Keeping a Beautiful Table

As discussed in the article: Setting the Table: A Sacred Act of Love and Connection, setting a beautiful table for at least one meal a day has multiple benefits.

However, we are all busy. Each day is full and that requires us to have plans in place for getting a nourishing meal on the table each day, as well as making a beautiful table easy to set.

I have found that having certain tools in place, make table-setting a breeze for company as well as for our regular family dinner.

  1. Maintain a Beautiful Table Throughout the Day: Keeping a table with a centerpiece and linens is essential for creating a lovely setting for each meal. On our dining room table, I always have three large farmhouse-style candles. Additionally, I use a burlap table runner or placemats to add visual interest. Having consistent linens and a centerpiece ensures that our dining table looks sharp all day and remains inviting for every meal we share there.
  2. Tidy Up After Table Activities: Since we use all the tables in our home for homeschool lessons, sewing projects, and crafts, I make sure at least one table is clean for eating. I encourage my children to put away their materials when they’re done. After school, the books find their place, and completed projects are stored away.
  3. Adornments for Our Table: Our typical table decorations include candles, fabric, and flowers. Lighting candles during family meals creates a cozy atmosphere and encourages conversation. I also like to forage around the yard for foliage to adorn the table. Seasonal flowers, holly, or even cherry blossom branches (when our tree blooms) all add a touch of natural beauty. Fabric is essential for completing the table’s look—I’m content with hemp placemats, but a simple table runner or a more formal tablecloth works equally well.
  4. Cloth Napkins Are a Must: A decade ago, I switched to using cloth napkins. Not only do they elevate an ordinary table setting, but they also save money. We no longer need to buy paper napkins, which adds up over time. I can reuse cloth napkins for each meal, assigning the same one to each person’s spot.
  5. Tableware should match napkins the regular setting. While I initially loved stoneware, the wear and tear from our children led me to switch to a pretty Corelle set. The comfort of knowing that a dropped plate won’t chip or shatter is reassuring. Although I do have some fine china my husband gifted me, I reserve it for special occasions due to the hand-washing requirement. Overall, a quality set of tableware can be chosen to coordinate with table linens and accessories, completing the look for every meal without the need for separate dishes.

Having these things in place, makes setting a table for dinner each evening a breeze. The table invites people to sit around it at all times, whether to share a cup of coffee or tea or spread out and spend time studying the Bible.