Setting the table for a special dinner isn’t as difficult as it may initially seem.
We do not want to intimidate guests by being too formal, yet some rules do apply. The following diagram shows a full-blown table setting for a fancy dinner party. Adjust it as necessary to fit your menu.
Remember to make your guests as comfortable as you can. Don’t put out utensils that won’t ever be used. If your menu doesn’t include anything that would be eaten with a teaspoon, don’t put teaspoons on the table. If you’re planning to serve coffee and dessert afterward, bring out the teaspoons then.
* For an informal meal, include the coffee cup and saucer with the table setting. Otherwise, bring them to the table with the dessert.