You can decorate your table with flair without denting your wallet.
Xandra Ramos-Padilla, general manager of Crossings Department Store, suggests you plan the Christmas table as you would your wardrobe. The rules are the same: establishing a basic color theme; being adventurous with patterns; layering (visually overlapping one another); and playing with shapes.
“Customers want style, but at cost. All you need are basic pieces, and add as you move on,” she says.
Ramos-Padilla herself hosts intimate gatherings with her book-club friends, former schoolmates and relatives. Her advice on table settings: “You can start with a basic color like black and white with beads; include metallics; use red for the holiday season, or have fun with animal patterns. Mix and match your charger plates and placemats.”
One of her oldest pieces are the coco-beaded placemats which she acquired when she got married five years ago. It was revitalized when long-time family friend, design consultant Rachy Cuna, composed it with shiny and patterned objects from Crossings Department Store.
Rachy has been styling the landmark occasions of the Ramos family and the merchandise display for the store.
For the Inquirer shoot, he created three themes that reflect his exuberant style. Rachy shows his penchant for playful shapes, strong colors and tall objects for high impact, and a bit of gilt and glitter for sparkle.
Black and White Magic
The black and white theme is inspired by the tuxedo look. Chairs have black or white runners accentuated with silver and embellished with paillettes. The black crocodile-pattern charger is the visual focus on the table, topped with black-and-white pinstriped plates and bowls.
The transparent reindeer and trees, crystal leaves, and berries on the table and silvery twigs with glass beads on a contrasting white vase suggest a winter wonderland. An embroidered monogrammed napkin lends a hint of tradition.
Animal patterns and shapes are great for events for children or the children at heart. Instead of the conventional fresh floral centerpiece, use silver ferns and glittery birds of paradise. The coco-beaded placemat anchors the tiger-patterned plates and bowl. Orange vases pick up the color of the plates. A ruched silk napkin tied by a silver fern adds formality in this spirited setting.
A classic season color, red is favorite for its high impact. Rachy highlights the red with gilt chargers adorned with cutout borders. Tinsel and a box of faux pearls are nestled atop the red ceramic plates for a festive feel. The focal point is the tableaux of reindeer, candleholders in front of and three Christmas trees with red crystal beads in varying height.