When I think of Christmas morning, what tends to come to mind first are the smells that come with it. The smell of the real Christmas tree, the smell of fresh coffee grinds and steamed milk, the smell of bacon and slightly burnt toast and […]
Do you love entertaining? Yes.
Do you love Christmas decorations? Yes.
Do you love food? Yes.
THEN THIS IS THE POST FOR YOU.
Combining all things festive and Christmas and food and hosting and entertaining and eating and being merry, today we will be looking at some really incredible (and easy to achieve) Christmas Table Setting Ideas to make your get together just that little bit special this year! Though I am partial to a grazing table with people milling about the house happily, I also love sit down meals where there is just masses of food lining the table and there are arms and limbs going everywhere passing the potato bake and the chicken and the salad and the prawns amongst one another.
With everyone coming to our place for Christmas this year (because I will be huge and tired and probably pass out halfway during the day), I get to decorate our house once again and make cookies and make the place as Christmas-y as possible. We have a beautiful dining table which is the main hub of our home and I am so excited to deck it out with Christmas treats, beautiful napkins and little decorations here and there. There is nothing more rewarding to me than people’s first reactions when it comes to decor – and there is no one more important to me than my family and my extended family – so I have trawled the web for inspiration for Christmas Table Settings and I am going to share them with you here, today, RIGHT NOW.
Probably my favourite table setting decor that I came across was from Eclectic Creative whose owner and creator, Jess, has an Australian background. Her Australian-inspired Christmas table is absolutely stunning AND she has included personalised cookies for each table place which is totally up my alley. I definitely plan on using a lot of the elements that feature below for my own Christmas table this year (in just thirteen days!). Instead of my usual vanilla biscuits that I make, for the big day I will be making spiced ginger biscuits with fondant icing – some of the cookies I will press with Christmas messages like the ones from Eclectic Creative, while others I will decorate with Christmas sprinkles that I have bought specially for the occasion. I also love the accents of the baubles that are scattered on the table and, knowing my mum, she will bring big bunches of flowers that we will place on the table as well!
From Homes to Love I loved the Christmas cracker on each table place as well as the small plates of nibbles and sweets (especially nougat, always nougat). The simplicity of this table setting, with a bit of a 60s feel with the light mint green plates and funky cutlery, is gorgeous and the simple lace tablecloth is a little bit pretty, a little bit elegant and a little bit festive. Yes, yes and more yes.
For something very simple to make that is still super pretty, The Stylist Splash created these really sweet mini rosemary wreaths that are held together with twine. By now you should all know (and probably be totally sick of hearing about it) that I am a big fan of the natural, rustic, country, homemade aesthetic. CANNOT GET EOUGH OF IT. This ticks that box and they are adorable. TINY WREATHS. Love.
I found this image on Pinterest but I wasn’t able to source where it was from – but I love this idea for cutlery. I didn’t realise how festive and versatile rosemary was as a decoration! I’m obsessed now! I love the twine/rosemary/hand-drawn swing tag combo of this and again, it is such a simple idea to execute and so beautiful. I also want this cutlery set, but I guess that isn’t really the point of all this..
My mum has so many decorative things in her house. She loves a floor vase or any kind of ceramic pot of jug. She love stones and pebbles and bowls. And for some reason she has a wicker basket that is full of pine cones. I have never understood where she got the pine cones from as I have never seen her collecting them, but she has had them for years through NUMEROUS moves. NOW though, I have a use for them! From A Piece of Rainbow is this DIY snowy wintery themed table decoration that features, you guessed it, PINE CONES!
And finally, for all of you with little ones, from Brit + Co is this Christmas Table Setting Idea should inspire the hell out of you! LOOK HOW CUTE THIS IS. Make the kids feel special by creating placeholders for them as well as fun activities to tick off, craft, colouring-in sheets and some Christmas treats to satisfy their sweet tooth! I cannot tell you how excited I am for our little man to be old enough that I can do this! Ahhh. Yes. (Also, every single idea on that Brit + Co hyperlink is AMAZING and I want to – and will – do all of them!)
It’s December! It’s Summer! It’s the festive season! Our Christmas tree is up! Our cat has discovered a love of tearing baubles off the tree and waking us up at 5am by chasing them down the hallway! Seriously though, I am so freaking excited that […]
Whether you are going all out and hiring a venue and catering and the whole shebang, or if you are doing something at home with a budget, your baby shower can still ooze fabulousness, instgrammableness and loveliness! I have always loved hand-making as much as I can, mainly because I love doing craft but also because when you make something yourself it is often cheaper and incredibly unique. Of course, not everything can be handmade (that would be the dream!) and heading into parenthood is expensive. Pete and I have managed to cut some corners without skimping on quality goods for us or bub, so I do hope that even SOME of these ideas help for those of you throwing a baby shower on a budget!
