AUSTIN, Texas (December 10, 2003) Vibrant limes, rich velvet or silk runners, and perfect apples sound like a merchant's treasure. They're just some of the pieces of the puzzle of last-minute table dressing. Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ: WFMI), the world's largest natural and organic foods supermarket, knows that all the food prep may leave hosts with little time to think of how to set the table. We've prepared three simple, stylish ideas for setting the table to impart just the feeling needed for joyous holiday gatherings.

Plan a tablescape to reflect your style and the mood you'd like to create. It's as easy as 1-2-3. Here are 1-2-3 easy, lovely concepts for your table:

  1. Infuse food into your table design; gourds, apples, pears, and beautiful berries can be simple colorful centerpieces presented in a favorite silver or crystal bowl or artfully mounded on a footed cake plate.
  2. Instead of a standard white tablecloth, crisscross red, gold or silver table runners down the center of the table and across at each place setting, leaving the rich wood of your table exposed to enjoy. Place small votive candleholders evenly spaced down the center of the table. Your beautiful table will be a sight to behold! When pressing table linens, drop a few drops of your favorite essential oil (cinnamon or clove would be lovely) into the water of your iron for a subtle scent that will fade into the background as your beautiful meal steeps the room in heady aroma.
  3. For a clean modern look, you'll need six clear cylinder vases (two each of three different heights). Arrange the vases in the center of the table with the two tallest in the center. Fill one of each size with cranberries and one of each size with small whole limes (slices can be used as well, which is also quite pretty). Fill the vases with water. You can intersperse the cylinders with small votive candles on the table — or top each one with a floating candle. Burgundy and lime ornaments can substitute for the fruit for a festive look as well.

Set your table several days in advance so you have time to enjoy the beauty of it as well.