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Love Your Christmas Home Day 15 The Festive Table

Thu 12th, Dec, 2013

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Good moaning from Sydney, we are doing holiday tablescapes today, yup the dressing up of festive season tables and  how to dress your Christmas table without any stress.

Now I love myself some foofing and tablescaping with a table or six, indeed I have turned it into a sport, much better than throwing oneself around the gym, however at this time of year, your table and how it is presenting itself to the world, may well be the very last thing on your mind.

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 However a pretty festive table is a lovely little Christmas ritual that I love.

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The key for me is a leetle bit of forethought and the tiniest bit of preparation, leaving you on the day to actually enjoy it and make all the effort of the last few weeks worth it…. So here are a few things to think about and your mission for Day 15, the table…

1. first of all think about how you want your table to look, mine is bare, a bit minimal this year, just they way I like it and more importantly quick and easy and not too much fuss, but what about you?  Have you always fancied a big vase full of baubles and little white lights, get going on it, do you want your table drowning in fresh greenery, how about heaps and heaps of candles in little mason jars – so decide what look you are going to go for…mine always always centres around ease and simplicity at this time of year, this is not the time for uber-foofing in this old cottage…but I still want it to look nice.  Have a look over on Pinterest for Christmas tablescaping ideas and you will soon be inspired, remember though you live in a real house and keep everything do-able.

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2. tablecloth – easy right?  well funny really and it always surprises me, lots of readers here and lovely people I bump into as I go about my oh so very exciting life tell me that I inspired them to use a tablecloth and how simple and quick it is to dress up a table, ummm yep, it soooo is.  So let’s get our tables dressed with something nice. Now, first off, if you have kids or guests or both and you want to use a ‘best’ tablecloth then you are going to have to throw all ideas of it staying ‘best’ out of the window, I don’t believe in keeping stuff for best, life is too short and anyway most of my table linens are thrifted so worst case scenario I’m not losing out on a lot.  So make that decision now – will you bring out the best linens.

Secondly I know a lot of people who pop in here are on a budget and spending on a tablecoth is not in any shape or form going to happen at this time of year – I have ways around that though – there are soooo many things you can use in your home that you already have – I’ve used all sorts to dress up tables – great ideas for a neutral palette to top (I always go for a plain neutral tablecloth) are old vintage sheets from goodwill, second-hand table linens, drop cloths (you can get these in hardware stores and a huge one is not expensive, the best thing is that it looks like rustic linen, I’ve used them a lot with fab results), brown kraft paper (love this idea, especially good for a kiddies table), turkish towels, old crochet throws – basically anything that you can throw over your table as a base that makes your table pretty go for it.

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3. china – get your china ready now for the big day, this may seem a bit on the organised side, but if you have a quick open up of your cupboards now and mental check to see if you have enough plates you’ll be happy.  I think it’s worth mentioning here too paper plates, ummm I am not a big fan but I have been to a couple of meals where nice paper plates were in evidence and wowzas to how much this helps the clearing up.

 

4. get napkins in the house, simply true and makes things looked dressed up and effort-y when they aren’t, I have a huge stash of napkins, they are cheap as chips in the op-shops hence I always buy them and usually they are un-used because people keep them for best…if you can’t possibly stand the thought of more things to wash (though really I throw mine in the machine it’s not stressy) then a good quality paper napkin goes a long way folded on your Christmas table…

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5. dressing it up – keep it simple and easy, one main centrepiece works well at this time of year and can easily be moved once the food comes out…when tablescaping on big occasions such as this one it’s quick and fuss-free to ‘dress’ the plate or plate area – a bauble in the wine glass, here I used a shell Christmas dec on each plate and a sprig of rosemary, ribbon or tinsel (don’t shudder I love a well placed string of Christmas sparkle) around a napkin, in fact spending a small amount of time on the napkin works wonders, plus you can get that done now, store them somewhere they won’t get fiddled with by kidlets and easily place them on the table on the day.

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6. think about doing the table the night before or even a few days before if you have the space to, luckily I do, we have two dining tables, one here and one on the deck, so I will usually start the table laying a day or so before – I have read that once it’s done you should cover it with a sheet or something similar for dust and stuff, to be honest I’ve never bothered with that, I mean a day or so of dust won’t kill anyone I don’t think.

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So that’s it for today’s Love Your Christmas table, I am hoping that you’ll foof it up ladies of beach cottage land.

Sarah x

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8 Responses to “Love Your Christmas Home Day 15 The Festive Table”

  1. Neen says:

    Hardware shop drop sheet, (plastic backing removed, perhaps not on xmas eve as I did) is the PERFECT linen-look table cloth !!! Rosemary might just get a look-in too this year. Great, simple affordable table foofing ideas thank-you Sarah. ;) Neen

  2. Aide says:

    I love that door it’s beautiful Sarah great fine I been looking around for an old door but no luck.

  3. kerrie says:

    So pretty. I love the neutrals and simplicity.

  4. Annie M says:

    Hi Sarah, I’m really enjoying your little series ‘ love your holiday home’ and I am so pleased I can go back and read any posts I have missed as I don’t always manage to find time to read it on the day it is posted. However I am a bit miffed that since your new look blog, I can no longer find a way to scroll back in sequence and catch up on posts I have missed. Is this just me or a problem reading on my IPad? I have always read your blog on my IPad and had no problem before…in fact when I first discovered A beach cottage, I had the pleasure of starting right at the beginning and reading through to the date at the time and loved it….a whole new world opened up for me….just like a book about all my favourite things! Hope you can help as I love, love, love your blog and would hate to miss anything…Annie x

    • Vicki says:

      Hi, Annie,
      If you go to the home page and go to the link for “Christmas Home Day 1″ (top right of page), you will find a link in that day’s column for signing up for a daily email. Then you get each Christmas home post delivered directly to your inbox. That’s how I’ve been keeping up!

  5. hrh Sarah says:

    love your table this year, Sarah! mine is woefully undressed, but you’ve inspired me to put something pretty in place, even if no one is going to see it but me ;)

  6. merilyn says:

    I personally always like things understated and rustic!
    this fits the bill … “simples” and the feeling is relaxed and uncluttered!
    everything else in place and foofed with food on the table … ‘bobs your uncle!’
    lol m:)x

  7. Vicki says:

    Another entry for my “why I can’t have nice things” list:
    Inspired by Sarah, I put a tablecloth on the dining table, foofed it with holiday china, and added a centerpiece consisting of a few thrift shop sprigs of red faux grapes and greenery around a sweet little lamp.
    Apparently my cats think it’s sweet, too. They had never noticed that we had a dining table… until the footing was finished. I caught two of them enjoying a nap, curled up on the soft tablecloth underneath the warm glow of the bulb. Now my tablescape requires supervision, if I want to enjoy the lamplight. :(