Christmas Eve Table Setting and Dinner

So, Christmas has come and gone.  I hope everyone had an enjoyable holiday.  Today, I am going to share my third seasonal table setting with you.  This is the one I used for Christmas Eve dinner.

Christmas Eve 2012 Table Setting

My dining table is not large but comfortably seats four and can accommodate six guests.  To give an air of formality to the setting, I started out with an antique Irish linen tablecloth and chose simple gold charger plates to frame each place setting.  And, of course, I used my fine china for the occasion.

For the central tablescape, I opted to go with one main floral arrangement flanked by two smaller matching satellites.  Additional satellites can be added if the length of the table is greater. It’s a great way to extend the floral centerpiece down the entire length of a dining room table. The color scheme is deep rose that draws that particular color out of the darker flowers in the Royal Albert “Lavender Rose” china pattern.

Small glass cubes are very versatile standbys to have in a collection of vases.  Here, I have covered them in a sparkling ribbon that shines like rhinestones.  This, of course, covers up the mechanics of the arrangement (i.e., the oasis used to hold the flowers in place) and also lends an air of elegance to the table.  I used lots of magnolia leaves and seasonal greens as the base for each arrangement, then the roses, and finally the frothy baby’s breath was added.  Magnolia leaves are wonderful because they are deep green on one side and a velvety rusty-brown on the underside.  So, you’re getting two colors and texture with one leaf!

Roses on a bed of magnolia leaves and seasonal greenery

One of the easiest ways to present napkins is in a napkin ring.  Here, I have chosen a very simple napkin roll because the flowers form the focal point of the table and an extravagant napkin fold is not necessary.  I found these “blingy” napkin rings at our local Winners store.

Place Setting

I love these wonderful little clip-on birds.  I use them on trees, in mantle sprays and garlands, and even work them into place settings.  So it wouldn’t appear too “matchy-matchy”, I selected two green and two pink, again to bring out the colors in the china.

Birds Adorn Each Place Setting

The color of these roses is just extraordinary.  It’s amazing how well the rusty-brown of the magnolia leaves works with the deep rose color of the flowers.

Deep Rose Roses

Here is an overhead view of the table.  I usually line up the cutlery but, for this setting, opted to stagger the height of the flatwear.

Festive Holiday Table

For safety reasons, I am not a big fan of using tall taper candles in tablescapes, particularly those (like this one) that will actually be used.  One jerk of a knee on a table leg and a tall burning candle is easily knocked over.  Generally, if my tablescape involves candles, I will choose to use low votive candles.  There are many beautiful and decorative votive holders on the market and they will still give the soft glow and ambiance of candlelight and I find them safer options.

 

 

 

One of the things to keep in mind with any table setting is the time of day it will be used.  Colors change in different lights.  Some colors look great in daylight but don’t show well at night.  Some will work well no matter the lighting.  Here is a photo of my same table setting at night.  The colors of the roses change and get a little deeper shade and everything has a warmer golden glow.  I particularly like how the ribbon surrounding the glass cubes really sparkles in the glow of the evening candle light.  When you are selecting the color scheme for your table setting, it’s a good idea to make sure that the colors can transition well from daytime to evening, if you are planning to use it for both.

In the Evening Light

 

 

 

 

 

Roses and Birds

Our Christmas Eve dinner tradition is very seafood-oriented.  We start with seafood chowder, then fresh Atlantic lobster with salads and, for dessert, finish with cherry cheesecake.  This year, our wine pairing was Matos Chardonnay, produced from locally-grown grapes from vineyards in St. Catherine’s, PEI.  You can check out my October 22, 2012, story on Matos Winery by clicking here.

Matos Chardonnay

The seafood chowder recipe I used is Jeff McCourt’s PEI Seafood Chowder.  You can find this recipe included in the story I wrote on September 16, 2012, following my participation in one of the culinary boot camps at which Chef McCourt taught at the Culinary Institute of Canada in Charlottetown, PEI.

Seafood Chowder

How appetizing does that great Atlantic lobster look!

Traditional PEI Lobster Dinner

 

And, for anyone who still has room left, a piece of cherry cheesecake as a finale to Christmas Eve dinner.

Cherry Cheesecake

Setting a beautiful table adds to the festive mood of the holiday.  Thank you for visiting my blog today and enjoy this holiday season.

 

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