With big holiday celebrations coming up, you'll want to have your table looking as good as possible! You've already got your bounty of food, but if it's a very special occasion, you might want to go the extra mile - a few candles, a floral display, and an awesome table setting that'll impress everyone around! But where do you start? Which side does the fork go on? Here are handy tips to getting it right every year!  

Place Setting Spacing

It's important to leave about 2 feet of space between the center of each place setting to give each individual person an ample amount of elbow room. Your settings will be based around the placement of the plates, which is why the plate-centers are the ideal guide!

"Full, Formal Table Setting"

This is the finished result of a table setting, if you're using the full spectrum of utensils - (left to right) butter knife and plate, salad fork, dinner fork, dessert fork and spoon, dinner knife, soup spoon, and cocktail fork! You can simplify this setting, obviously, if you're serving dishes that render them unnecessary. If you don't have soup, don't include the soup spoon; if you aren't serving a salad, there's no need for the salad fork.

Cups and Glasses

Drinking-ware should be placed in the upper right hand corner, with different glasses for water, white wine, red wine, champagne, and coffee (usually placed in this order, from left to right).

Forks and Spoons

Forks usually go on the left of the plate, and spoons normally go on the right - the only exception to this being a cocktail fork, which goes on the right-most spot beside the spoons.  Within each section, the utensils are placed in the order of usage during a meal from the outside in - a salad fork is left of a dinner fork because a salad comes first.

Dessert forks and spoons are placed at the top of a setting with the fork handle facing the forks and the spoon handle facing the spoons.  Some people also place these spoons with the other utensils, with the dessert fork being the innermost beside the plate on the fork side and the dessert spoon to the right of the knife on the spoon side.

Photo Credits: Barina Craft, Country Living, Examiner

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