Tablescaping is a fun way to unleash your creativity and make any dinner party extra special. It is also a great way to make your guests feel welcome and appreciated.
Setting the table can be a wonderful meditative process, but it’s so much more than just laying down forks, knives, and plates in neat rows.
And while taking the time to set a beautiful table can be both relaxing and rewarding, with so many things to consider, it can be confusing to get started.
To make the process easier I put together a list of questions I like to mentally go through as I work on each tablescape. These questions help me focus my thoughts and think about all the elements of my table.
Once you have worked through the questions, you will find that setting a beautiful table can be a smooth process, even as your skills and creativity evolve.
Knowing the cuisine served is a key step in the process. This will dictate the type of plates and silverware you need to prepare, and how you will arrange them on the table.
If the dinner is formal, you will need to make sure your table setting reflects that. Typically the more formal the dinner, the more elaborate your table setting should be. For these occasions, I like to create lavish centrepieces, add on theme decorations, and even dress up the chairs and surrounding areas.
A simple and relaxed table setting will work fine for a casual dinner. Focus your attention on bringing in fun colors and fresh elements through greenery, flowers, fruits etc.
Plastic or wooden cups are great for kids’ parties or picnics outdoors. A different celebration may have multiple beverages being served and require an assortment of glassware from rock glasses to champagne flutes.
Having an idea of the types of drinks you’ll be serving will help you determine the glassware you need, as well as where certain items will be placed.
Cloth or paper? The type of napkin you choose will be based on what you have at your disposal, the type of meal being served, and the mood you want to set.
For formal occasions, I normally like to use cloth napkins I can fold in a creative way, but they’re not necessary.
Paper napkins can also be folded in and enhanced and, if your table setting has a particular theme or style, a printed paper napkin can become a complement to the theme.
There are no rules when it comes to choosing one or a combination of the elements above. For my own tables, I almost always use placemats and add either a table cloth underneath or a runner in the middle. Usually, the tabletop surface helps me decide whether to leave it exposed or cover it with a tablecloth.
The choice is yours, but table cloths, runners, or placemats, are all great for adding color and texture to your tablescape.
Let the theme of the party or season of the event be your guide when it comes to table decorations. Because I like to include natural elements in my tablescapes, my own table decor varies widely depending on the season.
But don’t limit yourself to florals – take a look around your home and surroundings and see what you can borrow from them.
You can create arrangements of your own that will be both pleasing to look at and appropriate to the theme.
Now that the table is set, take it one step further and think of the mood you want to create.
The ambiance of your dinner party can be further curated through lighting, music, and even fragrances.
A warm candle glow can add a cozy, romantic feeling to your table. If you can, avoid harsh overhead lighting and instead turn on lamps in various corners of the room to create a relaxed atmosphere
Music can be a great way to create a unique mood and set the stage for a special evening. I like to play music during dinner with the volume low enough so that guests can still talk and hear each other.
Finally, whether you are setting the table for family or friends, be sure to leave plenty of time for the process itself.
You will have more fun and become more relaxed if you take both time and care in creating your table so that it becomes a part of your guests’ memories as they enjoy their evening out with you.
Did you enjoy this post? Follow me for more!
Join our newsletter to receive monthly emails with tablescaping ideas, tips, and access to special offers.
You have successfully joined our subscriber list.
Hi, I'm Alice. With a background in jewelry design, real-estate and hotel management, I developed an eye for beautiful things and a passion for creating memorable experiences.
I started Ascape Living because I noticed that tables are where we meet, dine, chat, laugh, and connect. I now want to share the joy of putting in the extra effort for the people that you care for, so that you can create a space that is filled with love, meaning and life.
I can help you create your very own memorable moments with easy to use table scaping solutions, tips, inspiration and more.
Welcome! Ascape Living is a monthly tablescaping blog for anyone looking to make their table settings unique and memorable. From special events to small family dinners, we help you create a story and transform your dining table into a place where thoughts and conversations flow.
Subscribe to my blog if you'd like to receive monthly notifications with new post releases, easy table scaping solutions, tips, inspiration and more.
You have successfully joined our subscriber list.