Once a kindergarten teacher, now your go-to guide for all things DIY. My passion for teaching didn't stop when I left the classroom - I merely switched from ABCs to DIYs. I've learned a lot from transforming my own home from scratch, and now I'm here to pass on that knowledge to you.
I am a Brand Ambassadör for IKEA U.S. This is a sponsored post. As always the views, ideas, and opinions expressed here are my own.
Celebrating the holidays can look different for every family or group of friends. Even with the traditions that take place every year. Today I’m sharing a tradition that we started about five years ago: hosting Christmas Eve brunch. It all started when we finally had a few family members move to Florida after we moved away from our hometowns. We wanted to do something special to not only celebrate the holidays but also with family being so close by.
Fast forward to now and it has become one of my favorite traditions. It starts with a Christmas Eve brunch and ends with a round of competitive games to bring in a little fun. This year being the first year with a new dining room and my mother-in-law making the move to Florida as well, I wanted to kick our Christmas Eve brunch up a notch.
My goal? Create an inviting tablescape, a way for our guests to easily grab food throughout the day, and a cozy and inviting space to enjoy our games. I got several of my pieces from IKEA which also made this super affordable. I can’t wait to share my finds with you!
First up on the list: the tablescape. I wanted our tablescape to show signs of Christmas but in a simple and non-overwhelming way. Let’s be honest, we’d all rather have more room for drinks and food. With a black and green color scheme in mind, here’s the tablescape I came up with.
For the plates I went with the DINERA in dark gray. I knew without a doubt I wanted darker tableware and it help set the tone for the rest of the table. Using the darker green dish towel from the VILDKAPRIFOL set, I placed it between the side plate and the main plate. It gives that perfect pop of green against the dark gray plates for a holiday feel.
I debated going lighter or darker with the flatware but ultimately decided on this black set. Have you ever tried black flatware? If not, now is the time because I love how it looks! And with a clear glass, they’re able to stand out even more.
The finishing touch to the table setting for each guest, is the magnolia leaf with a name written on each one and adorned with a gingerbread cookie. Remember, my goal is to keep it simple yet festive and beautiful.
Along the middle of the table, I placed some garland that I had on hand and a branch of magnolia leaves in a BEGÄRLIG vase. A single branch is all that you need. Within the garland I placed a few candlesticks and light up houses. All of these elements turned this table from an everyday table into a holiday table for a Christmas Eve brunch. The finishing touch were the velvet pillows placed in the end chairs. Everything that I used for the holiday tablescape can also easily be used for everyday basics.
Since the tablescape is good to go, what about the food and drinks? I got just about everything I needed for this as well at IKEA. Did you know that IKEA sells food and beverages in their Swedish food market? I was pleasantly surprised at everything they had to offer.
In the dining room I set up a beverage station using glasses, mugs, and carafes. This will give our guests so many options when it comes to their drink of choice while they visit with us. They can have a glass of sparkling pear drink or pour themselves a cup of coffee.
As far as the food, I want my guests to be able to easily grab what they would like to eat while enjoying a delicious brunch. I placed a mixture of wooden cutting boards, serving dishes, and a 3 tier serving tray on a side table in our breakfast nook. This is the midway point between the dining room and living room where we’ll also be playing games.
I honestly couldn’t believe what IKEA had to offer in their market. I decided to serve the cinnamon buns, pastries, crisprolls with jam, pancakes, and a side of fruit among other things. My personal favorite? The mini cheddar cheese and leek pies. They are SO good, my friends! The serveware not only made it super easy to display, but always very convenient for our guests to easily grab what they’d like.
After we’ve enjoyed time well-spent around the dining room table, it’s time for the games. Games can be fun, competitive, and keep family and friends around a little longer before heading home. But we also want to keep our guests comfortable.
One of the things we’ve battled in the past is not having enough seating. I picked up two of the ALSEDA Stools in addition to GUNDE Folding Chairs that guests can choose from. I love how easily both can be moved around the living room to a spot where our guests can truly feel comfortable. The great thing is, the chairs can be used at our dining room table if needed and the stools can be extra seating on our patio if we decide to take things outside.
And I don’t know about you, but I always have a blanket within reach when I’m hanging out at home. It’s a comfort thing for me! I also want that comfort for my guests so the STINAMAJ Throw and the set of throw pillows are placed freely in the living room. I love how by placing them on the hearth that it creates extra seating as well.
Now, let’s pretend the games take us well into the evening. Which has happened before! With all the laughter and fun going on, I don’t want to miss a beat but we may need additional lighting (besides the Christmas tree). I placed smart lighting in the living room lamps so all I have to do is press a remote for all the lights to come on. It will also keep things cozy by being able to dim the lights and change the tones of light bulbs with the remote as well. Plus, wouldn’t you agree these smart light bulbs would be a great conversation starter?
I hope this gave you some ideas on how you can easily host your own Christmas brunch with some games included. Don’t let it be overwhelming! Remember, keep it simple! It also helps that you can find majority of everything that I used at IKEA. Don’t have one local to you? IKEA ships some if not most of these items which are all created with form, function, affordability, quality, and sustainability in mind. To make it easier for you, I’m linking everything below so you can easily find it. Happy Holidays, my friends!
1. DINERA 18-piece dinnerware set 2. GODIS glass 3. TILLAGD 20-piece flatware set 4. DINERA mug 5. IVRIG glass 6. 365+ Carafe with stopper 7. BEGARLIG vase 8. VINTERFEST LED Decorative light 9. FULLTALIG Candlestick 10. VINTERFEST set of 3 Christmas trees 11. VILDKAPRIFOL dish towel 12. VINTERSAGA Gingerbread set 13.SANELA cushion cover
1. STINAMAJ throw 2. TRADFRI smart lighting 3. SMYCKA articial leaf 4. VINTERFEST set of 3 Christmas trees 5. ALSEDA stool 6. VINTERFEST artificial potted plant 7. VINTERFEST serving stand 8. PROPPMATT chopping board 9. DINERA serving plate 10. GUNDE folding chair 11. SANELA cushion cover
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