Our BUB-beque is this Saturday. We are having it at home and there are about forty people coming over for lunch, drinks, nibbles and frivolity. More often than not, the baby-to-be’s godmother will throw a baby shower for the mama-to-be but that isn’t something that I wanted for myself. Instead, I wanted to be surrounded by friends and family and mot importantly, I wanted Pete by my side. It just so happens that it is Pete’s birthday in mid-December and getting everyone together can be so difficult that it was yet another great excuse to simply throw a party.
That doesn’t mean that our house won’t be all about BABY, though. Oh no.
Last weekend, Shari and I went shopping for the big day and surprisingly we didn’t spend nearly as much as I thought we would (or could have). Everything that we bought for the BUB-beque (except for alcohol and meat) was bought from Kmart, Aldi, Coles or Big W and for a lot of what we got, you wouldn’t guess it!
A few posts ago, I wrote about how we are turning our dining table into a huge grazing platter for the day. There are cheaper options for food which would include salads, bakes and perhaps some meat however, just because of the size of our house and the amount of people that we are having over, a grazing platter for us was definitely the best option. I also don’t want to be running around trying to make sure that everyone is fed on the day, this option means that all of the food is there and ready to be devoured and I don’t need to think about it again.
Having said that, where I could be frugal, I was.
We went to Coles first to get all of the antipasto elements of our grazing table including cheeses, olives, fruit, nuts, pickles and a myriad of other things in jars with oil (pickles, etc.). For the cheeses, we chose a few really nice ones that were a tad more expensive, however the majority of the cheese we bought (we bought a fair bit because there is no such thing as too much cheese) was the Coles brand! I have bought their brand of cheese before and it is just as delightful and creamy and heavenly as their branded counterpart that is triple the price.
The fruit that we bought wasn’t too expensive, and fresh produce is something that I choose not to skint on anyway. We bought a lot of blueberries and strawberries (they were on special), as well as grape tomatoes, carrots, cucumber and a variety of other fruits and vegetables to freshen up the table. Of course if you want blackberries and figs and the more exotic fruits, then yeah, your costs will go up a fraction, however like I said – fresh produce deserves the best.
The same thing applied when selected our antipasto favourites. We bought Coles brand olives, both kalamata and stuffed green, semi-dried tomatoes and dried fruit such as sultanas and apricots. When then filled in the gaps with some branded goods such as mini gherkins and cheese-stuffed peppers. By way of dips, I can almost 100% guarantee you that one brand or another will be on sale on any given day. Although my favourite dips are the Red Rock Deli variety, the line of Mercer Valley dips were half-price so we loaded up on them instead! The flavours that I wanted were exactly the same, and in that one decision alone I saved over ten dollars. Plus, all dips are delicious anyway..
We went to Aldi to buy all of the crackers and chips and although these elements are cheap in Coles and Woolworths and most shopping chains, that dollar or two that you save at Aldi for these staples add up as well (especially when you are buying in bulk).
We didn’t buy the meat, the bread or the seafood elements last weekend as I want them to be as fresh as possible. So, on Saturday morning I will be heading back to Coles to their bakery and their deli section to pick up the remaining elements of the grazing table. It is only very recently that I discovered the Coles deli section whereas I used to just walk along the refrigerated section for all of my deli meats. Not only do you get to choose the exact quantity you want over the counter of the deli section, but the meats are far higher in quality (the prosciutto is always freshly sliced in front of me) and a hell of a lot cheaper than buying multiple packets. For the bread, I love the Coles brand french bread sticks and their olive sourdough loaf. They are a couple of bucks each and go a long way!
By way of sweets, treats and desserts – I spent all of Sunday baking personalised baby shower cookies! I also went to Big W because their confectionery section is legit – they still have Yupi and Trolli lollies so I was all over that. I also bought wafer biscuits from there because for some reason they are always on special at Big W. I will also be making fairy bread with blue sprinkles because fairy bread is life (and cheap). For our cake, I am lucky enough to have Mum and the incredible team at Unwritten baking our cake. Having said that, if that wasn’t an option, I would have made my own cake. I find that homemade cakes (even when you suck at baking) are far tastier than ones that you have to order weeks in advance. Again, I am a fan of the homemade, but if saving money is what you’re after then spending that little bit of extra time making things will result in a fair amount of savings!
