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dining room ideas for entertaining

6 Ways To Prep Your Dining Room for Holiday Entertaining

With fall in full swing and holiday entertaining just around the corner, peak hosting season is nearly upon us. With all the work that goes into planning a meal for multiple people, the last thing you want is to stress over your dining room.

Skip the pre-hosting stress this year, and get your dining room ready to go before guests descend. To help, we rounded up our favorite dining room ideas to help you get fully prepped for a revolving door of dinner parties.

Read on for a few dining room ideas that will help you shine as the hostess with the mostest!

dining room ideas for holiday entertaining1. Always Have Extra (and Comfy) Seating

Comfortable chairs can make long dinners much more enjoyable. If you like a little extra cushion, consider matching sets that are fully upholstered or have nice plush seats.

If you have room to spare, extra chairs are always great to have on hand in case of unexpected, or last-minute guests.

Short on space? Dining chairs are versatile so try placing extras in your entryway or home office. They won’t use up square footage unnecessarily, and you can easily pull them into your dining space in a pinch.

Shop This Look: A comfy dining room, featuring our Rustic Warmth Collection

dining room ideas for entertaining2. Be Realistic About Headcount

Big dinners are a holiday given, so be cognizant of how many people your dining room can accommodate comfortably.

If you have the space to entertain a big crowd, make sure everyone has a spacious spot at the table. A table with extendable leaves is a great solve for hosting large groups in smaller spaces.

dining room ideas for holiday entertaining3. Take Time to Outfit Your Table

Whether you’re hosting a Thanksgiving feast for 12 or an intimate dinner for four, a thoughtfully set table is always memorable.

Channel the colors of the season (orange, green, gold and beyond) and pick a combination of your favorite three to guide the palette for your table scape.

If you’ve been thinking about new dishes, silverware or glassware, now is the time to go for it as you gear up to entertain.

dining room ideas for holiday entertaining4. Prepare a Serving Station

Half the challenge of entertaining is being present with your guests.

Setting up a sideboard or a buffet where you can create a bar and a serving station for food, appetizers and dessert means you won’t have to dash back and forth from the kitchen.

In a smaller dining room, try a simple bar cart topped with drinks and light nibbles.

Shop This Look: A Polished yet casual dining room in our Contemporary Connoisseur Collection

dining room ideas for holiday entertaining5. Add Good Mood Lighting

Beyond candlelight, make sure your dining room is well-lit all around – overhead, along the walls, or a table lamp or two placed strategically on a buffet or a small table.

The idea is to have enough lighting around your dining room so that you can easily switch off a few to create a moody ambience.

If you have a single pendant above the dining table, consider hanging a chandelier for a show-stopping light source that adds more sparkle.

dining room ideas for holiday entertaining6. Warm Up Your Floors

A captivating rug is sure to set a cozy, festive note. Choose a low-pile option (one that’s not shaggy) in a color or pattern that draws focus to your dining table.

Or opt for a natural-fiber rug with a large-scale design that’s easy on the eyes and stands up to foot traffic. (These can also handle the occasional spill, because let’s face it – it happens).

Shop This Look: A dining room in our Refined Rustic look is always set to impress

Get your dining room ready for the holidays!

thanksgiving prep

Thanksgiving Prep: Easy, Last-Minute Tips to Get Your Dining Room Ready

Hosting a Thanksgiving gathering and feeling frenzied? You’re not alone. Between cooking and coordinating, there never seems to be enough time for Thanksgiving prep. But setting up your dining room with the right flow and flexibility can help you easily host a comfortable holiday meal.

If you’re pressed for time, we’ve got some tips that are easy to implement, even at the last minute!

Here are our favorite quick tips to help get your dining room ready.

thanksgiving prep

1. Accommodate Extra Guests

Be prepared to have a seat for the extra family member or the friend-of-a-friend (who forgot to RSVP) by pulling in ottomans, benches, and stools from other areas in your home.

These moveable pieces are a practical and perfect, last-minute way to accommodate additional guests at large gatherings. Ready a few around the room—guests can perch here with their cocktails before dinner, or simply use them as a spot for placing bags and coats.

 

2. Make Drinks Self-Serve

It’s as simple as pulling in a bar cart to allow guests to stir up their own drinks. Choose an option with casters, AKA wheels, that you can easily move around.

This allows you the flexibility of placing your bar cart in the corner for cocktail hour and then moving it into another room for post-dinner drinks and coffee.

thanksgiving prep

3. Make More Room to Gather

Expandable dining tables with leaves are perfect for hosting big events. They ensure you’ll never be short on space when having a dinner party, but won’t take up too much room on a daily basis.

Stylist Tip: Choose a rug that’s sized to your table when it’s expanded. We recommend that your entire table and chairs sit fully on top of a rug. You won’t have to worry about the rug getting caught under chair legs as your guests scoot in and out.

4. Eliminate Trips Back and Forth

Just as you would have a drinks station for your guests, create a buffet area on a credenza for appetizers and desserts.

This will keep you from having to make trips back and forth to the kitchen. Not to mention, once dinner is over, everyone knows exactly where to find the sweets and pies. Keep some extra plates and napkins in the cupboards of your credenza and you’re all set.

Ready to pep your space for hosting?