Photo Gallery: Holiday Tables
See 30+ tables ready for winter and Christmas.
A relaxed, pared-back vibe for Thanksgiving or Christmas.
Stylist Nikole Herriott created this gorgeous table setting with gold and copper accents. “Worry less about [your holiday table] being perfect and think more about being happy,” she advises. “It’s amazing how objets you love can and will have a common feel when placed together. You’ll often find an unexpected harmony that’s completely you.”
Metallic baubles set the tone.
When designer Brian Gluckstein found glam dinnerware in his favourite hue, he knew it was the perfect jumping off point for his refined holiday table setting. “I tend to use non-traditional colours for my holiday collections and design ornaments that reflect fashion and trends,” he says. A few small ornaments sit atop each place setting, small gifts that guests can take home. Ornaments show up again in a long chain that runs the length of the table, picking up on the metallic tones in the table cloth and china. Individual salt and pepper shakers and hand-written place cards add a sense of thoughtful formality.
Playful accents make for a relaxed holiday table.
This vintage tablescape from designer-turned-baker Rosie Daykin started with ornate dishes from France. “I think the crisp white plays off the seafoam blue and pistachio linens beautifully,” she says. “It’s clean and bright and feels like the light on a clear, snowy day.” Baked goods adorn the table in colourful boxes, which create height and make a delicious take-home gift. Daykin eschews placecards in favour of a quirky stand-ins — quail eggs with tiny, customizable note cards. Vintage-look ornaments complete the look.
Temper a riot of vivid patterns by using a two-toned palette. Use a solid napkin to keep it from feeling too busy.
Mix different sets of formal dinnerware to create an unexpected look that plays up tradition yet feels current. Set out platters or bowls with seasonal fruit or vegetables as table decor. Here, a plate of oranges sets off the tones in the tablecloth. Add unexpected elements, like the sardine dish and individually wrapped gifts for guests — a tiny trinket to commemorate the night. Brushed-gold utensils with teardrop-shaped handles are a formal touch that enhances the drama of the place settings.
A wool tartan runner introduces great texture.
The glazed turquoise plate, purple napkin and minty green eucalyptus put a sophisticated spin on this look. The pine cone napkin weight and bowl of walnuts in the shell play up the nature-inspired design. Modern hand-hewn plates and votive holders keep the rustic style from feeling too themed. Complement this simple table setting with elegant flatware, like this traditional silver set with a matte finish and unfussy handles.
Introduce small hits of winter greenery for a seasonal change.
For a simple and affordable table decoration, top each napkin with a frosty pinecone. Line the centre of the dining table with lit candles and fresh evergreen branches in vases.
Place taper candles in holders of varying heights along the centre of your dining table.
In this Calgary farmhouse, a grand dining table works perfectly for large holiday feasts. Red wine glasses enhance the Christmas vibe, and a natural wreath suits the rustic winter look.
Keep key pieces neutral and change the tablecloth to amp up or play down the holiday feel.
Different patterns in the same colour scheme add depth without being overwhelming. A small silver bird and a pewter dish holding tiny blue robin’s eggs cleverly reference the accent plate’s pattern. Incorporate the festive season with small arrangements of white flowers and red berries.
Traditional toile in bright orange and hot pink is an unusual colour combo for the holidays.
A brushed-gold charger dresses up simple white dinnerware, and a luxe patterned salad plate introduces blue to cool off the warm-toned scheme. The enamel butterfly napkin ring and handwritten placecard (shaped like a gift tag) keeps the look fun and whimsical while staying formal.
Rugged horn-handled serving pieces contrast with silver candlesticks.
An understated burlap tablecloth sets the tone for classic navy and green tartan — the only hit of colour on this table. A gold-rimmed glass charger and white dinner plate with subtle beading add a special touch. The crystal drop candelabra brings festive sparkle to the table.
Mix new and old stemware for a collected feel.
Artful layers, from flatware to linens and plates, create a lush tabletop. White hydrangeas are pretty but not overpowering. Soft pewter silver-banded plates complement the wall colour, and simple tapered candles are perfect year-round.
Pink roses and stemware add colour and drama but complement the room’s minimalist look.
