Sleighride by Candlelight-A Tablescape

Growing up with a French mother who required little help in the kitchen and was an incredible cook, I was most often enlisted to decorate the table.  I’ve been playing with dishes ever since and confess to often planning an entire menu around how a dish will look when served!  Creating the ambiance of a gathering is still my favorite part of entertaining and what I am known for.  For a Christmas Eve Soirée, a sleighride was my theme.  This tablescape can easily be used for a Christmas brunch or dinner.  The beauty is that it is a make-ahead décor, which we all could use at this busy entertaining season.

The centerpiece is a gold woven sleigh brimming with ornaments in golds, pinks(to tie in the dishes), red and blues( to coordinate with the dining room accents). image Because I love to let the rich wood of the table contrast with the china, I choose a runner and chargers instead of a tablecloth.  The runner is gold embroidered cream linen.  I love mismatched china and glassware

image and find them more interesting, less stuffy than matchy-matchy and more modern.  On a gold charger(Tuesday Morning), I layer a dinner plate, a salad plate and a soup cup, all from different but complementary china patterns bought in an antique shop.  The rose pattern works for Christmas because of the green border.  For some glitter, I place a beaded pomegranate in each soup cup.


With total abandon I mix my wedding Baccarat Meissen crystal wine glasses with TGMaxx water goblets and 19th century etched flutes, a thrift shop find.  They look great together!

image Because a table comes to life with multiple layers of décor, I scatter more ornaments on the runner,  weave in a garland of beads in red, gold and pearls, intersperce votive candles throughout and at each place setting, to create a soft glow.



For height, I bring in 2 chunky cream pillars on a carved pedestal and dress these with miniature red glass bead wreaths to complement the wreaths on our French doors.


For even more interest above, I dress the chandelier in holiday finery as well. image None of the vertical elements of this decor obstruct visibility across the table nor impairs good conversation flow.

I roll Nana’s antique linen napkins in a deep red beaded ring(Homegoods) and finish them off with a sprig of white pine.

imageA menu card and simple name tags edged in red and written in gold finish this festive table. image

image  Welcome to our Christmas Eve Réveillon!

I hope this tablescape has inspired your holiday table decor.  Happy entertaining!


3 thoughts on “Sleighride by Candlelight-A Tablescape

  1. Hey Johanne, Those dishes are lovley, hopefully I can be this creative one day. I hope you and your family are having a very Merry Christmas and James, Megan and I wish you many more! Thank you for the card! It was so lovley, what a busy family doing great things! Best wishes and God bless you guys always, Bernadette

    Date: Thu, 19 Dec 2013 03:47:02 +0000 To:

  2. Pingback: Christmas Brunch Among the Wrappings | French Gardener Dishes

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