Be inspired: set your table like a stylist

Home stylist Susie Clegg brings the outdoors in with an easy floral napkin ring and other table-dressing tips.

Whether it’s for a special celebration like a birthday, or simply because you fancy a change, a few simple touches can really make a difference to your table. When I styled the dining shoot in Sainsbury’s Home Ideas magazine, I used a few tricks to give it a fresh, seasonal feel.

Table-setting ideas: table laid with plain dinnerware and green glass vasesTwine time

Homemade decorations will give your dinner table a lovely personal feel. For an eye-catching napkin ring, take a napkin, roll it up, then loosely wind a length of twine around it. Next, simply tuck a sprig of greenery underneath – a burst of small blooms looks sweet and pretty, a single flower head is more dramatic and herbs give an earthy, organic feel.

Luggage tags

For a different look, brown paper luggage tags make lovely place settings with your guests’ names on – but if you don’t have any to hand, you can always cut tags out of coloured paper or tea-stain some white paper for a vintage look. Make a hole using a hole punch so you can thread them withTable-setting idea: A selection of white dinnerware with a floral and butterfly print in black and turquoisestring or ribbon and tie them to cutlery or drinking-glass stems.

Colour mix

If you’re using plain crockery, make sure your accessories bring energy to your table – a pop of colour will really wake things up. I used vibrant green bottles and glassware for the shoot, which worked with the wood for a natural look. Alternatively, try tableware with an on-trend botanical print and just a hint of colour.

What are your tips for making your table look special?

Susie Clegg is an interior stylist and writer.

Prices, top to bottom: Grey ripple-effect 12-piece dinner set, £50, see instore, Simplicity cutlery, set of 16, £15, see instore; white cotton napkins, set of 2, £4; white cotton tablecloth, £22; wine glasses, £2.50 each, see instore; Botanical dinner plate, £3.50; Botanical side plate, £3; Botanical cake forks, set of 4, £8.

Tip of the week

Dining outside instead? Check out our blog post on picnics, parties and barbecues and look out for our ‘Go al fresco’ Instagram competition, coming soon!

Three key pieces

White Coupe 12-piece dinner set,

Botanical 2-tier cake standtall green glass bottle

White Coupe 12-piece dinner set, £25; Botanical 2-tier cake stand, £10; tall green glass bottle, £12.