Any dinner guest can confirm this to be true: The table creates the atmosphere. The food might be the heart and soul of a dining engagement, but without the right table settings, the entire event will be off. Table settings are a craft in and of themselves. The type of event, the significance and the number of guests you are serving all define the appropriate table settings. Understanding the intricacies of this process is a really big deal in the entertainment business, even if we are just talking about a family dinner.
When it comes to hosting a dinner party, the right dinnerware means everything. The plates on the table do a whole lot more than simply allow you to serve food. They showcase your personality, your level of creativity and how much you care about the guests you are receiving. Putting together a strong table setting comes down to a few basic elements: the right dinnerware and a couple of creative ideas to get you started.
The Essential Equipment
To set the table you need dishes, and not just any old dish will do. When you are sitting home alone, ready for a night of watching TV as you eat, a plastic plate might do just fine. But when the in-laws come by or you agree to host your boss and her husband for dinner, you are going to have to be ready for something with a bit more class.
Matching spoonware, coordinating glasses and plates, salad plates and dessert plates as needed — these are the very basics of table setting. Remember, coordination is just as important as having the materials. If all of your forks are different or if your plates don’t match, it is going to disturb the entire appearance of your table. Keep a set of classy dishes around for just such an occasion.
Once you have the materials, get ready to put them in the right place. Significant meals like dinner parties or meals with important guests require a bit more attention. Use a tablecloth to create a warmer atmosphere and to present a clean and distinguished table. Then, a single plate in front of every chair. Make sure that the table settings are not too close to one another. There should be at least 10 inches between every guest to allow for ample elbow room.
When the plates are down, set up your table around them. Forks go on the left, and knives and spoons on the right. You can place a napkin beneath the cutlery, or go the extra step and create a napkin fold, something similar to origami, which really adds an extra element of elegance to the table. Water glasses should always be present, even if you are going to serve wine. Providing both glasses will give your guests the option of which beverage they’d prefer and prevent any unwanted pressure. If you are going to serve a salad or appetizer course, set the table with the additional plates or bowls. The smaller plate should be set in the center of the dinner dish.
HFCoors dinnerware sets are a great way to start creating a well-designed table. The brightly colored plates of the Serape line can be mixed and matched with one another to create a festive design, and you can coordinate the plates and bowls to match the mugs and even decorative pieces for the center of the table. Or you can add color through your tablecloth and push the focus onto the food with the always classy and all-white American Bistro design.
Finally, the last element to achieve an amazing dinner table is the centerpiece. Don’t overlook this most basic yet essential component. A small vase of flowers or a scentless candle are both great choices. If your table is long rather than round, consider multiple small decorative pieces rather than one large item.
Put some time into your table arrangements before sending out your next dinner invitation. You may be surprised to realize how much of an impact a well-designed table can have.