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How to Create a Modern Christmas Tablescape in 6 Steps

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Creating a Christmas tablescape is something that can be intimidating. There is a fine balance between designing a space that is beautiful, but also functional for hosting and entertaining.

So today, I’m excited to break down how to create a modern Christmas tablescape in 6 simple steps! Following these steps gives you the flexibility to design a space that is uniquely your own without reinventing the wheel.

How to Create a Modern Christmas Tablescape in 6 Steps

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Basic Elements of a Modern Christmas Decorating Style

Let’s start with the basics. What elements are central to a modern style when decorating for the holidays?

Christmas tablescape with gold, black and green.

The most common elements of a modern decorating style are:

  • Use of black and white/neutrals
  • Clean lines
  • Simplified
  • Metallic accents
  • Casual elegance

These are the building blocks of a modern decorating style that we will use to create a modern Christmas tablescape today.

How to Create a Modern Christmas Tablescape in 6 steps

Now, let’s break down how to create a modern Christmas tablescape in 6 simple steps.

How to Create a Modern Christmas Tablescape in 6 Steps

These steps are basic and broad. They are simple building blocks that give you the freedom to have a starting point, but not crush creativity.

  1. Casual table linen
  2. Fancy dishes
  3. Simple centerpiece
  4. Add black to ground the setting
  5. Bold colors
  6. Include something unusual

Let’s pull these 6 steps apart with some more detail.

1. Start with Casual Table LInens

First, let’s lay the foundation with casual table linens.

Could you use fancy table linens? Yes. However, modern style has a casual elegance to it that necessitates a balance of casual and fancy.

Casual table linen with a Christmas tablescape.

That’s why I like to start with casual linens. I will give it a fancier look with the other elements. Casual linens help tone it down so it doesn’t feel overdone.

Casual linens can be anything from a plain white tablecloth to a simple runner or basic placemats.

2. Add Fancy Dishes

Next, add fancy dishes.

Your place setting is the star of the show. The way you piece together different dishes and cutlery sets the tone for your entire Christmas tablescape.

Fancy dishes on a modern Christmas tablescape.

I chose to keep my dinner plates simple and add the fancy touches with a salad plate, gold rimmed glasses and gold cutlery.

Layering your table setting with a simple knotted napkin elevates the entire setting without any effort.

3. Include a Simple Centerpiece

Once you’ve designed your place settings, focus on the centerpiece for your modern Christmas tablescape.

Candle centerpiece of a modern Christmas tablescape.

Is there anything cozier than large pillar candles?

I like to keep my Christmas table centerpiece simple and classic. Modern styles tend to work best with simplicity so overdoing greenery or embellishments can quickly shift your style.

I added just a few sprigs of pinecones to dress it up, however, the marble base and pillar candles are the focal points.

4. Ground Your Modern Christmas Tablescape with Black

Now that we have the basics in place, make sure to incorporate black in some element of your table.

Simple holiday tablescape with black dishes.

I used black as my base in the table setting. However, you could add in a variety of items to ground the space. Here are some examples:

  • Black candlesticks
  • Black metal modern reindeer
  • Black cutlery
  • Black serving dishes
  • Bowl of black mercury glass ornaments

5. Pop in Bold Colors

Next, choose one or two bold colors to include. These should be in line with the color palette you’re using for the rest of your home to remain cohesive.

Modern Christmas tablescape in a dining room.

My pop of color is the green runner with some scallop detail. And then a pop of gold! Which leads me to…my favorite part.

6. Top it Off With Something Unusual or Unique

Every modern Christmas tablescape should have something unusual or unique.

Unusual flowers on a Christmas table.

For me, that could be two things on my predominately gold Christmas tablescape.

  • The sheer white flowers
  • The DIY star pendant

I loved how unusual the sheer poinsettias are. I simply snipped off the stems and placed three along the length of the table.

However, the really unique addition is this star pendant I built from a bunch of ornaments.

Star pendant.

I love how it creates this floating effect and shines with the light of the Edison bulb.

Try to add something that is unique and a conversation starter!

You’ll Also Enjoy…

I hope you enjoyed seeing how I designed this modern Christmas tablescape. Follow these 6 simple steps with the items you already own to create a unique look for your next holiday gathering!

DIY light over a christmas table setting.

All of the items you see on my Christmas tablescape this year are from At Home Stores.

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Kitchen island decorated for Christmas

If you’re looking for more Christmas decorating inspiration, make sure to check out all of my Christmas and holiday decorating articles here!




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