Monday, September 6, 2010

Table setting for company

Setting a Great Table for Company
When it comes to setting the dinner table for company, I am in my glory. I love to have a theme, and often I purchase dishes, table favors and decorations from the $1.00 Store or the $.99 Store. I have found amazing and exciting things from both. I am very fortunate to have inherited beautiful sterling flatware (service for 12) and Lenox dishes (service for 12). They are truly exquisite but not appropriate for all occasions.
I once, no that should be several times, purchased dinner plates from the stores mentioned above. We often entertain members from our Sunday school class, the old folks that is, just like my husband and me. Usually we have anywhere from 2 to 10 people, but on holidays with family we can have more. It is fun for me to decide not only the menu, but how I want to set the table. I have numerous table cloths and napkins in a variety of colors, so I start with that, but starting is just that, my first choice is not always my last. Try different things out several days before your company is due.
The $1.00 Store and the other one can have ugly plates and things, but once in awhile, if you look or hit them at the right time you can find things that no one would ever believe where you got them. One day I was at the $1.00 Store and I had a basket full of goodies, but on the way to the register (I don’t know how I missed them) I saw a fabulous set of red and white dishes, bowls, and coffee cups. I instantly fell in love with them, because red is one of my favorite colors, and quickly emptied my cart. I proceeded to fill it back up with a complete service for 6 of the red and white dishes.
Another time, I planned dinner for 10 and, again, I wasn’t going to use my Lenox service, so I went to the $.99 Cent Store and just happened to see 12 marvelous, large, 11 inch, tan colored, dinner plates. They looked like expensive stone wear. I snapped them up in a minute, and proceeded to make my dinner theme into one from the Holy Land. I made the river Jordon down the center of the table using $1.00 Store rocks and stones, small ferns, and light green, orange and tan candles. I put the candles on a plate made to hold them, and I had short, little vases, $1 each from Wal-Mart. To each vase, I added a single orange flower from a $3.00 bouquet I bought at the grocery store. I
One year, we hosted a dinner, and I bought from the $1.00 Store, adorable cats that stood about 4 inches high. They were dressed in various colors, black and white stripe, pink, hats, feathers and purple or light green outfits. There was a place to put a name card, so for the women I used the cats to indicate where everyone should sit. I used a simple place card for the men. The whole theme was, of course cats. The celadon green, table cloth held a creamy white satin runner, and I filled out the rest of the d├ęcor with a bouquet of roses and candles. I have lots of beautiful candle holders that hold tapers (tall, slender candles) and for this theme I used purple tapers.
Well, you get the picture. To make a fun table, use your imagination and shop cheap. One time I bought 12 plates that looked like they came from Macy’s but were from the $1.00 Store. I went to Wal-Mart (my favorite store) and bought 12 glass salad plates for $1.00 each. I use them with the above dishes that have a dainty rim of colorful flowers around the white plate. FYI the $1.00 Store always has cheap, some times ugly, figurines displayed in the front of the store and on shelves elsewhere. If you need ideas for a theme, or you need favors, look these items over and pick out the best ones (check the faces to make sure they are done well, some are sloppy). These stores are a great plact to get ideas for how to set your table.
PS People love to hear my stories of where I found my dishes and the fact that I am not too proud to tell them of my great purchases.

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