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Video:Make a Formal Table Setting

with Bonnie Zaiss

Learn how to make a formal table setting for your next dinner party. Here are some tips on how to make a formal table setting.See Transcript

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Transcript:Make a Formal Table Setting

Hello, I'm Bonnie Zaiss for About.com. Today we're going to show you how to do a formal table setting for your next dinner party.You can use your everyday ware or your best china. Ideally, make sure everything matches from the bread plate to the soup spoon.

Different Elements of a Formal Table Setting

From top to bottom, here's a standard dinner setting. From the very top from left to right:

  • Bread plate with butter knife (top left of dinner plate)
  • Coffee cup (top right of dinner plate)
  • Water glass
  • Wine glass
  • Liqueur glass

At the bottom, we'll start with the silverware on the left side and continue to the right:

  • Salad fork
  • Dinner fork
  • Dessert fork -- all your silverware should be lined up at the bottom
  • A charger plate, which is a larger decorative plates used to dress up dinner tables (usually for special events)
  • Dinner plate with salad or soup bowl on it
  • Knife
  • Small spoon for coffee or dessert
  • Soup spoon

Tips for a Formal Table Setting

Napkins can be placed inside the water glass, folded onto the dinner plate or to the left of the silverware.

There are optional dinner settings depending on what you're serving. See how just a little effort goes a long way.

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