As the holiday season approaches, many of us feel a renewed urge to build memories together around a table. And yet, it’s understandable that just putting food on plates seems like a heroic feat these days; the creative well has dried up.
I reached out to Toronto designer Anne Hepfer, a passionate “tablescaper” who describes herself and knows how to make formal dinners and weekday suppers a special occasion. Here are some of his proven techniques for eating with panache.
Lay the foundation There’s nothing thoughtful or special about a bare table, so a tablecloth or table runner is a must, Hepfer says. Adopt a rustic vibe for a harvest vibe with a burlap or slub linen rug. When you go up the formality, take a full cotton or fine linen tablecloth (ironed if you can handle it). And feel free to layer colors and patterns with napkins: “It’s time to mix and play,” she says.
Don’t forget the fees – no exceptions “Natural beauty brings every table to life,” she says. But think beyond the traditional centerpiece of flowers in a vase, which can hamper visibility. “My favorite lifestyles are potted bulbs in a shallow dish with river rocks and water, small potted succulents, which look cool and low-maintenance, and herbs. in a jar for a nice and fragrant addition. “
Pretend you are in a restaurant A mother of two pairs of twins, Hepfer enjoys involving the children and having them distribute sparkling water and bowls of limes and limes. “Why not give the impression of dining out?” ” she says. “I also like to bring out an After Eights club when dinner is over. A mint treat is usually enough to satisfy and bring a smile to faces.
Use shine as a secret weapon “We use our fancy glasses all the time,” Hepfer says. “It makes dinner more festive and the kids remember to be extra careful.” She says her team also lights candles every night, a ritual that makes everyone feel connected and comfortable – and more likely to linger on the conversation.
Have fun with it Don’t be afraid to be a little cheeky with your table decorations. Hepfer warns that sometimes “good taste” gets tired. “I include ski gnomes from Switzerland for the winter dinners in our chalet,” she says. “It’s a Hepfer tradition and everyone laughs when they see them. “
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