This was our first year to host Christmas dinner at our house. We had both of our families over for a total of 11 people. I wanted to make the table festive and elegant with a lot of natural elements. Here's what I came up with:
I knew I wanted greenery on the table, but I wasn't sure exactly how I was going to do it until I went browsing at the craft store. I found nice quality artificial garland 70% off the weekend before Christmas. I cut it into pieces, averaging about 12 inches long each, so that I could place the greenery more precisely how I wanted.
To add elegance and a nice ambiance, I used a variety of candles. In the center, I floated three red candles in a bowl with fresh cranberries (bringing in the natural elements).
On either side of the bowl, I had a pedestal candle holder with a red pillar candle.
Then on each end, I used a bowl half filled with Epsom salt (to mimic a snowy look) and topped with fresh cranberries. I used a small pedestal candle holder in each bowl with a white votive candle.
When entertaining for big groups, I'm usually big on easy cleanup, but because I wanted this to be a really elegant table, I decided to use my wedding china. It meant more dishes to hand wash, but it looked beautiful! (And how often do I get to use my china anyway? It's worth the extra cleanup once in a while).
I wanted natural elements at each place setting, so I tied the napkins with natural jute twine and tucked a cinnamon stick and a sprig of fresh rosemary in each one. I also used real wood "stump" place card holders.
Finally, to tie in the cinnamon sticks to the centerpiece, I filled four small votive candle holders with Epsom salt and cinnamon sticks and placed them alongside the greenery.
I love how it all turned out. Merry Christmas!