Instead of using flowers, try decorating the tables with candles, sprigs, rushes, fruit, vegetables or pots of herbs, according to the season.

• If you don’t have a suitable tablecloth, you can use an ironed sheet or a curtain, a piece of wallpaper, wrapping paper or foil. High-quality disposable tablecloths are suitable for many festive occasions.
• Buy napkins that are a suitable size whether you are serving coffee or food. Thin, disposable napkins are best for coffee, and larger napkins are needed for food. For example, beautiful, small tea towels are a good alternative for serving food in a more relaxed way.
• Use tableware creatively. Serve soup in coffee cups or salad in glasses. Or prepare small bites on cocktail sticks, spoons or forks.
• Not all foods need a serving dish. For instance, bread or rolls can be put inside a serving cloth or displayed on one.
• Pour juices from their cartons into beautiful glass bottles or jugs.
• Use baking trays, chopping boards or shelves from cupboards as serving dishes. Cover them with foil and decorate them with doilies.