Dreidels, Latkes, and more…
Chanukah, oh Chanukah, come light the menorah…
Let’s have a party, we’ll all dance the hora…..
So goes the refrain from one of the most recognizable songs of the Jewish holiday of Chanukah (also spelled as Hanukkah).
Gather ‘round the table, we’ll give you a treat
Dreidels to play with and latkes to eat
Definitely a holiday of partying and eating! As decorating is an integral part of any party, Chanukah decorating is no exception. Typical Chanukah decor might consist of symbols like Stars of David (the Jewish religious symbol), dreidels (the 4-sided spinning top which is a popular game), and menorahs or Hanukkiahs (the candle holder that includes places for 8 candles representing the 8 nights of the holiday and the shamash, the candle that lights all the other candles). These items might be placed on the dinner table, or on a hearth, or in paper garlands often draped from wall to wall. The party could take place any of the 8 nights, and many traditional foods are eaten, particularly potato latkes (potato pancakes), brisket of beef, and sufganiyot (donuts) for dessert. Most of the traditional foods are made with oil, commemorating the oil that was left in the Temple after its destruction, and the miracle that the small amount of oil, enough for burning for one night, ended up lasting for 8 nights (thus, the 8 nights of Chanukah).
Decorating the Tables
The color motif for Chanukah usually consists of blue, white, gold and/or silver. When you start thinking of Chanukah tablecloths, there are certainly many options using just those four colors. For a fancier party, one could use a single tablecloth of white damask table linen, possibly adding a lace tablecloth on top. Or try a satin stripe tablecloth in royal blue. By adding a layer of silver organza, you get shimmer and elegance. The smaller organza tablecloth could be simply laid on top, using a square organza tablecloth over the round tablecloth, or if the table is rectangle, one would use a smaller rectangle tablecloth on top. Matching chair covers and organza chair ties complete this beautiful ensemble. Two other dressy tablecloth fabrics that would be great for a Chanukah party are Iridescent Crush (good color choices would be White, Platinum, or Champagne Gold) and Polyester Satin in Silver, and Snow. For a more casual affair, spun polyester tablecloths in solid white, gray, Byzantine gold, and various tones of blue (light blue, periwinkle, and royal) will perfectly suit the event. Spun polyester tablecloths are wonderful because they retain the color after numerous washings, and they have the nice substantial feel of cotton. Of course, adding napkins and chair ties that match the rest of your color scheme, will further tie in to your theme.
There is a new invention called the Couvert Clip, which adds a great new dimension to table decorating. It is most effective when used on an upper tablecloth, which is placed on top of a larger tablecloth. It is used to gather a tablecloth, secure the gather in place, and then is meant to attach to an embellishment to promote the theme of your event.
Let’s say you have a round table, and you use the tablecloth clip to gather the cloth in four places around the sides of the tablecloth. Then you could take a dreidel of about 2” in length, place a piece of hook Velcro on the back, and attach it to the clip which is constructed of loop Velcro, consequently allowing the dreidel to attach easily, and you have thus quickly customized your Chanukah party décor. Or, Linen Lovers has several already-made designs that can be used for Chanukah to attach to the clips. The first is a ribbon/bow made of royal blue ribbon with blue 6-pointed stars resting on silver leaves. The second is a hand-painted periwinkle-blue design that resembles a wrapped party gift. In addition, there is a white and gold ribbon/bow and a white on white ribbon/bow. The Couvert Clips offer a unique way to decorate the Chanukah table and tie in your theme.
Finishing your Chanukah design
Once your dining tables are dressed with beautiful tablecloths and table settings, you can extend your décor to other areas of your home. Remember to decorate your buffet table accordingly, using matching tablecloths and gathering the table linen with the Couvert Clips and embellishments. The Couvert Clips can also be used on a chair tie, one additional way to develop your theme.
And while we, are dancing, the lights, they are burning low,
One for each night, we shall shed a sweet light to remind us of days, long ago.