Hearty meals and busy diaries are what makes the holiday season, and we’re here to help yours go off with a bang. From table styling and mood lighting, to finishing foodie touches, the entertaining gurus at Social Pantry told us their top tips for seasonal soirées…
Do The Unexpected
This season, it’s time to rip up the rule book and embrace winter’s coolest tabletop trends. Try ‘tabletop noir’ – all-black tableware that looks seriously sophisticated and enhances the colour of food. And continue the rebellious thread by swapping traditional silverware for gold cutlery – it’s a unique table accent ideal for adding a warming glow, perfect for chilly evenings.
Add Pops Of Colour
The easiest way to make an impact is sticking to a neutral colour palette and adding in pops of bright hues. Try placing a row of coloured table candles or mini bottles along the centre of the table – add a dash of water and a few sprigs of flowers (the brighter the better) to each bottle for a Pinterest-worthy spread.
Swap Flowers For Fruit
Scattering seasonal fruit such as crab apples, cherries or mini squash can be a beautiful and original way of dressing your dining table – we guarantee all your friends will want to copy this one.
Dim The Lights
Dim overhead lights where possible (if you haven’t got dimmer switches, consider turning them off and using lamps instead) to and create an intimate atmosphere.
Now you’ve got the lights on low, it’s time to light some candles to give your room a warming ambience. Try placing a cluster of candles or hurricane lanterns in the centre of the table to draw guests together, or for something more traditional and grandiose, opt for a striking candelabra.
Customise Candle Holders
Glass bottles and a bit of creativity are all you need to make gorgeous bespoke candle holders. Fill the bottles with water; submerge a sprig or two of rosemary, a small branch of eucalyptus or even some dried lavender in the water then fix your table candle to the lip of the bottle.
Play It Safe
Now’s not the time to experiment! Avoid a Bridget Jones blue soup moment by sticking to simple dishes you’ve tried before, and opt for dishes that showcase seasonal ingredients for the best flavour and price.
Keep Things Stress-Free
Most importantly, remember to relax and have fun. If you’re at ease, your guests will be too, so do as much prep work in advance as possible: chop veggies beforehand and make baked desserts a few days prior to the event. Because why should you miss out on all the fun?
Try Fun Food Trends
Charcuterie boards are all the rage right now – they can look seriously pretty and are the perfect catering solution for a group of friends. And to finish off your feast, look to the retro dessert revival – think homemade strawberry jam Wagon Wheels, sticky toffee fig rolls or an upside-down pineapple cake.