Do you want to set a festive holiday table for your friends and family, but don’t have a lot of money to spend? Here are some tips for setting a festive holiday table, and these tips will fit right into your budget:
Fill the table. You might think that a table with lots of room is what your guests desire, but likely not. When you have a picture-perfect table, it makes your guests feel that they have to be picture-perfect guests and pretense always takes away from the holiday festivities. So, put all the food in the center of the table, neatly arranged into a vision of abundance, and place the plates around the food. Let your guests all crowd together to share in the good fortune of the holiday.
Mix and match. Are you one to toss out (or put away) a set of dishes because you no longer have a complete set? Why does all your tableware have to match? Why not find some pretty, but unusual plates at garage sales and second hand shops and then use them for your holiday table setting. If you use a solid-colored tablecloth and solid-colored napkins, the plate variety will work much like mixed ornaments do on a Christmas tree.
The plate variety will give your table a festive holiday touch. Plus, the plate variety will also serve as a conversation starter, even with the men. You might hear stories of old times (remember when), or you might hear discussions over market value for such prized pieces of tableware. Even better, you get to display your taste by showing off the plates that you liked enough to buy. The best point is that you get to stay within your budget.
Deliver the country touch. Every table needs a touch of country to help mellow the guests, so make your guests feel comfortable enough to reach across the table by serving up tea (or other beverage) in Mason jars. Your guests’ drinks will stay cold, and the Mason jars will send the message that your guests are at home. Even better, Mason jars hold a lot of liquid, which means that you will have less drink refilling to do.
Serve an oddball. You likely have certain foods that you serve at certain holidays (like Thanksgiving and Christmas), and staying with tradition is a good thing. Still, you can make your holiday table more festive by serving one or two holiday foods that is specific to another culture. For instance, Chinese Dumplings are a traditional food for Chinese New Year, so why not serve some of these? Serving a different holiday food (along with your traditional holiday food) invites your guests into a new culture and can also serve as a conversation starter.
*Abundance and warmth overrides perfection.