Mixing Bowls (and Plates and Cups . . .)

Thursday, November 15, 2007

If you dust off your fancy dinnerware (a.k.a. "the good stuff") to prepare for this holiday season and find yourself underwhelmed, resist the urge to buy a whole new set. Mixing a few colorful pieces with your old china can turn a lackluster tabletop into a feast for the eyes.

White plates may be the popular choice on bridal registries, but today's hosts are looking to inject more color and individuality into their table, says Sarah Dennis, who writes the Toast & Tables blog, a daily musing on the well-dressed table. Bold patterns, unexpected shapes or colorful linens can give an otherwise traditional table setting an instant dose of personality.

Retailers are taking note of this trend and are selling dinnerware pieces a la carte, Dennis says. Also search flea markets, yard sales and antiques stores for less expensive pieces to accent what you have and make your table unique.

"It's all about putting your stamp on the table," she says.

So when setting your tables this season, mix it up a bit. Make it fun. Make it distinctive. Make it you.

Terri Sapienza

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