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Sarah Richardson's Holiday Dining Room

Embrace mix-and-match dining when hosting large groups.

It's Christmas tradition in many families to cram dozens of people into a space that normally seats four. This year, embrace the chaos and set a charming, mix-and-match table. Toronto designer Sarah Richardson remembers a year the dining table featured a mix of silver cutlery from her mother-in-law, antique Limogoes plates from her own mother, dinner plates from her grandmother, and placemats made from an Irish linen runner. "I think what's important is not getting too caught up in having a perfectly matched setting for 12 people," says Richardson. "I can't imagine anything looking tickety-boo because then it has no reflection of history."

For more ideas, see our Designers' Holiday Decorating Tips photo gallery.

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