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A Fun Halloween Dinner Party

Often, setting the table is a last-minute task that can leave you wondering about silverware placement and what should be on the table. These simple ideas will keep your dinner party stress free and let you focus on the food and your guests.

Start with the basics for a causal setting. Place a simple table cloth over the table and add a plate, fork and knife at each seat. For a more formal setting, add more pieces by bringing additional plates, silverware, glasses and other serving pieces to the table.

Set the theme by adding a centerpiece. The centerpiece should not block the view of the person sitting across from you. Have fun with this! For the Halloween themed dinner party above, skeletons are the centerpiece. Other easy items you can use to create a centerpiece are candles, flowers, and wrapped gift boxes depending on the theme of the event.

When setting the table, the dinner plate is positioned in the center of the place setting and everything else is placed around it. The flatware is arranged around the plate in the order in which it will be used. To the left of the plate is the fork, to the right is the knife and spoon. The water glass goes above the knife and napkins can be placed under the fork or on the plate.

As you create a more formal place setting, pieces are added as outlined in the image below.

Things to remember for your dinner party:

- Bring out your china, crystal, silver and best linen cloths. Mix and match crystal and china. Use some vintage pieces with more modern pieces to keep it interesting.

- Use place cards so guests don’t have to guess where to sit.

- Serve appetizers and beverages in the living room before sitting down.

- Before calling guests to the table, fill water goblets and put out the bread and butter. If you’re serving a salad, fill individual salad plates and set them at each place setting.

- Before serving dessert, clear the table of all dishes, including extra glasses, salt and pepper shakers and condiment dishes.

- Once you serve the dessert and coffee, relax. Avoid the temptation to clear the table and start washing dishes…that can wait until after your guests leave.

The most important thing is to have fun with your dinner party!

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