A Giraffe Safari ..

Table setting has always been my favourite! When I was a kid I remember I would ask my mom to do the table settings and add small details just for fun. Growing up and continuing this act, I realized that this was basically a way of spilling my creative juice.

My own take on setting a table is simple. Just listen to your heart, design with what you have and don’t be afraid to mix and match. There is no right or wrong so you can’t follow a guide – just do what you feel like! Whatever and however it turns out, its your own little piece of satisfaction.

Here is my plan that ill share you with you while I’m going about thinking and planning for my table.

  • I usually decide a theme in my mind and then go about it. It can be anything from any antique piece lying around in your cabinet or a new crystal that your so and so aunt gifted. Every piece has a story behind it and I love to relate that to my guests. These giraffes are usually standing alone in one corner and with this table setting they were the centre of the attention.
  • Choose a tablecloth (or no cloth) and your table mats. I added a neutral table runner to go with giraffes.
  • I’m always thinking about my theme while I’m doing groceries and usually if something matches with it, ill pick it. Flowers usually are the best shot at any grocery store. Luckily I found this dried plant arrangement in a muted colour palette at “HomeSense” and arranged it with a few bamboo sticks and fairy lights.

Once the centre piece is decided then

  • Add your place settings with dishes, flatware and stemware.
  • Fill in with accessories, candlesticks or any seasonal items.

Listing my menu items on a piece of paper is my way of getting organized for the dinner prep. But recently I made that list visible to the guests and felt that is “the” new trend. Simple and effective for guests to see what’s on the table before they start pouring stuff in their plates and start playing dish guessing games in their heads. You can print or even write it yourself and place it in any frame to give a personalized look. This frame added another fancy item on the table yet served the purpose. You can use any board, tile etc lying around in the house to do the honours.

While setting up the drink corner, I always keep in mind that there can be spillovers. Add placemats so it can look appealing to the guests yet minimizing the dirty spilling effects. Living in Alberta and surrounded by Rocky Mountains, Calgary the place a call home is just an hour away where i once witnessed Elk. The sheer coincidence that i was imagining “wildlife” theme in my head and saw one at one of the stores. When I saw this “Elk” I immediately knew that this will be my water corner prop.

You don’t need to buy too many expensive pieces to raise your bar. Just collect a few pieces that will stand out! I found this Octopus stand at Pottery Barn and its one of its own kind. Every time I place it on the table, it gives a seaside flair to the table! Guests inquire about this unique sand-cast aluminum piece finished with an antique look and I direct them to the most inspiring store I’ve come across in Calgary. This stand adds a fancy yet artistic look to my table. A drink dispenser that I converted into a dish stand is indeed one of my most cherished purchase.

I found this Oh so deer-ly piece at Homesense Canada and you can’t imagine how happy I was! Clearly I’m obsessed with animal pieces and being near Rockies reindeer’s take the lead. Came across this candle stand lying unnoticed in one of the holiday collection isles and immediately knew that this could be used as a stand for one of my dishes.

Floating Candling along with scented candles around the table add a lovely touch to the whole setup.

The following is a very neutral table setup. You can go vibrant with red or go subtle like this in beige. Hues like table runners, seasonal items, flowers in muted colour palettes, candles to lit the look are few of the accessories that can give your simple table a fancy look. These ideas are not just usable for tables but can be added to and island or buffet setting as well.

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