Holiday Entertaining Made Easy: Tips to Prepare Your Dining Room for Hosting 

A luxurious, but cozy holiday set up with a dining table in the center and a Christmas tree on the left corner

The holidays are a time to make memories, spend time with friends and loved ones, and most importantly, delight in incredible food. As the center of every holiday get-together, the dining room is a place to gather, feel comfortable,  and tell stories. As a  host, this is a space you want to feel proud of.

Choosing the right dining tables and chairs—as well as other decorative touches—introduces a welcoming touch to your home. So, whether you’re hosting a traditional Christmas dinner with family or a more casual Friendsgiving with your group, these tips will help you expertly decorate your dining room for the occasion.

Refresh Your Dining Room for the 2023 Holidays

Looking to breathe new life into your dining room? With all your closest friends and family coming together, now is the perfect time to show them you’re on top of the latest styles. 

This year, there are a couple of holiday décor trends to take note of:

  • Pops of vivid color – Greys and neutrals have taken over for too long. This year, deep blues, rich greens, burnt oranges, and bold reds are making a comeback. Whether you prefer a set of contemporary dining chairs or a vibrant tabletop sculpture, these pops of color introduce personality into the dining area.
  • Metallic tones – For a touch of luxury that doesn’t feel too over-the-top, you can’t go wrong with metallic accents this year. From gold dining sets to candle holders, metals are the perfect way to project glamor and style. Glossy and matte finishes are both in, so feel free to pick your favorite.

Shop Eliza White II Bar Cabinet

  • Patterns and textures – Plain, single-colored furniture pieces are classic, but they often lack the eye-catching pattern or texture that can bring personality to the dining room. Pieces like a textured microsuede chair or an abstract area rug are especially complementary to curved, organic shapes and sustainable materials.

Shop Relax 8′ x 10′ Area Rug

The best part about these trends is that they’re timeless. While deep blues and rich golds will feel extra stylish this year, they’ll continue to dazzle your guests for years to come.

So, how do you find the right pieces and work these 2023 trends into your dining room? Don’t worry—we’ve got you covered.

Choosing the Right Dining Room Table

Shop Vandelli Extendable Dining Table

If you need a new dining table—either because you’re hosting more guests than usual or you’re switching up your home’s theme—you’ll want to choose one that suits your needs for years to come.

When you’re picking a dining room table, there are two factors to consider: the size of your dining room and the style of your home.

Based on the size and shape of your dining room, here’s what we recommend:

  • Large dining room furniture ideas – If you have the space, we suggest opting for a bigger table. Why? You can always sit fewer people at a large table, but you can’t magically make a small table larger. Rectangular tables, especially extendable tables, are well-suited for big spaces and can easily accommodate a group of eight guests. 
  • Smaller dining room furniture ideas – For smaller spaces, we recommend a square or circular table that will give you plenty of room to position chairs and move around the table. Depending on your kitchen’s layout, you may also be able to use your counter as an additional serving space, by adding stools.

Of course, the size and shape of the table are only part of the equation. You should also think about how it will look in your dining room. For example, a  table with a unique base can become the center of attention. Meanwhile, a glass-top table allows you to see what’s underneath—a feature that’s especially nice if you have unforgettable chairs.

Shop Mariel 3-Piece Dining Set

Selecting the Right Seating

For your guests to make lasting memories, they need a cozy seat at the table. That’s why choosing the best seating is essential.

First, there’s the functional aspect to consider. A swivel chair, for example, makes it easy for guests to keep the conversation flowing with those around them. Or, if you have elderly family or visitors with mobility issues, having a well-cushioned accent chair to pull up can be a lifesaver. 

Shop Enzo II Dark Blue Leather Accent Chair / Shop Matera 77″ 5-Piece Dining Set

Then, there’s the way the chair looks. If you’re hoping to brighten up the room, side chairs made of vibrant leatherette or colored fabric get the job done. If, on the other hand, you need to ground an already busy room, wood chairs can do the trick (and they’re easy to clean, too!).

What about when space is tight? In that case, the counter or island can come into play with adjustable stools. Choose a matching stylish counter stool to tie in the kitchen and the dining room. 

Whatever you choose, don’t forget the name cards to ensure everyone can find their seat!

Setting the Holiday Table

Shop Sapphire 78″ 5-Piece Dining Set

Far too often, hosts focus on buying the right table and chairs (and having enough of them). But what’s on the table is nearly as important as the dining set.

As you prepare your holiday table, think about making the entire spread inviting. Depending on the vibe you’re aiming for, you can opt for a splash of color with a vivid vase or pick out a more neutral textured tray to let the furniture shine.

The more you match your table and chairs with your decorative accessories, the more tied together your setup will feel. And every addition naturally brings versatility and personality to your table.

Finally, keep in mind that the atmosphere of a dining room extends to the furniture and accessories around the table. You can transform your entire space into a must-see masterpiece with additions like:

Shop Beads Ceiling Lamp

By carefully matching or contrasting these accents with your table and chairs, you can create a truly Pinterest-worthy dining room.

Dining Room FAQs 

We know that hosting family and friends—whether it’s your first time or your fifteenth—can feel overwhelming. To help you keep your holiday stress levels low, we’re answering some common questions about decorating the dining room.

How Can I Create a Warm and Inviting Atmosphere in My Dining Room?

One of the easiest ways to create a welcoming atmosphere is to play with lighting. Rather than settle for cold, white lights, set the mood by installing Edison bulbs or dimmable smart bulbs instead.

Naturally, the light fixture is just as important as the light bulb. To complete your 2023 Holiday Refresh, you can incorporate trendy touches of gold with a corner floor lamp or, if you’re ready to make a more permanent change, a new conversation-starting ceiling lamp.

Beyond lighting, you can give off an inviting vibe by leaning into the trend of warm, rich colors. For dining room chairs, try a deep yellow or lipstick-red upholstery. As for dining room tables, a natural wood look can really bring warmth.

What’s the Best Way to Handle Last-Minute Guests?

Unexpected plus-ones can throw a wrench in your seating plan. That’s why it’s vital to have additional chairs on hand.

Of course, if you only host the occasional dinner party, there’s no reason to have four extra dining room chairs tucked away for those “just in case” moments. Instead, consider buying furniture that can transform into bonus seating when you need it.

A classy office chair can work in a pinch, and so can an ottoman or bench. These seats will feel so at home in your stylish dining room that your last-minute guests will think you were expecting them!

Entertain Guests in Style This Holiday Season

Shop Karla Extendable Dining Table

As the host of a holiday gathering, your number one role is to create a welcoming space for your guests. By furnishing your home with design in mind, choosing practical dining tables and chairs, and paying attention to the finer details, you can do just that.

Because when you’re happy with your space, your guests will notice and share in your joy. And isn’t that what the holidays are all about?

We like to think so.

This holiday season, refresh your dining room and make a statement with El Dorado Furniture—your guests will be asking you to host every year.

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