Black napkins folded neatly into rectangles are easy to do and elegantly understated. Black bowls and geometric patterned saucers creates a sharp setting.
Fiery pops of pink contrast with black and white.
Free of a tablecloth, runner and chargers, this minimally decorated table is clean and sophisticated. White silk chairs add a bit of glitz. Crystal chandeliers encased in sleek drum shades cast a soft glow.
Deep indigo walls give the room a rich feel.
A tall vase filled with large birch branches is a contemporary and rustic alternative to traditional flower arrangements. The table is set to accommodate buffet dinners, with stacks of dinnerware, napkins and cutlery readily available.
Create pretty tiers on a tabletop by layering cake plates and platters.
Line shelves that usually hold cookbooks with glasses and extra bottles of mineral water. Set up food buffet-style on the dining room table. Decorate it with tall branches hung with a few ornaments; they add a festive note but won’t get in the way of people’s ability to move and socialize around the table. Pull chairs away from the table to allow for better flow around the buffet.
Choose soft cool colours to create a winter wonderland in your dining room.
A lovely combination of rough textures comes together to create a modern farmhouse look. Tailored meets rustic with a slipcovered wing chair and a raw wooden table. Blue pottery and linens pop against a white background, reminiscent of a frosty winter landscape.
A custom trestle table adds country charm.
This Niagara-on-the-Lake home was designed to maximize views, channel the style of the estate’s original barn, and provide a cosy space for frequent entertaining. Homeowner and designer Brett Sherlock created the farmhouse-style glass-topped trestle table to add counter space and keep the kitchen casual. He and partner James Booty can pull up chairs for an informal dinner, arrange a breakfast buffet for guests, or display appetizers at a bustling cocktail party. The table is based on a design by Ralph Lauren and was custom-made by Peter Henley in nearby Vineland.
For more island inspiration, see our Kitchen Tables As Islands photo gallery.
Update a rustic dining space with a few glam antiques.
This log cabin has been the site of many boisterous Christmas gatherings. A casual mix-and-match table setting is adorned with a simple potted evergreen and a few scattered boughs, and illuminated with playful antler candleholders. An antique Nova Scotia table and Windsor chairs offer a sturdy complement to the exposed wooden beams and log walls, while a 1920s French chandelier and stunning silver disc light add a surprising hit of sparkle.
Create a festive and functional party buffet.
A chandelier, overflowing with fresh greenery, is lit with faux candles to give off a soft, warm glow during meals. For a party, dining chairs are pulled away from the table to create an instant buffet. All-white square serving platters offer an orderly presentation and let the food take centre stage.
See more of Pauline Esdale’s Festive Home in our photo gallery.
For more holiday decorating ideas, check out our Christmas Decorating gallery.
This space was inspired by celebrity designer Nate Berkus’ Chicago apartment.
Layering antique furniture with soft shades of lilac, this room is an elegant and upscale take on holiday dining. There’s no ornamentation here; a garland of magnolia leaves decorating the 19th-century Dominican sideboard, potted paperwhites and a single vase of hydrangeas, lilies and berries offers subtle nods to the season.
Find more inspiration in our photo galleries of Thanksgiving Tables and Holiday Tables, plus see more holiday decorating ideas in our photo galleries of Christmas Decorating and Designers’ Holiday Decorating Tips.
A restrained holiday palette.
A stunning centerpiece of large silver balls and sprigs of evergreen add holiday cheer to this winter-white formal dining room. Dark glossy floors, warm wood furniture and natural light streaming through the windows offer warmth and sparkle.
Succulents are a fresh alternative holiday greenery.
Dispense with the typical pine boughs and baubles. In this dining room, sculptural modern furniture and black accents pop against an all-white palette. A traditional mantel and contemporary painting quietly capture the spirit of the season.
An off-white and cool grey palette reads soft, subtle and seasonal.
Bamboo Chippendale-style chairs exude a holiday vibe thanks to their winter white hue. Dark wood floors keep the room grounded.
A minimal, yet whimsical design.
A compact table, sweet miniature chandelier and set of traditional chairs create a charming, albeit tiny, dining area in Heather Shaw’s Victorian home. A simple tabletop vignette of pinecones and greenery brings the outdoors in, while a vase full of illuminated branches adds a magical glow.
