Christmas table setting design ideas

Need Christmas table setting inspiration? From crafty tips to formal touches, explore these festive design ideas and arrangements

Christmas table settings are essential for a large family meal on the big day.

As everyone knows, the true centrepiece of any Christmas day is the dinner. And the centrepiece of the dinner is the, well, centrepiece. And candles, and place cards, and place mats... With this in mind, here are 20 original ideas to style up your dining room this festive season - and perhaps rival the turkey as the star of the show.

If you're looking to make an impact, you can't beat a striking colour scheme. Silvers and golds will create a classy, classic feel, while purples, teals and blacks will establish a more modern aesthetic. Crisp white table linens and crockery will add freshness and look great when paired with gold candlesticks and metallic ornamental touches. If you want to add a hit of formal glam, consider tying fabrics or linens around the chair backs.

You can have fun with Christmas tree baubles too, either hanging pedant-like over the table or scattered among the tableware. Indeed, for a more dramatic effect combine hanging baubles with vintage ornaments, elegant candelabras and rich colour palettes. There, your very own winter wonderland!

If you're looking for something a little more pared back and sophisticated, minimal tableware and black and gold accents should be just the thing. Of course, even the most chic Christmas table isn't immune to some good ol' Christmas spirit - just add a clutch of attractive crackers and fun party favours. After all, it is Christmas!

1/19 Nordic-style dining table dressed for Christmas

dining table with christmas and tableware

(Image credit: TBC)

Give your dining room Nordic charm with crisp stripes and checks in red and white. Add snow-white highlights with ceramics and candles. Bring it all together with the gleam of glass and silver, and scarlet-berried greenery. Use striped ribbon to tie decorations to guests' chairs and dress the table with a red and white striped cloth. Top sparkling silver place mats with gingham check napkins and go for white tableware with green and red decoration and cranberry-coloured glassware. Make it all shimmer and shine with plenty of candlelight.

Drummond sideboard
Similar tableware
Not on the High Street

2/19 Go for glamour

dining table with dinner plate with fork

(Image credit: TBC)

Mix rose gold metallics and soft velvet in midnight jewel tones for an effortless yet luxe Christmas table setting. Inky indigo tableware contrasts perfectly with warm copper. Choose a cutlery set with a streamlined minimal design to really show of the beauty of the burnished metal and match to a hammered-effect copper coaster and button details on the table runner.

Bleu de four dinner plate
The Conran Shop

3/19 Christmas table setting with natural charm

christmas table with dinnerware and display foliage

(Image credit: TBC)

Choose a simple white and green colour scheme for a natural look. Display foliage and flowers in antique-style bottles for a pretty centrepiece.

House of Fraser

4/19 Minimal and glamourous Christmas table setting

christmas table setting with stick on moustaches and mug

(Image credit: TBC)

Create an elegant look this Christmas with minimal tableware and accessories in stylish black and gold. Fun touches, such as stick-on moustaches, keep the mood jovial.

Stick on moustaches

5/19 Go dark and dramatic

white wine glass with stafford plate and glasses

(Image credit: TBC)

Make the most of a dark stone table top to create a striking monochrome scheme with blush accents. Mix black and white patterned plates with marble serving platters and a soft grey charger plate to add to the contrasting tones. Choose modern amber glassware in a simple design, shell pink napkins and copper touches for a luxurious twinkle. A small wrapped gift makes a thoughtful name setting and finishes the look.

LSA edge white wine glass 

Royal Stafford plate

6/19 Look to the north

christmas table with glass bell jars and tray

(Image credit: TBC)

Use cool wintry colours and icy glassware for a relaxed Scandi-style Christmas table. Stack white and smoky grey plates topped with gorgeous glass bell jars filled with treats or rustic star-shaped decorations, alternating the two colours around the table. For informal dining and a pared-back look, eschew a tablecloth in favour of a rustic linen table runner and matching napkins in a textured taupe. Finish the scheme with frosted glasses wreathed in eucalyptus, foraged berries and woodland finds.

Star bell jar with tray
Nordic House

7/19 Keep it country

dining table with scene plate and candlestick

(Image credit: TBC)

Mix traditionally festive colours of red and green with cute country-style touches for a warm Christmas look. Start by dressing the table in tartan and plain tablecloths for colour and texture. Add natural rush placemats, wood-handled cutlery and a mix of pretty candle holders for a natural theme and stack patterned plates with a contrasting colour to add interest. Finally, create a name holder from threading nuts, herbs and berries into a garland and dress a cracker in an embroidered linen napkin.

