Nico Journal Modern table settings

In a time when meals are increasingly eaten on the run, or in front of television, there is genuinely nothing lovelier than proper family dinners at the table, or just a beautifully-laid table that encourages you to slow down and take a seat. Whether it’s a one-pot meal or a pitch-in potluck, we’re bringing some reverence back to mealtimes without being too precious about table settings.

Forget the old rules though. Forget the spoon-and-fork rules and all those bits that make it seem daunting. We spoke with two of the most gracious hosts we know, our creative director and head of house & home, to bring you this little guide to genuinely easy, and thoroughly modern table settings.

For a sit-down family dinner
At the end of the day, every sit-down meal with the family is about great conversations and time spent together. “Table settings mustn’t overpower or intimidate”, Simran Lal told us. Our Creative Director grew up sitting at the table for every meal and recognises the merit of a fuss-free and inviting set-up. “I love anything seasonal”, she said, referring to flowers and plants that are in bloom and she often steps outside to pick blossoms that find a home on her table.

Layering is kind of a big deal here at Nicobar, and we love layering linen and crockery for a textural table. We’ve dressed our summer table in a light palette with dainty flowers picked from the garden, softly-gleaming gold and silver, and our newest collection of irregular stoneware.

For a potluck brunch
Last minute plans lend themselves perfectly to a potluck, and allow for a little experimentation with the table setting. “I believe a part of the table must be community-style that gives equal importance to every dish and elevates the table”, Arya, our head of House & Home, told us. “When friends and family pitch in with a potluck, they’re sharing a piece of themselves and want their food tasted and appreciated”, she continued. We divided our table setting (into a 1:3 ratio) to allow space for every dish, and a place setting for those who choose to be seated at the table.

For this one we like our slate and marble tableware, layering and styling with platters, cake stands, bell jars, pinch pots, and our classic Fez platters.

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