Dressing a table was not created in a day by a housewife! No, it was gradually established by the European courts. Setting a table is about expressing your creativity, making your guests feel special but you need to follow the classic rules.

It is important to  present  a  beautiful  table  setting as it normally reflects your character and eventually the  wonderful  food  which  will  be  served.  It  is highly  recommended  to  set  the  table  properly  and aesthetically,  when  you  want  to  create  a  pleasant atmosphere for a meal.

The modern art to table setting is quite simple once you understand a few basics:

  • The tablecloth forms the basis of a well-decorated table. The tablecloth has to be clean, perfectly ironed and should hang down on each side of the table by about 20cm. The colour of your tablecloth is always optional, however, you should match the colour of the tablecloth with the tableware. If it is plain, it’s advisable to use a tablecloth with an interesting pattern to create a more appealing look.
  • Plates: start by positioning the plate of the main course, then that of the entry above. We never put more than two plates on the platter. The dish, whatever its size, needs to be about 2 cm of the table edge. The small bread plate must be located on the left above the seats. Choose round plates for a classic deco or square plates if you prefer contemporary deco. Make sure your guests can be seated comfortably at a sufficient distance from each other.
  • Serviettes/Napkins is an essential on every table as not only are they hygienic, but they also add a decorative element. If you are hosting a very chic evening, it is advisable to use linen napkins that match other decorative elements on your table (in colour and/or design). Nowadays, paper napkins can be used; they come in all sorts of colours and designs, which can add a pop of colour to any table.
  • Proper arrangement of cutlery – You need to place your cutlery in order of usage, on the outside you should have the cutlery being used at the beginning of a meal and the last pieces are placed on the inside (closest to your plate). Forks are placed to the left, knives and tablespoons should lie on the right. Sharp knife edges (steak knives) should be directed to the left. All cutleries being used for desserts should be in front of the plates. It is inappropriate to exchange or add cutlery during a meal, all the tableware should be on the table before dining begins.
  • There should always be at least two glasses for each guest. The water glass is placed in front of the plate and wine glasses slightly right. The white wine glass just to the right of red wine glass. If there is a champagne glass, it stands to the left of the water glass, a little behind.
  • Accessories: accessories are essential for your table, this makes a dining table go from ordinary to sophisticated by adding charm and  style e.g. flowers, candles, personalized name tags, menus and beads to name a few. The heights of the centre pieces are very important. If they are too high, they may be an obstacle for people who are interacting across the table. As far as possible avoid candles that smoulder and drip outwards. It is also advisable not to use flowers that are too fragrant as over scented flowers can be overpowering and very off putting. Do not forget the water jug and the wine must be placed in front of the “maître de maison”.

Attention to details is of utmost importance. Various events will dictate different table utensils and tableware e.g. breakfast, lunch or dinner.

What are the latest trends concerning tablecloth and utensils?
Colours are the basis of a good table setting. They should be good looking and pleasantly soothing. Contrast is a popular modern way of achieving a good result. For example, a bright tablecloth goes well with pale cutlery, utensils, and decorations.
While a pale table cloth is well complemented by rich brightly-coloured decoration. It is important to combine and correlate colours into groups and distinguish a predominant colour for the table setting. Nowadays, any colour goes, but a trending colour is duck egg green or turquoise, especially for day time events and an old time favourite is black and white with a pop of colour.

Vintage, vintage, vintage
The beauty of a vintage inspired table setting is that the more mis-matched the better. When it comes to Vintage, you can get more hands on with the accessories as you can search on the internet just about any DIY to create a vintage inspired table setting. Lace, beads, natural fabrics, plates and glasses that, are odd in size and loo. If you also have crockery sets that are incomplete, this is the perfect occasion to use them. You should personalize your table with individual salt and pepper, name tags, small objects that will give a little something to your table.

For an informal luncheon, colourful and patterned quality plastic tableware is very popular. Again, the more mismatched, the better it is.

What should be avoided for a perfect, Dressing a table?
Your table should not be cluttered as this may distract your guests from the accessories you have put together and also will not leave much space for serving meals.