Author: Canadian Living

Excerpted from Tabletops: Over 30 Projects for Inspirational Table Decorations by Jo Rigg (Breslich & Foss, 2003).

It is thanks to the Victorians that today's Christmas celebrations take the form they do. This used to be one of the few times of the year when the best pieces of tableware were brought out and used at the table. There were lots of important jobs to be done in preparation for the Christmas Eve meal: table linen and napkins had to be laundered and starched, glassware was cleaned to a sparkling finish, and cutlery was polished until it glistened. This table setting (left) aims to recreate the elegance of years gone by.

Christmas remains a very special time of the year for many people and a great opportunity to spend time with family and loved ones around a beautiful table. A Christmas Eve feast is the ideal occasion to decorate the dinner table in sophisticated style. In a break from the traditional color scheme of red, green, and gold, our Christmas table is decorated in a modern scheme of cool icy whites teamed with frosty silvers and clear glass, a theme inspired by icy mornings and frosty walks in the countryside. The scheme is pulled together with a simple but highly effective centerpiece: a footed glass bowl piled high with Christmas baubles and miniature lights that lends the table a magical warmth.

Attention to detail and the use of pure white, silver, and gold guarantee that dinner guests will be entranced. A freshly laundered white linen tablecloth provides a clean crisp surface onto which a generous handful of silver stars is scattered, adding extra sparkle to an enchanting setting. A plain linen napkin is given a touch of glamour with the addition of iron-on silver squares on a single corner. Chunky glass accessories, such as stylish coasters, and cool blue coffee cups ensure that the wintery theme runs right through the meal. Handwritten place labels tied to delicate baubles and laid at each setting invite guests to take their seats at this delightful table.

For more sparkly table decor ideas, click on "SEE ALL IMAGES" under main image at top left.

Try this glittering Bauble Centrepiece from the book.

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DIY & Crafts

Set a glam holiday table