“There’s no rule that says you have to use typical holiday colors that often don’t match your interior décor,” says Claire. “Instead, it’s fun to try a non-traditional approach and create a table setting that is unique, yet still festive.” Kristi’s artwork served as the inspiration for this bright and cheery holiday table. And neutral green and white florals, white plates with pewter chargers, and hand torn cloth napkins served as a backdrop for an assortment of colorful vintage glassware, watercolor painted cookies, and menus that double as little pieces of art. It’s surprisingly simple to bring these DIY elements together to create a table that is truly a reflection of your home and personal aesthetic.
Begin by taking color inspiration from your dining area or artwork.
If you don’t have a mix of colorful glasses on hand, consider renting from a vintage dealer. Claire advises renting two or three glasses that coordinate with your color palette. Use one glass for water, one for wine and a third for a special holiday cocktail.
A second option is to start your own collection of vintage glassware. It’s lovely to have a special set or two for the holidays. Vintage rental expert Kelly Connolly of
Most fabric stores have
Call your local flower shop to pre-order stems of harder to find flowers, and purchase the rest from the grocery store, or grab some additional foliage from the backyard. You’ll need some simple clear vases and floral shears—two utilitarian purchases that will pay for themselves over and over again.
To create the edible “watercolor” cookies pictured, use a toothpick to mix lemon extract with Wilton gel colors, and paint on top of the fondant with a brush. Cate recommends using a marshmallow fondant like
Tie your color palette and table together with a 5×7-sized post card, which can double as your menu. Create your own artwork by hand, digitally, or purchase pretty postcards from a local stationary shop. Guests can leave with a frame-worthy piece of art.
Kristi’s advice for hosting is to remember that setting the table is like setting the stage. “There’s magic to a really good meal,” she says. “By bringing many elements together—the people, the food, the table, and the ambience—you are creating a mood, which can lift your guests out of the everyday and reach all their senses.”
Seen here: Kristi Kohut (left) and Claire Staszak (right) at Krist’s home studio.
Creative Direction: Claire Staszak
Prop Styling: Jennie Cornell