How-to: The Formal Table Setting
When it comes to entertaining, few things impress like a properly set table. Mastering a formal table setting is an art form where presentation is everything. From the placement of the glasses to the direction that a knife’s blade faces, every detail matters. Curate a dazzling tablescape for the most sophisticated of settings with new Tiffany & Co. dinner plates, flatware, glassware and a showstopping centerpiece.
Dinner Plates & Napkins
The charger anchors your formal dinner setting. Center the dinner plate atop the charger, followed by the salad plate. The bread plate is traditionally placed in the upper left-hand corner. Avoid placing flatware atop the napkin, which can create unnecessary clanging when guests are first seated. Instead, center the napkin on the dinner plate. Napkin rings and place cards add a touch of sophistication to the table setting.
A well-appointed table setting calls for exceptional glassware. Positioned in the upper right, the water glass belongs closest to the plate. Placed to the right of the water glass is the red wine glass, and slightly lower and to the left of it is the white wine glass. If champagne is served, place the flute at the furthest to the right of the other three glasses.
Proper etiquette tells us to begin eating with flatware at the outside left and right, then work your way in towards the plate as the meal proceeds. When setting the table, start with the dinner fork and place it to the left of the plate, then place the salad fork to the left of the dinner fork. The knife goes directly to the right of the plate, followed by the spoon. Place the dessert spoon horizontally above the plate. The butter knife can be placed horizontally on the bread plate. If you’re serving soup, the soup bowl will go on top of the salad plate.