Christmas table settings:ten ways to decorate your festive table

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Dining tables are the setting for lazy brunches and long lunches, from Christmas to New Year. And while your perfectly-cooked feast is the real centrepiece, a beautifully dressed table can't fail to boost the festivities.

This year, there are plenty of key looks that have already been carefully curated by top interiors experts to give you inspiration. 

Glittering gold and silver is one of those timeless combinations that is back in a big way this year.

“Go for glamour with a gorgeous table dressed in sparkling, metallic tones and textures," recommends Kate Thompson, head of homebuying at House of Fraser.

You can also go bright and bold, mixing turquoise and fuscia crackers and napkins, for a playful and contemporary look. Adding elements of gold with cutlery or napkin rings will add a touch of festive sparkle.

Nordic Noel is another big theme - create a simple, rustic look with evergreen foliage on a bare table laid with mismatched crockery for a cosy cabin feel.

"Natural, organic and handcrafted forms add to a relaxed atmosphere to an otherwise formal dining room," says Emily Rubner, Heal's dining buyer. "I think the emphasis is on the handmade this year, making your table feel especially unique and personal.”

If time is on your hands, you can achieve these looks without huge outlay by collecting foliage and pine cones on a winter walks -perhaps spraying them with metallic sivers or golds - or writing on baubles for place names.

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