Tag: plates

A How To Guide: Dinner Party Cheese Platters

Cheese platters

For people hosting upscale dinner parties, it’s all about the food! Instead of the standard sliced cheeses from the ready-made section of the local grocery store deli, sophisticated foodies are opting for high-quality cheeses that are conversation pieces.

There are several questions people should consider before purchasing cheeses for a dinner party.

  • How many people will be attending?
  • Will the cheese course be an appetizer or an after-dinner treat?
  • Are there any particular must-try cheeses or ones that should be avoided?
  • What is the overall budget?

Etiquette Guide: Rehearsal Dinners

Rehearsal dinner

Rehearsal dinner parties are a wedding tradition. Etiquette dictates that the groom’s parents should host this event, allowing the groom’s mother the opportunity to entertain wedding guests. However, more couples are paying for their own weddings or families are choosing to help share expenses. Generally speaking, whoever pays for the dinner should have the deciding factor in rehearsal dinner details.

The following outlines general rehearsal dinner etiquette, making it easy for families, friends, brides and grooms everywhere to know what is expected.

  • Invites – Close family, friends and people participating in the wedding should be invited to the rehearsal dinner. This may include bridesmaids, ushers, flower girls, groomsmen and ring bearers. However, in some cultures, it’s customary to invite everyone who is invited to the wedding to the rehearsal dinner.

Choose Your Own Dinner Party Adventure

Dinner Party Adventure

Dinner parties are an imaginative adventure enjoyed by hosts and guests alike. Whether it’s throwing a themed dinner party or a culinary adventure into the unknown, there are several different types of traditional dinner parties.

  • Basic – Most dinner parties are informal. These types of dinner parties are perfect for friends, family or large gatherings. Whether it’s roasting chickens, grilling steak or sharing a big batch of New Mexico-style chili, informal dinner parties are simple. These types of parties may also involve passing dishes around a family-style table or having guests casually serving themselves from a buffet. Basic dinner parties are informal and homey. Traditionally, there are no wrong meals, but dessert usually consists of home-baked cakes, cobblers or pies. Simple dinner parties are often potluck-style, with hosts supplying entrees and asking guests to bring side dishes.

Modern Party Etiquette

Modern Party Etiquette

Long ago, women would go to school to learn formal etiquette training. In today’s more casual society, there are still several etiquette trends that are still followed. A source of confusion for most young adults, Just Charger Plates offer a glimpse into modern party etiquette.

  • Invitations – Always extend invitations with enough time for guests to plan and respond. Today, invitations can be done over the phone, via traditional paper mailings or even using digital services such as Evite. It’s thoughtful to include a GPS-friendly invite, as this makes it easier for guests to find locations. Guests should RSVP as soon as possible and if in doubt, over communication is better than casting assumptions.
  • Early – It’s important to arrive on time to a dinner party, but avoid arriving early as this can leave hosts feeling panicked.

Small Space Solutions: Dining Décor

Dining decor for small spaces

As more Americans are downsizing into smaller homes, this doesn’t necessarily mean that stylish dinner parties are soon to become a long-forgotten tradition. In fact, there are several ways that smaller homes can be designed and decorated to improve small living spaces and make entertaining more efficient.

  • Bars – Instead of the traditional oversized bar that takes up an entire wall of the dining area, consider opting for a wall-mounted bar. These are sleek and pair well with under the cabinet style lighting. Consider opting for glass cabinets for a modern, contemporary look.
  • Double Duty – Sleek entertainment units are perfect for great room areas that keep kitchen, dining and living rooms open for mingled conversations. Consider selecting a television consul that doubles as a faux fireplace.

A Guide to Surviving a Formal Dinner Party

Surviving a formal party

Formal dinner parties can be intimidating, but as long as guests know what to expect, these affairs can be fun-filled and entertaining.

To survive formal dinner parties, follow these helpful tips.

  • RSVP – Once the RSVP arrives, it’s polite to respond as soon as possible, preferably within a few days or a week after receiving the invitation. This helps make it easy for hosts to plan venue, meal and drink accommodations.
  • Dress – Dressing appropriately is a vital part of being a good formal dinner party guest. If the event is formal, then a suit and tie are likely appropriate, but if the event is casual, it’s still important to appear professional. This means leaving yoga pants at home and donning an outfit that is classy and tactful. This also shows appreciation and respect towards hosts.