Unfortunately, alcohol is alcohol. Aside from shopping around at different stores and grabbing things while they are on special, alcohol and drinks will always be one of the most pricey elements of a get together. Pete bought all of our alcohol from Dan Murphy’s and I bought some non-alcoholic sparkling wine from Aldi as well as a bottle of Seedlip for those who aren’t drinking alcohol.
I saw this idea on Pinterest and absolutely loved it – a Mum-osa Bar.
Shari and I bought a cheap metal container from Kmart where there will be bottles of champagne sitting in ice, as well as four plastic jars that we will fill with fresh fruit and three glass bottles filled with different kinds of juice. I bought a cheap frame from Kmart and designed and printed a little size to slip inside it, as well as wooden swing tags and twine that I will write on to identify each juice! We also found some stunning champagne glasses (as I didn’t have any) that came in boxes of six. I bought two boxes and then a packet of glittered plastic champagne glasses in case we needed any spares. The disposable ones from Kmart are actually really pretty and photograph really well, so if you didn’t want to spend the extra money on proper glasses, these are a great option!
We also bought boxes of canned soft drink on special from Big W!
Once again, Kmart and Big W provided the goods when it came to Shari and I choosing the theme and buying the decorations for this weekend. Like I have mentioned, we are going for a very rustic and natural colour theme with pops of blue throughout. To start things off, I handmade a Woodland Creature Bunting as well as a cake topper both of which only took about an hour all up (and cost next to nothing!).
At Kmart, they have a wide range of buntings that are insanely cheap! I went for the hessian flag bunting as well as two of the DIY blackboard buntings that come with chalk. I chose these two because it ties in with our theme and the DIY buntings means that I can dedicate one to our baby boy, while the other will be a birthday one for Pete!! I am planning on having the buntings layered throughout the house, rather than just stringing each of them up against a wall!
We ordered the balloons for the baby shower from Big W. I ended up going for two bouquets that will sit on the floor instead of table-top ones. The balloons are in metallic green, pearl white and some really pretty clear latex ones, some that are being filled with rose gold confetti and others that aren’t. I personally didn’t want any balloons that said ‘boy’ or ‘baby’ – however there are a number of cheap options available on eBay that you can purchase and then get filled with helium closer to the day! We also bought some really creepy looking plastic babies that are meant for a baby shower game called “My Water’s Broke” but 1. I don’t do games and 2. I thought that they would be great to dot around the table.
When my mum and I hosted my godmother’s baby shower for her baby girl, we bought a number of toys that we used as a part of the grazing table. Not only did it look great they were also some extra presents for her to take home at the end of it! For our little man I bought some Hot Wheels, some Lego Duplo and a few plush toys. If you are having a baby shower where you don’t know the sex of the baby, there are some great neutral toys you can get including teething rings, fabric books and neutral soft toys all of which are available at Big W and Kmart!
Also for the table, and for around the house and on top of the cake, Mum is going to Sydney Markets on Thursday morning to pick up some Australia native flowers. If you want to include flowers as a part of your decoration for your baby shower, I strongly suggest hitting up the markets. The flowers are always incredibly fresh and SO much cheaper than they are at the florist. It does get hectic at the markets and it can be a pain, so if you can, get there early in the morning! Again, these suggestions are all to save some cash and although it will take that little bit more time and effort, the flowers will be fresh and vibrant and lovely.
Back at Kmart again, Shari and I managed to find some really sweet napkins! I originally wanted simple napkins, however when we saw these three options, we knew that they would work together and play off the theme nicely. We have the pop of blue, the rose gold lettering matches the champagne glasses and the ballon and the black, white and gold ones suit everything! I found it difficult to find nice looking plates.. but we landed on these silver striped zig-zag kinda’ ones. We found them at Big W in the party section and they were also available in rose gold and standard gold. Most of the plates that we came across were really bold colours and flimsy plastic. These are sturdy enough that if we wanted to, we could wash them and use them again – though I doubt that we will do that..
I also bought some hanging decorations from Big W – just those white crepe-papery ones – they come in packets of four or five and you need to pull them out and make them yourself. They are extremely cheap but if you can get creative and intertwine them with a few different types and colours, and maybe some smaller balloons then you will have a really pretty (AND SUPER FANCY) decorative feature goin’ on!
After the weekend has passed and we have celebrated our little man with our family and friends, I will be sure to post photos of everything that I have mentioned here, as well as things that I probably missed! Also, just a little side note, you will have to excuse me if this post seems rambly or doesn’t make sense – I am still adjusting to the third trimester and it is hard and I am big and constantly hot (so much so that I think I may evaporate) and tired and have reflux so my brain is a tad foggy. Apologies.