When it comes to hosting a memorable party, attention to detail is key, and one of the most important aspects of party planning is setting up the party table. A well-arranged table not only enhances the overall aesthetic but also sets the tone for the event.
Whether you’re organising an intimate dinner or a grand celebration, we’ve covered you with our insider tips and tricks to help you create the perfect party table setting that will leave your guests in awe.
Start With A Theme Or Concept
Every great party begins with a theme or concept that guides the decor and table setting. Whether it’s themed around a holiday, historical period, or character, or you simply want to keep it classy, you will want to choose a theme that suits the occasion and your personal style.
The theme will dictate everything from the colour schemes to tableware choices, so make sure you love it!
Select The Right Tableware
Choosing the right tableware is crucial for achieving the desired look and feel. Select plates, bowls, and utensils that match the theme and formality of your event. For casual gatherings, colourful and patterned paper plates can add vibrancy, while fine china or porcelain dinner sets are perfect for more formal affairs.
Offer an assortment of glasses for different beverages, including water, juice, mocktails, and hot drinks. If you’re opting for party plates, make sure you pick up the party cups in the matching design to keep everything cohesive.
Don’t forget the serving utensils if you’re serving family-style or buffet-style.
Tablecloths and Runners Matter
A tablecloth is the canvas for your table setting. Choose a colour and fabric that suits your theme. For a rustic look, consider burlap or cotton, while silk or satin tablecloths can lend a touch of luxury. Although if you have children or messy food on offer, a wipeable tablecloth may be the best option to keep your table looking pristine throughout the party.
Table runners can add depth and visual interest to your table. They can match or contrast with your tablecloth, depending on your design preference. We personally love when they added a pop of colour that matches the party plates and other decorations.
Don’t forget the small details. You can fold napkins creatively into different shapes to impress your guests or use napkin rings that match your theme. Placing napkins in glasses or tying them with ribbon can add an elegant touch to sit-down dinners.
Centrepieces That Wow
The centrepiece is the focal point of your table so make it stand out!
Fresh flowers in a vase or a series of bud vases can bring life to the table and are considered a stable centrepiece option for any occasion. Choose flowers that match your colour scheme and theme to ensure your party table looks cohesive.
Candles will create a warm and inviting atmosphere that you’d expect when celebrating. You can use candle holders that match your decor and consider scented candles for an extra sensory element.
Why not get creative with non-floral centrepieces? Create fruit arrangements, succulent gardens or personalised themed decor items to display on your party table.
Place Settings & Seating Arrangement
Properly setting the places at your table is essential for a well-organised event, however, this is only necessary for a more formal sit-down meal. Use place cards to guide guests to their seats. They can be simple or elaborate depending on your style.
When creating the seating plan think about the dynamics of your guest list, consider group dynamics and seat guests strategically to encourage conversation.
Attention to details
Small details can make a huge difference in your table setting, such as small decorative accents like confetti or themed ornaments sprinkled on the table for an added touch of fun.
If you’re serving a special menu, you can go all out and create menu cards that match your theme and place one at each setting – this will add a touch of luxury to any dinner party.
If you want to make your guests feel as though they are at a 5-star restaurant you could even follow proper placing of cutlery. Traditional party etiquette for placing flatware would be to position forks on the left, and knives and spoons on the right., with glasses on the upper right, above the knives.
Lighting & Ambiance
Don’t underestimate the power of lighting, it can transform your room and create the atmosphere you desire.
Soft candlelight can create a romantic and cosy atmosphere. You can buy electric candles so you don’t have to worry about candle wax or fire hazards during your party. For some additional colour use stained glass or paper lanterns, simply place your candles inside and watch them glow – you should opt for an electric candle for this though!
The addition of fairy lights can also add another layer of lighting and act as a decorative item if you want to keep the main lights on during your dinner.
Lastly, consider practical elements to ensure your guest’s comfort. You’ll want to provide comfortable seating ensure the table height is suitable for dining and leave enough space between settings to allow guests to eat comfortably and have conversations without feeling cramped.
Place condiments and serving dishes within easy reach of guests so they can help themselves as and when they need to. Consider having a few sporadically placed if your table is on the longer side so that they are both visible and accessible to everyone.
With these tips and tricks, you’ll be well on your way to creating a stunning and inviting party table setting that sets the stage for an unforgettable event. Remember that personalisation is key, so let your creativity shine as you design a table that reflects your style and the theme of your celebration.