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dinner party

Tea with the Queen…

tea with the queen


You’ve exhausted the time and effort to prepare a lovely affair – the clock is ticking, and guests will arrive today. Tis’ time to set the table – the silver is polished…the china is out…the crystal is flawless….now, what napkin would the Queen use? – need you even ask this question?! Paper is never appropriate at a fine occasion….in fact – paper is only appropriate at a backyard picnic and even in that instance I can make the argument for the cloth napkin.
1) Cloth napkins dress up the event – beautiful napkins act as dressing to your table – just as you’ve invested in the perfect frock – think through your napkin choice – crisp, white linen – preferably monogrammed sets the tone.
2) Cloth napkins are green – talk about an au courant way to be eco-friendly – because this fine piece of tableware is not commonplace you can find exquisite – yet affordable ones at antique stores.
3) Looking for a craft – you can make your own. I learned this little trick from my mother-in-love – so simple, and this endeavor truly gives you the freedom to customize your look! Visit your local fabric store and ask for approximately 1 ½ yards of cotton fabric – make sure to prewash/preshrink – then you can measure out and cut four squares – find the fringe and pull around the edge until you have the width fringe you want around the edge. Incidentally – these make great housewarming gifts along with a wooden spoon and homemade cookies.
4) Napkin folding is a relatively simple art – employ the internet and a little practice and you’ll be making French pleats with the best of them. If the concept of a fold makes you panic – give yourself a break and whip out those napkin rings you never use – they’re fun and just taking up space in your sideboard!

Relax and welcome your guests to your charming soiree – be it casual backyard supper or a formal dinner party – the extra effort will not go unnoticed

Guess who’s coming to dinner…

table setting for post


It’s the little things. Whether you’ve put forth the effort to whip up a three course meal worthy of Julia and invited a bevy of guests – or you are having a simple Sunday supper – a properly set table will elevate your gathering.
1) Start with the Basic Table Setting – it is your foundation – this setting is fitting for most occasions and can be built upon as the event formality is elevated.
2) First the dinner plate is positioned in the center then the flatware is arranged around the plate in the order it will be used – the fork is placed to the left, the knife is placed to the right of the plate with the blade facing the plate and the spoon is placed to the right of the knife. A water glass goes above the knife.
3) Now step it up – if a salad is to be served then place the salad fork outside the dinner fork. Salad and bread and butter plates go to the left of the forks. White and red wine glasses are positioned to the left of the water glass. If you are serving a soup – place the bowl on the plate and the soup spoon to the right of the dinner spoon.
4) The bones of your table are there but dress up the look with a charger under the dinner plate and a low centerpiece. Your flowers should never be above 10-12 inches – you want your guests to be able to chat without leaning around a tall bouquet.
5) Napkins can be placed under the forks for an informal setting – but when you take things formal go the extra mile by trying a fancy fold or incorporating your napkin rings with a sprig of greenery.
A lovely table sets the mood for your dinner party – don’t skimp on this step. A properly set table is the first step to a truly enjoyable meal.