(SH): Is there a way to give traditional decorations a custom look?
(DP): Your monogram on a dinner napkin.
(SH): What are some small touches that make a big impact when entertaining?
(DP): Candles – simple always makes the biggest impact.
(SH): How far in advance should fresh arrangements and centerpieces be prepared?
David Phoenix(DB): The day before. It gives the flowers a chance to open up.
(SH): What is the rule of thumb for mixing and matching china and serving pieces?
(DP): There are no rules – I like to mix it up and use my silver – mix it with platters that range from China to silver. It is completely about layering. This is the time of year you can use everything that has been sitting in your cabinets for months on end.