The 300 Sandwiches Guide to Five Minute Tablescaping

By 300 Sandwiches

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goldpumpk3You’re having people over for dinner. Your table needs to be entertaining. 

You cannot have paper napkins out for people. The television remote better be nowhere near that turkey. Or the biscuits. Flowers? Yes, a staple, just like the cutlery. But it’s a holiday. You’ll need a higher level of visual stimulation.

I was not brought up in a house that was big on tablescaping. My mom was too focused on the rotation of food in the oven onto serveable plates that table decor was an afterthought. If there were a few candles lit, that was considered tablescape enough.

But E got me into tablescaping. He is a visual person who pays attention to the appeal of cooking, of plating and of the table food is being presented on. “Make it look like you care,” he says. My man cares enough to spend a day buying flowers and laying out the good china a day in advance of dinner.

How can you tablescape like a boss? Quite simple.

Herewith, 300’s Guide to Five Minute Tablescaping:

—GOURDS: Get a few. Big. Small. Medium. Lopsided. Whatever. Uniform is boring. Place them on your table. Add some candles, or leaves. Boom. Done. Feeling arts and crafty? Paint your gourds. Above, my weekend project: my gold plated gourd I painted with a can of gold spray paint. To do at home, clean gourd, spray with white primer, then a coat of gold paint, and let dry.

—VEGETABLES: Acorn squash is beautiful on a farm table. Butternut squash, cranberries and persimmons are also great pops of color.

—BRANCHES or FOLIAGE: Go to the park, and grab a few branches. If a few have leaves on them even better. Branches add texture and color to your table. Keep them clear of any candles to prevent fire.

—CANDLES: A few tea candles or candlesticks are just enough to illuminate the table and have some light source bouncing off the those glistening vegetables and gourds.

—FINALLY, LAYER: No rules, here. Just place your pretty things down the middle of the table in between table settings, leaving some room for your food, of course. You can use one pumpkin and one candle in the middle and have a significant tablescape, or construct an elaborate 50 piece ‘scape with every spare pumpkin and votive you can find.

Voila. Tablescape in five minutes. Leaves more time to focus on cooking. Maybe I’ll do two pies instead of one with all my newfound time this year. Might have to move my gold gourd out of the way to make room for it.

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