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How to set the table

How to set the table

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Modern families eat differently, many of us eat on our laps or on the go. Fewer and fewer families are sitting down to a meal.  Sitting down to a meal is an important part of life and more families should do so.  One question we all ask is do the forks go on the left or the right?  Many of us just stack the cutlery in the middle of the table for easy grabbing. But there is a way to set the table properly.  Here is how

From the centre out

You may or may not wish to cover your table with a table cloth, the choice is yours. For a more formal setting a table cloth is a nice touch. Modern homes use a placemat under the main dining plate that is at the centre of your setting.  Place a salad plate on top of the dining plate and soup bowl on top of that if having soup.  Always place the plate in the centre of the placemat or table setting, from here the setting is easy.

Forks to the Left

In answer to the common question, forks go on the left. Place the main fork next to the plate on the left hand side and the salad fork should follow and then a fish knife if fish is being served. You then eat using the outer fork first.

Knives and Spoons Right

Place the main eating knife inner most on the right hand side of the dining plate.  Next place a small salad knife if using and then a soup spoon. Next you can set the cutlery for dessert above the plate horizontally, fork at the bottom handle to the left and spoon above handle to the right.   

Glasses and the charger

It is tradition to place a charger (serving or bread plate)  above the forks on the left hand side, this may also be where you place your napkin. Glasses are always to the right with the water glass placed above the main knife followed moving left my a wine glass down to a port glass. 

Quality matters

Good quality cutlery, crockery and glasses will make your table setting stand out. Each set of utensils should be removed after each course working in from the outside then finally up to the dessert spoon and fork. The final step is to serve clockwise round the table using the right hand to serve a tradition that started as a sign of peace.

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