Marni Elyse Katz is the blogger behind StyleCarrot, a blog devoted to art and décor with a contemporary bent, along with a sprinkling of street style. A Boston-based writer and editor, Katz is a regular contributor to the Boston Globe, Boston Globe Magazine, and Boston Home. You can follow @StyleCarrot on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Nordic design, known for its rustic simplicity, translates beautifully to the holiday table. Neutral tones or simple black and white schemes become festive with a hint of red or a bit of sparkle. Most of all, incorporating natural elements, like evergreen sprigs, pinecones, and branches, brings the outdoors in for a cozy winter feel. Here are six ways to incorporate rustic Nordic design into your table this year.
To set a Christmas table, blogger Nina Holst laid an artificial pine garland, complete with pinecones, down the center of her black-stained wood table. Everyday white dishes are topped with black and white snowflake print napkins, along with a homemade paper star. Snowflake coasters under each glass add extra shine, while faux bois salt and pepper shakers complete the woodland motif.
Stylist Kara Rosenlund set a minimalist table for Christmas Eve dinner using found and edible tidbits. White dinnerware with scalloped edges atop a gray linen tablecloth is the backdrop for feathers, a sprig of rosemary, and some sort of seeds. Handwritten names on bits of kraft paper act as place cards. As a centerpiece, feathers in a vase and a cluster of walnuts add interest, texture, and additional earth tones.
Jenny Steffens Hobick, the entertaining and lifestyle expert behind Everyday Occasions, gave herself a theme last Christmas—"Handstitched Holiday"—to help inspire her decorating, wrapping, baking, and table setting. She used sprigs of cedar to create a swag down the center of the table and punctuated it with topiaries dressed up with red and taupe striped ribbon. Pillar candles complete the magical holiday effect.
These adorable miniature Christmas tree place cards are more of a DIY project, compliments of Martha Stewart, than a simple foraging and arranging affair. Cut a round from a thick branch, drill a hole in the center, insert sprig of greenery. Add paper name tag and top with a star.
This dining room has all the elements of classic Scandinavian holiday style—paper stars, sheepskin throws, and bare branches. Oversized branches are stuck in a vase and hung with ornaments to create a tabletop tree. Hearts painted with chalkboard paint act as place cards. They're cleverly hung on chair back, freeing up valuable real estate on the table.
This is actually a Thanksgiving table, but it will work for any winter holiday, too. Created by Anna from Take the Side Street, the centerpiece is comprised of a cluster of logs of varying heights, topped with simple glass votive candles and more in pressed glass jelly jars. The burlap tablecloth looks perfect with the crumbly bark. Little bits of moss add color, and red ribbons with greenery act as napkin holders.