Fully set tables with an array of plates, bowls, cutlery, glasses, and steaming platters of food probably feel like something from a movie. But it doesn’t have to be that way!
I think a beautifully laid table can be done any time but is especially delightful when celebrating guests and those we love.
Like a recipe, however, table settings require ingredients which should be prepped in advance. For you foodies out there, think of it as mental mise en place.
What do you want to showcase, the food or the table as a whole?
What are your primary colors?
Are your diners fancy or funky?
Will it be served family style or in courses?
As with everything in life, having a plan helps!
You don’t need grandma’s wedding silverware or Aunt Mary’s gravy boat to set a welcoming table. Here are some small touches that can elevate even Taco Tuesday to new heights, and I guarantee you’ve got most of the ingredients laying around already.
Accentuate the experience with fresh flowers, interesting branches, or a citrus centerpiece (but keep bouquets easy to see over and around). Bud vases at each setting are a dollar store win. Paint an Insta-worthy picture with a flowered tablecloth set off by individual solid-colored placemats or vice versa. Such a two-toned linen effect can make up for non-fancy plates. If your plates ARE a work of art, what about woven plate chargers? They’ll frame dish and dishes with style.
If there’s room on the table—and you are kid-free for the night—consider candles. Tall tapers or sprinkled tea-lights can make a normal dinner intimate. Remember, though, scented candles may not be a great idea during dinner. Food is the star!
Good linens are truly the key. They can make your dining room table a gorgeous centerpiece instead of simply rectangle-that-holds-mail-and-backpacks-and-stuff-you’ll-get-to-tomorrow. Whether an elegant, mid-toned look, midcentury modern vibe, or botanical riot of flowers, companies like Made on 23rd keep tables fresh and fun.
Designed and produced in Vancouver, owner Deb Spofford has always had a passion for globally influenced textiles. After a lifetime of appreciation, she graduated from a three-year master’s program in Textile Design before coming home and opening her own shop. She starts each season’s collection inspired by the world around us and plenty of hand drawings. These are then cut into woodblocks which hand-print linen, wool, and velvet with heat set eco-friendly inks. She’ll even make custom designs!
You can see Deb’s crafts-woman-ship on Madeon23rd.com and contact her through the site. Then start planning a feast that’s sure to wow your guests!
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