Fun with Setting the Table

Our dining table is not too big – six people will fit without much room to spare – so I’m always looking for ways to keep table settings simple but fun, without too much “stuff” in the way.  I typically use placemats, so this time decided to depart from that habit and go with simple white linen napkins and silverware directly on the table.  The people at Room and Board told us that it would be ok to put glasses directly on the table, etc.  I was a little worried, but went for it and the table was fine.  It was nice being able to see the wood.


I set out stemmed wine glasses for the wine and then my husband had the brilliant idea of using our stemless wine glasses for water glasses, instead of our big clunky drinking glasses. He’s not too happy that I’ve started calling him “Martha.”  When dinner rolled around I just put open bottles of cold Pellegrino on each end of the table for pouring into the water glasses.


As far as flowers, my goal is usually to add some color to the table without obstructing people’s view.  These little golden-orange spray roses caught my eye at the grocery store — they were a nice fall color.  Spray roses can be unruly.  To deal with this, I cut them off the large stems so the slender stems of the individual blooms were about the same length and then bunched them into bouquets.  I tied the bunches together with a thin piece of silver ribbon, trimmed the ends of the stems a little more and put them in more stemless wine glasses with water.


Using tall candlesticks helped add some visual interest since most of the rest of the items on the table were short.  These old candlesticks are slender and didn’t take up too much room.  I found them at an antique store in Alexandria, VA.  It’s nice to add something old to the mix so everything is not sparkling new.  This whole set-up worked out pretty well.  There was room for bread and butter on the table and people seemed to have enough breathing room without table clutter getting in their way.

1 Response to “Fun with Setting the Table”

  1. November 11, 2008 at 1:33 am

    Nice table setting, I’ll impress my friends next time with your suggestions.

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