After years of watching Downton Abbey, one would think we were all masters of table setting via visual osmosis. However, we all need a refresher in the proper way to set a table. Our handy infographic will easily guide you in the nuances of what goes where in an informal setting.
Now that you are familiar with the basics of table setting, remember that every gathering is unique in its own way. Guests may be added at the last minute making your table feel a bit smaller than you had originally planned, or you simply have a creative itch to mix and match your dishes with your grandmother’s china.
The bottom line is, it’s a good idea to reference the infographic for proper placement, but do be sure to add your own touches as a host or hostess to make the time spent at your table a memorable one.
Here are 10 things to keep in mind when arranging a place setting:
#1 – Forks are always to the left.
#2 – Knife blades should face the plate.
#3 – Dessert spoons and/or forks enter the room when dessert is served.
#4 – Edit down (and keep it simple) for large parties in regards to centerpieces. Less is more. It’s nice not having to play peek-a-boo with the guest across from you. Juliska’s Cofounder & Creative Director, Capucine De Wulf Gooding, talks below about “thinking outside the pot” and using everyday vessels for florals.
#5 – Glasses: start with your water glass just above the knife and proceed with a wine glass. If you are serving both red and white, arrange the stemware in the order in which the wine is being served.
#6 – After the meal, all dirty plates must leave the table. Wine glasses should stay, in addition to wine coasters.
#7 – A comfortable sized space for a person to sit and enjoy his/her meal is 21 inches.
#8 – Don’t be afraid to mix and match patterns and colors. Need some ideas on how to vary from the original template? Juliska, a leader in stylish and creative entertaining, is FULL of inspiration!
#9 – Don’t forget about your “lefties.” Seat a left-handed person in the corner for consideration so his/her elbows aren’t doing the tango with other guests.
#10 – If your table is tight, it is acceptable to place your napkin under the forks to tighten up your presentation.
While there is no need to get stuffy when it comes to setting a table, there is something to be said for appropriate placement so your guests can easily transition from course to course. We hope our easy infographic and place setting tips will help make your next event a success!
Need some in-person inspiration? Past Basket is known for our “live” table settings where we can mix, match, and propose ideas for your special events or everyday use. Bring in those keepsakes and we can help you seamlessly blend them with some new pieces to enhance your table.