Hosting for Christmas: top festive dining tips

Christmas. One of the biggest days of the year, with months of preparation, days of festive tunes played on repeat and the actual day being over in the flash of an eye! As the saying goes, time flies when you’re having fun and amongst the anticipation of ‘the big day’ is memories with loved ones of laughter and joy that will last a lifetime.

We’ve gathered some tips and tricks to get you excited for the seasonal celebrations ahead this Christmas period. Read on to get inspired..

A merry mood

Nothings feels more festive than the aroma of pine, cinnamon, eucalyptus and a burning candle or crackling wood fire. Research has shown that our sense of smell is closely linked to our memory, meaning the two often become intertwined. With so many memories made around the Christmas period, familiar festive smells can not only remind us of joyous moments from Christmases past but ease our guests into the merry mood of the present.

“Burn pine or eucalyptus oil in a burner to set the scent of the evening”

Stacey Dyer @end_of_the_row

As well as setting the scent of the evening, candles can provide the perfect low lighting for a cosy and warm environment where cherished memories can be made. Mix in some Bublé in the background and you have an exquisite foundation for an evening of festivities.

A table fit for a king

The pinnacle of Christmas for most people (aside from the presents and people of course!), is the copious amounts of hearty food. From sweet honey carrots to pigs in blankets and, of course, the controversial sprouts… How you present your delicious banquet is the fun part and sets the scene for your social soiree. With so much delicious food to adorn your table, allow your plates and glassware to do the talking by layering dishes of varying sizes in similar hues… this year, we love the trend of rich, jewel tones of peacock blue, jade green and violet to fill your dining space with a spectacle of colour and energy. Be inspired by the ornate art deco era with scalloped serving plates, fluted water jugs and gold edge champagne coupes. Gold twisted, tapered candles and embellished baubles are the perfect finishing touches to your Christmas dining table for that touch of luxury.

“Use bud vases for individual stems and scatter them amongst the table”

Stacey Dyer @end_of_the_row

Interior guru Stacey Dyer also recommends a scattering of individual stems along the table, and if keeping in theme with the scent already set, pine cones, eucalyptus and some sprigs of pine tree will create the perfect festive look.

Our Kingsley bench is the perfect piece to create an informal dining space to host family and friends

The more the merrier

During the festive period we typically have a lot more time on our hands, and more often than not we choose to spend this with loved ones, the people who lie at the crux of our celebrations! Nevertheless, space isn’t always on the side of everyone with a long invite list and therefore, large, lavish dining chairs may not be an option.

Dining benches can be a great solution in this instance, with no particular parameters for spacing, there’s plenty of room for budging up in case of extra guests…the more the merrier! Drape the bench with a soft throw or sumptuous sheepskin rug to add an air of comfort and you’ve got yourself the perfect seating arrangement for any surprise guests the day may bring.

Relax and revel

Hosting can be a daunting task. Aside cooking a feast, transforming our home into a winter delight and making sure there’s room for everyone, there is the pressure of ensuring everyone is entertained. Traditionally, a trait of a good host is to use their watchful eye to scour over the table, measuring up everyone’s drink to make sure that no one is going dry. However, this can often leave said host feeling like a Jack in the box dashing back and forth from the kitchen to the dinner table to top up everyone’s tipple.

The balance between enjoying the day and being a server can often be difficult but adding a drinks cabinet or a drinks trolley can help blend the two together. This will help prevent you missing out on any precious moments throughout the day, while also keeping everyone with drinks a plenty!

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