8 Creative Accents to Establish Your Holiday Table Apart

8 Creative Accents to Establish Your Holiday Table Apart

It is the time of year, when dried leaves under the soles of your boots, the day air is crisp and it is time to gather with family and friends to get food and drink.

I recently asked a few experts — including a stylist, a florist and a chef — to discuss their insights and strategies for hosting this year. Their simple, cheap jobs can brighten any holiday get-together and add a private, fresh touch for your fall table.

Corynne Pless

Gina Sims, a photo stylist (one of many other creative titles), offers the following guidance for styling your holiday table: “First comes the theme, the vibe and the colours,” she says. “Afterward the items which will make the largest impact.”

I chose a neutral palette to match with a rustic theme and added a few splashes of bold colours throughout the plates and florals. Title tags include a personal touch. “I love to label everything,” Sims says. “It makes your table look thought-out and unique.”

Corynne Pless

Project: Title Tags

Create name tags with a few series and card stock. Look outside or on your kitchen for alternative place card holders. I tested a few distinct choices before picking simple string tied around a cloth napkin.

Corynne Pless

Project: Chalkboard Tray

Coat a metal plate using chalkboard spray paint and write your personalized message in addition to This undertaking can be used yearlong.

Note: Avoid placing food directly on the surface; the menu functions best for exhibiting wineglasses, candles or jars.

Corynne Pless

Sims suggests adding layers and height to your table to direct the gaze upwards. “Using the whole wall makes the setting really intriguing. I almost always hang something from the ceiling or from trees if we’re outside, if it be a garland, banner, lights, pom-poms or lanterns,” she states.

In order to add height to my display, I hung a window and then dressed with a colorful garland.

Job: Paper Garland

Produce a simple, colorful garland by cutting paper using vintage floral prints to triangles and threading them on a string. Old art books or textbooks with thick pages may provide decorative alternatives for your garland as well.

Corynne Pless

Project: Outdoor Bar

An easy table made from hay bales works perfectly for a temporary outside pub. Whether you’re hosting dinner out or gathering around a flame, it is an easy way to keep drinks close at hand.

I made my pub by stacking a couple of hay bales together and including a vintage wooden sign at the top. I also turned a wooden crate into a cooler by stapling a transparent plastic bag to its inside.

Corynne Pless

These colorful projects and a hay bale or 2 can easily transform your table, patio or backyard into an unforgettable setting for fall entertaining.

Corynne Pless

“To get a fantastic fall table, step out,” Sims says. “I enjoy using leaves, nuts — au naturel or spray painted a fantastic metallic shade.” Copper is especially powerful in the fall, she says.

“I send my kids outside to hunt for acorns with shirts still on,” she adds. “You can’t go wrong with nature.”

Corynne Pless

“I like large-scale items like vases or cloches, and use varying heights to include more attention,” Sims says.

I took Sims’ guidance and increased a few of the blossoms and accessories to vary the elevation. Extended sticks from our lawn are accumulated in a simple, big vase, which adds texture and height to the display.

Corynne Pless

Project: Illustrated Clipboards

Clipboards are an affordable and effortless way to upgrade a blank space on your wall. Start by prepping your space and outlining your letters in pen.

Insert paint and you are done! If you want to reuse the clipboards later, consider using colorful Japanese washi tape to spell something out instead.

Corynne Pless

Project: Natural Flower Arrangements

John Cooper and Celia Barss handle Woodland Gardens, a farm which grows over 80 types of certified organic vegetables, fruit and cut flowers. Cooper provides a few hints for organizing a seasonal, low-key bouquet.

He suggests collecting items like grasses, leaves or herbaceous wildflowers from your yard or even a neighbor. The white tuberose blossom is among Cooper and Barss’ favored seasonal blossoms. “They are simple in look and so fragrant, so that they are one of our favorites. We dig and store the bulbs for the subsequent year,” Cooper says.

I spotted those coniferous branches on a hike and included a few sprays of greenery from our tiny garden, such as lavender, spiked celosia and dusty miller.

Corynne Pless

If you are not certain where to start, Cooper suggests looking around you outside. “The natural world provides the best inspiration,” he states. “See what grows or blossoms in groups and attempt to replicate — see plant communities and work these into natural structures.”

Cooper also promotes simplicity. “If you’re doing more than one bouquet, find a pattern and repeat — not too many distinct types, textures or colours.”

Corynne Pless

Job: Engineered Water Resistant

This thought was inspired by many of my favorite restaurants in Nyc and by this DIY project by Molly Jacques. I relabeled the wine bottles with enamel paint and a small bristle brush.

Try recycling clean wine bottles and using them for water. Scrape off the label paste with hot water and a flat utensil, and completely clean the bottle. Fill the clean bottle with water, chill it in the refrigerator, and put it on the table until guests arrive for a chic alternative water pitcher.

Corynne Pless

Project: Dipped Spoons

Give your serving pieces an upgrade by painting the grips. I followed this comprehensive online tutorial in House of Earnest. Use them to serve something like this fall-perfect side dish:

Roasted Carrot and Beet Salad With Feta, Pulled Parsley and Cumin Vinaigrette
(from A New Turn in the South, by Hugh Acheson)
Serves 6

1 tsp salt 1 lb baby carrots, peeled, 1/2 inch of green top left on1 pound baby beets, washed although not peeled1/4 pound feta1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil1/4 cup cumin vinaigrette (recipe below) 1 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves, pulled1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Bring a large pot of water to a vigorous boil, then add 1/2 tsp of the salt, and then the carrots. Blanch for 1 minute and remove the carrots, placing them into a bowl of ice water to halt the cooking. As soon as they’re cool, eliminate them.

2. Place the beets in a big pot of cold water. Bring to a boil, then add the remaining 1/2 tsp of salt and simmer until the beets are tender. Gently the beets and pare them with paper towels to rub the skin off. This is easier when they’re still warm. Crumble the feta and set it aside.

3. Toss the carrots using 1/2 tablespoon of the olive oil and set them on half a baking sheet. Toss the beets with the remaining olive oil and set them on the other half of the skillet. Roast for 15 minutes.

4. Remove the beets and carrots in the oven and set them in separate bowls. Add 1 tablespoon of the cumin vinaigrette and 1/2 cup of the skillet to the beets and toss. Add 1 tablespoon of the vinaigrette, the remaining parsley and the feta to the carrots and toss.

5. Divide the carrots evenly among 6 plates. Then divide the beets evenly among the plates and then gently mix them with the carrots. Drizzle with a bit more of the vinaigrette.

Cumin Vinaigrette
Makes 3/4 cup
1 tsp Dijon mustard1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil1 tsp lemon juice2 teaspoons sherry vinegar1 teaspoon cumin seed, toasted in a skillet and then pulverized1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mintSalt and pepper to tastePlace the Dijon mustard into a bowl and whisk in the olive oil, then the lemon juice and the sherry vinegar. Add the cumin and the mint. Season with salt and pepper.

Used with permission from A New Turn in the South, by Hugh Acheson. Copyright © 2011 by Hugh Acheson. Published by Clarkson Potter, a division of Random House, Inc..

Inform us : Have you been making your very own tabletop accents this year? Share a photo below!

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