Budget-Friendly Dining Décor

Budget friendly decor

With more Americans on tight budgets, 2014 is anticipated to be the year of do-it-yourself décor. With less Americans completing costly home remodels, the latest trend is focusing on defining spaces using inexpensive home furnishings.

Just Charger Plates offers a variety of budget-friendly décor that will help inject modern design into dining room areas.

Small Space Solutions: Dining Décor

As more Americans are downsizing into smaller homes, this doesn’t necessarily mean that stylish dinner parties are soon to become a long-forgotten tradition. In fact, there are several ways that smaller homes can be designed and decorated to improve small living spaces and make entertaining more efficient.

  • Bars – Instead of the traditional oversized bar that takes up an entire wall of the dining area, consider opting for a wall-mounted bar. These are sleek and pair well with under the cabinet style lighting. Consider opting for glass cabinets for a modern, contemporary look.
  • Double Duty – Sleek entertainment units are perfect for great room areas that keep kitchen, dining and living rooms open for mingled conversations. Consider selecting a television consul that doubles as a faux fireplace.
  • Expandable Tables – Select a small dining table that can easily be extended to accommodate additional guests. This makes it easy to entertain for large holidays or even host small dinner parties.
  • Chairs – One of the most ingenious designs to appear in homes is the morphing chair. When not in use it can easily be folded to double as a stylish room divider. Comfortable and sleek, guests will never know these stylish chairs pull double duty. Another option that designers are turning to is pop up seats. They fold flat for easy storage under couches or in closets, but easily pop up to form a small table or additional seat.
  • Pet Beds – Instead of having cat beds take up valuable floor space, why not combine cat’s love of high sleeping habits with a wall-mounted pet bed? Sophisticated and sleek, cats everywhere will be purring in posh comfort.
  • Flower Frames – Not the typical floral arrangement, many homeowners are turning to wall-mounted flower frames to serve as artwork and also double as a handy bouquet holder.
  • Lamps – Nearly every homeowner wants to place lamps in the corner, which why the ingenious corner lamp is perfect for these hard to reach angles. Neatly slipping into tight nooks and crannies, this lamp helps brighten small spaces while saving on much-needed space.
  • Convertible Storage – Perfect for people that are looking to maximize smaller spaces, convertible storage systems double as classic buffet tables, but expand to reveal an assortment of trays and shelves that will tickle any organizational fiend’s fancy. This type of storage is perfect for storing formal china and crystal. It can also serve as storage for glass charger plates, which are perfect for dinner parties.
  • Imitation Windows – Just when most people thought they’d heard of everything, this ingenious invention neatly hangs on dark walls and instantly gives the illusion of a well-lit window.
  • Ceramic Wall Units – Doubling as space dividers, these units are contemporary and modern. They are perfect for storing books, china and highlighting small artwork.

Just Charger Plates strives to help homeowners create inviting, warm spaces despite small size restrictions. They offer a variety of contemporary and traditional charger plate designs, including glass charger plates, square charger plates and even mirror charger plates.

Budget-Friendly Seasonal Centerpieces

With hosts nationwide looking to save money this season, it doesn’t mean they have to forego dining table centerpieces. In fact, there are so many new designer centerpiece styles that are affordable, hosts will have a difficult time selecting only one!

Just Charger Plates features the latest inexpensive centerpieces that are gracing tables, including:

