5 Tips for Dressing a Holiday Table

Wow your guests with these table-decorating tips.


Tinsel, garland, holly—you go all out when it comes to sprucing up your abode during the holidays (and we're not talking about just the spruce tree).


But if the feast is really the main course of the Yuletide season, why not put all your decorating Christmas cards on the table with a really decked-out dinner party? We know, we know—one more thing added to your to-do list, and you're going to need a crew of reindeer to help you get those errands done. Don't worry, you won't have to go the course alone. We tapped the flower, design and décor experts at Passion Roots to show us how they gave their own tablescape an extra special dose of flair that you can recreate at home.   


Things are about to get pretty festive up in here.


Photos by Ashley Goodwin.



First, start with the basics


Think of your dining table, buffet table or entryway table as a base to build upon. Consider different textures, heights and material to layer on top of that base. Your décor can be merry and festive while also being in line with your everyday design aesthetic.


Then, incorporate traditional holiday findings


Use extra sprigs of fresh pine branches from your own tree for a seasonal touch. You don't need a lot. Your local garden center or grocery store will most likely have fresh pine branches as well. Use the branches and other pieces of foliage as your table runner, or tuck a few sprigs around each guest's plate. Cluster groups of pinecones on your table and pop one on top of each guest's setting. You can also use Christmas ball ornaments in the same way.


Add candlelight


Use lots of candles and candleholders, and don't be concerned with matching. You can mix metals and glassware, and sizes and heights. The more the merrier when it comes to a holiday table filled with candlelight. Scour your local second-hand or home-goods store for pieces that you can use year-round.


Make each place setting special 


Add layers of plates for drama, and consider mixing and matching if you don't have a full set. We love including pieces of chiffon fabric around each plate tied off with sparkly ribbon to make each setting extra special. Whether you use fabric or paper napkins, a little sprig of pine secured with a ribbon is a fun touch.


And finally, incorporate fresh flowers


Arrangements don't have to be big to have a big impact. If you're creating your own arrangement, start with a base of pine and then get creative. We're always fans of foraging in your own backyard or neighborhood for foliage. And don't limit yourself to red and green: This table setting has ivory, white and fuscia blooms. Think of the overall color scheme of your room and table décor, then choose flowers that will complement those colors.

Vases can be created out of virtually anything that can hold water—this table has a glass pedestal, but you can use a fruit bowl, a vintage tin or a simple glass vase wrapped in fabric or ribbon. Again, your local thrift store and home-goods stores are filled with treasures that can be used to hold flowers.