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How to Create a Practical Thanksgiving Tablescape

How to Create a Practical Thanksgiving Tablescape

Thanksgiving is a wonderful holiday to spend time with family and friends. It’s always fun to decorate the table, but you don’t have to break the bank or go over the top to get a great look for fall! Here are some easy tips to create a practical and beautiful rustic farmhouse style table this holiday season.

Step 1: Table Covering

Because I was going for a very practical table this year, I stayed away from a traditional table cloth or covering. Kraft paper is a cheap and easy alternative that will just as easily give your table neutral but practical look. Add in a neutral table runner down the center for an extra touch of elegance and texture.

How-to tips:

  • Lay out Kraft paper across each long side of the table, leaving at least a foot extra at either end. 
  • Place table runner in the center of the table.

Step 2: Centerpiece

The beauty of a truly simple but stunning Thanksgiving table can be attributed to a variety of heights and textures coming from a thoughtfully layered table. Head to your local grocery store for some budget-friendly items to use as a centerpiece. You can go the traditional route with orange pumpkins and green vegetables or a more neutral palette like we’ve done here with a mix of white and green. Even better if you have some pumpkins leftover from Halloween! Mix in accessories you have around the house - could be more traditional Thanksgiving decorations you have on a cornucopia basket or items you use year round like some mirrored glass candle-holders and candles for sparkle and glam. Next, add in some more natural elements, like greenery (I chose a baby Eucalyptus), or some sticks and branches or dried wheat.

How-to tips:

  • Start in the center with your biggest centerpiece items (in this case, I started with the largest pumpkin in the center and built around that).
  • Place larger candle holders and candles next.
  • Layer in the smaller white pumpkins and smaller mirrored candle holders. 
  • Lastly, add in the eucalyptus branches and dried wheat. 

Step 3: Place Settings & Placemats

Start by laying out where you want each person’s plate to go with a charger or placemat. I decided to ditch the placemat this year and just use a charger and the Kraft paper I layed down earlier. A fun idea is to have a place for guests to write out what they’re thankful for next to their place setting as a touch to remind them what Thanksgiving is all about.

How-to tips:

  • Place chargers or placemats on the table. 
  • Use a white colored pencil or marker to write the “I’m thankful for” message on the kraft paper at each setting. 
  • Additionally, draw several lines so guests have a space to write.

Step 4: Dinnerware

White dinnerware is a classic go-to look for table settings. White is a great staple because it's a very clean look and allows other accessories to shine. You can add some height by stacking a dinner plate and a salad plate, but in this case, I really wanted to keep dishes minimal and decided to only use a dinner plate. You can also add your water and wine glasses to give the table a complete look.

Step 5: Napkins & Silverware

A final simple touch you can make is using some neutral color twine to tie up your napkins. To really bring the whole look of the table together, add in elements you used in your centerpiece on your napkins as well. In this case, I’ve used white cloth napkins and taken one piece of eucalyptus and dried wheat to each. Guaranteed to look great and really have your guests impressed!


How-to tips:

  • Fold your white cloth napkins into a rectangular shape. 
  • Tie in the center with neutral color twine. 
  • Slide in a eucalyptus branch and sprig of dried wheat under the twine. 

Follow my simple tips and you’ll have a practical, charming and rustic country table your guests will surely enjoy!

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