Candles and fresh greenery make a beautiful centrepiece. You can use almost any greenery from your garden as decoration for a table, especially when used with candles.
Candles and fresh greenery make a beautiful centrepiece. You can use almost any greenery from your garden as decoration for a table, especially when used with candles.

Book explains how to create the perfect table setting

MANY years ago, I was living in New York and I was lucky enough to work at a beautiful homewares store in Soho called Wolfman & Gold.

It was the sort of store that Jacqueline Kennedy frequented (unfortunately not when I was there).

This store was all about table settings - two whole floors dedicated to la table!

The owners also published a book called The Perfect Setting, yep, all about table settings.

I thought I would share some of what I learned from my time there.

Firstly, there are some basic rules for table settings. Silverware, cutlery (or flatware as Americans call it!) follows one simple rule.

No matter how formal or relaxed the event set the silverware on the table in the order it will be used.

The fork for the first course is the one farthest to the left; to the right of the plate, the knife for the first course is the farthest to the right.

Any spoons needed before dessert (say, a soup spoon), should be placed to the right of the knives. In other words, you work your way in to the plate.

The only pieces of china that should be part of a table setting are the bread plate and a charger - a purely decorative oversized plate used mainly for formal occasions.

Food is never served directly on a charger, but a soup bowl or salad plate can be set on top of it. The charger should be cleared along with the bowl or plate.

For linen, a napkin is placed to the left, usually under the forks. Or if you prefer, folded in the centre of the knife and fork on the charger.

The linen should reflect the occasion, use damask (white) linen for formal occasions to quality paper napkins for more casual occasions. Glasses are set to the right above the knives.

 

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