Cheap Christmas dinner table styling hacks using wrapping paper, fairy lights and fruit

Christmas is an excuse to go all out, but the cost of living crisis has many of us pinching pennies - here are six great hacks to help create a stylish Christmas dinner table setting on the cheap from Pinterest, TikTok and Instagram

<p>An example of a ‘modern’ Christmas dinner tablescape in silver and white. Pic: @elleandmavenue on Instagram.</p>

An example of a ‘modern’ Christmas dinner tablescape in silver and white. Pic: @elleandmavenue on Instagram.

Christmas is a time for fun decorations, sparkle and all things magical. And with the ‘big day’ fast approaching, you’ll no doubt be thinking about how to incorporate all three into your Christmas dinner table.

Tablescaping is a way of creating beautiful themed tables for special occasions like the festive period across your dining table. It goes beyond simple tablecloths and crockery by adding colour, print, accessories and centrepieces to build a gorgeous place setting.

Due to the cost of living crisis, many of us are having to scale back on Christmas this year - but there are hacks you can use to style your Christmas dinner table for less. Interior design expert Furniturebox has uncovered the best tips here.

How to Plan Your Christmas Tablescape

According to TikTok data the hashtag #christmastable has around 17.1 million views worldwide so clearly when it comes to festive decor, most Brits like to do something special. To plan your Christmas tablescape consider the following:

  • Think about the size and shape of your table: A good tablescape makes an impact but doesn’t completely overwhelm the dining space. Consider how much space you have to use, and this will help you narrow down your ideas.
  • Plan your theme and colours: Pick your theme and colour scheme as a starting point. Do you want to go for a traditional festive feel or something more on-trend and bold?
  • Consider your seating plan: Small personal details can really make your tablescape design come to life. Think about your seating plan and add handwritten place cards to create a more personalised setting. 
  • Choose a creative centrepiece: A beautiful centrepiece brings the whole theme together. Candles, foliage, flowers or lanterns can be placed across the middle as the main focal point.
An example of a ‘modern’ Christmas dinner tablescape in silver and white. Pic: @elleandmavenue on Instagram.

How to style your Christmas table for less

Sustainability is a big interior theme for Christmas and a great way of saving money on decorations. There are plenty of ways you can repurpose existing decorations and get thrifty to create handmade Christmas designs with a personal touch. Plus, this is a fun tradition to do with your loved ones too!

The Instagram hashtag #sustainablechristmas has over 101,000 images so there is plenty of inspiration to find online, but here are Furniturebox’s top tips:

Use fairy lights as your centrepiece

After decorating your Christmas tree you may have a spare string of fairy lights which can make simple but very pretty centrepieces. Simply put them in a jar or vase, turn them on and you’ll have a sparkly centrepiece for your table that is very easy to make.

Make your own Christmas crackers

You can’t style your Christmas table without crackers! Purchasing bright, fun or beautifully decorated crackers is an affordable way to make a simple table come to life. You can even make your own Christmas crackers with toilet roll tubes and fill them with cute, personalised trinkets.

Use pom pom garlands as a centrepiece

If you prefer quirkier table settings then pom poms can be the perfect finishing touch. Pom pom garlands can be laid across the middle of the table, hung around the edge of the table or giant-sized pom poms can make unique centrepieces.

Swap tablecloths for wrapping paper

Instead of buying a new tablecloth, how about using leftover wrapping paper? Choose a design that fits your theme and it will look just as good as a tablecloth. Plus, if you have small children at the table, things can get messy pretty quickly but using wrapping paper means the table can be cleared easily once you’ve finished eating.

Use dried fruit and pinecones

Cinnamon sticks, dried fruit, pinecones and holly can all be used as natural decorations. Not to mention, they smell great too. Sliced oranges and lemons can be put in the oven to dry out and then placed on the table along with cinnamon sticks and pinecones from your garden or local area to create a gorgeous woodland table decor.

Layer your tableware to create a more styled look

Layering is a key element of tablescaping. Instead of putting out one plate per person try layering a smaller side plate on top of a larger dinner plate complete with a napkin on top. If you have plates in different colours or prints this is even better. The mix of tableware will add height, texture and colour to your table for a more luxurious feel.

Top Christmas table colour schemes for 2022

You also need to think about colour schemes as this will make your table look more put together. Traditional festive colours are great for creating a cosy feel around the dining table but don’t be afraid to go for neutral or even something bold and maximalist too.

Here are the most popular colour schemes for 2022:

  • Traditional: Red and green
  • Classy: Red and gold
  • Modern: White and silver
  • Natural: Neutral browns and forest green
  • Quirky: Bold multi-coloured

Product Development lead Laura Rich from Furniturebox says choosing the right colours will create the right look and feel at your Christmas table. She said: "First and foremost, you need a welcoming colour palette, one that ushers in your family and friends from the biting cold.

“I’m a big fan of a classic green and red combo, which is a colour scheme rich in tradition and festivity; others might prefer an all-white Christmas, keeping things fresh and contemporary."