Decorating a beautiful, anxiety-free table

This time of year always comes with an excitement – a dream to have the best Christmas ever. And so those “helpful” reminders hit our mailbox, inbox, and Pinterest feeds from marketers hoping we will buy, buy, buy to create a home atmosphere to remember. But sometimes with that excitement comes pressure and potential anxiety as we strive to make our dreams a reality.

This year, what if put our focus elsewhere? What if we put our focus on making things easy by using what we have and save hours shopping for the “perfect” or “in” decorations to impress guests? Instead, let’s focus on using the beautiful pieces we already have on hand and may have forgotten currently available in our cabinets. Let’s share those with our guests.

Why? So, maybe the conversations around the table can shift this year. Instead of …That bowl is so pretty, where did you buy it, we can move toward That bowl is amazing; is it a family heirloom? That can lead to shared memories: Oh, I remember a china pattern like that from Aunt Sandy’s house. Maybe meaningful conversation can start up as you all gather together, sharing stories of precious holidays before…or hopes of this holiday season, and even dreams of ones to come?

Don’t get me wrong, a beautiful table makes people feel cared for, but nothing takes the place of meaningful conversation shared between family and friends. This is where the real magic of Christmas can be found – in conversation around a table, not in a trend of dishes. Let’s make a plan on where to start:

  1. Use your current plates as inspiration and build festive decorations around them. Look closely at the pattern, color, and texture. What stands out?  What is the main thing you want your guests to notice? What complimentary color could accent your tablescape so the attention remains on your plates?
  2. Strategic lighting always improves the atmosphere and adds a special warmth to the room. What lighting can you add on or around the table with candles, fairy lights, or string lights? What candlestick holders, glass jars, hurricanes, flower vases do you already have on hand? Can you find white or that special color from your plates tucked into a drawer that can be used this season?
  3. Natural elements. Your yard could be the perfect place to shop for adding live greens to your table rather than heading out to buy them. Treasures like pine bows, boxwood sprigs, holly stems, fall leaves, pine cones, and acorns all bring natural elements and interest to a table. Choose what you feel mataches the theme and design of your plates.  This becomes the backdrop to your Christmas table centerpiece.

Now that you’ve got a base inventory, let’s consider a few inexpensive, easy supplements.

  1. Do your plates call for red accents? How about lining the bottom of your chosen glass container with some fresh cranberries from the grocery store. Save an extra trip by picking them up at the same time as your Christmas grocery shopping day.
  2. Do your plates call for gold or silver accents? After layering greenery on the table, sprinkle ornaments on the greenery. Or, if preferred, place ornaments in your chosen glass container for display and enjoyment.
  3. None of these fit? Try simple candlestick holders of different shapes and sizes layered with the greenery as your centerpiece.

Put it all together.

  1. Start with your cut greenery by arranging them evenly along the center of your table.
  2. Then, add your candlesticks or chosen glass containers evently.
  3. Now you can dispurse your accents among the greens.

Many blessings to you and your family for a warm and happy holiday,  Jeannie

Jeannie Morris, Lead Designer
Transforming Spaces, LLC

  • January 16, 2019