You've planned a dinner party at your home and want to make certain your decor has that extra special X factor. One of the easiest ways to elevate a dining experience is to allow your dinner table to become the centerpiece of a room. Elevating the tablescape — a fancy way of saying dressing your dining room table — with a theme, specific color palette, and thoughtfully paired dinnerware can make the room pop, acting as a visual surprise for your guests.
To help you make your tablescape look expensive, we reached out to designers for advice. With the following seven tips, you'll be able to transform your dining room in no time.
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1. Add glass dishware and decor.
Adding glass — bowls, vases, glasses — to a table can create an immediate and lasting impression. "The reflective tendencies of polished surfaces bounce light beautifully and double as durable surfaces that are easily cleaned," Paige Gray, partner and lead interior designer at Parker & Harlow Interiors, tells Hunker. Think about varied textures that will complement the glass while accentuating the entire tablescape.
Paige Gray's pick: Dougherty Glassworks Tundra Series Drinking Glasses, $48
2. Double down on details.
Paying attention to small, but important, elements on a tablescape can help you create your intended effect. Etsy's in-house trend expert Dayna Isom Johnson tells Hunker, "Hand-embroidered runners, gold serveware, or engraved napkin rings are an easy way to make any tablescape feel more upscale and special."
Dayna Isom Johnson's pick: Maki Atelier Greek Linen Table Runner, $85
3. Bust out the good china.
There's no need to save your "good" plates and bowls for a special occasion. Instead, whether you're "preparing tables for a casual meal or entertaining guests, don't be afraid to bust out the good stuff," Johnson advises. "Heirloom-worthy dinnerware adds an extra layer of sophistication and class to any tabletop."
Dayna Isom Johnson's pick: Every Story Studio Hand-Pinched Porcelain Plates (small set of 2), $71.29
4. Use long tables and low vases.
One simple change can make a significant difference in the tablescape arena, according to Mary Patton of Mary Patton Design: "I love doing one long table. You can rent them inexpensively and do a simple white tablecloth." She also likes placing a row of low vases in the center, filling them with flowers of a single color, and pairing them with votives. "It creates a beautiful ambiance and you are able to see the person across from you," Patton tells Hunker.
Mary Patton's pick: The Avenue Small Crystal Vase With Ovals Design, $38
5. Invest in crystal decanters.
Mixing the beautiful with the practical is an ideal approach for a tablescape. "Invest in crystal decanters. Not only are they the jewelry of a tablescape, but they serve a function, too. It prevents the host from having to continually leave the table to refill glasses. Conversation flows when the wine flows," says Lance Thomas of Thomas Guy Interiors.
Lance Thomas's pick: Baccarat Oenologie Young Wine Decanter, $800
6. Sprinkle in vintage.
Departing from the traditional is an out-of-the-box way to make a tablescape that your guests will be talking about the next day. "Vintage accents add a sense of elegance and luxury. Think vintage colored glasses, candle holders, or coasters. The best part is that vintage pieces range in price point so there's sure to be something for every budget," Johnson explains.
Dayna Isom Johnson's pick: French Home Vintage Dessert Bowls (set of 6), $103.54
7. Don’t go overboard on decor.
Simplicity is always classy. Johnson states that "at the end of the day, a tabletop should be as practical as it is beautiful." To avoid an awkward or cluttered spread, she recommends investing in just a handful of impactful essentials and decor elements. "Quality over quantity is key," says Johnson.
Dayna Isom Johnson's pick: Art by Bossa Personalized Napkin Ring, $19
Our pick: Fable Home The Dinner Plates (set of 4), $75