Wedding table setting: 5 trends for 2022
Which are the wedding table setting trends for 2022-2023? Creating a table setting coherent with the theme and location and functional for the guests is vital for a balanced event. Where to start from? In this article, we will understand what a table setting is, what etiquette prescribes, and the main trends of this season.
Table setting: why is it important?
The table setting is the translation of French “mise en place”. Literally “put in place” refers to the choice and correct positioning on the dining table of:
- decorations – such as centrepieces and backsplashes;
- Textiles – tablecloths, table runners and napkins;
- Furnishings and crockery – plates, placemats, glasses, cutlery.
The mise en place is much more than a simple set of rules for the bon ton at the table. It is a fundamental design element. If particular decorations of the environment or details of the location can go unseen, the guest cannot fail to notice – and therefore remember – the place where they’ll pass most of the party: the table!
Setting the table is not enough to create a wedding mise en place. For this element to really give added value, it should be consistent with the wedding’s primary theme and location.
We talk about the harmony of colours, shapes, and styles to create a balanced and pleasant visual impact.
Let’s see this season’s trends for an unforgettable table for your guests.
The wedding table setting in etiquette
The most classic of this year’s trends is the bon ton table setting, actualized by a pinch of informality. The table setting changes according to the type of service offered, but some etiquette rules have to be considered in any case.
- Forks should always be on the left of the plate, while knives on the right – only if the latter is not provided, forks can be set on the right.
- Glasses should always be placed above the cutlery and to the right of the plate;
- The plate for the bread should be to the left of the underplate.
I guarantee that the etiquette of table setting is much more complicated than that! However, respecting these elements is enough to create a neat and classic mise en place. In this case, we will use a white or light coloured tablecloth with matching napkins.
To not exceed formality, we could avoid placing on the table the triple fork (appetizer, first course, second course) and the double knife (fish and meat). Just as we could not include the dessert cutlery (knife, fork and dessert spoon) in the initial table setting, supplying them later.
In the image below, we see a very formal wedding mise en place that includes three wine glasses. In short, an abundance of functional furnishings but not really suitable for every type of reception and wedding tables, also for reasons of space.
The Very Peri palette: a modern and bright table setting
I have just mentioned the theme of simplicity: not by chance! The last two years have made us rediscover the pleasure of small things, delicacy and authenticity. The wedding world has not remained immune to this trend. If in 2021 minimalism was one of the most popular design choices, in this new year, the trend could evolve.
No longer an excessively sober and bare table but a clean, elegant design with few but stunning decorative elements.
Particularly trendy this year will be the PANTONE Color of the year 2022: PANTONE 17-3938 Very Peri. A deep shade of purple described by the brand as courageous, curious, daring, intriguing. With this colour, PANTONE wanted to represent the transformation, unpredictability and constant change of recent years. A transformation that has stimulated creativity and technological advancement.
The purpose of PANTONE 17-3938 is to put the future in a new light and build confidence in what’s to come.
Transformation, trust, creativity, future: perfect words to represent marriage and its emotions!
But how to work such a deep shade? There are two options: in harmony with similar shades or in contrast. An example of an elegant and delicate table setting could be the one that works in gradation: from white to pastel, to Very Peri – perhaps reported in some important detail!
In this case, we could find cutlery in satin or polished silver or gold steel, golden, marble white or transparent glass underplates combined with classic or frosted goblets. The centrepieces can remain floral but are reduced to a few elements of substantial impact. The tablecloths are distinguished by simple textures and light fabrics, such as cotton or linen.
Pastel wedding table setting: delicate and romantic
As we anticipated, 2021 has brought authenticity back to the centre of marriage: less glam, less scenography, more feelings and emotions. Pastel colours, delicate and soft, are part of this trend. These colours can be declined, in the tablecloths, with notes of lilac and light blue, and in placemats and ceramic details.
This trend manifests itself in several styles: from boho chic to minimalism to the natural theme – which we will talk about shortly.
We often find pastel weddings in country locations or in historic buildings with magnificent murals. Similarly, we can find a complete wedding table setting, consistent with the etiquette, as an informal and fresh one. In short, the pastel colours are a design element extremely flexible: anyway perfect for the most romantic weddings.
Look at the diversity of these mise en place!
Natural and recycled materials: an eco-chic & sustainable wedding
The tendency to use materials and elements from nature – even raw ones – has already been underway for some years. We have seen several beautiful table settings characterized by wood, jute and straw.
This year, however, we take a step further: not just nature but sustainability. A trend especially for younger couples – millennials are growing up too! These wedding table settings are usually created in weddings where each element has been designed with an eco-friendly perspective. From the location, surrounded by greenery, to the simple and km0 food.
The characteristics can be really diverse. An idea could be a straw or rattan placemat or a linen tablecloth with a jute runner. The absence of tablecloths is also stylish. In this case, the dishes are placed directly on the table – strictly in natural wood – and completed by herbal decoration – branches, leaves, petals – and raw fabrics.
A trend that resists: table setting with dried flowers and pampas
The trend that in recent years has become an absolute must for many couples this year is still alive.
You are right if you think this trend could be included in the nature & eco-chic category; they are indeed connected! But one detail really makes the difference: here, the focus is not on sustainability or minimalism.
However, about the latter, we must say that compared to the complex, “constructed” and bohemian mise en place of the past few years, “delicacy” is the watchword in this new year. The same decorative and furnishing elements remain – candelabra, vases, swings, aviaries, lanterns – but the quantities and the scenographic arrangement change.
A more minimal style, which matures and seeks new variations – even blending with vibrant colours outside the classic pastel palette.
The wedding table setting characterized by dried flowers borrows shapes and colours from all the categories we mentioned above:
- complete mise en place, according to etiquette;
- clean lines in the dishes;
- pastel colours in the choice of flowers and tablecloths;
- materials of natural origin.
Maybe that’s why they like it so much: sleek, young and modern (and a lot Pinterest!)
The mise en place is the queen of your table: do you know how to choose it?
When choosing your wedding mise en place, keep in mind that it will be one of the elements that your guest will remember. As a wedding planner, I have to admit that it is one of the parts that is often paid less attention to.
Why? Simple, the basic table setting service is often offered in the catering package: white tablecloths and crockery, steel cutlery, classic glasses and goblets. Here, this mise en place, however timeless and always elegant, is not suitable for all types of weddings and all locations. I would say, not even for all the spouses!
This, which I have left for last, is perhaps the most essential point. As the theme, the wedding table setting should first be in line with the character, perceptions and values of the couple!
Are you paying the proper attention to your table setting? What’s your favourite trend 2022-2023?