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Interiors

Christmas Hosting Tips According To The Experts

The presents have been wrapped, the food has been bought, and the champagne is on ice, now it’s time to turn your attention to your Christmas tablescape…

If you’re wondering how to give your Christmas dining table the wow factor, fear not, CF has consulted the experts for their pearls of wisdom.

Bell Hutley Artist and Founder of Bell Hutley  

What are your top tips for curating a Christmas tablescape?

Let nature do the talking. I love to use whatever I have in the garden: foraging for pinecones, eucalyptus gunnii, holly, and berries. I weave it across the centre of the table. If you can get your hands on gold spray, spraying the pinecones is always a nice touch. Another idea is to get shrubbery with lots of small branches for the centre of the table, and hang small baubles and decorations off of the branches. Always have candles scattered for a golden atmospheric glow. When it comes to napkins, go big on the ribbon when tying them: this always looks extra special.

What decorations will you be using on your Christmas table this year? 

This year I’ve been shying away from more traditional colours and want something more vibrant. I found some giant acorns and baubles at Covent Garden Market which I have hand-painted in baby pink, olive green, and gold. I have recently experimented with hollow bark, spreading it down the centre of the table. I will decorate it with tea lights, moss, foliage, and whatever else I can get my hands on.

What is the secret to a successful Christmas supper party?

I don’t think you can go too wrong with: plenty of wine and cocktails flowing, fun music, a warm fireplace, mood lighting, candles, and food – preferably served late so everyone can be a little drunk by the time they sit down. A rowdy game of charades with more cocktails is always welcome too. I like to keep things very simple and informal with a “help yourself” attitude. 

What is your festive tipple of choice?

I’ll be making a Hendricks gin with Fever Tree tonic, served with a large slice of grapefruit and ice. 

What you are hoping to find under the Christmas tree?

This year I’m hoping to received experience-based presents, these presents are really memorable. 

Sophie Lamotte and Cloe Bueso Co-Founders of The Sette   

 

What are your top tips for curating a Christmas tablescape?

At The Sette, we love mixing traditional with the unexpected: iconic Christmas colours designed in a contemporary way. When it comes to your Christmas table, start with the mood of the meal and work with the colours in the room. Once you’ve decided on this, choose a tablecloth and napkins that reflect the mood and build from there. Pick colours for the table linens that you can work in throughout the table. Don’t feel you have to go too matchy-matchy, but it does help for the table to have a cohesive look and feel. At Christmas it’s always nice to have a festive centrepiece such as a wreath with a large candle in the centre. Crackers are a must: they automatically add a festive vibe.

What decorations will you be using on your Christmas table this year? 

Our burgundy candles are perfect for creating a festive atmosphere. We will be placing our bud vases, filled with flowers, down the centre of the table, which add a great finishing flourish. Clementina Sketchbook placecards add a personal touch too.

What is the secret to a successful Christmas supper party?

Christmas crackers break the ice, and a fun festive game brings people together.

What is your festive tipple of choice?

Mulled wine with an extra shot of cognac.

What are you hoping to find under the Christmas tree?

A pair of our champagne coupés in clear crystal or blue.

Bianca White Founder of BABLE candles

What are your top tips for curating a Christmas tablescape?

The Christmas table is one of my favourite tablescapes to create. It’s a great excuse to use all of your best tableware and really go all out with embellishments. I would say have fun with it; use lots of colour and textures. I think it’s fun to do something slightly traditional, so that you really feel it’s Christmas, by using holly and velvet, but add quirky touches. For example, non-festive flowers and eye-catching crackers.

What decorations will you be using on your Christmas table this year?

Instead of place settings I have some gorgeous red bows with each of my family members’ names embroidered on them in gold from The Embroidered Napkin Company. They look stunning and really add a touch of glamour to the table. Naturally, we are going to have BABLE dinner candles as they create a wonderful atmosphere. I am going to go with red and pink with gold stars.

What is the secret to a successful Christmas supper party?

All you need is a board game to bring everyone together and have a great time. Board games paired with a cheese board are a winning combination.

What is your festive tipple of choice?

On the big day, I mainly stick to champagne, but I do love a good Aperol Spritz (even in the winter!).

What you are hoping to find under the Christmas tree?

A baby blue smart coat.

Anna De Lanoy Co-Founder of Anna + Nina

What are your top tips for curating a Christmas tablescape?

More is more! I love classic tartans and red and white stripes, but also try to spice things up with a little glitter, winter flowers, coloured candles, and Christmas crackers. Put bows around chairs, ornaments on the table, and get out the real silver and crystal glasses. If not now, when?

What decorations will you be using on your Christmas table this year?

My table will be decorated with our Holly tablecloth and napkins, complemented by red and green twisted candles. I’m going for a super classic setting with some tongue-in-cheek ornaments and glitter place cards. Above the table you’ll find our Merry Christmas garland and mistletoe.

What is the secret to a successful Christmas supper party?

1) Prepare as much as you can far in advance.

2) Keep the food simple. I prefer to do as much as I can in the oven; this gives me a chance to mingle instead of checking pots and pans.

3) Little details, such as written menus, make your guests feel welcome.

What is your festive tipple of choice?

Champagne, always.

What you are hoping to find under the Christmas tree?

I’ve got my eyes set on a Hermès passport holder. I have mentioned that to my husband – now let’s hope he got the hint.

Isabelle Dubern & Anna Zaoui Co-Founders of The Invisible Collection 

 

What are your top tips for curating a Christmas tablescape?
Isabelle: I like to mix candles, colours, flowers, vases, and objets both old and new. Murano pieces for example, or rock crystal candle holders. Placemats are essential for every Christmas tablescape, either white or embroidered.

What decorations will you be using on your Christmas table this year?

Anna: I will be using one of the Dîner en Ville boxes we’ve developed with Isabelle Moltzer. Effortlessly chic, each box is composed of a harmonious selection of vintage dinner and luncheon plates, wine glasses and goblets, bespoke linen and napkins, and an array of elegant, decorative objects – carefully handpicked by Isabelle herself.

What is the secret to a successful Christmas supper party?
A: Make the colours work and the taste will follow: what is nice to the eyes, will be even better to taste!

What is your festive tipple of choice?
I: A Bellini with fresh strawberries.

What are you hoping to find under the Christmas tree?

I: This beautiful rug by Studioparisien. I love its loops & tassels.

Veronique Piedeleu Owner of Caravane

What are your top tips for curating a Christmas tablescape?
It’s the little things that make a difference for me. Recent finds – whether that be new linen colours or beautifully embroidered napkins – interspersed with long-loved plates, silverware, and crystal glasses inherited from my mother and grandmother. Whilst it’s often a time for new things, the essence of Christmas is about family and tradition. I always go back to nostalgic pieces and objects when curating my tablescape for that reason.

What decorations will you be using on your Christmas table this year?

Our Selena table linen and napkins. There is such a gorgeous spectrum of colours to choose from, which means every year I can totally transform the scheme of our tablescape. Curcuma or Laurier both perfectly pair with gold accessories, such as the hand embroidered Kalagi napkin rings or the Deena dishes, adding sparkle and charm to every Christmas tablescape.

What is the secret to a successful Christmas supper party?

Family. Christmas dinner is always my favourite time because I can have both my children home. Ambience too, which I think is easily achieved with winter candles dotted around the house and a roaring fire.

What is your festive tipple of choice?

I don’t drink alcohol but instead treat myself with an apple and spice kombucha.

What you are hoping to find under the Christmas tree?
The new Ottolenghi recipe book and some yoga pants.

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