Haute Holidays: Chic Tabletops

I can't believe it's that time of year already... the tree is trimmed, gifts are wrapped and under the tree (ok, I'm lying - my shopping has barely started, but it sounded good, didn't it?) and friends & family are gathering to share in Christmas Cheer. As the big day (read: big dinner) approaches quickly, thoughts of how to create a fabulous table setting are top of mind. Whether you are preparing an intimate dinner for two or going full gusto with a big group, there are fun ways to add personality and charm that leave the super traditional settings of the past, well, in the past. In line with our Holiday segment for CTV Morning Live today, we have created two totally different settings to entertain your guests. The first is a glam inspired intimate table for two - using a mid-century table and jewel-tone glassware with gold accents, it's polished and chic, yet still playful and inviting. Sharper colours against the stark white table make each place setting pop, while layered glass and metallics add just that little bit of sparkle. The space is finished off with great DIY projects like knitted pom gift bows and wrapping-paper-turned-decorative-trees. Our second table plays up a warmer, more rustic feel; using a heavy wood table and richer palette of emeralds and golds mixed with plaids, this space pulls more upon a cabin in the woods environment. Faux furs and antlers set the backdrop, while unusual industrial finds and unexpected objects add the finishing touches. Our DIY here was the use of Winter socks as wine bottle covers - a great hostess gift idea with the combo of a fab wine plus a cute pair of stockings!

The best part about these tabletops is that they don't break the bank: the glassware and dishes were all scores at Value Village (we spent about  $100 for both table settings, including accessories) and we sourced the unexpected special finds at our usual stop for cool treasures, Space Lab. It's the chic & cheerful approach to Holiday entertaining that leaves your time and money available for less "chore" and more "cheer"; we challenge you to create a fabulous Holiday setting on the cheap this year - send us your best pics and we'll feature them on an upcoming blog post!

The Chicks top tips for a Haute Holiday Style? 1. Layer! Just as with fashion, adding multiple layers - each with a slightly different texture and colour - adds depth and interest to a space or tabletop;  we used mixed chargers, plates and placemats to achieve the look on our tables, as well as groupings of coloured glassware. 2. Experiment with colour. Don't allow yourself to be restricted by traditional colour ways; this season the saturated jewel tones are largely on trend and ultra pretty... mix and match - try them out in your Holiday decor or fashions! 3. Choose unexpected items in lieu of more formal pieces - we used industrial brass clamps and steel cut offs from machining as place card holders (with vintage found photos as the place cards) and opted for a set of pool balls instead of formal Holiday decorations to fill the surround of a poinsettia. We also used vintage brass numbers to mark the chair places and wrapped the formal chair with old plaid blankets (our pick for the number one must-have decor piece of the season) and tied them off with leather straps from camera cases.



Feeling creative? Give some of our featured DIY projects a go!

Eco-happy Pom gift topper (we opted for a knitted version): http://www.designsponge.com/2008/11/diy-project-eco-happy-pom-pom-gift-topper.html

Recycled dry cleaner bag Holiday wreath: http://www.designsponge.com/2008/12/weekly-wrap-up-diy-wreath-project.html


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