baubles can just be threaded through both loose ends of the ribbon, increase the size of the ornaments as you go. Repeat it four times and tie the end of your ribbons to your current light fixture.
The green light continues to give the go with this simple place setting. A mirrored candleholder acts as a glimmering charger with simple white dishes and a white silverware roll. The setting is topped off with a green glass bowl and a silver ornament with some festive green & white striped ribbon through the top. Doesn’t the ribbon pattern kinda remind you of a modern candycane?
Maybe modern isn’t your cup of tea.
Well, this traditional table for two for tea should do the trick. Only giving off a hint of Christmas, it could easily be switched for any grownup dinner for two.
In the center I placed a couple glass hurricanes with candles and split peas as a textural filler. I think I love looking at the peas more than I have ever liked eating them. And the oil-rubbed bronze color carries over into the center bowl which is hoisted up by a cheap bronze pedastal surrounded by fake red poinsetta picks. Isn’t it amazing what you can do with cheap wreath picks?
Each place setting gets started with a faux runner – actually it is a wool scarf, but hey, who needs a scarf in Georgia, right?! Then a gold charger with a dinner plate, salad plate and tea cup which hails from our collection of wedding china. I topped it off with a cloche – making the whole thing look a little more fancy-errific. A crimson napkin and a couple gold bells tied to the cloche handle gives the whole thing a little more color and a touch of rich appeal.
Ok – so you aren’t a tea drinker and you don’t like apples. Well, maybe you are a typical girl and just like things that sparkle at Christmas time. Yeah. I prefer expensive sparkles. But for some reason they always cost so much 🙂
Anyhoo, this tablescape is a little more wintery wonderland than Christmas cheer.
The centerpiece is totally easy. Just a tray with a mercury glass tree and silver ornaments, a few homemade bubble ornaments, and a whole bunch of candles for glittery fun. I used mini spice jars for the candleholders but really any kinda glass or silver candle holder would do just fine.
And the guests can sit down to feel really special…they are about to eat the gift of food (and their eyes get to feast on spectacular decor). Tying up the plate and silverware with a little bow is sure to put a smile on the face of your friends and family – especially when they get the pleasure of wrapping their dinnerware.
And speaking of guests – let’s not forget our littlest ones – the kids. A kid’s table is a must-have at some point in every family history. And setting a table especially for the kiddos is REALLY fun. Mostly because they won’t judge you and your choice of cutlery 🙂
Our table got youth-inized with a runner from red & white polka dotted wrapping paper and the centerpiece is just simply a tree (with the base wrapped in a red scarf) placed on a white platter and adorned with red ornaments. Even the chandelier got in on the action with red glittery ornaments. And don’t forget a jar or cup or mug of some favorite kiddo candy – a few candycanes go a long way in convincing the children to eat their greens.
The placesetting is totally geared toward keeping the little one’s busy. A little wooden reindeer head can be colored or used as a name card. And the placemat – mine is cut from a piece of craft foam – is just as easily decorated. I don’t have kids yet hence no plasticware- but simple unbreakable white and red dishes can be purchased from nearly every Walmart or Dollar Store.
Lastly I set the table for a little hot chocolate and cookies buffet. Setting the table for simple events can make them special and memorable. The same applies here. Maybe you just want to invite the neighbors over for a sweet dessert and some coffee or maybe you are a single mom of teenage kids who are just too busy with friends to enjoy an entire meal. With this arrangement, you can have your loved ones – and eat your cake too!
I set it up so that it made sense to me. Mugs stuffed with a candycane start the buffet line and your guests can dole out their choco-favs to customize their cup of sweetness. Don’t forget to add a couple spoons – mine look simply simple in a jar with a ribbon.
And the other side of the buffet should house your cookies and small plates. Just make sure that the higher stuff (like cookies on a cake plate) are in the back and the lower stuff (like napkins and plates) are in the front.
So there you have it folks – a few tablesetting ideas to get you in the holiday dining mood. Anything strike your fancy? I love the ornament cluster hanging from the chandelier – it reminds me of expensive grapes 🙂 And the wrapping paper tablecloth? Why did I not do that sooner?! It’s so easy and doesn’t require any laundry detergent! And those cookies? Ok – so technically they are just a prop…but still, I am pregnant and props count as favorites…especially when they are high in sugar and fat. and love 🙂
Have you hosted a get-together already this season? Maybe you set the table for a Christmas party buffet or a intimate dinner for 16? Anyone out there with other tablescape ideas? Or maybe a unique way to identify placesettings? Or maybe you just wanna tell me what your favorite holiday memory is that involves food and drink. Whatever it is that conjures up that Christmasy feel – let’s reminicse together. One of my favorites involves a homeless man wanting a banana & my mom’s reaction to a drug dealer on Christmas morning 🙂
12 Days of Christmas continues.