What does Thanksgiving mean to you? Family, friends, traditions old and new, togetherness, thankfulness…FOOD? Whatever this holiday means to you and your family, whatever traditions you embrace, Thanksgiving is all about giving thanks and celebrating with food. So of course with an entire holiday focused around the table we all want ours to to look the part. Jodie and I are no experts in the cooking arena (although for Thanksgiving we definitely have fun attempting our best). However, as you may have guessed, we do pride ourselves on creating beautiful settings for our families and friends to enjoy. I can’t wait to show you what I did this year for our Thanksgiving table. And I am hoping you find some ideas and inspiration to use when you create your own Thanksgiving table! For additional table decorating ideas be sure to check out our posts on creating a Halloween Tablescape and Holiday Tablescape Ideas.
If you have arrived from our talented friend Ashley Modern Glam then a special welcome! It is always a sweet honor and exponential fun to join with other talented friends on a blog hop tour! Jodie and I learn so much from our friends, and we know you do too. Be sure to continue through the tour because you truly will not want to miss even one of these amazing blogs!
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Find Inspiration for your Thanksgiving Table
In order to create something special we need to be inspired. Inspiration can come from anywhere, a store display, a magazine photo, Instagram, a friend’s home, a restaurant…. If we are open to it we can find inspiration almost everywhere! I had been recently looking at a lot of magazines for inspiration and I caught a mood…it wasn’t anything more specific than a mood, but I knew it was the direction I wanted to take my holiday table…. Glamorous! What does “glamorous” mean to me? Fine china, candlelight, crystal…I decided to bring it all out and see what I might create.
Thanksgiving Table: Layer from the Center
I always begin with the center of the table. First step, start by choosing a table runner, scarf, or table cloth. I wanted to show the beautiful wood of my table so I opted for a table scarf. The scarf added dimension, texture and color without completely hiding the table. I chose one with rich fall colors and fringe for added detail. Draping it diagonally across the table I let the folds ripple to create movement and a picnic-like feel. It’s so fun mixing the surprise of the casual draping of the scarf with the elegance of the china and crystal. Even my 14-year-old son Julian looked at the table and said, “I like how it’s not flat”…hey, high praise from him…take my word for it 🙂
Use Your Favorite Pieces
Do you have signature style pieces you love to use over and over again? That’s great if you do. My “signature pieces” are my antique alabaster candelabras. I absolutely love the statement they make, and since I wanted a glamorous table I didn’t hesitate adding these to my table.
What should I do in the middle? I wanted a bit of height for drama. A lovely Thanksgiving-inspired floral centerpiece would have been beautiful. However, to be honest, I created the table so early I knew it would not last until Thanksgiving. I decided to use what I had and create something that would last the 3 weeks until I would actually use this table!
Building My Thanksgiving Table Centerpiece
After choosing my table scarf and candelabras I looked at the color scheme. There was already a nice balance between off-white and rich fall colors. I would continue this in the centerpiece and also with the place settings.
- On top of the plaid table scarf I layered similarly colored leaves for added interest and texture. Because the colors blended it didn’t distract too much.
- Next I placed a rustic tobacco basket on top of the leaves.
- I placed a wooden pedestal in the center of the basket
- Then I filled the basket with a variety of small pumpkins in various sizes and colors.
- On top of the pedestal I placed more leaves.
- In the center of the leaves I placed a white ceramic pumpkin.
I can also picture a decorative turkey looking flawless here, but again, I used what I had (which is a motto of mine!)
Something Special for your Thanksgiving Table
Searching for something special to add the perfect finish to my table I came across special dessert plates received from my grandmother years ago. Instantly I knew they were perfect! Six unique designs depicted fruits and nuts. The small size meant that they could be the “crowning glory” on my plate stack. The gold edge of the plates tied in beautifully with my copper chargers (a Christmas present from my husband last year).
Jodie and I both had a very close relationship with our sweet grandmother. Nan, Nanny, Nanner, Alice…was pure love to us. She was a nurse, a great cook, a dancer, a dresser, and a survivor. Nan lived a full and beautiful life devoted to others and to God and set an extraordinary example to all of us who knew her. Her words of advice still ring in my mind regularly. I would dress my table with her plates and let her spirit of love continue to guide me.
Thanksgiving Table Place Settings
There are lots of decisions, lots of options when it comes to creating your place settings. To create visual interest and function to my settings I like to layer.
Here are some options for place setting layers from bottom up:
- largest plate
- salad plate
- decorative item
Note: The napkin can be one of the layers. It can be placed in between plates or on the top along with your decorative item. I decided to skip the napkin and decorative item on top of my final plate because I wanted to showcase the plates themselves.
Link to Our Past
Why are family traditions so special? The bonds of family are so much more than simply genetic ties. These days “family” can mean so many things. It’s the people who love us the most and the people we love the most. By sharing in special moments and shared traditions we increase our closeness and the bonds that tie us together.
Our pasts link our hearts. When we share memories with loved ones we grow in relationship. That’s why traditions are so important. Did you know that smell holds the most powerful link to memory? It’s true. It is one reason why the smells and tastes of Thanksgiving remind us so vividly of our childhood. It’s why your grandmother’s pumpkin pie or the smell of the turkey roasting can conjure up memories of the past.
Passing down recipes from generation to generation is not just keeping our stomachs happy 🙂 It is a marvelous way to relive memories of past Thanksgivings and build family bonds that last.
Memory Making and So Much More!
Thanksgiving is all about gathering family and friends together to celebrate. It’s a time when our regular hectic lives take a pause, work is suspended in favor of memory-making and family times. We gather, sit, and eat. We thank God for our blessings and pray for strength as we face life’s challenges.
While it has been absolutely lovely having you here with us it’s time to send you off to enjoy another stop on our Thanksgiving Inspiration Tour. Next, please head over to oh-so-creative girl Olivia Reinvented Collection. We know you won’t want to miss what she’s cooked up….Wishing you all a beautiful and memorable Thanksgiving Celebration!
With love & gratitude,
Julie & Jodie
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