Setting a holiday dinner table


gravy boat, holiday tableware, table setting for dinner

Gearing up to host Thanksgiving dinner or getting ready early for your Chrismahanukwanzakah celebration? For both, I tend to spend a lot of time between the kitchen and the dining room, trying to get it ready for my massively hungry family. I’ve found that there are a few things you want to keep in mind when getting your table ready for such a large holiday event.

Make it festive

I love decorating my home for the holidays! There are so many different decorations out there, that you can style the inside and outside of your place exactly how you want it. Since you’ll be spending a lot of time with your family around the dinner table, I’d recommend starting with some nice holiday tableware. My dinnerware set is white porcelain, with a simple red band, because it’s a classic looks for Thanksgiving and the following holidays. But there are certainly other sets that are made specifically for the holiday you’re decorating for.

Table setting for dinner

Last year my cousin (who works as a waiter) sat down at the table, looked at his plate and said, “That’s an interesting way to set the table.” Apparently, there’s the proper way to set a table and there’s the way I did it. This year, I’ve done some reading, and here’s a quick guide to table setting for dinner:

table setting for dinner

We eat from the outside in, so I set up from the inside out.

  1. Put the dinner plate in the center, with the salad plate and bowl on top of it.
  2. To the right, from the center out: knife, teaspoon, soup spoon. To the left, center out: dinner fork (the bigger one) and salad fork. The napkin can either be under utensils, or on top of the plates.
  3. Centered above the plate: dessert fork and dessert spoon (if you plan on dessert.) To the left and right of that: drinking glasses and wineglass.

Make sure you have extras

My family is huge, so I tend to have over twenty people for a big dinner like this. To make sure no one fights over anything, I try to have extras of everything. It was handy when someone broke a plate, and I had a spare ready for them. For things that aren’t the main course, like a gravy boat with my family-favorite homemade gravy, I like to have one on each end of the table. This helps your holiday dinner run more smoothly.


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