Days like this remind me how much better I work under pressure. Give me a deadline and I can make quick and balanced decisions; give me too much time and I’ll get bogged down with too many options.
In 48 hours, I will be setting up my table at the Oregon State Fair so I did a mock-set up this morning (still knowing I have some things to pick up in between). How did I get to this point? Here was my process:
- After finally deciding on a theme, I drafted the menu (see post here).
- Then I devised a checklist based on several table setting diagrams I found online, as well as what I somewhat envisioned in my head (shout out to my Passion Planner).
- Then I headed to Crate & Barrel to grab the basics (plates, napkins, placemats). Why C&B? Believe it or not, their basic plates and napkins are actually cheaper individually than somewhere like Target – and their selection is more classic, whereas Target focuses on seasonal stuff.
- The odds and ends gave me some trouble – where to get the butter dish? Bread basket? Tablecloth? My mom provided some vintage pieces that fit the theme (as well as the required card table you have to bring to the competition), and then I did a lot of random bargain shopping.
- Finally, I set up my mock table and carefully pored over etiquette sites. Did you know the flatware should be 1″ from the table edge? Or that your coffee cup’s handle should be facing 4 O’Clock? Yeah, well I didn’t. But that is exactly why I signed up for this competition. It’s called experiential learning, people!
Today I will make my (hopefully) last stop at IKEA since I refuse to pay $4.00 a piece for sugar spoons or an extra napkin. I’m running all my glassware through the dishwasher and am hoping to press my linens tomorrow night (but how to keep them wrinkle free on the ride there??).
What do you think? It’s inevitable that the judges will rip me a new one (because it seems like something they enjoy), but I’m a neophyte in this category so bring on the feedback.