Set a Table that Sparkles

The jewel of any successful holiday dinner is a beautifully set table. It's the one time of year that we get to pull out the fancy plates and glasses and dress things up. The Kitchen has some surefire tips to help you set a table that glistens with class, sophistication and holiday cheer.

First off, everything has its place starting with the silverware. An easy way to remember where each flatware piece goes is to place them in the order of the letters in the word "forks." The order, left to right, is: "f" for fork, "o" for the plate (it is shaped like an "o"), "k" for knives and "s" for spoons (forget the "r"). The flatware is laid out with the pieces you will use first on the outside. For example, if the salad course is first, then the salad forks go on the outside and the dinner forks go inside of that. When placing the knife, the blade should face towards the plate. The dessert fork and spoon go above the plate with the spoon facing left and the fork facing right.

To place glassware, touch the tips of your thumbs to the tips of your forefingers to make a lowercase "b" with your left hand and a lowercase "d" with your right hand. This reminds you that "bread and butter" go to the left of the place setting and "drinks" go on the right. 

When setting a perfect table, you want to make sure that you don't get too carried away--you need to leave room for your food! Make sure all your food will fit by laying out all of your empty serving platters before you add centerpieces and decor.

Once you're sure everything will fit, it's time to add some glam. We like to make a quick and easy centerpiece. A large floral centerpiece blocks the faces of your guests and takes up valuable real estate on your table. Instead, you can create a tumbling ornament centerpiece that runs along the center of your table by placing ornaments down the length of the table. We chose ornaments that had mixed metallic elements to go with our shimmery theme. We also piled these ornaments into small gold wreaths at either end of the table.

Our table had lots of metallic decor, so we decided to add lighting to make everything shine. You can do this by using micro LED lights that are battery-powered and inexpensive. They'll add a perfect twinkle to your table. Thread them through the centerpiece and wrap a small box in gift wrap with a bow. Cut out the bottom of the box to slip over the lights' small power box. This sits on the table and disguises the power pack as a decorative gift!

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