  • Woodlands – This easy centerpiece involves planting ground cover in a shallow pot, highlighting it with tiny ceramic mushrooms, stones and foraged wood. A show-stopping design, those with youngsters may even decide to add a magical fairy and have their own indoor centerpiece fairy garden.
  • Nature – A stripped branch decorated with dotted air plants looks beautiful surrounded by delicate tea lights. For an alternative approach to flowers, consider placing a variety of striking pheasant feathers in a simple vase for a textured bouquet. For an added touch of warm, cover chairs with small faux sheepskins, which gives dining areas a rustic, warm and cozy feeling.
  • Farmer’s Market – Embracing the season often involves incorporating bountiful harvests into centerpieces. Consider adding berries, pomegranates, persimmons and other ornate foliage for long-lasting color.
  • Solo Pieces – A single berry-filled branch is simply stunning, especially when paired with a vibrant, contrasting vase.
  • Low – To help facilitate conversation, consider embracing low tabletop arrangements. Whether it’s adding a variety of low candles in various shapes and sizes with branches and holly leaves, or interspersing berries for eye-catching pops of color, guests will thank hosts for their thoughtfulness in selecting low-style arrangements.
  • Color – If a dining room table is painted, consider giving it a fresh coat of eye-popping paint for the holiday season. Whether it’s a warm tone, such as a golden yellow, or a vibrant color, such as Christmas red, changing the color of a dining table can redefine a dining room area.
  • Kitchen – Hosts can shop what items are already around their homes. Centerpieces can include pitchers, platters, trays and fruits or potted herbs.
  • Highlight – Small items should be highlighted with a plate or charger plate, allowing these small pieces to make a dramatic statement. Consider placing a potted plant or an array of pillar candles on a glass charger plate, which makes a budget-friendly centerpiece.
  • Jars – Old-style mason jars look charming set aglow with small pillar candles. Consider placing these on a burlap runner and pair with rattan charger plates for an eclectic, home-style vibe.

Just Charger Plates offers a wide variety of chargers, including acrylic charger plates, metal charger plates, glass charger plates, metal charger plates and faux leather charger plates, to name a few. These types of charger plates can serve double duty – playing a central role in serving meals and in decorating centerpieces.

Exclusive Holiday Table Accents

Instead of using traditional ho-hum table accents this holiday season, spice up tablescapes with these unique, one-of-a-kind designs and creations.

  • Nametags – If nametags are important, consider making them into stunning centerpieces. A little cardstock and string can go a long way, but instead of pursuing traditional designs, consider incorporating nametags into the centerpiece designs, such as pinning them to cloth napkins or tying them to a gourd or colorful pomegranate.
  • Chalkboard Tray – A plain metal tray can be dressed with a coat of chalkboard paint. This allows for personal messages to be highlighted or for specific treats to be labeled. This is especially helpful for cheese and meat platters. It’s best to avoid placing food directly on the paint, so consider placing items on small plates. The deep chalkboard color pairs exceptionally well with simple white plates and bowls. This type of tray also works for displaying an assortment of jars, candles or even wineglasses.
  • Layers – To have a multi-dimensional table setting, it’s important to add layers. Whether it’s hanging decorations from ceilings, such as lanterns, lights, banners or garlands, this multi-dimensional approach gives rooms a holiday-filled feeling.
  • Outdoors – For areas with warmer winters, consider dining outdoors. A hay bale can double as a bar area and splashes of warm copper tones look stunning in the fall and winter. By incorporating nature into the theme – adding acorns and cedar cuttings – backyards are transformed into an outdoor holiday paradise.
  • Flower Arrangements – Instead of spending a fortune on a traditional flower arrangement, consider embracing natural arrangements. This can include collecting an assortment of cuttings from the yard, including leaves, grasses and branches. Design tip: try to mimic nature’s own bouquets, as these will likely make the most beautiful arrangements.
  • Recycled Wine Bottles – Doubling as sophisticated, artsy water pitchers, recycled wine bottles can be relabeled using paint and a small brush. For an upscale theme, consider writing the French word for water – bouteille d’eau on the bottle; however, if hosts are looking for a modern theme, consider H2O.
  • Spoons – To give wooden serving spoons an edgy look, consider painting the handles a different color. For a more festive holiday theme, consider adding metallic hues to make a more modern, streamlined design.

By far one of the biggest decorating trends these holidays is black, white and red tablescapes. Whether it’s a classic white charger plate, paired with black dinner plates, white salad plates and punchy red soup bowls, this color scheme looks excellent when paired with a paisley tablecloth, black candleholders and white pillar candles. Top this arrangement off with a bouquet of red sunflowers and soft, creamy white hydrangeas for a tablescape that is sure to garnish attention from guests, if not receive it’s own honorary Facebook mention for its breath-taking first impression.

Just Charger Plates sells a wide array of styles, including round charger plates, square charger plates and octagonal charger plates. They also offer acrylic, metal, glass and rattan charger materials.