News & Trends
Creating the Perfect Gathering
Thanksgiving has arrived. Company is coming, and your linens have been washed, pressed and ready to be admired.
We believe that when you welcome people to the dinner table, you are welcoming them into your family, and we’ve always been incredibly honored to be part of that moment. This is why our collection of table linens was designed with you in mind. Using only the finest Italian fabrics, which can be customized with a variety of finishes – a hand-guided hemstitch, embroidered scallop, satin stitch, applique or lace inset – our linens are intended to help bring your table to life. Whether you prefer a solid white Provenza tablecloth, or a Zebra jacquard, or a lace inset like our Doric collection, these pieces were meant to be enjoyed, on your own or with your guests.
With the perfect backdrop for your Thanksgiving table taken care of, let’s not forget the other key ingredients for hosting the perfect holiday dinner.
So you’ve decided to host a Thanksgiving dinner, but you’re not ready to take on full responsibility for everything from turkey, to bread rolls, to wine? Be clear if you want your guests to help; everyone is usually more than happy to lend a hand and ease the stress! We understand, asking guests to bring their own food may be awkward, so we find that asking in the following ways is more than welcome: “I love your fresh rolls, would you mind making some for dinner?” or “Would you mind picking up some ice on your way?”.
2. Seating Plans.
As the host, your biggest job is to ensure everyone feels welcome and has a good time. And given it’s Thanksgiving, much of that time is spent around the dinner table. Take every care in creating a seating plan that encourages lively conversation and avoids quarrelsome personality clashes. If you notice someone stranded outside the conversation, create inclusive opportunities. If you’re seated next to a conversational void, try an old fail-safe like, “How has the last year been for you?”
Thanksgiving deserves a little ceremony…and thanks, of course. Prepare something to say at the start of the meal to make your guests feel truly welcome. It’s an opportunity to share what you’re thankful for, while also providing your guests a moment to reflect for themselves. Also, if you’re looking for a way to ease the conversation, consider asking your guests to share what they are especially thankful for. This is a charming way to learn something significant about everyone present.
4. Minimize Spills.
Did you notice we started out by ensuring your linens have been washed? Spills and stains are essentially guaranteed when hosting large dinners. However, you can minimize the number of gravy and cranberry sauce spots that need soaking by doubling up on saucers at both ends of the table. This will reduce transport back and forth across the table, and hopefully cut down on stain removal following the holidays.
5. Socially Present, but Socially Silent.
Holidays like Thanksgiving provide the rare opportunity for families to come together, so first and foremost, it should be about enjoying one another. While the Thanksgiving table does make for the perfect Instagram opportunity (#thankful), there’s always the chance for a #latergram. Spending time together is truly invaluable, so encourage your guests to put away all devices while there is food on the table.
6. Drunk Uncle.
A Thursday off, football and plenty of alcohol? You can’t be surprised that guests may get caught up in drinking too much before the table is set. We like to have hors d’oeuvres on hand – ones that keep the stomach lined, without filling our guests up too much before the Turkey is ready. Also, make sure to have water readily available; water bottles, or a carafe with fresh sliced citrus will encourage your guests to help themselves.
7. Bird Duty.
While the host may be responsible for the Turkey, carving should not be his / her sole responsibility. As the host, don’t be shy to ask for help. Whoever has the strongest knife skills should carve the turkey…it is the centerpiece of the meal after all.
8. Master Chef.
Thanksgiving is about being grateful, so never apologize for the food. If something is truly inedible, don’t serve it. Otherwise, be proud of your efforts and accept compliments with grace. Your guests are not expecting a Michelin star meal, and if they are, plenty of restaurants are open. Rather, your friends and family have gathered to spend time with those who really matter to them during this holiday.
9. Clean Up.
When everyone has enjoyed their Turkey, gravy and stuffing, there’s obviously one thing on the mind…dessert. While we encourage guests to help clear the table, there’s a time and place for that. No need to make your guests feel rushed. Enjoy the time seated around the table together. Revel in the moments spent engaging in good conversation. The dishes can wait while you create lasting memories.
For many, the best part of Thanksgiving is the leftovers. It’s definitely one of the perks of being the host, but don’t be greedy. Packing up leftovers for your guests to take home is a generous parting gift. They’ll appreciate it the next day for lunch, and it will give you a bit of wiggle room in your own fridge. Plus, it serves as a subtle hint to suggest to all those attending that maybe it’s time to go home.
Taking these small suggestions and adding them to your meal will help to create closeness, conversation and a congenial atmosphere. From our family to yours, we wish you a very happy Thanksgiving.