Entertaining can seem overwhelming or look like a big production- for someone who isn’t used to it. However, the reality is, what may look like a production is never as complicated as it seems, and putting together a nice gathering, is actually much easier than it looks.
I imagine these are familiar questions both to people new to entertaining, and to those who are already entertaining pros...
Don’t know where to start? Start here!
I would always suggest, simply starting with the basics. Having a nice set of basic linens that you can dress up and down will not only make your everyday meals prettier, but also your casual gatherings around the table with friends and family more enjoyable. Depending on your lifestyle, this can be a set of wipeable placemats (minimal cleanup, yay!) or if you are a bigger household, an easy care tablecloth which is machine washable with no ironing needed. A great advantage to using a tablecloth is that you can easily add to the number of people at the table, without having to create individual place settings. I grew up with tablecloths, but became a placemat-gal later on, and now the preference just changes depending on the occasion and the look I want to create on the table.
My go-to Mode Living pieces of late are the Notte placemats. I love how versatile they are- they have a linen-like look and are double sided, allowing you to create many different table scapes, even with the same napkins! Alternatively, you can always dress your table up or keep it just by changing the napkins. Placemats suit my lifestyle since they are so easy to clean up, all you have to do is wipe them down and put them away!
If you prefer tablecloths, I would suggest starting with one from our Essentials Collection. They are machine washable, don’t need to be ironed, and are wine and liquid resistant, which is a big plus when you’re hosting a party. They are perfect for everyday or a formal gathering.
What’s for dinner?
While homemade food is always appreciated, you can create a dinner party with take-out or catered food as well. Not everyone is into cooking, and many are very busy in their day to day lives, you need to find a way that works for you to make entertaining easy and fun. Whatever the occasion is, you can make it as simple as you would like. Putting down a beautiful runner, creating a delicious cheeseboard with your favorite selections, some crackers, fruits and nuts, pouring your favorite wine, and voila, you have an aperitivo with friends! No matter the occasion, you can still make a table look beautiful. The more you set the table, the easier you will realize it is and the more naturally it will come to you.
When in doubt, always choose fresh flowers. They are easily available and will immediately add warmth to any table setting. Pick a floral color that goes with your table setting, or choose a colorful one that will pop on your neutral color palate.
Finally, remember that even for the pro hostess who loves to go above and beyond with every detail, what matters most are the people around the table. We can have a very simple table setting or a sophisticated one, but it’s the people around the table that make it special. When you keep that golden principle in mind, you are sure to create a beautiful time around the table.