Seven Fun Holiday Table Settings For Christmas

We’re back with a second place setting post (you can check out the original one here) and this time we’re all about creating that festive holiday feeling. While humming Christmas carols (getting into character is key) and using only items and accessories that we already had around the house, I whipped up seven different tablescapes with glee. Here’s the play by play.

I began our first place setting by whipping out our spring table runners (who knew they’d work so well in the winter), popping a feather tree on a cake stand and positioning a few other white objects (some ceramic pears and candle holders) along with vases of green yard clippings on either side. Some cute green bowls topped with white snowflake ornaments (snagged for pennies at Target last year) finish everything off (and would make super cute favors for your guests at the end of the night).

Here’s a yummy little detail shot. Feeling festive yet?

Our second table setting feels a bit more traditional and classic thanks to a red runner (actually a cheap pashmina repurposed for the day) and some more little trees that I bring out each December. Red punch, white servingware and a big ornament in each bowl (which could also be a take-home favor) finishes everything off for sparkle and spirit to spare.

Then we swapped out the runner for our neutral fall one, added even more ornaments, borrowed some hurricanes from the den and a few other white objects from the coffee table (an antler candlestick and a shell ball from the coffee table). The glam finishing touch was placing our chandelier ornaments (snagged for 70% off at West Elm last year) on each plate for graphic interest and seasonal shine. Oh and we tossed one of our Ikea sheepskins (that usually lives atop a slipper chair for a cozy layered look) on the bench for that warm and cozy Christmas dinner feeling. Mmmm.

Then we went back to the red pashmina-turned-runner, added a seasonal tree, some bottles of Pellegrino and the pitcher of punch. It’s an easy and functional centerpiece (no more running into the kitchen for drink refills). On each plate I popped a green embroidered napkin and an apple place card holder (instructions below). Easy peasy.

To turn any apple into a chic little place card holder, use a knife to create a shallow slice just behind the center of the apple, then stick a place card (ours are hand written on pieces of card stock) into the groove. Cute, no?

Next I went back to a slew of glittering white objects (the feather tree, shell ball, antler candle stick, flower votive holder, hurricanes, etc) and added some green wine & Pellegrino bottles (we save them for everything from decorative accessorizing to beverage serving) and a few green glass votives (to light up each place setting and go home with each guest at the night’s end). Oh and swapping out the green accents for blue glass vases and votives would create a pretty white and blue scheme perfect for a Hanukkah gathering as well.

This setting felt like it could also function as a New Year’s tableau due to all the glitz and glamour (thanks to that ever present feather tree, our mercury glass candle holders- cheap scores from Ikea- and oodles of ornaments- including a few special ones for each guests to tote home). Oh and we swapped out our bench for the other two chairs that go with our dining set to demonstrate another easy holiday decor idea. Hooking stockings to the back of each chair is super simple (we used an ornament hook to loop them around the back of the chair) and you could also fill them with cute little favors like wooly socks and candy canes for each guest.

And finally a super casual holiday gathering of little snacks and festive beverages need not be served at a formal table. We love a cute little buffet of bubbly water and punch along with some pistachios and some yummy little cookies and crackers (Trader Joe’s famous Gorgonzola crackers are a crowd favorite at our house). And to add even more holiday spirit to the tableau, we popped a few ornaments on our cake stand along with a few white ceramic pears for a little sparkle that goes a long way.

So there ya go. Seven seasonal ways to add sparkle and spirit to your home just in time for company. We’d love to hear your favorite scheme as well as any tips and tricks that you have up your sleeves for setting a seasonal table with style. Happy entertaining!

Looking for more holiday placesetting ideas? Check out these from MyHomeIdeas and these from BHG


  1. says

    I LOVE your place settings posts!!

    It’s amazing what you put together with just a few knickknacks and table runners!

    Thanks for the ideas :)

  2. sarah says

    2-5 seemed really crowded to me- seems like your table is too small for that many things to be in the middle. I liked #6- even though there are still a lot of things, they are all the same color and aren’t drawing your eye all over the place. #7 is my favorite though, b/c that’s how i like to party! ;)

  3. says

    I love the idea of stockings on the back of each chair. It would be so cool to put little surprises in there. I like this idea for an advent type of event with my child too. Each morning something new tucked into the stocking. You guys are quite clever.

  4. Sarah says

    I love them! Especially #1.

    My only concern would be that some of the pieces would need to be moved when it’s time to eat. But who cares. It’s beautiful.

    I saw the feather tree at Target. I actually thought that feather tree looks like younghouselove’s style when I saw it. It that weird?

  5. Jacky says

    All the colors were deliciously coordinated!

    I always had the same concern. Some of the tall center pieces seem to prevent our guests to see/talk each other… Also too many center pieces limit the space for serving plates.

    I always wonder if people just take them out from the table once the dinner starts? How do you all manage that?

  6. says

    Oh how great. I was hoping you would do a feature like this!! I bought our new tablecloth last night and while I was taking pictures of it as soon as I got home, I thought about your last feature, and the possibility that I should play around. Good on you guys for only using items you already had!! Very cute!

  7. srabee says

    ok, i have to admit, i am inspired… i want to set my table now and like some of the things you did. i do have to tell you that the silver stockings look really cheap on the chairs, maybe you can get something better to replace those.

  8. Little House in the Berkshires says

    I love the setting in picture number five. The white with splashes of green is fabulous!

  9. YoungHouseLove says

    We’re so glad you guys are enjoying this post! I actually threw the whole table fashion show together last weekend (while John was out wrestling the leaves) and I couldn’t wait to share it (but we thought we should hold it until after Turkey Day since it was so Christmas focused). Needless to say it was super exciting to finally click “publish” this morning.

    As for the constructive comments about getting less cheap looking stockings and about some of the settings looking a bit crowded, we’ve taken both to heart. Of course if money were no object we’d have a big 10 person table (to accommodate all of our repurposed decorations) and luxurious stockings in plush silver velvet (yummy)- a girl’s gotta dream…

    Oh and as for Jacky’s question about what to remove when you start to serve, we basically transplant anything that doesn’t facilitate easy chatting and eating, so although we might invite everyone in and pour them drinks with a table full of decor, by the time we bring on the grub we usually find ourselves removing a few things if dinner is already plated and a few more items if we’re doing things family style (with dishes being passed around the table).

    We do find that because our table is so small, family style doesn’t work as well as pre-plated meals (or buffet style serving that is done in the kitchen) so we usually can maintain most of the items in the center of the table since there’s not really room for a family style meal at our modest little table anyway. Hope it helps! Happy entertaining…


  10. Jacky says

    Thanks for your prompt answer to my question! We also have a smaller dining room, but we squeezed in a wider table for more seating…(Yes, it’s a bit tight here and there… ;)).

    You are right, we tend to do family style, and leave the serving plates in the middle of tables, so people can get to more food later. We should definitely try the buffet next time tho! So we can leave the nice decoration in the middle of the table to enjoy them longer! Good idea!

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