Tag Archives: holiday table

Dec 11, 2018


photo by Nickie Stone

With the holidays quickly creeping up on us, we’re sharing a few tips and modifications on designs we do for our clients that you can easily do at home for your holiday tabletops. Feel free to leave any questions or comments you may have if not covered here.

For this first takeaway, I love the idea of a roll or bread piece served on the plate with a name “flag” in it- something so simple and easy that is just a nice little touch for guests sitting down.


photo by Corbin Gurkin

This I love as a sweet touch for all of the upcoming holidays, a fresh sprig of rosemary laid out on napkins, you could also tie together a small bundle of fresh thyme with butchers twine in lieu of rosemary.


photos by Adrienne Page

We used this concept to display escort cards for a wedding dinner, but for a smaller gathering or dinner party, taking corks that you have around the house or from what you will be serving and placing handwritten name cards at each seat would be just so.


photo by Liz Banfield

Now, this is a really easy one – one even the kids could get involved with… finding a leaf or piece of greenery from the yard and writing names with metallic markers on them is truly a simply elegant design.

photo by Liz Banfield

I’ve been seeing different variations on this our and around a bit, but for the glam hostess, finding agate slices is fairly easy these days. Painting or writing with white or metallic on them for menus or place cards also makes a sweet take home surcie for the guests.


photo by Adrienne Page

Lots of ways you can do this at home… Finding different vessels from around the house and filling them with small bouquets of flowers, or greenery makes for a pretty addition to to a formal table, and it also means you can do less in the center. You could also use thing ribbon or twine to tie name cards around the vases.


photo by Liz Banfield

This idea would be a nice detail for a buffet type setting where it’s hard to find a lot of decor opportunities. Pre wrapping the silverware in cloth napkins will make it easy for guests to carry along with a full plate. Wrapping them with pretty paper, scraps of special wrapping or wallpaper will give it a finished touch.

photo by Gayle Brooker

For a simple, lovely, inexpensive, and easy centerpiece idea- purchase phalenopsis orchid plants at your local store (Trader Joe’s has great ones!), and put them in pots covered in moss. This is such a small task but really gives a formal and elegant touch… You could even spray paint the pot to match the color scheme.

photo by Liz Banfield

For a client whose rehearsal dinner fell on New Year’s Eve- we took silver strands from decorations we purchased online and decomposed them… tied to each each seat with name cards gives a festive feel!

12.11.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Entertaining, Event Design, Event Planning, Parties, Uncategorized, Weddings | Comments >>
Dec 11, 2018


With the holidays surprisingly already around the corner, we are sharing some tips from our feature for Trad Home. But  many tips here can translate to any dinner party occasion. All using items you can pull from around your home with easy how to’s! Photos by Corbin Gurkin.


Finding enough seats to accommodate all of your guests may be a challenge, so don’t be afraid to mix seats.. Benches, upholstered chairs, dining room chairs, etc. can all work together. Also, scour your home for items that could be used for eclectic decor- using small stacks of books and placing candlesticks on them, using compote dishes or juice glasses, or emptying different bowls laying around can add variety and dimension.


Also, placing varying serving dishes with nuts, olives, or dried fruits add to the decor and also offer different appetizers without having to offer a formal course. We often place bowls or items at our bars, so as guests are getting drinks and having conversations they can easily nosh.


Handwritten menus are such an easy way to amp it up for your guests. You can even find mixed materials to write on- these copper sheets came from Lowe’s, but you could use different picture frames (write on the glass), old stationary or wrapping papers. Use a fine tip Sharpie, which also comes in plenty of colors!


Here in Charleston we have access to many shells, specifically Oyster shells. We used oyster shells to create salt and pepper wells, and then raided our serving collections. Any shells with a bowl component would work obviously.


If you are dining outside and have added lighting, extra cords can be unsightly. Find greenery or vines that you can attach to the cords to camouflage them.


Of course we would be remiss if we didn’t discuss setting up a bar for your guests. Make sure you have a selection of everything along with the appropriate glasses,  in case someone only drinks wine, or only drink scotch.  It also takes a load off of you as a host for guests to easily be able to serve themselves.


If you don’t have decanters for everything (btw- they are often available for a fraction at antique stores), using glass pitchers, wine decanters, or lovely old bottles can work just as well. Be sure to let your guests know which is in each container again with handwritten signage.

12.11.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Entertaining, Event Design, Event Planning, Food and Drink, Photographers, Press | Comments >>