How to create tablescapes - a beginners guide to creating a beautiful table setting

If you've not heard of the term 'tablescape' before, you'd be forgiven. Tablescaping is a trend that started making waves more recently over the last few years, but essentially it is the art of setting a beautifully laid table. All it requires is careful consideration when selecting table decor such as candles, votives and small decorative pieces as well as cutlery, crockery and glassware. Tablescaping is a creative process and one that should be enjoyed, there are no strict rules just some fundamental steps to follow to ensure that you get that great feeling of accomplishment when you step back and admire the gorgeous table display you've created.

In this blog post we'll guide you through step-by-step on where to start, what to choose and how to style your tablescape. 

Step 1. Plan 

When creating your tablescape you first need to consider the theme. Don't over think it, it could simply be a colour scheme, a blue and white tablescape, a black and white tablescape or a pink tablescape for example. Or perhaps you're hosting a seasonal event and you want a tablescape for Christmas or a tablescape for fall. If you are planning for a seasonal occasion, you'll want to take this into consideration when selecting your linen, table decor and colour palette.  

Think about what kind of event are you hosting, is it a formal gathering in the evening or a casual daytime party? If it's the latter, you may want to consider skipping certain aspects such as tablecloths and opt for a bright colour palette. 

Consider the shape of the table you'll be dining at. If you're entertaining around a round table you'll want to keep your table centrepiece circular and low. Whereas if you're seating your guests at a rectangular dining table your tablescape would be best suited in a linear fashion.

Step 2. Choose linen

Firstly you'll want to decide whether you'd like to use a tablecloth or not. This is a personal preference and one that can be determined by the type of event you are hosting.

When choosing your linen for your tablescape you'll need to think about print and colour. It should complement your theme. Your tablecloth and table runner should contrast with each other. For example if you've selected a solid colour tablecloth, opt for a print runner and vice versa.  

If your tablescape is for Christmas then you should think about the colour palette and festive prints. If you're planning a tablescape for a wedding choosing light, plain table linen could be the best option.

The shape of your table comes into play here too. If you're dining at a round table then layering your linen would be a great idea! Choose a floor length round table cloth and layer it with a square topper. This adds a luxurious feel to your dinner party. 

Step 3. Choose tableware

Your tableware plays an important part of the overall look of your tablescape. It's the first thing your guests will be looking at when they sit down. Our tips would be to layer your tableware. By layering your placemat, charger plate and additional plates you instantly create depth to your table.

You can introduce different textures with your choice of placemat like seagrass, rattan, slate or vinyl. Make sure that it complements the style of plate you have opted for whether it's ceramic, porcelain, glass, china or stoneware.

Set out your cutlery and add your glassware to the table. 

If you need some tips on how to set a place setting then just refer to our helpful graphic below. Follow this and you'll make setting a place setting a doddle!

Step 4. Accessorise with decor

When it comes to accessorising your table you should always include some sort of floral element, whether it's small stems in bud vases or a foliage garland. You can use either fresh or silk flowers or have a mixture of both. 

Add height to your tablescape with candlesticks and taper candles, combine these with small votives and tealights to add depth to your tablescape. The warm glow of the candlelight truly sets the tone for your dinner. 

Think back to your choice of theme and include aspects that really define the look and feel you are trying to create. If your theme is a rustic tablescape, choose natural, woody elements to add to your table and incorporate the use of brown string. Want to create a Mediterranean inspired tablescape? Why not add green foliage like eucalyptus as the table runner and place lemons alongside to add a pop of a colour.   

This step of the process is where you can be really creative, let your imagination lead the way to producing a spectacular display. Mix and match your decor elements and incorporate different textures. If you're struggling for ideas you can always head to Pinterest for tablescaping inspiration! 

Step 5. Finishing touches

If you want to add some personal touches to your tablescape there's a couple of things you can do to really impress your guests. Firstly, you can add place names to each place setting. Let your guests know where to sit when they arrive at your table. Place names can be handmade, they don't have to be anything too fancy, but they show that you've put a lot of thought and effort into your hosting. Secondly, prepare a handwritten menu to place on the table. Get your guests involved with the food, build excitement around the delicious meals they will be enjoying. 


Now you should have all the knowledge to prepare your very own tablescape from scratch. If it still feels a little daunting or you'd rather skip the process and go straight to the finished product, we have a gorgeous selection of curated tablescapes for you to choose from. Each one is beautifully presented in a keepsake box, with everything you'll need to create a stunning tablescape that you can use over and over for years to come. 

Discover our tablescape collection here.

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