The Secret to Serving Up a Stylish Table

published Nov 24, 2016
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(Image credit: Marisa Vitale)

If you’re intimidated by the lingering memories of friends or family member’s sophisticated, traditional Thanksgiving tables, take heart. The table setting in Rory and Chris’ LA wonderland is here to inspire and inform you.

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This holiday season (or any time of year) forget traditional holiday color palettes or minimal vibes. This here is your anatomy of a perfect table setting: a distracting explosion of the color, patterns and textures that you love.

(Image credit: Marisa Vitale)

The key here is going to be layering. No matter your dining table material, adorn it with a table cloth or table runner. The more patterned, the better. In Chris and Rory’s home, a large scale leaf print simultaneously confuses the eye and beckons the spirit. Find a similar table runner at

(Image credit: Marisa Vitale)

Next, add the dishware. Don’t skimp on the layers here; go for chargers under your plate, main dinner plates, smaller plates, multiple glasses and more. Rory says the dishes are the Intermix collection from CB2. He also writes:

“I can’t cook so I try and distract people with a bomb table setting. They won’t focus on the food tasting like shit if it’s on colorful plates with gold flatware.”

(Image credit: Marisa Vitale)

And don’t miss out on the opportunity for more color and pattern when it comes to choosing the rest of your tableware. World Market has rattan chargers and hot pink napkins. You can find gold flatware at Target.

“Also let me take this opportunity to publicly endorse the cloth napkin,” wrote Rory.

(Image credit: Marisa Vitale)

Next, add low accessories that have a lot going on visually. In this table setting, striking geometric candle holders work alongside a glam gold low vase. Here are similar candlesticks and vase.

(Image credit: Marisa Vitale)

And of course, don’t forget a striking flower arrangement. Here, a bold bouquet adds height to the table thanks to a tall gold, patterned vase. A seemingly function-less goldfish figurine exemplifies the power of maximalism. This is a similar gold vase.

(Image credit: Marisa Vitale)

More dining wisdom from Rory: “I chose a glass top table to keep the space feeling open. I didn’t want anything that felt too heavy because I didn’t want to disrupt the open energy of the apartment. Now that I’ve made myself crazy with keeping a glass table top clean for the past year, I think next time I’d sacrifice the spacial element and go for something easier to keep clean.

The orange stackable tiki glasses are from CB2 as well. I couldn’t recommend them more, as someone (Chris) has dropped them on the floor more than once and we’ve yet to lose one (!!!).”

(Image credit: Marisa Vitale)

See all of Chris and Rory’s home:

And read about how they make it work as a couple in a small space: Life, After You Move In Together: What It’s Like to SHARE a Studio