If you are looking for some clever inspiration for your holiday party tablescapes, look no further than the pages of the Charles Dickens classic about Ebeneezer Scrooge.
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You can create a themed table display that is reminiscent of Victorian England, an opulent feast of abundance, or a streamlined, architectural tablescape.
Begin by understanding the fundamentals of effective buffet design and how to create a tablescape. This article will discuss the materials to use for the themes, whereas the other two articles will instruct you on how to build a tablescape.
Inspiration: The Ghost of Christmas Past
Dickens portrays the visions of Scrooge’s past Christmases as peaceful, bucolic, sweet and friendly. You can capture this feeling by using natural materials, incorporating specific fabric choices, and adding in several decorative elements seen in “A Christmas Carol.” The contrast between old English finery and the pastoral setting is what captures this theme.
- Use a base tablecloth of open-weave cotton, monk’s cloth or even soft burlap in a neutral, undyed color to simulate the counting bags found in Fezziwig’s warehouse business.
- Over this base, add layers of festive cloth in fabrics reminiscent of the ladies’ Victorian dresses at Fezziwig’s Ball. Look for rich, jewel-tone satins and taffeta in green, plum, copper, and gold.
- Overlap the fabric, scrunch it up in places and tuck it around tea lights or candles that are held in clear glass votive holders.
- Use fresh greenery, such as evergreen boughs, sprigs of mistletoe, red apples and firm green pears to contrast against the fabric swatches.
- Finally, add in an antique violin or several fiddle-shaped Christmas tree ornaments to remind your guests of the inebriated fiddler entertaining at Fezziwig’s Ball.
Inspiration: The Ghost of Christmas Present
Dickens portrays this spirit as one that is full of abundance, opulence and joy, and this theme works beautifully for any type of holiday event.
To recreate this theme in your own home, you will need to present the image of excess food, gifts and ornamentation, so scouring your existing holiday décor and the local Dollar Store will help to keep your budget in check!
- Use a base tablecloth of rich red or burgundy velvet to simulate the plush robe worn by the Ghost of Christmas Present. The fabric should be draped over the buffet levels and hang at least 6 inches over the edge of the table.
- Wind yards of gold roping throughout the velvet cloth, using the rope to tie off some of the fabric around the levels, and in small bunches for added visual interest.
- Now it’s time to add the abundance!