If you're hosting Christmas this year, why not wow your guests with a beautifully decorated table. It doesn't need to be expensive but it does need to be well thought out. Here are our top tips for creating a stunning centrepiece.
Get the basics right
Whether you prefer plain or sequined, crisp white or traditional red, start with a table cloth and runner. Place mats are relatively inexpensive and will add a layer of interest to the table. Next add a charger or lay the plates. Depending on how formal you want to get, you could have one plate or put your salad plate on top. There's no need to buy pricey napkin rings. Simply wrap napkins with some sparkly ribbon or a Christmas decoration.
Create a centrepiece
The key to the entire table is the centrepiece. You can be creative and use decorations and items from around the house – just make sure you can easily converse between both sides of the table. If not, ensure items are lightweight enough to be moved out of the way.
Start with two garlands and run them down the length of the table. If you don't have garlands, you could use a length of ivy from the garden or woodland, or even lay a few cut off branches from the Christmas tree.
When it comes to arranging ornaments, work in pairs, making sure to keep a sense of symmetry. If you group items together, work in threes, and use items of varying height.
For example, you might choose to have two tall candlesticks at either side of the table, or group together three hurricane lamps or tree ornaments of various sizes in the middle.
Think texture and sparkle
Next, add sparkly decorations to the table - some silver baubles or a string of fairy lights can look stunning. If last year's decorations are looking tired, spray paint them white or silver, along with a few leaves and twigs from the garden. Either stick to one main colour, such as sparkly silver, or use two shades to create a cohesive scheme.
Placeholders with handwritten cards and a small, wrapped gift, will make your guests feel extra special.
Prepare in advance
Finally, it's a good idea to decorate the table the night before your guests arrive – so you're not trying to arrange things whilst busy in the kitchen. Remember that you need to leave space for food. If you don't have a dining room cupboard, it can help to bring in side tables to hold a jug of water or wine – freeing up more space on the table for food.
Seven products to give your table the wow factor:
Set of six gold placemats, £14.99
Pine Cone, Snowflake & Artificial Green Fir Woodland Christmas, £14.95
Weiste White Glitter Tree Christmas Table Decoration, £10
Green Glass Tree Table Decoration, £7.99
Ashdon Oak Effect 150cm Table and 6 Cream Midback Chairs, £189.99
3 Hurricane Clear Glass Candle Lamps with Candles, £9.99
White Glitter Log Tree – Large, £19.99