Jenny’s Tips: Styling your dinner table for a cosy Christmas!

Jenny Blanc Blog - Handmade Wreath
Above: A handmade wreath featuring oak leaves, ivy and beautiful chiffon ribbon sets the scene and invites guests to cross the threshold to Jenny’s beautiful cottage at Christmas time.
Jenny Blanc Blog - Jenny Blanc Picture
Jenny Blanc

When it comes to table settings, Christmas is a time to pull out all the stops and create a sense of occasion with candles, flowers, small table gifts, seasonal napkins with beautiful napkin rings and – if you are lucky enough to have them – your antique glassware and best china.
Inspired by the beautiful Christmas window at our London showroom which features a festive dining table, today I’m pleased to share with you some thoughts on table settings that you can easily put into practice at home using items you are likely to already own! As is so often the case with interiors, the key is to build up layers – a small candle or sequinned place mat might not look like much on its own but when combined these touches can really elevate your dinner table into something magical!

Jenny Blanc Blog - Cut Glass Stemware and Jennys Finished Christmas Table
Above left: Cut glass stemware with a touch of cranberry harmonises with the rest of the colour scheme. Above right: Jenny’s finished Christmas table looks both relaxed and inviting.

Tea lights in beautiful glass holders are essential to create a sense of wellbeing and warmth. Aim to create a soft, golden glow to dispel the greys and blues outside and watch as the tiny, flickering lights are reflected in the glasses, sequins and silver that make up your table decoration, bringing the whole scene to life.

Scented candles are another important part of your festive lighting scheme as they not only add beautiful ambient light but their fragrance will complement the decoration with hints of spice and citrus.

Jenny Blanc Blog - Antique Cranberry Glassware with Decanter
Above: Jenny’s collection of antique cranberry glassware includes this beautiful decanter which catches the light wonderfully and harmonises with all the colours of the season.

Antique glassware such as my collection of cranberry glass (including the beautiful decanter pictured above) really comes into its own at Christmas time where it creates a wonderful sense of occasion and ceremony. Now is the time to pull out your most special glasses and pieces of china and really relish the beauty they bring to your table.

Fresh flowers are often in short supply at this time of year – resist the temptation to buy something straight from the hot house at your local florist and look to the British countryside for inspiration. Greenery such as laurel leaves, ivy and of course holly can all be used to create a natural looking display. Even plants that you might usually think of as ‘weeds’ such as seed heads can look beautiful as part of a display on the Christmas table. I personally think that a slightly rustic and natural looking floral display is the perfect counterpoint to a glamorous and beautifully laid table.

Jenny Blanc Blog - Floral Display with Candle and Antique China Place Setting
Above left: A relaxed and informal floral display topped with simple, white dinner candle creates a soft glow. Above right: A place setting featuring a collection of antique china creates a sense of anticipation.

Layer your place settings by using a charger followed by an antique china plate and soup bowl to really make an impact. I always top each place setting with an individual present – a beautiful votive or bauble for the adults and a small wrapped gift for children is always well received, especially if the children’s gift contains an activity such as a magic trick to learn or a joke book to keep them entertained!

I hope I have given you some ideas for ways to create a dining table your friends and family will remember this year! My most important tip of all though is to relax and enjoy yourself – as soon as the guests are seated, take time to look around you and savour the moment. The hard work will be (mostly) done and after all, you’ll have plenty of helping hands should you need them!

Jenny Blanc Blog - Red Silver Votives with Cocktail Napkins and Glass Votives with Beaded Table Runner
Above left: Red and silver votives, embroidered Christmas cocktail napkins and our handmade ornamental Christmas crackers. Above right: Glass votives, beaded table runner and napkins with jewelled napkin rings. All currently available at our London showroom.
Jenny Blanc Blog - Silvered Glass Bud Vase with Jewelled Linen Napkin and Napkin Ring
Above: A silvered glass bud vase and a jewelled linen napkin and napkin ring make a beautiful place setting.
Jenny Blanc Blog - Christmas Window at Jenny Blanc London Showroom
Above: The Christmas window at the Jenny Blanc London showroom.

Our London and Barbados showrooms are both full of beautiful items with which to dress your table at every price range – we look forward to welcoming you in the run up to Christmas! To help ease the stress of the inevitable last minute preparations, our London showroom will be open until 7pm on Thursdays and on Sundays 11.00am – 5.00pm.

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