Lifestyle and design: rules and tips to make the table stylish and elegant

When you decide to host relatives or friends at home and provide them with good food, you need to set up the table taking care of everything without forgetting anything.

You first need to set the tone of the day or night, whether formal or family, or informally among friends.

It 's always advisable to find the table been spread, to the guests so that they can enjoy its beauty, do not feel embarrassed by seeing everything set up in their presence and to adapt peacefully choosing their place and maybe start drinking or tease.

Few rules at the base, many useful tips and much to the imagination in order to customize the atmosphere.

Let the most beautiful tablecloths (linen or damask) for important occasions, special occasions or formal invitations.
Adopted tablecloths possibly one color for more informal invitations with friends and relatives; let coatings in paper or plastic only very informal invitations from friends.

The ideal solution for every occasion is the white tablecloth ironed laundry that smells, no stains, rips or stains.
The choice of white is not made at random, as this neutral color does not weigh down the overall vision, enhances the elements of the table and is well suited to other decorations, dishes (even more so if decorated) and glasses.

If your favorite is colored, try to harmonize the entire table by choosing simple glasses, plates and napkins  following the line color of the tablecloth.
Too many background colors may be confusing, especially with fancy tablecloths that do not follow geometric patterns defined, simplicity is synonymous of style and elegance.

Unmasked crumpling or halos with placemats, although widely used, are not good for formal dinners and must be well matched to the entire table.

It is not very usual napkin fantasy but muted colors, simple geometric shapes or napkins theme.

As you might guess, a beautiful tablecloth fabric is almost mandatory napkins match the same color and the same fabric and keep the paper napkins  only for occasions particularly informal or on the table in case someone will require.

There are different types of paper napkins, the best known are white and not very "elegant", but there are also napkins, too expensive, that emulate the texture of the fabric.

If you do not have the possibility to set the table with elegant napkins combined, opt for paper towels, disposable single colored tablecloth with a call to the same color.

As for the positioning, there are no precise rules, right, left, or directly on the plate when there is not much space between a seat at the table and the other. Moreover, by choosing to place it on the plate, you can create the effect turning the towel in a creative and form a fan, a swan, a little fish ...

Just remember to allow at least 50 cm of space for every guest and, if possible, be careful not to put a right-handed next to a lefty.

The placemats are not only very fashionable, but play a key role as they protect the table from heat and tablecloth from possible stains, secure the place of the diner, dress and enrich the table.

The original is the silver plate, simple decoration with a slight edges. Actually today using mats of all types (ceramic, glass, fabric, wicker, ...), all colors and all shapes (oval, square, flower, ...), depending on the tone of the evening , the colors in the table and the type of furniture used in the home (in a colorful and modern house, put a plate of silver for a dinner with friends would be excessive and too inconsistent).


May be adopted a plate that recalls the line of the plates used, but usually prefers to break using a color or a different material, the important thing is that it is not too heavy or too large. Also, if the table is particularly small or the number of guests reduced, it is better not to use it.

Usually the underplate should never be removed, and then is placed under the plate to the main course. After the meal, when all the plates are removed, and the plate stays with the dish of dessert.

As a rule, the dishes used must belong to the same service (it's always best to reserve the service good to purely formal dinners and exploit ceramic dishes more common for other occasions).


 The modern way of understanding the construction of a table, however, includes the use of dishes for the main course than those of the starter and even play with forms, the important thing is that they should match with each other as well as with tablecloth and napkins.

It 's always better to choose soft colors and avoid dishes transparent or with strange fantasies going to weigh all of the table.

Of fundamental importance is the check if the dishes are not clearly scratches or cracks, otherwise it is better to replace them, or, if there are other dishes available, to happen "by chance" that dish in your seat.

It 'important to note that the soup bowl is used only for soups or liquid food.

Should belong to the same set of dishes, but are fine of any type, as long as they are consistent with the style of the evening and the colors of the table. In this regard we can adapt oval plates in steel (or silver), glass, glass or wood.

It's better to serve the salad in a large bowl never metal and cheeses and sausages on a wooden cutting board.

Accompanied every dish a special cutlery to make it easier to serve the dish and avoid the embarrassment of using their cutlery.

It takes at least two glasses: one for water and one for the wine (or for carbonated soft drinks in the case of children).
Beside the two is possible to add a third glass in the case in which there were present at the table different wines (red and white).

If instead there is provided a dessert wine or sparkling wine, the glasses become four, and changes the disposition before there is always the water glass and then, proceeding to the right, the two wine (first the one for red wine and then that for the white wine), and finally, one for the sparkling wine, to be added only if the size of the table allows, if not it is best to add to the table at the time of the dessert.

If it is planned to dine sparkling wine or champagne, you have only two glasses: one for water and one for champagne.

As for the types, the glasses are divided into:

Cups: are more formal and elegant, perfect for holding wine.
And 'recommended a perfectly transparent glass that makes visible the content and thus avoid decorations if not in the stem or at the base of the glass. Depending on the food to be served and paired wines, will have a different shape. In general the width of the glass increases proportionally to the body of the wine.

Normal Glasses: informal, practical, colorful and definitely cheaper.
Sometimes, they are used to contain the water and pushed together to the glasses with the stem for the wine, in this case it is recommended that a glass simple, transparent and which references the style of the other glasses present.

The cutlery should be placed beside the dish following these rules, dictated by the logic and practicality: The knife must be put right with the blade facing the plate, then you put the spoon. If the menu has two maincourses, it is preferable to place two knives (not more), one for fish and one for the roast.

On the left the fork , because normally the fork is used with the left when the right is the knife's used. Again best not to put too much cutlery and stop to a maximum of three forks. The only exception is the fork from oysters to be put on the far right.

Outside always go the cutlery that are used first. Can not be wrong even when we are in an elegant dining and we face an array of cutlery. It 'still preferable to avoid exposing them all together so as not to confuse and not occupy too much space. If you have provided so many courses, better renew cutlery together at the plate.

The cutlery dessert should be placed in front of the plate: the fork with the tines facing to the right and on the contrary the spoon, facing left.

The cutlery fruit at the restaurant or at official banquets are brought together with the fruit plate and should be placed following the same rules of knife and fork. If you are a casual lunch or family you can already arrange them on the table.

The centerpiece should be placed on the table only if there is space and be in style with the tone of the evening, the board, with the menu and the season (put a centerpiece with chestnuts in the middle of summer is not a good choice!).
Moreover, its height must not be excessive in order to allow guests to look at each other and talk to each other without practicing gymnastics, but not too low as to be confused with the food.

If the table is too small or too big centerpiece, move it just before starting the meal in a place where it can still continue to be admired. If you establish its position at the center of the table, make sure that is not too full of odors so as not to annoy the guests (some fresh flowers, although very beautiful, give off strong scents with risk cover odors of food).

If appropriate to the style of the evening, the centerpiece can be created with fake flowers if they are beautiful and refined and maybe matched with creative compositions with cinnamon sticks, bamboo or colored stones. Avoid them still in very formal meetings.

If you prefer to use candles, be careful placement, use suitable candelabra candles or floating in the water without overdo the amount.

As indicated above, we must avoid those particularly flavored and still have to be careful with their possible shutdown, as emanates a smell of smoke during the meal. Obviously if it's a romantic dinner ... the atmosphere by candlelight, becomes an obligation!

These are the rules and tips to show your elegance and your taste not only in your furniture or your clothes, but also in the way to welcome your guests.

Use it well and enjoy your meal.