Beautiful Table Settings: How to Set a Table for Stylish At-Home Entertaining
Make your next gathering unforgettable with a table dressed for the occasion by getting these six style elements just right.
Sharing a meal with loved ones is one of life’s true pleasures. From good food and conversation to laughter, drinks and desserts to delight in, all these are essential ingredients to making up precious moments to hold onto.
To really set the scene and make meals that bit more special, dressing your dining table will set the stage and tone for good times ahead. Here, we reveal the six key style features that will help you create the perfect table setting with gorgeous decorating ideas to boot.
Table Setting Tip 1: Gorgeous Glassware
Keep the drinks flowing and savour that favourite drop in chic tumblers and flutes filled to the brim from a sleek carafe. Going with clear glasses may be the obvious choice, but introducing some tinted glassware will take your dinner party game or summer soiree to the next level.
Introducing a bit of texture will also add further interest and contrast to your table setting. Fazeek’s Wave glasses($79) bring a ripple effect with their ribbed forms, Aeyre Cascais tumblers from Reliquia Collective ($79) add a vintage-inspired vibe while beloved glassware specialist Maison Balzac has always offered beautiful handcrafted tumblers and carafes in a veritable rainbow of colours, but don’t overlook the elegant flutes on show.
Table Setting Tip #2: Statement Dishes, Platters & Serving Boards
Present your banquet on crockery that has earned its place on your dining table. Hosting a party is a perfect excuse to look at your crockery collection and see if it’s serving your everyday meals and expressing your personal style.
Look also to include a bit of variety when making your choice – dinner plates, side dishes and bowls are a must, as are a couple of larger platters (this Robert Gordon Natural Home Oval Tray in White Speckle, $79.95, is super chic) and bowls for charcuterie, cheese and crackers, salads, pasta and roasts.
Table Setting Tip #3: Cute Crokery
Start your curated crockery collection with some of our favourite Australian brands: No. 22 Home create classically chic pieces from plates to platters, Alex and Trahanas encapsulate that European holiday vibe of endless alfresco meals in the sun; the pastel-pretty ceramics of Mud Australia; the timeless appeal of nature-inspired tones from Robert Gordon Australia; or the graphic fun of In The Roundhouse.
And for a bread or cheese serving board, we love the TS Makers’ beautiful reclaimed Australian timber pieces full of charm and character.
Table Setting Tip #4: Cutting-edge Cutlery & Serving Spoons
Forks, knives, and spoons are the utilitarian players of the table, often overlooked but a very necessary piece of the puzzle of the table setting. Again, going with stainless steel is a viable option but Krof Cutlery offers this and more, brushed or polished gold or silver, as well as a sophisticated matte black set.
The colour-me-happy and pattern-punch range at Kip&Co is sure to bring the fun levels up a notch or two. And give those large-format platters and bowls an extra dose of functionality, style and colour with a set of serving spoons from Dinosaur Designs.
Table Setting Tip #5: Next-level Napery
Bringing out the linens will instantly make a meal at the table feel a little bit more special. Going with a block colour for your napery is a guaranteed style staple but introduce pattern or two-toned napery for some added playful fun. To really amp up the occasion factor, a tablecloth will elevate the occasion. If you are going to go with both, make sure they complement one another to ground any other pattern, texture or colour found in your glassware, plates and platters.
Some of our favourite go-to napery options include Fenton & Fenton's vibrant vacay vibes (check out their Paradiso Napkin Set of 4 for $90), Sydney-based sustainable label Thekla, which utilises vintage, reclaimed and deadstock fabrics for its charming wares; Bonnie and Neil’s tactile, bright, Australiana-inspired linens; and the linen collection from Bed Threads, particularly the scalloped placemats.
Table Setting Tip #6: Mood Enhancers
Setting the table is only complete by setting the mood as well with a few finishing touches. Fresh flowers, succulents, or even citrus fruit as a centrepiece or adorning each place setting will really add to the inviting atmosphere, as will the warm, inviting glow of candles. Black Blaze’s pillar candles (from $30) fit the bill, offering ribbed elegance and are available in a range of colours to suit any dining table scheme.
For a decorative statement that doubles as a cheeky conversation starter, Jones & Co's quirky collection of vases and planters will provide the perfect vessel for florals and succulents to adorn the table.
Setting the table for summer soirees will be a breeze with our bright ideas and statement style-makers. For more at-home entertaining ideas, check out our guide to the best drinks trolleys and easy cocktail recipes.
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