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Colorful Decorating Ideas for a Christmas Dining Room Table

Updated on October 30, 2014

Creative Table Setting Ideas for Christmas

Christmas is one of the biggest holidays where every family gathers together. One thing to keep in mind before this special day is how to prepare the dining room table to make it look and feel the presence of Christmas.

It is a wonderful time of the year! Yes, indeed! Knowing how to beautify your eating area will create a Christmas atmosphere, and your family will have even more fun and excitement. Likewise, it is very important to know how to set the table to make it look presentable and eventful. In addition, food being served on the dining room table adds great ambiance where a much awaited scene takes place in which the entire family waits to see.

Seeing what kind of food is served is mouthwatering. It should be the same way with the appearance of the dining room table. It is not only giving a satisfying and delicious meal for the family but also making it exciting and with a Christmas feeling.

A Christmas dinner table arrangement and setting
A Christmas dinner table arrangement and setting

ACTS It for Christmas

The four major things to remember on how to beautify a Christmas dining room table are:

  1. Arrangement of food.
  2. Colorful tablecloth
  3. Table setting
  4. Setting a Centerpiece

Image source: ulterior epicure @ Flickr

A Christmas dinner table with only essentials
A Christmas dinner table with only essentials

When do you have your Christmas dinner?

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Arrangement of Food

It is essential to know the proper arrangement of food on the dining room table because it adds illumination to the family. Proper arrangement creates great impact to what the eating area looks like. By knowing how to arrange the food on the table provides an appealing Christmas feeling and great impressions.

A crowded dinner table is never a good quality to have, especially at Christmas. However, this doesn't mean you should throw everything on a separate table or counter and let everyone get up every few minutes to grab a piece of bread or other sides.

To successfully create your dinner, you should keep your staple foods on the dining room table to keep you and your guests seated at least most of the time.

As for your separate table or counter, place all non-staple food items around the entire area. Items like the main dish should always be placed at the beginning of the buffet line and desserts should be placed at the end.

Image source: DaKohlmeyer @ Flickr

A colorful yellow and purple Christmas tablecloth
A colorful yellow and purple Christmas tablecloth

Tablecloth Design and Folding Ideas

Instead of simply lying your tablecloth on the table, you can do one of these more creative ideas:

  1. Place the cloth sideways
  2. Place a white center cloth on top
  3. Use two tablecloths of different colors with the darker color being larger than the other. Lay it on the table and the smaller cloth on top.
  4. Do the same as number 3, except place the top layer sideways.
  5. Use two tablecloths with a much larger cloth on the bottom. Create folds on the bottom tablecloth using pins (great for the buffet table).

Colorful Tablecloth

One of the great things to set up on the table during Christmas is the tablecloth. The right choice of cloth will build a fantastic combination with the arrangement of the food, centerpiece, and table setting. Christmas is exciting when using a colorful cloth that represents happiness, love, prosperity, peace and gratitude.

Setting a colorful tablecloth brings excitement and wonders to the food that is served on the table. It makes the food tastier and appetizing to eat.

Colors create moods. However, when there are multiple colors, the mood changes. Some people prefer solids such as red, green, or white for Christmas, but this can leave a silent and formal mood with your family. But this is Christmas! Even though the overall dining experience may be formal, the actual mood shouldn't be. The mood should be cheerful and talkative. This is Christmas, after all!

Choosing a colorful tablecloth doesn't mean you have to choose the traditional colors of Christmas. They can include even yellow or purple such as you see from our picture.

If you are worried about the colors of Christmas fading away, that's where the rest of your table design needs to take over. Your centerpiece and napkins will create the harmony you desire.

Image source: Beppie K @ Flickr

Benson Mills Christmas Ribbons Engineered Printed Fabric Tablecloth, 60-Inch-by-120 Inch
Benson Mills Christmas Ribbons Engineered Printed Fabric Tablecloth, 60-Inch-by-120 Inch

If you want something less showy and with a Christmas look, try this fantastic table cloth from Benson Mills. It's a 60 inch by 120 inch cloth featuring printed ribbons perfect for any family Christmas dinner.

A place setting for Christmas dinner
A place setting for Christmas dinner

Which of these is your favorite family holiday get together?

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Table Place Setting

A great table place setting conveys a well-presented and delicious Christmas meal for the entire family. In fact, setting the plates and utensils properly welcomes the family to eat together which builds a harmonious relationship while spending Christmas as one family. The setting of the table includes the plates, utensils, glasses and table napkins.

A formal place setting should include the following:

  1. Forks on the left, with the first used fork being the outermost, such as the salad fork. The dinner fork should be the closest to the plate.
  2. The dinner knife and soup spoon go on the right. The soup spoon should be the outer most and the knife's blade should face inward.
  3. Any desert forks should be placed above and sideways of the plate.
  4. Any glasses should be placed four inches away from the plate on the right side.

Table napkins

A table napkin adds art and comfort to a table. It shouldn't only be something used for wiping your face, it should also be something which adds creativity.

  • A simple yet elegant design for a table napkin is to create an origami candle and place it inside the wine glass.
  • A second idea is to create a French fold and place the napkin on the left.
  • Another design, is to create a more extravagant origami design and place it on the center of the plate.
  • Fourthly, it is possible to simply place the napkin in a holder.

Image source: VancityAllie @ Flickr

Christmas dinner table centerpiece
Christmas dinner table centerpiece

Setting a Centerpiece

A centerpiece provides attraction and elegance to the eyes of the family. It is very important to choose the right centerpiece to put in such a way that it looks eye catching and eye popping even with the food around it.

  1. Floral arrangement - The arrangement should include reds, greens, and whites.
  2. Candles - A great look is to place candles inside an Advent candle holder. If you wish, something simple can be accomplished with arranging candles with flowers or using an Advent wreath or a candle placed with evergreen.
  3. Poinsettia - A poinsettia is a great look for any table.
  4. Christmas ornaments / pine cones - Place the ornaments or pine cones (or both) inside a bowl. You can add candles for an extra touch or leave it as is.

Something homemade is always a good choice as well. Making something with garland, candles, pine cones, or one of the other great many Christmas decorations can be full of fun. Get your children involved for some extra quality family time. It'll not only look fantastic, but it will also be a point of discussion in the future and something your children will be proud about.

Image source: Don Nunn @ Flickr

Nearly Natural 4654 Candleabrum Holiday
Nearly Natural 4654 Candleabrum Holiday

This beautiful centerpiece includes gleaming apples, jeweled berries, evergreen branches, and an elegant glass hurricane candle base for the perfect family Christmas dinner.


ACTS Will Give Your Christmas Extra Cheer

Hopefully you learned something! Be sure to follow all of the steps to create the perfect Christmas dinner table. Remember, arrange, be colorful, be creative with table napkins, and have a great centerpiece!


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    • Arco Hess Designs profile image

      Arco Hess 2 years ago from Kansas City, Kansas

      Thank you, Comfort B. I hope you will be able to use the ideas. :)

    • ComfortB profile image

      Comfort Babatola 2 years ago from Bonaire, GA, USA

      These decorating ideas are beautiful, and practical too. Thanks for sharing. Voted up and useful.

    • Arco Hess Designs profile image

      Arco Hess 3 years ago from Kansas City, Kansas

      @sosown, the pictures are all credited to the proper sources beneath each text block. :-)

    • sosown profile image

      Kelly 3 years ago from NJ, USA

      I liked your pictures, did you take them yourself, or choose them from the internet?

    • LindaSarhan profile image

      L Sarhan 3 years ago

      Great tips! I am definitely sharing this one.