It’s that time of year again … the holidays are upon us! Now that we’ve enjoyed Thanksgiving, it’s time to look forward to December entertaining for Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza and the New Year festivities. Whichever of the upcoming holidays you celebrate, these festive gatherings call for beautiful table settings. I’ve had several clients ask me about unique table-setting ideas for the holidays, so I thought I’d share a few ideas with you as you look ahead to your holiday plans.

If your style is more traditional, I always suggest bringing out the china, silver and crystal for your holiday dinners. These beautiful (and often heirloom) pieces are meant to be enjoyed and the holidays are the perfect time to do so. If you prefer the classic Christmas red, you can easily incorporate it into your table setting with napkins, placements or chargers. Be careful not to overdo it, as a little red goes a long way.

Traditional With a Twist

Formal Holiday Table
Formal Holiday Table

Playing with Color, Texture & Theme

I occasionally like to introduce a different color scheme than the traditional red and green.  Look around your home and see what other colors you use in your interior décor for ideas. You can find napkins, ornaments and accessories in many non-traditional colors these days. It’s easiest to stick with one dominant color and accent with neutrals – but that’s certainly no longer the rule in table decor.

For a change of pace, consider incorporating a theme; a coastal-inspired table setting would be ideal for anyone wanting to create a warm, tropical feel on a cold wintry day. Cailini Coastal’s Blue Christmas holiday collection is gorgeously inspired by the sea. If you decide to use blues in your table settings, try balancing them with crisp white linen, and beautiful silver or gold candles and accents.

Cailini Coastal - Holiday Table Decor

Does your dining room have large windows or otherwise excellent lighting? If so, we recommend trying a neutral color scheme this year. Balance your white and cream dinnerware with textured pieces, and throw in some silver or gold accents here as well. A few well-placed mirrors will look beautiful underneath the centerpieces on your table.

Bringing the Outdoors In

For a more casual setting, consider adding some elements from nature. Pieces such as pinecones, evergreen, rosemary boughs, or cranberries in containers not only breathe some fresh life into your dining room, but they smell great! You can also find eye-catching pieces that bring the outdoors in, such as this log used as a candle holder along the center of the table.

Holiday Centerpiece - Log Candle Holder
Holiday Centerpiece - Natural Elements

Express Yourself

Look for ways to express your creativity with unusual or unexpected centerpieces and accents. Visit Pinterest and the many blogs out there for inspiration, but remember to tweak their ideas based on your own pieces and preferences. Your holiday table will bring you much more joy if you tailor it to your and your guests’ tastes, experiences and memories.

A few more tips:

  • Candles are a beautiful addition to any festive table but do keep in mind that some heavily scented candles can interfere with the enjoyment of a meal. Consider unscented candles for your holiday dinner tables.
  • Don’t opt for tall centerpieces unless they are quite narrow; you want your guests to be able to easily see and talk across your table.
  • Place cards can be beautiful additions to your table, but consider allowing your guests to place their own cards wherever they would prefer to sit.

The team at AHT Interiors wishes you a beautiful and festive holiday season!