Half the fun of ordering dinner at a special restaurant is the presentation and atmosphere. If the dinner table looks Instagram-worthy, the food is going to taste a little bit more delicious. The same goes for your own dinner party. A unique table setting can make dinner feel warmer, one-of-a-kind, and festive. So, move over, Martha Stewart. These seven steps will help you create a table setting to impress your dinner guests.
Pick Your Linens
Before you put a utensil on your table, start with a clean slate that can serve as the background for all of your table decor. Rather than spreading out a sole tablecloth, layer up your linens. Start with a simple tablecloth, then choose a more unique fabric in a brighter color or print as the runner down the center. This will add some personality and style, which will help you select the rest of your unique table setting. Next, choose placemats to complement the runner, which will also make spacing for the next six steps easier.
Choose Your Dinnerware Wisely
Before you pick your dinnerware, prepare your menu first. Will you need bowls and spoons? Two forks or one? Steak knives? Make sure that your guests will have everything they need so you aren’t scrambling when the food is ready. And just because you are creating a special place setting doesn’t mean you have to use your finest china (unless you want to!). Choose something that fits the food. Classic dishes deserve classic plates, while an adventurous Asian dish calls for something more colorful and funky.
Get Out the Glasses
What will you have to drink? Whether you are shaking up fresh cocktails or serving a bottle of your favorite wine, find appropriate glasses to have at each place setting. And don’t forget the water glasses. Keep a pitcher or bottle of some kind on the table so guests can serve themselves during dinner. Add some chopped lemons, watermelon, or cucumber to the water pitcher for a fun pop of flavor.
Perfect Your Napkin Folding
You don’t have to be an origami whiz to make your napkins pretty. We can tell you a secret that ‘s basically the easiest two-step fold ever: Fold your napkin into a triangle, then roll it up. Stick it into a glass, or add a decorative napkin ring for a little personality. It’s that easy, and it looks awesome.
Personalize With Place Cards
It’s fun for guests to look for their name on a place card at the table. It shows that you took the time to make it personal, and it’s a little something they can take home with them at the end of the evening. Cut your cards into a unique shape (cookie cutters are great for tracing and making them even) like a simple diamond, butterfly or mini flags with help from toothpicks or Popsicle sticks.
Find Your Centerpiece
The centerpiece adds the wow factor to the table. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a bouquet of flowers, although that’s always a go-to option. You could use fresh seasonal fruit, like apples or lemons in a basket or vase, tall candles, or an assortment of rustic mason jars. Just make sure that it doesn’t get in the way of your guest’s conversation (they want to be able to see each other), and isn’t too large for the table. When in doubt, keep it simple.
Add Finishing Touches
Now that each place setting has all the necessities and the centerpiece is out, add a few small details to pull the look together. Scatter some tea lights or flower petals along with the runner, add a little sparkle with some confetti or glitter, and don’t forget to put out your salt and pepper shakers!
Voila! Your unique table setting is guest-ready, and we doubt they will be able to resist taking a few photos of your decor skills.