Creatively styling your dining room table elevates it into an inviting focal point that impresses guests. The right decorative touches express personal flair while setting the tone for memorable meals. Follow these tips to artfully stage your table – from dressed up linens to curated place settings to a showstopping centerpiece.
Style the Table Base as a Foundation
Build ambience and texture from the ground up:
- Always start with an ironed or steamed tablecloth, linen or runner to eliminate any wrinkles or creases. Pristine draping is key.
- Layer in tablecloths, runners and overlay fabrics in complementary colors and patterns for visual depth and interest.
- Choose base colors that tie into the overall dining room decor and palette for harmony.
- Allow ample overhang of the table linens to create a luxe drape effect. 12-15″ overhang is ideal.
- Incorporate ornate woven tablecloths, embroidered and lace details or textured accents like macrame and knitting to add personality.
Create an Impactful Centerpiece Focal Point
Choose a dramatic tabletop centerpiece that anchors the setting:
- Opt for tall, branching floral candelabras that rise above the table for elegance. Candles add ambience.
- Display eclectic collections creatively like vertically stacked antique books, assorted glassware, or fruit piled high in a ceramic bowl.
- Alternatively, create negative space at the center using a simple element like a bowl of floating lemons or minimalist stone sculpture.
- Use fresh potted herb plants, succulents, ferns or leafy greens as natural centerpieces. Introduce greenery.
- Anchor your centerpiece on a decorative metal, wood, or mirrored tray for added visual dimension.
Style Plates and Chargers for Artful Drama
Arrange china, chargers, and dinnerware elegantly for visual flair:
- Play with mixing and alternating round, square, oval or uniquely shaped plates and chargers.
- Contrast more neutral white or black dinnerware with brightly colored glass or gem-toned charger plates layered underneath.
- Creatively alternate the placement and overlapping positions of chargers, dinner plates, and salad plates.
- Stack or lean plates and bowls at different artful angles and levels to add dimension.
- Surround the place settings with small floral blooms like buds or greenery sprigs.
Dress Up Flatware for Artistic Detail
Elevate utensils and cutlery into artistic elements:
- Neatly cross the fork and knife over the napkin on each place setting.
- Choose engraved, monogrammed, or uniquely shaped handles for visual interest.
- Combine glimmering silver and gold toned metals in cutlery patterns for subtle sheen.
- Display flatware upright in glasses or small vases as alternative vessels.
- Wrap linen napkins around rolled flatware pieces and tie ribbons around them.
Add the Final Touches
Use accents to pull the entire staged table together:
- Place creative menu cards, name tags, or coasters layered on top of napkins at each place setting.
- Wrap complementary napkin rings around rolled napkins to coordinate colors.
- Scatter small tea light candles and votives across the table for soft illumination and reflection.
- Set decorative water glasses and ornate glasses like crystal goblets at each place setting.
With a little planning and creativity, you can transform a plain dining table into a dramatic and polished space ready for impressing dinner guests. Have fun staging!