Winter's scene plate

John Lewis

Corinium candlestick 


8/19 Table setting with shimmering lanterns and baubles

table setting with shimmering lantern and baubles

(Image credit: TBC)

Set a party atmosphere and decorate your Christmas dining table with glass hurricane lanterns filled with glimmering silver baubles surrounded by plenty of glowing candles. Mix and match Christmas decorations for a laid-back yet elegant feel.

Blomster lantern

9/19 Sparkling centrepiece for Christmas table setting

christmas table setting with botanical jug

(Image credit: TBC)

You can't beat gems and jewels for livening up a Christmas dining table, and this styling idea is so easy. Simply add a wreath to the centre of the table and pop a bright jug with a big bundle of evergreen foliage in the middle. Finish off with jewelled napkin rings to add a touch of bling.

Gisela Graham Botanical jug
Number One Interiors

10/19 Festive table setting with hanging red baubles

hanging red baubles with festive table setting and 12 piece dinner set

(Image credit: TBC)

Make your table the centre of attention in your dining room this Christmas by hanging bright red baubles on pretty ribbon above it. Then continue the festive theme by balancing baubles on glasses for a light-hearted touch.

Value 12-piece dinner set
Luxury Red crackers

11/19 Quirky place cards for Christmas place setting

christmas place setting with mini pegs and drink glass

(Image credit: TBC)

A novelty tree decoration makes a simple place card when pegged onto a bowl, while votive candles add a warming glow to the rest of the dining room.

Mini pegs

12/19 Bold red Christmas place mats

christmas red mats and plates

(Image credit: TBC)

Jazz up a smart silver and white table setting with a modern Christmas look. Red and white is a stunning combination. Why not get creative and make your own festive decorations? It will add a personal touch to your dining room - and save you money.

Similar felt place mats and coasters

13/19 Sophisticated white Christmas table setting

dining room with christmas table setting and 12 piece dinner set

(Image credit: TBC)

For a sophisticated dining room table setting stick to white linens and a chic dinner set with subtle silver detailing. Continue the glamour with silver crackers and baubles, and ensure there's plenty of elegant glassware for a smart finish.

Boston 12-piece dinner set

14/19 Candy striped Christmas table setting

christmas tree with table and tablecloth

(Image credit: TBC)

Expecting lots of family for Christmas dinner? These nifty pocket place mats will create a neat and efficient table setting that will give you more time to finish the cooking. Plus, the red and white candy striped linen is perfect for creating a fun-filled dining room atmosphere for a family Christmas.

Reversible place mat with pocket
John Lewis
Holiday fine stripe tablecloth
John Lewis

15/19 Modern teal and gold Christmas table setting

christmas table setting with teal table and christmas tree

(Image credit: TBC)

Impress your guests by dressing your dining room table with a mix of opulent gold and elegant teal. The warming colours will be a contrast to the crisp white winter outside and dazzling fairy lights will continue the comforting glow.

Teal table runner

16/19 Classic white and gold Christmas setting

gold christmas setting with dinner plates and drink glasses

(Image credit: TBC)

Keep crockery and glassware
simple with elegant white china and clear glassware. A couple of
glittering gold accessories will add a touch of sparkle to your dining room, while tall,
elegant candles will finish the look beautifully.

Dinner plates

Dunelm Mill

17/19 Christmas table setting with metallic touches

christmas table setting with metallic touches and white roses

(Image credit: TBC)

Gold and silver at Christmas will never go out of fashion, so choose metallic-edged crockery and mix with classic sparkling glassware. Finish with a white rose and glittering silver bauble at each setting to create a gorgeous personal touch.


18/19 Elegant vintage Christmas setting

elegant vintage christmas setting and decoration

(Image credit: TBC)

Go for a vintage-style Christmas dining room table with distressed and antique-look
baubles, delicate glassware and plenty of candlelight. A simple ribbon
tied around the back of each chair makes a pretty finishing touch.

John Lewis

19/19 Dramatic jewel toned Christmas table setting

christmas table setting with purple and blue

(Image credit: TBC)

The mix of rich jewel tones and gold makes for a theatrical, glamorous Christmas dining table. Opulent mask decorations teamed with large purple and blue hydrangeas will wow guests.

Table runner


Tamara was Ideal Home's Digital Editor before joining the Woman & Home team in 2022. She has spent the last 15 years working with the style teams at Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home, both now at Future PLC. It’s with these award wining interiors teams that she's honed her skills and passion for shopping, styling and writing. Tamara is always ahead of the curve when it comes to interiors trends – and is great at seeking out designer dupes on the high street.