3 Simple Table Settings
There is always an excuse to gather around the table with friends and family to enjoy good food, tell stories and laugh, although cooking the meal for your guests is often only half of the fun. Laying the table to help create a beautiful ambience or to create a focal and discussion point is a key aspect of the entertaining experience and it doesn’t have to be a daunting task or take you hours to perfect.
Although the arrangement of place setting varies from country to country (usually in the West), the key elements, which are often just practical, remain very much the same and unless your dinner is a very formal affair, there is really no need to set the table in preparation for an 8 course dinner.
From napkin folding to glass and table ware (cutlery) decorating, there are lots of opportunities to try something new, but often it can be daunting to know where to start. Below are 3 simple ideas to try (which can work for banquet type meals as well as mezze too).
Simple table setting with elements from nature
This type of setting works if you have the central runner as the main event. If you plan on putting the meal on the table for everyone to serve themselves, then this is a lovely way for the decorative elements to come through the individual pieces (just make sure a leaf doesn’t cover an essential sauce that is hidden in a tiny pot).
Give it a go:
Adding greenery is a quick way to inject some vibrancy to your table and a few large candles dotted around will create a cozy ambience. You will need a long runner that preferably drapes down the edges of the table and some flowers or greenery (even from your garden is fine).
This style can work without placemats, just stack plates with a contrasting color or with some detail. To spice up the look, use copper and rose gold metallic finishes which contrast beautifully with navy and indigo blues or add textured table mats to give your table an extra layer, creating warmth and sophistication.
A glamorous table setting with lots of sparkle
If your style is more glamorous or chic, plants from your garden just won’t do. Lighting with lots of reflective materials will make this type of table setting sparkle. The shapes and style of the plates and place settings will be either the main event or the backdrop to the sparkle.
Give it a go:
Candles and tall glasses can take the main stage with this kind of setting (especially if you alternate and fill some with candles or other sparkly items such as metallic items in silvers and rose gold). They key is to stick with a maximum of two metallic colors, don’t over do the colors or else it will look like a children’s party or Christmas setting.
Modern and refined place setting for entertaining
If no frills is more your style but you want to add some class to your dining setting, why not try a sleek and modern table setting? This can be easy for some and very difficult for others depending on whether you like to keep adding items to your setting. The main event here are the plates. Choose contrasting plate and bowl shapes with the same color theme and layer them onto large placemats. There won’t be a need for a table runner, instead focus on the placemats or a central item on the table.
Give it a go:
Square modern plates stack beautifully to create a smart and sophisticated look and contrast beautifully with perfectly round bowls. Go for thin ceramics to really enhance that restaurant-like and smart atmosphere.
Pair with modern, streamlined silver cutlery and simple elegant wineglasses to compliment the contemporary plates. Keep napkins crisp and create a warmth with slightly textured table mats.