For the most dramatic result, choose a limited colour palette and stick with it, such as this example of green, white and gold.
For the most dramatic result, choose a limited colour palette and stick with it, such as this example of green, white and gold. Thinkstock

STYLE: The perfect Christmas table

I'VE written about this before, but in the early '90s when I was in my 20s and living in New York, I was lucky enough to work at Wolfman and Gold in Soho, Manhattan. It was the Holy Grail of interior inspiration, a tasteful store specialising in stunningly beautiful table settings.

Peri Wolfman wrote the table setting "bible", The Perfect Setting, while her equally talented husband and partner, Charles Gold, exquisitely photographed the styled tables.

The Wolfman and Gold table setting philosophy was "all white." Actually it wasn't all white, it was white, beige, cream and gold, but you get the idea. The other important thing I learnt was that theming a table is paramount for a dramatic visual effect.

For instance, I styled a fashionable friend's wedding and the budget was zero, so beautiful table settings for 200 guests totally depended on creativity and imagination. I settled on green and white for the overreaching table theme. Bags of fresh (and free) cut ivy to run down the centre of tables, combined with candles and crockery, in any shape or form - as long as it was "sort-of-all-white" - was my theme.

This timeless leitmotif still works brilliantly. It's elegant, dramatic, yet easy to achieve. I also suggest choosing one metal colour and sticking with it. Whether you choose gold or silver, for full effect do not deviate. As it is Christmas, add a dash of red, but only a dash. With your white, green, red and gold (or silver) highlights, your theme will conspire to set the perfect Christmas table.



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