Wednesday, 3 December 2014

The Christmas Table

Here it is - December already! I hope my last couple of posts might have given you the inspiration needed and now you are so organised you can just concentrate on the festive feast.
If there was ever a time of year when you want your table to look spectacular then surely Christmas is it.
Will yours be a truly magical Christmas worthy of the Weasleys? Image via.
Silver has been used for centuries to add glamour and opulence to the dining room. If you think of any film or period drama with a dinner party scene then chances are, the table is adorned with silver.
From the centrepieces and the candlesticks to the serving dishes and utensils right down to the cutlery we eat with; silver, silver, silver!



Most of use lead such busy lives now that we probably don’t make everyday dining a formal event, but come Christmas our desire to wow and impress shines through. A well dressed table turns dinner into an occasion.

You could pretty much dress the entire table in silver, but that might be a little over the top. However, accents of silver add just the right amount of elegance to the proceedings.
So with this in mind, I will offer up some ideas for setting the perfect scene. Choose as many as you see fit, to give your table the wow factor.
An Edwardian set of 12 sterling silver plates. Click here to view on our website
Starting first with the plates. Many formal table settings will be laid up with a charger plate. This plate sits on the table and the plate on which the food is served is simply placed on top.

Naturally, these are available in silver and silverplate.

Surrounding the plate we have the cutlery. Many of us have silver cutlery which, sadly, often gets put away and only brought out when there is a special occasion. This is a shame because using it everyday would surely make every meal that little bit more special. We are experts in flatware here at I.Franks. Whether you’re looking for a full set, wishing to enhance an existing set or maybe just adding some serving pieces; we are here to help.

Many households have a tradition of adorning the napkin with a napkin ring. A lot of people choose to mix and match the styles so that each family member has their own unique one.
We have a huge selection of styles and they make ideal stocking stuffers. A lovely gesture to welcome a new member to the family. We have a great selection of menu holders and place card holders too.

Glasses and goblets can all be had in silver. We have a range to choose from. We've got plain Georgian ones or more decorative Victorian styles, as well as options to suit modern tastes.

We sell individual pieces and have a selection of sets as well.

Once your table settings have been decided you can then consider touches, such as how to offer up the condiments.
A pair of Georgian silver salt cellars. Click here to view on our website.
A traditional table setting might place individual salt cellars in front of each guest or perhaps to be shared amongst dining neighbours. Silver salts come in many styles and sizes. A very popular choice is the cauldron salts which are, typically, three-footed and lined with cobalt blue glass.They look lovely in pairs when you use the second pot for pepper. Of course, you could opt for a silver pepper mill instead. Condiment pots are available for mustard or horseradish or whatever additional relishes you might wish to offer up. A stunning cruet set with lovely cut glass bottles on a silver stand would look spectacular.
Victorian Cruet Set. Click here to view on our website.
Silver bowls in all sizes can be used to put any little side offerings in.

We have a vast selection of sauce boats, butter boats and gravy boats. You could take a leaf out of the fifth Duke of Argyll’s book; he so disliked being served cold gravy he created a vessel to keep it warm. It looks like a silver coffee pot with a hot water chamber and this became known as an Argyll. Genius! Check out our website to view a selection.
An Edwardian sterling silver Argyll from our website.
The selection of serving dishes and tureens is vast and varied. They can be bought alone or in pairs and sets. You might choose a simple lidded dish with a removable finial which then becomes two serving dishes. Very clever.
You could choose a tureen with a separate compartment for hot water thus helping to keep the food warm. Of course, there are numerous trays and platters to be had, from the simple to the elaborate.

Or, for a real touch of theatre, is there a better way to present the bird than to appear at the table with an impressive silver domed meat dish cover and dramatically reveal your culinary masterpiece? Tah dah!
A very impressive silver-plated meat dish and cover. Contact for details.
So we’ve covered the huge array of options available to help serve in style and I hope it has inspired you. Our website has a selection of some of the tableware we have on offer and we've much more on show in our shops. Get in touch if you have something in mind and can’t see it. We will do our best to help you locate it.

Next week I will show you some stunning centrepieces to add that final pizazz.

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