Manners 101 from My Southern Grandmother

Although I grew up in the North, my Southern raised grandmother made sure I understood manners and proper etiquette from a young age. I'm forever thankful for the lessons she taught me as simple manners have gone a long way in social and professional settings. And I'm one of the few people I know who still knows how to set a dinner table!

Always RSVP. Let your host know if you can make it as soon as possible so he or she can plan accordingly. RSVPs are often less formal now. Usually a call, text, or e-mail with suffice.

Push your chair in when you leave the table. Pushing in your chair after leaving the table will save the host(ess) from having to do it later. Also, it frees up space in it's path.

Never show up empty handed. Bring your host a small token of appreciation such as a bottle of wine, small trinket, or baked good - something that says thank you!

Greet everyone in the room. Even if you don't know every at the gathering it's the polite thing to say hello and introduce yourself.

Look at the person you are speaking to. Making eye contact with the person you are speaking with lets them know you're listening and interested. It's impolite to glance down at your phone or scan the room while someone is talking to you.

Learn people's names. Learning and remembering a person's name and using it to address them is a sign of respect and caring.

Ask before bringing a guest. Don't assume a plus one is a given. Also ask your host(ess) if you can bring a guest... or your kids!

Hold the door. Look to see if anyone is behind when entering through a door. Holding the door for someone is just a nice thing to do.


  1. LOVE this whole list, especially always RSVP'ing. I will never be able to understand why it's so hard for people to let you know if they're attending your party or not :-P

    Green Fashionista

  2. Love this, old school is truly the best.

  3. I love this! My mama and Oma taught me, too, to never show up empty-handed! And, to this day, I know how to set a full dining table! I hope to pass these etiquette tips to my children, as well! It's a dying art.

  4. These are great manners to know. I am amazed by how much manners has gone astray in the modern age.

    Allie of