Imagine tying the knot on the day the whole world celebrates love and romance! Quite a moment, wouldn’t you say? But if you happen to be more of the modern type when it comes to table decor, how do you combine all the Valentine’s elements with an elegant, chic flair? Don’t you worry. It can be done!
This wedding table setting we’ve styled still incorporates the classic “roses and candles” look of Valentine’s—along with pearls, lace, and of course the color red. But we toned down the sweetness, and upped the sophistication factor. Does this sound like something for you? Excellent!
Add Black to the Valentine’s Red and White
A traditional Valentine’s palette of red and white gets a stylish spin when paired with edgy black.
If there’s one thing that declares your style approach right off, it’s color. So we precisely kept the requisite red and white of the season, but incorporated stylish, sophisticated black. The immediate message? This is one Valentine’s dinner party with pizzazz!
Worried that the black may be too stark or overpowering? Not if you keep it to one table element, like this laser-cut rose runner. Nothing else on the table is black. But what truly makes the setting’s palette pop is the wall we covered in black wall paper having a faint “xoxo” lettering. How’s that for drama!
Note: The other table element that immediately says “modern” are the ghost chairs in clear molded acrylic! Nicknamed “Louis ghost chairs,” these are a takeoff from the classic Louis XV armchair, and are available online from Amazon or may be rented from an event supplier near you.
Set a Tablescape That’s All About Luxe Romance
In place of the traditional centerpiece is a table-length arrangement of red paper flowers and candles in elegant glass holders.
Upon closer inspection, too, you see the interplay of feminine, floral elements and edgy, sleek touches on our table. Deep red flowers, glowing candles, and strands of pearls are set against the modern black runner, as well as glass, metal, and mirrored pieces.
The traditional centerpiece, too, is replaced by a random arrangement of loose paper flowers, interspersed with candles in petite votive glasses to gracefully towering holders. Definitely not your usual dreamy Valentine’s setting, yet a captivating sight all the same—vintage meets glam!
Hint: Fresh flowers in vibrant red would, of course, be extra fabulous! Some varieties you could try: roses, carnations, dahlias, mums, and calla lilies.
Take a Casual, Unstructured Approach
Decorative elements are placed in a stylishly unstructured manner, giving the table setting its extra appeal.
Much of the appeal of this setting, for all its modernity, is the easy, seemingly unplanned placement of decorative elements. Flowers just appear to have been tossed in at random. Pearl strands drape casually around, over, and into glass containers. Candles stand out from among the decorations in various places.
Nothing is symmetrically positioned or perfectly balanced. The varied heights of different pieces provide visual interest, with extra “levels” created using mirrored and metallic boxes (you can just see one underneath the votive candles).
Create Classic Place Settings Amidst the Modernity
The contrast between classic and trendy is highlighted in the place settings’ table ware, napkin placement, and pearl- and kiss-adorned menu cards.
For place settings, we intentionally chose classic silver-edged dinner ware with a white-on-white floral pattern. Very subdued and traditional, in contrast to the bold tablescape. We played up the same contrast by using a dainty lace table cloth underneath the very stylized laser-cut rose runner.
Then, we inserted red table napkins between the plates and topped each place setting with individual menu cards ringed with pearls. Note the sassy little “kiss” print on each menu, in honor of Valentine’s!
Complete the Look with a Vintage Table Number
An ornate carved frame for the table number adds a soft accent to the otherwise boldy styled scene.
In one more nod to tradition, we displayed the table number in an ivory vintage-style frame, rococo flourishes and all. Its old-fashioned charm brings a softening touch to the vividly colored scene, don’t you agree?
And on a final note about those pearl-adorned candle holders, do keep an eye on the pearls as the candles begin to melt during the party. Unless you’re able to find the drip-proof type of candles, you may end up with burnt pearls and an acrid smell (we found this out the hard way during this shoot)!
And you were worried that combining modern and romantic would be a styling challenge? Well, with this Valentine’s-themed wedding table, we hope you’re now convinced that it’s definitely possible. Even better, we hope you’re excited to try styling a similar look for your own wedding party!