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Throwing A New Year Party? Learn Creative Table Couture Ideas From Stylist Ami Kothari!

  • IWB Post
  •  December 29, 2016


I like food that’s carefully arranged and presented on my table. And so, that’s how we ended up attending Mumbai’s Ami Kothari’s workshop on Table Styling.


Ami shared with JWB stories from her childhood, the time when she picked the passion to decorate the dining table. “When I was small, everyone in the house was delegated one responsibility before the guests were supposed to visit. My duty was to arrange the spoons. I considered that annoying. But today when I look back, I see how much that has helped me understand the table etiquettes and decoration details,” remembered Ami.


So what exactly is Dining Couture and how can we score an A on it? Check out!

Play With Colors

Ami suggested, “Irrespective of what colors are dominating on the runway at the moment, you can choose whatever you need to include in your crockery collection. When it comes to choosing the cutlery, keep in mind the food’s color or for that matter, the party theme. Play around them and voila!”


Centerpieces are the perfect table elements where colors can play a significant role. From candles to flowers and other showpieces, everything is your playground. Ami said, “If you want to show-off your creativity, do paper cones and put fresh flowers in them. To display your personal moments during a family dinner, you can fill a big bowl with colorful pulses and insert picture sticks in it from family albums.”

table Couture

Small is Pretty

Ami began telling, “I have collected a lot of small bottles in which I serve oregano, ketchup, chutney, etc. for every guest. In this way, they feel the warmth on the table. Moreover, isn’t it annoying for the one sitting in the middle to keep passing things?”

Ami Mehta Kothari

The Napkin Art

“Place napkins with small chalkboards or placards with names of the guests written on them,” suggested Ami. “A personalized approach like this is lovely. You can even add a scramble to display their names!”

IMG_0956 Dining Couture

Ami said, “When I went to China, I picked up these door hangings in gemstone hues. Why? Because I could use them to decorate the otherwise dull napkins!”


“You can roll a napkin plainly and use a handmade sheet to fix it from the middle. Make colors contrast. Chic and totally inexpensive.”

table Couture

“To make your napkins look attractive, add elements like jute ropes to tie them up.” 

Ami said she once bought few bracelets with stone work. Though she never wore them, they’ve become her napkin pins!


Table Mats

Ami smilingly remarked, “You know what’s fun? Before you throw anything away in the dustbin, think if you can use it on your table. For last Diwali, a relative sent us a big thaal of sweets covered with a fine red cloth. Today, I use it on my table as the centerpiece.”


“If there are too many guests coming over, and you don’t want to splurge much on table mats, use foam papers! They come in various bright colors and are pocket-friendly. Moreover, they are the best kind of ‘use and throw’ product you can bring into your kitchen.”


She added, “All of us have seen these silver and gold net sheets in the local markets. Why not turn them into table mats? Buy in bulk and cut them in mat sizes a few days before the party.”

Dining Couture

This idea is our personal favorite. Ami showed how a simple piece of jute fabric could give your dining table a makeover.


She said, “If you’ve got a rectangular table, spread the material on two adjacent sides. If it’s a circular one, do a plus sign in the center. To give it a more earthy look, tie some real flowers in the middle of the fabric.”


For a kids party, she asked the mothers to use paper flowers in neon colors to set the playful mood up. All you have to do is spread them all over the table.Kids parth theme

What else? Ami told us how fascinated she was with Jaipuri textiles and that she was game for using them as table mats! Wow! Imagine an indigo or block-printed table mat! She added, if it’s a night party, you can spread some beads or sequins over the table. Well, well, we’re off shopping. What about you?

[This article was first pubished on August 13, 2016]

Sanchit Sethi

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