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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Traditional Tabletop Ideas


I adore a well dressed Christmas tabletop. I imagine that people have been dressing their tables for this festive occasion for centuries. This Victorian era table made me smile.


I have been collecting images to inspire my own holiday table and I thought I would share a few of my favorite ideas and how you can recreate them in your own home.


The table below not only could be recreated as a low cost alternative, but most of the elements can be found at any supermarket~ baby’s breath, fruit, bread and wine. I would probably nestle a lovely red ornament within the nest of baby’s breath.


A few cream colored candles and a walk through a wooded area to collect a few pine cones and branches and you could easily recreate the following stunning looks. 


I love the glass containers filled with pinecones surrounded by faux snow.


The addition of red napkins to an otherwise neutral palette of pine and cream is festive punch of color.


Here is another neutral table with a cheery pop of green placemats.


Any of the four above tabletops would look lovely with name cards made from twigs ala Martha Stewart or perhaps try cinnamon sticks for a heavenly scented table.


For a traditional country look try a red and white gingham runner, simple white candles, and a few sprigs of holly.

Many people choose a table laid out buffet style as it works well.  Although the image below is a small space, I adore how the mantle is integrated into the overall feel of the buffet by the addition of large silver platters.


Pewter, glass and the sheerest of tablecloths showcase this design. You could create a similar look with an inexpensive sheer curtain.


Even if you live in a one room apartment, you can create a luscious tablescape on a coffee table.


Though buffet style tables are generally more relaxed in feel, they can still be festive. This pyramid of rolled napkins showcases this idea beautifully.


Love truly lives in the details and you can personalize your space with the addition of a lovely centerpiece.

Ever simple, ever stunning.


The everyday chandelier gets dressed for the season in a style reminiscent of a advent wreath.

Any glass jar can be elevated with a design etched onto the glass. Etching supplies are available at most craft and hobby stores.


I often dress the backs of my chairs. Here are a few of my favorite ideas.


Simply sweet stockings.


Grandma Jingles just sent me a small box filled with antique Christmas post cards. I might recreate this look with a scalloped cardboard cake board, ribbon and photocopied images of her precious gems.


I generally save holiday crackers for my New Years Eve table, but they are truly a happy touch.



For many people the idea of having to sit at the children’s table is horrendous. I myself would be happy to sit in any one of these sweet seats. Of course I do “pine” for my very own Ghost Chair.  Ba da bump.


Since I had such an enthusiastic response for for my non traditional Thanksgiving table, next Wednesday I will be showcasing Christmas tabletops that include, brown, purple and other outrageous palettes.

Do you favor a more traditional look for your table?


For tabletop looks using vintage and antique linens please visit the Metis Linens blog.

Linking to:

Between Naps on the Porch


Red Door Home said...

So many different styles and color combinations, yet each one is pretty!

Willow Decor said...

Beautiful tablescapes and great ideas. Looking forward to using some of these ideas for the Holidays!

jeanette from everton terrace said...

First, thank you for including some buffet ideas as well. I'm having a gathering soon and it's going to be buffet style, haven't decided on the design yet (or the menu - yikes). Second, I seem to like it all, the traditional and the non so bring it on.

Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

Ohhhhhhhhh these are all GORGEOUS Laura!!! Love them! :):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):)

April said...

They are all so lovely, but the red and white farm table with the gingham made my heart beat just a little faster--
makes me want to paint all my walls white and slipcover everything.
Of course that could just be the profound urge for SOMETHING to be simple this time of year.
Looking forward to your nontraditional tablescapes! :)

Jennifer said...

Beautiful inspiration pictures! I think a well-dressed dining table just completes the holidays. For the most part I stick to fairly traditional colors and settings. There is just something about red and green for the holidays that makes everything all right with the world. I love all of the different elements each table incorporates from nature to things you already have in your home.

I hope your holidays are off to a grand beginning!

French said...

Oh so many great ideas, Laura. I love the coffee table setup, the rolled napkins, the red ribbons on the chair backs....on and on. Longer note to you later this morning.

Karena said...

Laura all so beautiful. Adore the one with the purple bench and fire going in the fireplace.

Art by Karena

Lorrie said...

Now this isn't fair, Laura. We have to choose between all these beautiful tables? I love them all! Maybe I'll just have to have multiple dinners - or not! Thanks for sharing.

Privet and Holly said...

What a gorgeous
array of ideas!
I like serving
buffet-style in
order to have
a roomier table
for dining but
I do appreciate
the formal looks,
too! The rolled
napkins for the
buffet are going
in my idea file.
Thanks for such
an idea-packed
post, Laura!
xx Suzanne

Red Couch Recipes said...

Thank you for such a jam-packed post of ideas. I even made a note and am bookmarking this post. Thanks. Joni

Deanna said...

Dear Laura,
This is a sweet post!
Really like the red ribbon tied around the chairs with pine cones and greenery.
Would probably mimic this one!

God bless,
d from homehaven

Tales From My Empty Nest said...

Beautiful pictures, Laura and such great ideas. Thanks for sharing. Love & blessings from NC!

debbies said...

Ooooh so many stunning tables. Off to grab a cup of coffee so I can come back and check out every single detail.

we three dogs and me said...

Realy enjoyed your many ideas. Can't wait to use some of your ideas. Thank you forposting them.

Beansieleigh said...

Oh Laura, for an amateur like myself, I do SO-ooo appreciate the many wonderful ideas you share, so that I too can have a beautiful Christmas table for my family! Thank you! Wishing you blessings, and lots of holiday fun in the days ahead! ~tina

Anita said...

Those are beautiful ideas!! I love the placecards tucked into branches. I will definitely have to try that idea! Thanks so much for stopping by!! I hope you are having a wonderful season!!

Mica said...

Laura these photos are it hard to pick which I like best...I am drawn to the ones with the reds of course..thank you for sharing and dropping in for a wee visit...may God bless you Cristmas and New Year...Blessings, Mica/The Child's Paper

Entertaining Women said...

An incredible buffet of tablescape ideas for the holidays. Thank you for sharing these wonderful designs and for stopping by my post. Come visit any time. Cherry Kay

Janie's World said...

Wow! What great inspiration. Not only were the tables great, but the rooms were as well. Thanks for sharing!

Cindy Rippe said...

Great ideas. Thanks for sharing!

xinex said...

There is so much inspiration in this post, Laura. Everything is so beautiful...Christine

Shirley said...

So many spectacular ideas here! Thank you.

Debbie said...

I love the decorated chairs, and hope to do something similar one day. Many nice tablescape ideas for the holidays! Thank you for showing us this wonderful collection and for stopping by my post. Debbie

Mid-Atlantic Martha said...

Loved this tour of tables! Lots of inspirations here.

timbuck2mom said...

I probably favor a more traditional look but I think I would be willing to try something new, too.

I really enjoyed seeing all the different table settings and decor. Those name cards from Martha Stewart are so cute. If I can get the time, I may try and make some. I have company coming in Tuesday so I'm not sure...

Treasuring the