3 ways to set your table

Give your amazing meal an amazing ambience.

A beautiful presentation gives everything an extra flavor. And although food is the protagonist at parties this time of year, the table setting shares the spotlight. To help with some inspiration, we asked three top interior designers for their versions of the perfect holiday table. From a decadent-bohemian approach to mixed-and-matched layers, these designs will outfit your table for a festive success (and a show-stopping meal). Take a look:

(1) Vibe: Organic and Bohemian

Los Angeles-based interior designer Natalie Myers from Veneer Designs presents an organic, modern, and bohemian table design. “The organic part is derived from the earthy colors and sumptuous shapes of the gourds and fruit, with natural wood and stone elements worked into the mix,” she says. For her, nature blends smoothly with modernity and luxury in her design, a symbiotic relationship that makes her design so intricate. “The modern element comes from the restrained monochromatic color scheme of muted natural creams and contrasting dark green and ebony tones. I mix in the patina of small vintage tabletop items with the crispness of new dishes and servingware for an accessible balance,” she notes. “The luxurious golden brass accents help to keep the minimalist color scheme from feeling cold or uninviting.”

Photography: Phoebe Chuason

Earthware and Wood trays: The Citizenry

(2) Vibe: Warmly-Lit

“Fall is a time of harvest, so we incorporated branches of bay leaves from our tree, springs of rosemary, baby carrots and juicy red apples that add warmth, fragrance and color,” says celebrity interior designer Lori Dennis, who's also based in L.A. For her, a good Thanksgiving table is warm, organic, and above all functional. “We are always inspired by what is natural and organic, using elements that can be re-used when the evening is over,” she says. Her secret to success is lighting. “Don't forget about lighting,” she says. “Keep the chandelier on a low dim and light candles across the table to make everyone look fantastic and set the mood for wonderful time together.”

(3) Vibe: Mixed and Layered Patterns

According to Lydia Marks and Lisa Frantz of Marks and Frantz, it’s all about layering. The celebrated New York-based duo of interior and set designers presents a design that challenges traditional aesthetics. “Think layers when it comes to dishes and glassware,” they say. “Mix patterns and think of creative ways to layer the foundation. For example, on the table, we started with a very simple, long and narrow floral arrangement. This was just a three-inch run of green floral foam wrapped in tin foil to keep the table dry. We married this with a black and white striped fabric scrap that serves as a table runner and interlaced the blooms with gold ribbon." They think of this as flower arrangement that evolved into a sculpture. Though they emphasize bold color themes and textures, they also keep it natural. “Earthy, exotic and homemade are the buzz words in home décor right now. Leaves, moss, bark, wood slices and branches can transform a table into a holiday wonderland.”