Monday, September 22, 2014

Retro Etiquette for Teen Girls of 1957

Watch Your Hostess and don't be disturbed if you are faced with a row of silver.

Most of these rules of table etiquette you will know, but if you are going out to a meal and want to be sure to do the right thing, it might be well to review them. 

Remain Standing until your hostess and the other people are seated. If there are no man in the party, help to see the older members in their chairs.

Start to Eat when your hostess does.

Watch Your Hostess and don't be disturbed if you are faced with a row of silver. If you question which piece to use, do as she does. The rule, however, is to use the silver in order -- from the outside, working in.

Ask for things to be passed instead of reaching across the table or in front of other guests.

Eat Quietly, take small mouthfuls and be careful not to sip noisily. Do not talk with your mouth full. It is also very rude to mash your food or stir it conspicuously.

At a Crowded Table be considerate of your neighbors and keep your elbows out of their way.

When You Have Finished Eating you should leave the silver in this order:

The Bullion or Soup Spoon: should be left on the plate, not in the cup or bowl.

Fruit Cup Spoons: should never be left in the glass cup, but on the plate.

The Butter Knife: across the middle of the butter plate.

The Salad Fork: across the salad plate.

The Dinner Knife and Fork: parallel together across the plate.

The Dessert Spoon: on the plate, not in the sherbet glass.

The Coffee Spoon: in the saucer, never in the cup.

Your Napkin: need not be folded if you are a guest for only one meal. But at home, do fold it neatly and leave it at your place.

Emily R. Dow's 1957 "Brooms, Buttons and Beaux"