When you can create the setting exactly how you want it, be involved in the planning and making of the food you eat and enjoy the moment at your own pace in your own space, it’s a very compelling choice to stay home rather than eat out. Here are some simple switches that will help you transform where you eat every day into a magical place to make any dining occasion super special.
Our Blue Blooms pattern is a striking blue floral, upright but wavy, and full of movement
If we see the dinner plate as a frame, like for a painting but for your food, the simplest of meals – even a boiled egg – will get a rave reviews if served on a good-looking plate. So, this is the moment either to bring out the treasured dishes or to acquire your own set that will become the next generation’s heirloom plates. Choices about everything on the table, particularly the colour scheme, will probably stem from the style and colour of the tableware. If your crockery is an eclectic collection from numerous antique shop raids you can embrace the inconsistency of shape and style as points of symmetry and connection between other parts of the table setting will bring it all together.
A little attention to detail can go a long way our Reverse Candlestick can create a warm ambience.
I love the height of taper candles. With the glimmering light close to eye level the
table becomes the centre of a vignette. Candlelight softens and darkens the edges of the space helping to blur and push away the outside world and draw the focus onto the moment, the company and meal before us. Pillar candles and tabletop tealights are also great for adding ambience, spirit and sparkle. Better for you and for the planet, 100% natural wax candles made from soy, coconut or beeswax come in all shapes, sizes and colours too. Colourful candles in similar tones to the other elements on the table are good value as they look appealing and add vibrancy in the daytime when unlit.
Plants and flowers
Floral table centrepieces add a touch of colour
With my gardener hat on, the table setting element I like to fix early on is the leafy
centrepiece, because having that immediate presence of nature is essential - being around plants and flowers is relaxing and makes us happy! While there are slim floral pickings in mid-winter there are many alternatives to a traditional bouquet. If you have a fir or eucalyptus tree in your garden a few sprigs of these will work a treat, as will evergreen herbs like rosemary and thyme. They all have wonderful aromatic qualities too. Gather a bunch of stems of different greenery to add texture and the softening power of plants to the scene. If it’s flowers you must have, at this time of year potted plants like dwarf daffodils or cyclamen are perfect and can be planted outdoors afterwards.
Layer table linens to bring extra sophistication
Materials and fabrics have the extraordinary power of instantly affecting our sense of occasion - monarchs don’t line their crowns with ermine and velvet for nothing! In place of fine damasks and glittering brocades however, a humble linen or cotton tablecloth and set of napkins will raise the stakes and effortlessly give a feeling of comfort and modest luxury. The washing requirements of all the table linen post- dinner can be off-putting, but individual placemats are an excellent alternative to a full tablecloth, and they can also help to define the setting nicely.
How to fold the napkins? This depends on how adventurous you’re feeling. If they’re simply arranged into a rectangle or triangle, you have the opportunity, in a similar vein to a Christmas cracker, to hide a surprise note or gift inside and add to the magic. Slip in a sprig of greenery while you’re at it to draw the table setting together. If you manage to sculpt stars or pyramids, fleur-de-lis or swans please send in your photos!
The table it set, so, what’s on the menu? Boiled eggs wasn’t it?!