Greenery replaces fresh flowers for an unexpected centerpiece.
Simple Christmas decorations can make a big statement. A large evergreen wreath decorated with burlap tassels adds an organic appeal to this holiday table. White pottery vases filled with silvery dusty miller are lined up down the table to keep with the unfussy, nature inspired theme and don’t get in the way of dinner conversation. Tall pillar candles provide soft lighting, paired with black dishware the look is stylishly modern rustic.
Get more holiday decorating ideas.
Glittering baubles and ornaments give this fixture a festive look.
To prime a dining room for holiday entertaining, consider dressing up your chandelier with pretty ribbons and classic ornaments. Here, blue and white satin ribbons pick up on the tones in the table settings while silver baubles add a hit of sparkle.
See more festive photos in our White Holiday Decorating photo gallery.
Recast footed cake plates into centerpiece pedestals with birchbark-wrapped candles and whole walnuts.
Inexpensive elements add up to a delicious display that elevates an informal get-together. Create a singular statement by tucking a tree branch or resin antler among the pedestals. A modern porcelain pendant light keeps the look fresh.
Dark, organic-patterned china adds texture and depth against a white table runner and shimmering votive candles.
Place a tiny evergreen seedling at each seat to serve as both a place card and a thank-you gift for guests. Bundled in black burlap and tied with twine, the offering is a gesture that’s both eco- and economically-friendly.
Add sparkle to your feast with handmade decorations, elegant glassware and touches of silver.
Welcome winter and the holidays with hand cut, DIY paper snowflakes hung on wire over the dining table. Painted pine cones (or ceramic ones, as shown here) do double duty as decorations and placecard holders. Pine cones, cedar sprigs and bright red berries put a woodsy spin on the traditional Christmas centerpiece.
See more photos in our Christmas decorations gallery.
Inexpensive scarlet slipcovers give classic Ikea Parsons chairs a quick and festive makeover.
Skip the poinsettias and opt for non-traditional flowers and patterns in traditional Christmas hues. This table runner, in a Japanese cherry-blossom print, puddles elegantly on the floor for drama. Woven placemats and casual blooms in white vases keep the overall look light.
See more photos in our Christmas decorations gallery.
Set the table in style with a scarlet scheme that’s rich and festive yet modern.
Table settings are layered on a red velvet and organza runner with accents like red-glass pebbles, beaded napkin rings and oversized faux diamonds to lend sparkle. A long, low centerpiece of bold ruby amaryllis and ilex berries reinforces the holiday palette.
See more photos in our Christmas decorations gallery.
Step outside the expected red-and-green Christmas scheme and set a table that shimmers with gold accents and crisp white dishes.
Silver dollars in speckled gold-leaf vessels are a simple, sophisticated way to set your holiday table. White china and milky, translucent wine glasses keep the table looking natural and glamorous. Chunky glass candlesticks look like delicate ice carvings.
This glamorous Christmas table setting includes giant “diamond ring” napkin holders, elegant tableware and frosty-looking flowers.
A crystal chandelier and silvery wallpaper are sophisticated counterpoints to the glass dining table and icy blue chairs of Lindsay Mens, a senior designer with Sarah Richardson Design and offscreen member of the HGTV show, Sarah’s House. Mens used a medium-grey commercial-grade carpet to unify the living and dining room design, and to draw attention from the parquet flooring.
Crystal, crackers tied with Christmas ornaments and magnolia-leaf floral centerpieces add sparkle to an already polished space.
Luxurious silk taffeta drapes balance an off-centre window in designer Colleen McGill’s dining room. An oversized paper lantern and a seagrass rug are simple counterpoints to the room’s more formal elements.
Table settings play off this dining room’s vibrant look.
Acid green accents, including posies of orchids and viburnum, pop against the fuchsia. Wildly patterned Missoni Home china pulls together all the colours, and low glass votives inject sparkle.
Learn more about Decorating With Pink in our photo gallery.
A black lacquer table, silver chargers, sparkling glasses and crimson blooms look great for holidays like Christmas or New Year’s Eve.
Create individual party kits for each place setting by folding white linen napkins into pouches and fastening them with ribbons and various broaches; fill each of the pockets with flatware, noisemakers and sing-along scrolls.