Countdown to Thanksgiving: Tablescapes

countdown to thanksgiving


Thanksgiving is my husbee’s favorite holiday. It always annoys him that stores seem to go from Halloween to Christmas without so much as a nod to Thanksgiving. I guess it’s just natural that our daughter has decided that it should be Christmas now, and doesn’t care much about Turkey Day.

It’s because of my husband’s love of Thanksgiving that I am going all out this year. I have decided that we are going to use our nice wedding china because if not now, when? And with my Countdown to Thanksgiving, I am going to show my table to you. I looked at magazines and searched Pinterest to get ideas for table decor and I found some beautiful pictures. The thing is, I really don’t want to spend an arm and a leg plus come up with storage solutions for a bunch of new fall decorations. I am committed to putting together a nice table without spending any money… well, very little money.

I did purchase some craft paint, and this burlap roll:


I got at it Hobby Lobby, but you could probably find burlap at any store that carries craft supplies. I used my 40% off coupon, so it was pretty inexpensive.

I traced an “R” that I had hanging in my living room with a water-based marker (water-based so that it would wash off easily if I got any on the R) and then I painted it with craft paint. After I got the “R” painted on the end of my table runner, I repeated the same thing on the other end **I don’t plan on washing and reusing this, but if I did I would want to use fabric paint or mix a fabric medium with my craft paint.


Lest you think I have the luxury of working alone, that little hand belongs to my four-year-old daughter!


To keep the cost low, and to keep things from becoming too fussy, everything else on my table was already in my house.

After placing the runner down, I chose a “mini quilt” made by my mom. It’s basically a finished quilt block and it matches my kitchen. On top of the mini quilt, I placed some blue canning jar lanterns that I made last summer for my patio. Ball Jar Company made some nostalgic canning jars in blue and green glass. I snapped some up and twisted some wire around the necks so they could hang and I put little battery votives inside. You could use real candles, but I have a 4-year-old, remember?  After the lanterns, I scattered some colorful silk leaves and little tiny gourds that I had in my entryway and then I set the table.

I placed my napkins right on top of the plates, and then the place card. My place card is also the menu. I searched for “Thanksgiving menu printable” on PInterest, and I chose the one I liked best. It was free and had a fillable form so I could enter in my own menu items without messing up the design. I just wrote names on the bottom with a brown marker.


full table centerpiece

Here are some table-setting notes: If you’ve got nice china, use it. When else are you going to? If you’ve got kids, it’s a great opportunity for them to learn how to behave at a formal dinner and to learn the proper way to set the table: plate in the middle, knife next to plate on the right and spoon outside of knife. The blade should always face the inside so that nobody accidentally cuts themselves. The forks go on the left, salad (little) fork on the outside and dinner (big) fork closer to the plate. Water and wine glasses go right above the knife and a coffee cup goes to the right of the other glasses. There are a lot more pieces than what I have, so if you want to go even more formal, but aren’t sure what’s proper, just surf the web. Here is a fun Thanksgiving Etiquette guide with table setting directions.

table setting



One thought on “Countdown to Thanksgiving: Tablescapes

  1. Jessica, this is beautiful! You are correct to use your lovely wedding gifts. After 49 years I admit that much of the “special” stuff has only been admired and not used. You and Zach have a lovely family.

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