The entertaining season is upon us!
As we fast approach the end of the year, the social calendar overflows with lunches and gatherings to catch up with friends and family. Who's hosting the get together? Some feel a heightened level of anxiety at the suggestion of hosting - what to cook, how to dress the table, what do I present the food on… No need to stress, here’s our quick tips on getting your entertaining table ready for some seriously great catching up.
Tip 1 - Think of an overall theme. It’s good to have a theme in mind when preparing the menu and dressing the table, this will captivate and energise your guests. Choose a theme that represents your interest or suits your location. For us, we live on the water so our go-to theme is always coastal. Think blue coastal colours, relaxed vibe and seafood. Nothing too rigid, lots of texture and flowing fabric to set the scene.
Tip 2 - Select your dinnerware. Think about how many guests are coming and also the food you’ll be serving - Will you need centre plates, bowls or oversized dinner plates. Once you work out what dinnerware you’ll need for each course, you can then dive into your cupboards to pull together the perfect set. Always try to use what you have at home, or borrow any extras needed from friends or neighbours.
Tip 3 - Organisation is the key (and outsourcing is not frowned upon!)
Pull out your dinnerware, napkins and place settings prior to the day of your event, this will allow you to clean any plates that may have a stain or to wash linen that needs a freshen up. It will also allow you to pin point any items you may be short of.
Plan your menu, keep it simple, prep as much as you can the day before - that way you will have less to do when your guests arrive and you can spend the time relaxing and catching up. When all else fails and you are just too overwhelmed with cooking - call for take-out! Your guests are coming over to enjoy your company, they won’t judge!
Tip 4 - Linen
Don’t underestimate the power of linen. A linen table covering adds a level of sophistication to any sit-down meal.
Layer up your linen. You can go for a contrasting look between your table covering and the napkin to add another layer of interest. Or stick with the same coloured linen and add extra interest with contracting ceramic dinnerware.
Tip 5 - Fresh Flowers
Always have gorgeous fresh blooms in the centre of the table. Keep in mind your overall theme and select flowers that fit within that.
Tip 6 - Comfort
Always ensure your guests have a comfortable place to sit. The more comfortable your guests are at the table the longer they will remain seated and enjoy the great conversation. If you are limited by your available seating, add cushions! Cushions not only provide comfort for a stiff-backed chair or a hard base, they also add a pop of colour and add another feature to your theme.
Tip 7 - Refreshments
Keep your guests hydrated. Always offer a drink on arrival and ensure you have the glassware table ready. If you are serving alcohol at your gathering, be sure to provide both water glasses and wine glasses on the table.
Sit back, have a drink and relax - enjoy your catch up with friends and family!
* Don't feel like you have to do it all yourself. Take-out is your friend when entertaining.
* Make a game plan and write it out.
* Hire help! There are lots of easy ways to source staffing to help make your event easier.