The holidays are without exceptions, a very stressful and overwhelming time for all of us. Planning for the holiday festivities is one of those things that we tend to leave to the last minute.
To most of us the holidays are synonymous with family, friends and food, lots of food! Not only eating said food, but cooking, baking, preparing and presenting it. If you happen to be the designated entertainer this year and you are not Martha Stewart, setting a table and making it look the part can be pretty daunting.
We wanted to share a few of our best tips to help you breeze right through the holiday entertaining and maybe even impress a few of your loved ones.
Using native plants to create centrepieces or decorations is a very clever way of creating a unique, festive look when you have limited time and/or resources. Grab some branches from your backyard or local park or get some from your nearest florist. Bunch up branches and tie them together with decorative string to create a centrepiece, place smaller twigs in small vases or vials along the table or attach a few leaves and sprigs to a name tag or place setting.
Using fresh herbs is another great way to decorate your table and it makes the room smell lovely. Some Rosemary sprigs are perfect to place on or near each plate or attached to a place card.
If you are going for a more dramatic look, hanging a larger branch above your table or placing branches in a large vase and decorating it with baubles and other decorations is a great way of bringing your Christmas tree to the table.
Make each table setting personal by attaching a hand written name tag or place card. If you want to go to that extra length, baking (or buying) cookies and writing on them with icing for each place setting will surely impress your guests.
If you want to keep it a bit more simple, attach some fresh herbs or cinnamon sticks to add something special to each plate. Tie it all together with some decorative jute string or for a more festive look use some coloured or metallic string.
Investing in some good quality table linen is a great option to paper napkins and other disposable items. Less waste, many more uses and they look and feel so much better than your average paper napkin, plus they only get softer over time.
Don't be afraid to layer different colours and textures, using placemats does not have to exclude a table cloth or vice versa.
When it comes to tableware, keep it simple and stock up on good staples. Mixing different colours and styles makes for a great table setting, so don't worry if your dessert and dinner plates don't match.
We love Elph Store, they create beautiful handmade ceramic pieces. Every piece is unique in its own way, tiny imperfections making each individual piece more beautiful.
Food is often the most time consuming part of hosting any kind of party, but it really doesn't have to be.
Buying pre-made food is a clever shortcut that can save you a lot of time, time that you can spend with your loved ones instead, or time you can spend eating all that delicious food.. Pre-made food doesn't have to be that sad fruit cake from your local supermarket or appetizers from the freezer aisle.
Even if you purchase a pre-cooked ham doesn't mean you can't glaze it yourself, or if you get cold cuts from the deli spend some extra time decorating your cheese board or charcuterie platter with some fresh fruit and vegetables. Small, simple steps will go a long way.