I’m pretty sure I’m the epitome of a basic b*tch; I own more sleeping clothes than going-out clothes, I lived for over 2 years without a fridge and my idea of a rocking Friday night is eating pizza in bed! However, once in a while it’s nice to pretend I’m not completely basic and let my boyfriend do some cooking so I can pass it off as a team effort (what’s mine is his and all that!). However, the hardest part, can sometimes be trying to set and beautiful, grown-up dinner table when your crockery doesn’t match and you don’t have enough chairs to go around. Also, it’s a total faux pas to put a bottle of ketchup on the table (when there’s guests, not the rest of the time) but if you threw your ramekins out because you thought you’d never need them, it can be hard to know what to do. Don’t worry, I can help… Let’s go!
Oops! My Crockery Doesn’t Match!
I recently got a beautiful new dinner set from Next, it’s marble print and a Millennial dream, however, it’s a 12 piece set which means there’s 4 dinner plats, 4 side plates and 4 bowls. Perfect for every day use, but not so good if you have guests. Don’t worry, just find other plates and dishes in a similar colour theme (for me that’s black and white) and scatter them completely randomly so it looks like it’s meant to be like that. The astrology-print plates I have are actually cake plates from Anthropologie (no-one would ever know!), the face print plates are Fornasetti and FAR too fancy too use unless it’s an emergency (serve your own food on these and be very careful with your cutlery!) and the vintage homemaker plate was my boyfriends grandparents, but it’s monochrome so it totally works! Seriously, if you can stick to a colour theme, it will look great!
Oops! Not Enough Condiment dishes and Serving Platters
In civilian life, no-one needs an array of tiny dishes and serving platters for extras like chutneys, dressings, condiments and butter cubes / curls. However, when you’re hosting, you might not want to slap a half used butter dish on the table and a part used jar of caramelised onion chutney. Instead rustle up all your jewellery and ticket dishes from around your room / office / house and use them instead. As for butter and canapés, I found some kitchen tile samples which I think would look kinda cute with food lined up on them. Try and keep all the porcelain to a colour theme and no-ones going to notice what a hotch-potch it is!
Oops! Not Enough Chairs!
It doesn’t matter how many kitchen chairs you have, there is always going to be a time when you are caught short! Don’t worry, there’s a few things you can do in this situation, firstly, say a little ‘Thank you’ that you have enough friends and family because this is a pretty amazing problem to have. Secondly, rustle up all the stools, chairs, steps, garden chairs and what-not, and scatter them randomly around the table and pop a cute cushion on top of each one. Even if no-one uses the cushions because it makes their seat too tall, at least it will make the seats look more welcoming and let your guests know how welcome they are, despite the lack of chairs!
More Is More…
As with everything in life, more is more! Fill that table and pile it high! Buy a couple of sourdough loaves and put them at each end of the table, slice or ball your butter and serve by their side. Present an array of dressings, chutneys and condiments in cute trinket dishes up and down the table and in any spare gaps arrange scented candles, ornaments, foliage from the garden or tiny jars of flowers. After all, a full table is a happy table! Oh and these amazing gold pineapples are usually on display in my living room, however, they also make a pretty amazing centrepiece. They also have a rather lovely historical dinner party reference as in the old days, pineapples were often given to hosts as a gift (much like a good wine is now) and it would be kept on the table during the meal as a decoration and them carved and shared at the end of the evening. If you don’t have Gold Pineapples, you could always just buy some real pineapples, but it just goes to show how you can hunt around the house and re-purpose items for the evening to create a rather fabulous table setting! And just to remind you, stick to a colour theme and you’ll nail it!
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Vintage ‘Homemaker’ Plates (try eBay!?)