As the first signs of spring begin to blossom, our tables are set with sweet anticipation for the new season. Silver vases are filled with daffodils, tulips, and hyacinths. Crystal champagne coups set the tone for celebrating the longer and warmer days ahead. Antique linen and lace tablecloths and napkins pick up on the floral theme and provide a pretty foundation for porcelain plates and mother-of-pearl utensils.
As the spring holidays approach, I gather pieces to set the table for Passover and Easter and family birthdays. Starting with foundational pieces like table linens and then I work my way up to practical items like porcelain, glassware, and utensils, and then on to the more decorative things, candles, flowers, and serving pieces.
Mixing and matching items and managing to keep everything from getting overly fussy is a creative, or at least a thoughtful, process. The process of elimination is a good rule of thumb. Start with more than you think you’ll need and remove items until you find that sweet spot. Striking a balance between the spirit of the event and the comfort of your guests is key. The goal is to create a beautiful, inviting table setting that allows your guests to interact with it almost unknowingly, so that ultimately they interact with each other while enjoying a meal. When it’s done well, it never fails to earn the praises of appreciative guests.
It brings me great joy to see smiles and to hear chatter and laughter around the dining table. It’s a sign that the table setting has done its job in providing our family and friends a place to enjoy each other’s company.
Wishing you all a happy spring!