How To Create A Stylish (Small) Holiday Table
Photography by Mz.Icar Prop Stylist Chanel Kennebrew Producer Natalie Gialluca

After the 2020 we’ve been having, coming together with everyone healthy and happy for the holidays will be more meaningful than ever. The holiday dinner table is where the magic happens, so we asked two tastemakers for their advice on how to dress yours for the occasion.

1. MIX AND MATCH

“You don’t need a complete set of dinnerware in one color,” says interior designer Nicole White, of Nicole White Designs. “Use a mashup of plates, silverware and varied napkin patterns to showcase your personality.”

2. GO BRIGHT OR GO HOME

“We’re calling it ‘cheerful citrus,’” says Etsy trend expert Dayna Isom Johnson. “We’re bringing in oranges, lemons, kumquats, grapefruit— all of these really cheerful, bright colors that you typically don’t think of for holiday celebrations. But they’re the perfect way to add sunshiney color to that holiday spread.”

3. PUT A TWIST ON YOUR CANDLES

“You’re seeing lots of colored tapered candles, which you didn’t used to see,” notes Johnson. “Everything from matte black to bright rainbow colors—and the sculpted candle. Maybe they have a swirl motif, or they have a bend-and-twist in different shapes and forms. It really adds depth, character and personality to your table.”

4. MAKE A STATEMENT!

“Go for a dramatic table runner,” says White. “Think outside the box and have one made to showcase your style.”

5. BRING THE OUTSIDE IN

“How can you reinvent pinecones? Can you bring in branches of pine—not [just] pinecones, but the actual tree?” asks Johnson. “There’s also pampas grass, which is a beautiful accent. And try your hand at drying your own flowers. It’s not hard.”

Shop The Table

Maison Deongi from Etsy, Bubble Cube Geometric Soy Candle, $12, etsy.com

P Kaufmann Angola Mudcloth Basketweave Peppercorn, $14, fabric.com

Hampton Forge Zephyr Satin Gold Flatware Set, macys.com

Amoystone Gemstone Napkin Rings Holder, $38, amazon.com

Bed Bath & Beyond Stone Lain 16-Piece Dinnerware Set, $60, bedbathandbeyond.com

Divitis Home Infinity Fine Bone China Dinnerware Set, 16pcs, $79, divitishome.com

This article originally appears in the November/December 2020 issue of ESSENCE, on stands now.

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