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How to Style Your Christmas Day Table

My Top Tips and Favourite Festive Themes

So many joys of the festive season are about sharing tasty food and delicious treats with loved ones.

And with so much time and effort going into making wonderful meals to share together, it really helps the occasion feel special to also put some thought into styling your dinner table and setting.

Here are some of my top tips on how to dress your festive dinner table with style, plus three beautiful festive themes you can use as guidance for a really impressive and magical occasion.

1. Create a cosy, intimate atmosphere

Christmas is all about cosy! Or Hygge as the Scandinvians might say.

To create this irresistibly cosy feeling, use warm relaxed lighting, soft textures and warm tones. Scatter the table and room with candles - nothing creates an intimate and inviting dining experience like candlelight.

You can also use warming festive scents to make your house smell wonderful - try burning orange and cinnamon essential oils or get some mulled wine brewing to waft seasonal scents through your home.

2. Go all out - it’s only once a year!

Dust off your best dishes and glassware. If you can't get your best glasses out for Christmas when can you…?!

Use fabric napkins rather than paper - paper napkins with reindeer on them can be cute but for something more classy and make things feel special, use your nicest fabric ones.

And get those special candlesticks and ornaments out of the cupboard - now is their moment!

3. It’s the little details that make it feel special

The little touches will bring the whole thing together and create an immersive enveloping atmosphere.

Homemade place names make your guests feel really special and welcome, adding a beautiful personal touch.

And try tying a ribbon around each person’s cutlery or around their napkin and tucking in a sprig of greenery or cinnamon stick.

4. Welcome the outside in

Why not bring a hint of greenery to the table?

Go foraging for christmas foliage such as pine, magnolia, fir as well as buds and sprigs and pine cones to create a joyful wintery scene, full of the season’s natural offerings.

Use these to create a centerpiece, table runner or arrange them into beautiful arrangements along the dinner table.

You can also use smaller sprigs to decorate place settings and pinecones make wonderful name placeholders!

Not only will the festive foliage bring much joy to the dinner table but the foraging is a wonderful fun activity you can do together in the run up to the day.

5. Set up and style a drinks station

It’s a really fun idea to set up a small table or sideboard as a little bar close to your dining table so everyone can get involved in making drinks and cocktails, without having to leave the centre of the action.

6. Jazz up condiments and accompaniments

If you don’t have time to make all the dinner accompaniments, you can still make shop-bought items look beautiful.

Decant sauces into pretty serving bowls, top cranberry sauce with a little orange zest, and swirl some few thyme leaves and grated nutmeg into your bread sauce.

7. Choose centrepieces carefully

Your centrepiece will be the focus of the table so it’s key to your styling arramgement, but you don’t want it to use up too much valuable space - there’s a lot to fit on that table!

Pick candelabras or vases with narrow bases so you can still see across the table and leave plenty of space for the food.

8. Choose a theme

Think about a theme for your table to create a stylish cohesive look that will stand out. Here are 3 of my favourite themes for festive feasts, plus my tips on how to create each look.

Festive theme 1 : Glitzy

T’is the season for shimmer and sparkles. It is a mid-winter festival of light after all! So, shine a light through your décor and add some sparkle with a metallic theme.

Metallics help to pick up light, creating a beautiful warming ambience around the table - simple, but so effective.

Use Brass vases and candleholders to bring some simple glam to the table and use floral or foliage arrangements to compliment them.

The dark green festive foliage looks beautiful against brass.

Think gold when it comes to cutlery, vintage metal candlesticks and candelabras.

Lots of places are selling 1930’s style gold-rimmed glasses at the moment which feel special and don’t have to cost much. You can also pick-up gold and silver-coloured candles easily and cheaply.

You can use gold and silver Christmas tree decorations too, strung up as decorations or as part of the table arrangement, as well as on the tree. You can even spray items you already have!

You could have a gold or silver table runner for more glitzy party vibes or go plain as a dramatic backdrop to your sparkly things. Black works really alongside silver and gold.

This look is also great for New Year’s celebrations so you can re-use this theme for your NYE dinner party and, as I mentioned in my last blog post, metallics are going to be a big trend in 2022 so you may have plenty of opportunity to use this decor again!

Festive theme 2: Keep it classic

Nothing says Christmas like red, green and gold, so why not go trad and keep it classic?!

This colour palette doesn’t have to be cheesy or tacky, done well it can be beautifully warm, wholesome and inviting. Take your inspiration from the green holly with the red berries… so simple but beautifully striking.

A dark green tablecloth or table runner makes a lovely deep background and looks dramatic with hints of gold and red layered on top. Or go with a red tablecloth or table runner to create a warm hearty atmosphere.

You can add snow-white touches with ceramics and candles, and then scatter sprigs of scarlet-berried greenery amongst the table decorations. You might even want to try cranberry-coloured or forest green glassware.

Mix these traditionally festive colours with cute country-style touches such as tartan napkins for a hearty wholesome Christmas look.

You can also go beyond the traditional shades of bright scarlet red and forest green, and instead craft your own version using related tones for a classy alternative.

Why not take your inspiration from the three kings, the robes they wore and the exotic treasures they brought with them using mulberry, gold and spice colours to conjure up the essence of Christmas.

Whatever you do, make it all shimmer with plenty of candlelight!

Festive theme 3: Scandi minimal

This theme looks to the Scandinavians for inspiration by going with a natural, earthy and paired back look.

Focus on natural textures here, maybe skipping the tablecloth to make a feature of the wood of the table underneath. You could use a table runner or also drop this all together too.

What you should make use of however is natural rush or jute placemats, linen napkins, wood-handled cutlery and a mix of pretty clear glass candle holders to create the basis of a calming, natural theme.

Use foraged festive greenery to create a centrepiece if you can, and harness gold cutlery, accessories, candleholders and table decorations to mix in with the natural look and bring an elegant bit of seasonal sparkle.

Finish this theme with frosted glasses, foraged berries and woodland finds for the ultimate wow!

Here at Wonderlands, we specialise in providing the creative skills and the artistic flair guaranteed to make your dream wedding vision shine through.

You can read more about my event styling and what’s involved when working with me here.

#christmas #jersey #christmasstyling #christmasdecor #christmasdecortoptips

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