6 expert tips to creating the best Christmas table

I am very happy to introduce Aneen from Table & Cloth. Aneen is an expert tablescaper and she will be sharing the latest trends and creativity in all things entertaining every month! germarie x

To me, Christmas equals cookies, corny carols, the smell of cinnamon + watching Love Actually. It’s the time of year when one can just be merry for the sake of it. Christmas carols always put a goofy grin on my face but hey, who’s watching? It’s so easy however to get caught up in the end-of-year mania and before you know it, it’s no fun at all. I believe that planning is essential and it certainly helps with getting on your Christmas cheer. So here are my top tips to help you set a magical + festive Christmas table.

  1. Bottom line: you need foliage!

christmas table decoration

… and what better foliage than Cape Indigenous Foliage. If you are not familiar with Andrea’s Topiary Creations yet, you will be as delighted as I was when I first discovered it. The smell of these eucalyptus wreaths is simply divine. Pop a few candles in the middle of the wreath to transform your front door decoration into a table accessory. As you will see in this post, I love using table decor that can also be used elsewhere in the house 😉

  1. Tree decoration by night…table decoration by day

christmas table decoration

Christmas tree ornaments make for beautiful table decorations. Steal a few from the back of your Christmas tree or from the bottom if your tree is already strategically placed in a corner. I normally place the decorations on either the side of dinner plate with a personalized name tag.

  1. An “out of the box” centerpiece

christmas table decoration

I always look for something unique to use as a centerpiece. These macrame centerpiece designs from ForgetmeKnots are incredibly beautiful + once again so versatile. After Christmas, use it as a wall hanging anywhere in your home.

  1. It needs to smell like Christmas

christmas table decoration

I have been hanging on to these candles for the past 2 years after moving back from New York. I wish I could describe the smell but it’s impossible. Scented candles have become mandatory for my Christmas table and luckily it’s become quite popular in South Africa. There are some great options to choose from locally – try Yankee Candle’s festive range or Crabtree and Evelyn’s Festive Fig Botanical.

  1. Boast with your heritage

christmas table decoration

We live in such a vibrant country and continent and should embrace our summer Christmas. These colourful woven baskets are great solutions for table decor in the form of bread baskets or centerpieces containing festive baubles. They are so versatile that I can guarantee it will become part of your home decor when not used on the table.

  1. Joy

This is probably the most important table accessory you need, because what would a beautiful table be with a joyless bunch around it? Replace the nostalgia or sadness about the past with being merry in the present. I am sure Frank Sinatra’s “Have yourself a merry little Christmas” can help you get your jingle on!

Be sure to peruse the Festive category of Table + Cloth’s collection  to load up on your Christmas table decorations.

Merry Christmas!!


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Five inspiring Christmas themes

I have created five themed mood boards to inspire you to do something new and fresh with your Christmas table setting and decor wherever you might find yourself.


christenemeintjies.com Pinterest.com

If you’re fond of sand dunes and salty air …

The muted tones of the colour palette really speak to me. Play with subtle greens, beach wood tones and a sandy neutral to create a calm and inviting setting.

I simply love the cookie Christmas tree and stick stars that hang in front of this window.

Go to the beach beforehand to collect little gems and treasures to incorporate into your table decor like the center piece that is made up of a collection of shells with the most beautiful textures and colors.



Pastels, paper and oh so pretty!

This feminine color palette should be combined with a metallic to really make it sparkle. Use metallic tea light holders or glasses with a metallic rim to reflect soft candle and fairy lights. It just adds magic to any setting!

Paper pom poms are great to incorporate texture and luckily they are readily available in retail stores.

Group bunches of fynbos above your table as informal chandeliers. If you echo a little peach all the better!

Pink drinks make for the perfect partner to this setting.



Wonderful woodlands

Celebrate the trendy woodlands theme in style this Christmas. It’s a lovely toned down way of combining natural elements.

I simply love the bunched rosemary that weighs down the runner for an alfresco table. Fragrant and pretty!

Use pieces of sheet music as place mats and cut branches and pine cones for the center piece. It’s still has a traditional undertone but with a fresh new spin.




Celebrate geometrical shapes with a simple colour palette of black, white and yellow. You can freshen it up with a bit of green but the simpler the better.

Combine different black geometrical shapes with an all white branch to create the ultimate statement tree. Wrap your gifts in the same color tone to mimic the theme further and show your attention to detail.

Keep the table setting all white with clever colour pops and let the decor sing the same song. It’s now very trendy to make strands of tiny flags and combining different patterns in lots of layers for impact.

Print place mats with simple polka-dot backgrounds and fun messages in a pretty font.



Play date!

Throw all those traditional notions overboard and go bold this Christmas. This colour palette is one of my favourites as it has a retro feel but with a modern twist.

Make over-sized Christmas baubles from large colourful balloons and tie it up with a silver cylinder and handle to look like the real thing. This is so lovely and will be sure to intrigue your guests. Studio DIY

I hope you have lots of fun decorating your Christmas this year as for some it’s really the only time you have to show off your styling talents! Most importantly drive safe and cherish the people around your table.

Happy styling,

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