Harold Almon Etiquette Coach
Be at Ease School of Etiquette Austin
Have no fear. In an advanced formal place setting, there is a flatware rule of three: no more than three items of flatware of any one kind are to be placed in any place setting at any one time. An oyster cocktail fork can be placed with up to three other forks in a place setting. It is the lone exception to the rule of three. It can be placed to the left of other forks or tines in the bowl of the soup spoon handle to five o’clock.
And then there is the rule of ten: no more than ten pieces of flatware of any kind are to be placed at one place setting at any given time.
Each course is to get its own flatware placed in order of use outside in – in kind: all knives and then all spoons.
Study place settings even when alone. There are other flatware combinations of ten. Each is an informal place setting. In a formal place setting, not only is the bread and butter plate and butter spreader to be omitted from a place setting, but after some point, additional flatware items can be brought in with the course requiring it.