Choosing the right Valentine's Day table settings can help you inject a little extra romance into an already special day. Whether you're having an intimate dinner for two, an elaborate party for friends or you just want to make Valentine's Day special for your family, there are numerous table setting ideas you can use to create just the right scene.
Intimate Dinner Settings
The setting can be just as important as what it is you're serving for your romantic Valentine's Day meal. Try one of these table settings to help set the mood.
Give your proposal a personal touch with a tasteful table setting that lets the proposal take center stage.
- Begin with a red cloth tablecloth to cover the table and set the color scheme.
- Contrast the red cloth with white dishes and plates. Keep each table setting as simple as possible; the idea is to let the personal touches show, not let the setting take over.
- Fold a red and white print napkin onto each plate. Keep in mind that the napkin and the tablecloth need to be the same shade of red; using different reds will create contrast that will detract from the overall setting.
- If you are leaving a ring or ring box on the table, center it on the napkin so it's the first thing seen.
- Leave a handmade card to one side of the plate as a way to let your intention show.
Remember that with a proposal setting, anything extra will only shift the attention somewhere else; keep the table as clean and uncluttered as possible so that only the personal touches will show.
Create an upscale and elegant table setting using white as the predominant color on the table. Small pops of red stand out against the white, giving them more attention than if they were laid against a red background.
- Lay the table with a crisp, white tablecloth.
- Set each place with white china, laying a white napkin that matches the tone of the tablecloth on each plate.
- Set several red roses in a short vase in the center of the table. Trim the stems of the roses down so that the heads just crest over the top of the vase. Pack the heads of the roses closely together at the top of the vase to create a more dramatic appearance by giving the illusion of one, much larger rose head. Avoid any greenery or baby's breath; let the red roses be the only focus there.
- Add one or two red touches to each plate. This may include laying a single rose on each plate, placing a small red gift box on each plate or using a red napkin ring swag around the white napkin.
- Scatter red and white tea light candles around the table at regular intervals to illuminate the area and help add to the ambiance.
Valentine's Day Party Settings
If you're having a dinner party for Valentine's Day, bring your table to life with the right touches that are guaranteed to put your guests in the right frame of mind.
Romantic Party Setting
If the bulk of your guests are couples, consider creating a romantic table setting that will put everyone in the mood for romance.
- Cover your table with a white-on-white patterned tablecloth. Select an elegant and romantic cloth, including brocade cloths, embroidered cloths or lace-covered cloths.
- Lay a large red plate at each setting, and set smaller white plates and bowls on top.
- Wrap white napkins with red tissue paper napkin holders and one inside each bowl.
- Scatter red rose petals over the entire table to help set the mood.
- Light a cluster of red and white pillar candles in varying sizes in the center of the table as a centerpiece.
Fun Party Setting
If your Valentine's Day party is more fun than it is romantic, consider giving your table a mixture of traditional touches, combined with a few cliched images that are sure to make your guests smile as they celebrate the day.
Even when they're meant in fun, traditional colors and a few traditional images such as hearts help to set the tone of the evening and make a gentle reminder to all of your guests of why it is you're all there.
- Cover your table with a plain white tablecloth. Overlay the first tablecloth with a red lace, sheer or cutwork tablecloth that will allow the white to show through. If you desire, set the second tablecloth at a different angle to the first, so the edges of the two cloths show separately at the corners of the table.
- Place a large selection of white, pink and cream flowers and greenery in the center of the table. Cut the blossoms down to short stems and lay a few right on the table itself; place others in small vases of water.
- Tuck a few candles in matching colors in among the flowers to help bring some additional lighting to the table.
- Set each place with white china, as well as red flat flatware.
- At each place setting, take a red napkin and fold it into a heart shape to lay on each plate by laying each napkin flat on the center of each plate.
- Fold the napkin in half, then half again.
- Find the center and place your finger on it.
- Fold up the right half vertically, then the left half so you are left with a point facing you.
- Tuck the center corners under to form the shape of a heart on each place setting.
- Lay the flatware across the hearts, rather than leaving them to get lost in the rest of the table decorations that surround each of the settings.
- Place a variety of different-sized wine glasses at each place setting and plan on providing different wines with each course.
Family Dinner Setting
Celebrate Valentine's Day with your entire family by creating a fun and thematic Valentine place setting for each person. These fun settings can be used again and again, becoming a family tradition.
- Cover the table with a red tablecloth.
- Lay each place with a set of red and white polka dot plates. Layer a white cloth napkin between each of the two plates, leaving the top plate free.
- Place a small box of chocolates or a small gift tied with a red ribbon in the center of each plate.
- Decorate the table and accent each of the place settings with some red ceramic hearts to help remind everyone what day it is.
- Tie ribbons around the stems of the wine and water glasses used at each place.
- Put a low arrangement of red and white flowers in a basket in the center of the table. Tie a few of the same ribbons that are tied to the glasses onto the handle of the basket to finish the design.
Get Valentine Ready
With so many different ways to set your table for Valentine's Day, you'll have no trouble pulling off the perfect party scheme. Set your table according to the holiday, and help set everyone's mood for the day as well.