It's never too early to start planning a festive Thanksgiving table. Whether you're hosting a get-together or simply celebrating with your family, setting the scene for a feast is a great way to embrace the spirit of the holidays. The perfect table could even upstage the actual bird. Here are a few tips to help you get started!
- While a tablecloth is more traditional, a runner is another great option—choose one that's about 12 inches longer than your table so it drapes down the sides. Go with rich, fall colors, a pattern like checks, or a texture like burlap, whatever makes you happy!
- Layer in decor by shopping for items in your home such as candles, vases, even plants or herbs. Grab an assortment of mini pumpkins or gourds from the grocery store. You can also purchase fresh flowers or simply break out your Christmas garland.
- For a centerpiece, you can gather and arrange items into a bowl you already have, whether pumpkins, fruit, or pinecones. A bold floral display is a classic—switch it up by hollowing out a pumpkin and using it as a vase.
- To protect against spills and heat damage, as well as add a touch of elegance, use charger plates. They can be incorporated into your overall color and design theme, and placed on the table with dinner and salad plates on top. These will remain on the table like a placemat—just remove or trade out dishware for various courses.
- Set out glassware and silverware. If you're baffled by where everything goes, you're not alone! Depending on what items you wish to include, you can find different ways to lay everything out in this article from Food52.
- If you don't want to deal with washing and possibly scrubbing stained linen napkins, just use paper napkins. Here's a quick video on a festive turkey napkin fold. You can also download printable, step-by-step directions.
Extras & Finishing Touches
- For assigned seating, there are all kinds of ways to do place cards. Create handwritten tags and use twine to tie them around the silverware, a small gift, or DIY mini wreath. Print out your favorite photo of each person. Paint names on mini pumpkins. This is where you can truly be unique and personalize your Thanksgiving table.
- If you're putting out multiple glassware options, feel free go thrifting to find colorful, vintage pieces that add to your overall aesthetic. And mismatched is no problem, just shop around and see what catches your eye.
- Don't forget the kiddos! Make their table interactive by rolling out butcher or kraft paper and having crayons or other kid-friendly crafting supplies available. You can also put out small cups of light snacks or a goodie bag of small gifts and toys for each child.
Above All, Enjoy the Holiday
If you skip the decor and prefer paper plates, that's a-ok. Keeping it simple can often be the most rewarding option! It will give you more time to spend with your family and take a little time for yourself, too.
You can even offload cooking duties and order a gourmet "heat and eat" feast from local stores like Tony's Market in Denver or Blackbelly in Boulder—or check with your favorite neighborhood restaurant to see if they're offering a dine-in or takeout Thanksgiving meal.
Bottom line? Make the holiday your own, whether it's decorating to the nines or making it easy-peasy. You do you!