Today I'm sharing with you my table "must-haves." I'm going to work my way from table surface up.... but I want to preface this with a note about table cloths. I, personally, stopped using table cloths several years ago as I really enjoy seeing the table itself. My table was hand made by my father who passed away in 2018 and it's truly special to me. I don't want to cover it up. But you may want to use on to add protection from spills or maybe you just don't care for the look of your table. It's a personal preference!1. Table runner.
If you follow me on social media or saw me on Pittsburgh Today Live back in November, you know how I am keen on lightweight runners that are soft and can easily be fluffed or ruffled. I've been known to use lightweight blankets or scarves found in the Target Dollar Spot. The one shown here is from Amazon and is super long (so works for lots of table sizes) but I tied loose knots at each end to shorten it up to the length I liked. Fluffing the runner up is another way I add a layered feel.2. Woven placemats.
A nice neutral woven placemat, like these from Walmart work season after season. They add texture and a tiny bit of height. In my opinion, layers are the key to bringing a table to life and these placemats get that party started. They form the base around the table runner. You can find nice placemats at places like Homegoods and Target as well and are relatively inexpensive.3. A good set of neutral dinnerware.
I am absolutely still in love with my dinnerware set by The Pioneer Woman Collection that I got at Walmart a few years ago. I love the details of all of her dinnerware but this off white set was such a great investment for us as I use it so much! Sometimes I even mix and match - so if I have a few pieces in a different color, I will mix with neutral (i.e. the off white dinner plate coupled with a red salad plate). Your dinnerware does not all have to match! Or, you can even alternate between place settings.
3. Casual goblets.
The ones on this Valentine table are light pink and I only have six, but I do have another set of plain glass goblets that work well for casual or they can be worked in to a fancier setting. You can even find goblets like this at the Dollar Tree!4. A matching set of silverware.
You would think this goes without saying, but it kind of ties all together. I have never used gold before but this set is from my husband for Christmas and I am excited to use it!
5. Accessories (the icing on the cake)!
This is where you can really dig in and have some fun. One time, I put a Rae Dunn mug on everyone's dinner plate and the napkin inside. You can use a little burlap sack to hold some small flowers or greens or even the silverware. What about these adorable little easels I found once in the Target Dollar Spot bins for name tags. The sky is the limit! Every table can be unique and beautiful in it's own way. Perhaps you have some sentimental china handed down from your family or given to you for your wedding. If it's got a lot of pattern, you can tone it down with the other items.
Play with heights as well. Use fresh or faux stems as a centerpiece in a pretty vase, or tuck them into a cute rustic toolbox. On this particular table, I overlapped the little trays on top of which I could add some flowers I had that I used to use for staging photographs when I did custom signs. And, guess what? You can even "borrow" from other areas of your home! Just have fun with it! How cute are our little mini blocks on this riser?
6. Texture, texture, texture...
Take a look at everything you have on your table. Do you have a mix of shiny and soft? Wood tones mixed with greens? Woven with smooth? What works best for me is if I pick two or three tones and try to stick to those. For this table, I stuck with the lighter wood and woven tones (except for the table itself), pale pink and soft white. I really wanted the heart plates to have a pink border (rather than red) but since there was very little of it, it didn't keep me up at night. The pale pink chargers can also work for Spring and Easter or even Summer.
I have so much fun fooling with my table for the seasons! Let me know what your favorite part of this table is or if you love to decorate your table, too!