How to set a beautiful festive Christmas table with no fuss

‘Tis the season to be jolly, make merry, deck the halls… and entertain at home!

Sudeshna Ghosh

Published: Updated:

‘Tis the season to be jolly, make merry, deck the halls… and entertain at home! The festive season is in full swing and that usually means lots of socializing.

Whether you’re doing a traditional Christmas dinner at home, or hosting a non-denominational holiday party, table setting plays an important role in creating the right mood for the celebrations. And in the enjoyment of the festive meal of course – after all, as they say, you eat with your eyes first!

Here are some curated tips from experts on how to perfect your party prep:

Decide on a theme

Decide on a theme and color scheme in advance, then work from there. You could opt for the traditional red, green and gold, or go for a more modern, neutral palette based around whites and metallic, but everything needs to complement each other for a pulled together, cohesive look. You can always turn to sites like Pinterest for inspiration.

Get creative

Work with what you have at home, say the interior experts at Home Centre. You can get creative with everyday items in your kitchen, such as mason jars, twine, and even fruit and veg from the fridge, which can be cleverly incorporated into nature-inspired centerpieces. These help create a rustic-chic vibe, which has an enduring appeal. And if you’re going for the Provencal style full throttle, then having mismatched crockery (particularly handy if you don’t have a formal dinner set for all your guests!) works well too.

Try a vintage look

A vintage look adds instant glam. You can achieve this by using antique-esque goblets and Scandi-style brass candle stands, says Rene Boncan Magadia - Visual Merchandising Head from 2XL Furniture and Home Décor. Candlelight adds a warm glow to any dinner table, and using candle stands or an elaborate candelabra has an elegant effect.

Freshen it up

Take advantage of our sunny climes and use fresh flowers to brighten up your table décor. According to Priya Jelly, founder of floral boutique Maison Des Fleurs, “a couple of bunches of a nice deep red and white or cream, arranged randomly in a tall glass vase with oversized pine cones or metallic ornaments make for an ideal festive centerpiece.” Flowers and candles come together to create an effect you just can’t go wrong with. Another budget-friendly tip is to use a potted houseplant instead. Jelly recommends scarlet flowers, or plants with red-tinged leaves such as Amaryllis, primroses or even red berries.

Add some sparkle

It’s the little things that elevate a party from average to awesome. And all it takes is just a bit of planning. For instance, you could add a bit of sparkle to make the festive feel truly come alive, using fairy lights or glitter ornaments. And if it’s a sit-down dinner party, make personalized place cards – it takes next to no time and effort. But remember – less is more, so if you have one striking element on your table, keep everything else relatively simple and clean, so you don’t have too many things fighting for visual attention. You need to let the food be the hero of the table after all.

Allow your personality to shine through

Dare to be different. From juxtaposing unexpected elements together (such as something vintage with a bold modern pattern), to incorporating something personal into the tablescape – like your children’s creations or one of your little travel souvenirs – you can try anything that allows your own personality to shine through and make the festive table truly your own. After all, it’s as important for you to enjoy your holiday meal as your guests, so incorporating something you cherish is a great way to make the table a happy one.