We don’t have any scientific proof per se, but we’d swear that a beautifully set table somehow makes the food taste better. A tablescape is the first thing guests see before they sit down to eat, and it’s a good way to set the tone for your entire meal. And tablescapes aren’t just for weddings anymore. In this age of Pinterest, every brunch or dinner party is an opportunity to design a gorgeous table for guests to dine upon.

So with that in mind, we thought we’d give you a few tips for creating a stunning tablescape of your own. A few days ago, we hosted a fun little soiree featuring a Blue Diamond Almonds tasting (they have so many amazing flavors), pomegranate lemonade, and other yummy bites. Check out our photos and tips below!

1. Get Inspired

Inspiration is literally all around you. A single serving dish, a favorite flower, or even a current fashion trend can inspire a whole tablescape. In this case, the idea for our tablescape came from almonds. We know that might sound a little bit nuts (pun intended!), but the Blue Diamond Almonds on our appetizer platter were the inspiration behind the rustic, natural theme you see in the photos. That meant lots of wood, fresh linens, and lush greenery instead of colorful flowers. Just remember: A beautiful table is like any other work of art, so don’t be afraid to get creative.

2. Curate a Dish Collection

Dishes are one of our favorite things to collect! Aside from your everyday dinnerware, it’s fun to have statement serving pieces that you can wow your guests with. We loved using all the wood serving boards and hand-etched glassware from Lauren’s fair trade shop The Little Market. Our very favorite pieces were the little heart bowls that we filled with Blue Diamond Almonds at each individual place setting. In addition to the individual heart bowls, the set of three small nesting bowls was perfect for our almond tasting. We had our guests try out all the different flavors including Honey Dijon, Sriracha, and Dark Chocolate.

It can be fun to flea market shop for vintage plates and bowls, but if you only have storage space for one set of dishes, white plates and simple wood serving boards are always in style. It’s easy to take these classic items and customize them with a variety of florals, candles, and other elements.

3. Keep Your Centerpieces Short (or Really Tall!)

One of the most common tablescape mistakes that hosts and hostesses make is having a centerpiece that is right at eye level. Sure, you want everyone to see your gorgeous floral arrangement. But you also want your guests to be able to talk to each other. There’s nothing worse than having to crane your neck all night just to have a conversation with the person sitting across from you. So with that in mind, keep your centerpieces short enough to see over. Another option is to have your florals in an extra tall, skinny vase so that guests can see under the flowers. But, of course, this applies mostly to weddings and other grand events, not your average dinner party.

In that same vein, have your greenery take up no more than one-third of your table. It doesn’t matter how beautiful your flower arrangements are—if they are so big that there is no space left to eat, they are going to look ridiculous. That’s why we loved the long leafy garland and a row of small bud vases in our tablescape. They made a chic statement that still left plenty of room at the table.

4. Let There Be Light

You can’t go wrong having a few candles burning at your table. Flickering candlelight makes for a refined and romantic atmosphere. But be sure to burn only non-scented candles at a dinner party. Scented candles can interfere with the flavors of your food when you are trying to eat. We really wanted to be able to taste each individual flavor, since we were trying out over 10 different flavors of Blue Diamond Almonds, plus nibbling on cheese, cornichons, olives, and other light bites. Battery-operated tea lights are always a great option too, if you don’t want open flame at your table. When they are inside of a votive, you won’t even be able to tell that the flame isn’t real.

5. Use Place Cards as Decor

Using place cards is a great way to create a seating arrangement and strategically seat your guests next to people you think they would get along with. It’s also a great opportunity to add another interesting design element to your table. Instead of typical folding cards, consider writing guests’ names on stones, leaves (like we did!), or really anything else you can think of. Thinking outside of the box is highly recommended here.

We hope those tips help and that you loved our rustic, almond-inspired table setting!

Blog Source: Lauren Conrad