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Trim your table like a pro this Christmas


Trim your table like a pro this Christmas

As Christmas approaches, thoughts often turn to entertaining and decorating homes for the throngs of family and friends who visit during this festive time.

TAFE NSW Visual Merchandising Teacher Nikki Stewart has has worked in the visual merchandising field both nationally and internationally, for over 25 years. Her field of experience covers fashion, home wares, furnishings and children’s wear working in both department store and chain retailers such as David Jones, Sportsgirl, Witchery, Jigsaw , Topshop and Ikea.

Now she’s offering her top tips on how to trim your table like a pro and impress your friends and family this Christmas. Nikki says there is nothing more inviting than walking in to a room and viewing a beautifully dressed dining table that invites you to sit down and enjoy both the company, food and the visual stimulation.

Theme it

Traditional, Australian, classic, modern? What will be your take on Christmas this year? Aim to stick to particular theme which will keep the look consistant and make it easy for your guest to feel comfortable.

Make a statement

Consider a centre piece in the centre of the table to create a focal point that ’sets the scene’ for the event. You could also hang something beautiful from the ceiling to create a magical feel for the festive event.

Make sure your guests can see each other!

Make a statement with the decorating but make sure that your guests can see each other and that it is easy for them to communicate across the table! Christmas is a wonderful time to get together and to catch up, so make it easy.

Use layers

Layers can add interest and depth to a festive table, consider the following suggestions;

•              Modern Christmas- blue placemats placed straight onto the dining table / centre piece of coloured baubles through the centre/ white branches as a centre piece / white plates / decorative bright coloured serviettes/ bright fun bonbons!

•              Classic Christmas- white table cloth / silver runner/ small white Christmas tree centre piece for the focal point / silver plates placed under the white dining plate / silver cutlery / refined wine glasses

•              Traditional Christmas- red table cloth/ Christmas garland with fairy lights powered by battery through the centre / long candles as the central focal point/ white crockery / tartan cloth serviettes/ gold cutlery / gold bon bons!

•              Australian Christmas- pale green table cloth/ small eucalyptus branches placed along the centre of the table / Christmas bush placed at the centre of the table in a glass vase / wooden round placemats/ white crockery / copper cutlery

Consider the senses

Of course you will want to enjoy a visually pleasing table setting and eating the wonderful Christmas meal but also think about the other senses. Consider a beautiful scent with christmas themed candles and music that also works with your theme, it can work wonderfully and make Christmas a more memorable and enjoyable event!

To learn more about studying Visual Merchandising at TAFE NSW visit or call 131 601.

Media contact: Alice Dalley, TAFE NSW Media and Communications Business Partner,, mobile 0402 528 210.