Christmas Styling and Hosting Tips

Here i've shared my current 7 best tips on hosting Christmas with style and less stress!

I love hosting Christmas at our house, so from this and my experience as an event manager, i've listed my best tips to get you thinking and help take the stress out of decorating and preparing for your Christmas lunch or dinner. I'll be using this tips myself so I can sit down, relax and enjoy time with loved ones on Christmas Day.

- Loretta, Tablecloth Queen

Tip No.1

Set the table on Christmas Eve, either when you’ve finished making dinner or when you get home from work. You’ll thank yourself on Christmas day that you’ve got this task out of the way, and you’ll be free to make styling changes with more time up your sleeve than when you are trying to cook or food prep on Christmas Day.

You’ll be surprised how long it can take to set out the tablecloth, placemats and or table runner, cutlery, plates, wine glasses, tumblers, napkins, napkin rings, and Christmas table decorations (flower arrangements, Christmas ornaments, candles etc.) This task is best done not in a rush, and so long as you are happy to eat breakfast at the kitchen bench or couch on Christmas day, then you may as well get a head start on this one (unless you have cats who will love to mess this up in the night)! If you don't trust your pets or kids not to mess it up, then consider setting the table first thing after breakfast so you don't get caught up cooking and end up setting the table when the guests arrive.

Tip No. 2

If you’ve decided to do formal fabric table napkins for your table, consider also having Christmas patterned or plain paper serviettes on hand in case your guests have accidental large spills or need a new napkin for dessert time. You can usually pick up eco-friendly serviettes with your Christmas grocery shopping and I often have these on the buffet table in a serviette holder or on a nice decorative plate. Whilst I love a fabric napkin for the table setting, it usually saves me getting up to grab paper towel if I have some eco-friendly serviettes within guests reach.

Tip No. 3

Whilst food placed in the middle of the table is easy to reach, if you have a large amount of food or guests you may consider setting up the food to be self-served from the buffet cabinet/sideboard or setting up a buffet table using trestle tables with a tablecloth. This can be very useful so that guests don’t have to pass platters around the table or reach over each other to serve food.

If you have a buffet cabinet/sideboard in your dining room with everyday décor on it then it’s time to carefully wrap these up in newspaper/butcher’s paper/tissue paper and pop them into a cardboard box or plastic tub in the garage/laundry/spare room while you utilize this useful space for Christmas Day hosting! If you have a spare few Christmas ornaments or décor you can pop a couple of these on the buffet, perhaps with a table runner, some placemats overlapped along the top, or a tablecloth folded into a skinny rectangle, and now you have a Christmas decorated buffet for guests to line up and self-serve.


Tip No. 4

Consider using a trestle table with adjustable leg heights (you can pick these up at Bunnings or Officeworks) for a kids table if you have more than 2 kids attending your gathering. Giving kids a bit more space to dine can be useful to avoid accidental spills.

You can decorate this with a matching or contrasting coloured tablecloth, so that the kids feel special too. If you don’t have one, then a table runner or some placemats will do the trick for a bit of Christmas festivity! If you have enough space, place a plastic bowl with plastic Christmas ornaments or bonbons in the middle of the table for kid-proof centrepiece décor.

Tip No. 5

If you’ve set the table and it’s not looking especially Christmassy or glamourous, then see if you have a few Christmas baubles spare and pop these into a clear glass vase or on a cake stand in the centre of the table. Alternatively, make two for symmetry and place one on either side of your centrepiece (halfway between the centrepiece and the end place setting). This can really add a festive look to your table and if you choose a colour or two that match your table setting items (such as silver baubles to match silver cutlery) then it will look great!


Tip No. 6

Consider using your kitchen breakfast bench as a drinks station. You can set up extra wine glasses, tumblers, a water jug, wine bottles, and non-alcoholic drinks here so that your table isn’t crowded. If you have a table runner this will help keep spills from dripping off the bench. If you have a reindeer decoration or a little Christmas tree, this can be a great place to put this, or any spare bon-bons you might have inside a pretty bowl.

Tip No. 7

If you’re planning to do napkin folding art (like you may have seen in catalogues or on social media) for Christmas Day, then set aside some time this weekend to practice this skill. There are some great tutorials on Pinterest and YouTube for folding formal fabric napkins into Christmas Trees or pretty bows. Trust me, this type of table art is not something you want to be learning at 10am on Christmas Day, so get out a glass of wine, or a cup of tea this Sunday evening and sit down with a formal sized napkin and a napkin ring with an aim to decide on the folding style for you and master the art in advance. It can be fun, and you’ll be proud of what you’ve created!


Pop these tips on your Xmas to-do list and you’ll be a Christmas hosting superhero, free to enjoy the celebrations and proud of your Christmas styling!