Thanksgiving is a lovely holiday filled with good food, plenty of family and friends, and *Gorgeous, Over-the-top Tablescapes Deserving of Pinterest Awards*. Oh, wait. Let’s check that last part. Is a drop-dead-gorgeous table your breaking point (both in regards to stress AND budget)? Who has hundreds of dollars to spend on *just* the tablescape?! Not me…and I’m guessing you don’t either.
What a Thanksgiving Tablescape Isn’t
Friend, a Thanksgiving tablescape need not be an over-the-top, budget breaking ordeal. I don’t know about you, but when I start looking for simple Thanksgiving ideas, what I find is anything but simple. And then I find myself deep in that ugly comparison game. That’s not a good place to be.
Everywhere on Pinterest, in magazines, and gorgeous blogs you’ll find perfectly curated and exquisitely layered Thanksgiving tablecapes. Each one is absolutely gorgeous. Absolutely perfect.
And they make me want to give up before the Holiday even starts.
A day that is supposed to be filled with thankfulness and gratitude is overshadowed by my own comparison and that feeling of always falling short of that perfect table setting. Even though I *know* it’s not what really matters. Can I get a witness?
Letting Go of Comparison and Perfectionism
If you also find yourself battling the Comparison Monster, I’m holding out my hand to you and inviting you to walk away from what you think the “perfect” table is…and embrace a simpler Thanksgiving. One with less focus on the “things and stuff” and more focus on the faces of the ones you love gathered around the table.
Now, I’m not saying break out the paper plates and solo cups (though there’s nothing wrong with that if that’s what works for you) – I’m just saying give yourself a break, try to use things you already have on hand and say goodbye to that critical inner voice that says, “it’s never good enough”. I’m preaching to myself here.
I’m delighted to be here today, sharing with you a Thanksgiving tablescape idea.
It’s simple, it’s pretty, and it’s easy on the wallet. Most of all, it’s stress-free.
Let me take a moment to point out that I totally dig the scars and imperfections on real pumpkins – if they bug you, you can certainly find “perfect” fake ones and use those instead. I personally like my pumpkins the way I like my people. Full of stories (some that carry scars), and endearing imperfections…and seeing the beauty in the “mess”.
The Main Centerpiece
First, let’s work on the centerpiece. Now, don’t go running out and buying all the many perfectly coordinated things that will just end up collecting dust and taking up space. Shop your house. Use what you have. And maybe make one small trip to the local farmer’s market or the produce section at a local store for some pumpkins. 😉
In the background of this photo, you can see my Gracelaced print that I mounted on a canvas using the easiest method ever, the fall leaf garland I made here and the corner of my huge thrifted chalkboard. (And yes, I have twinkly lights around our french doors already.)
Here, I laid out a cotton garland that I already had down the middle of the table. Then I layered in different neutral colored pumpkins throughout. No real method here – simply whatever looks best to you. I also sneaked in a few antlers that I had elsewhere in the house – just because I love the rustic texture they add.
Easiest Napkin Rings Ever
Napkin rings are such a fun way to personalize each setting – and I think this must be one of the most inexpensive ways to make napkin rings. I simply used a decorative tape and applied strips to a sheet of card stock. Then I cut each strip evenly and wrapped it around a linen napkin (that I already owned). To hold it in place, I clipped it with a mini clothespin – along with a sprig of rosemary . Easy peasy. It smells divine. And cute!
Below are additional variations on this idea.
- 1. Burlap ribbon with a stamped tag clipped with a mini clothespin
- 2. White butcher’s twine tied around a sprig of rosemary
- 3. Card stock strip with decorative tape with a stamped tag held with mini clothespin
- 4. The same as described in the photo/paragraph above.
A Note on the Table Setting
I’m sure you’ve noticed that I’ve not layered the usual “charger/dinner plate/ salad plate/soup bowl” combo. That’s because this is how we usually set our table. Simple. No fuss. Just a dinner plate we pile high – and if there’s soup, the bowls are in the kitchen on the self-serve buffet.
The crystal goblets were handed down to me from my Grandma Harris, the china plates were a gift many years ago from my Mother in Law, and the linen napkins are from my Mom. Again…use whatever you have and mix and match and combine to make your table *yours*. Use pieces that have a story to them – it’s what makes your home YOU.
Oh – and the silverware? Yeah…it’s a mish-mash, too. I thought about running over to my Dad’s and borrowing the “good stuff” – but you know what? I decided to keep it real. This is real life. It’s how we roll in this house and I’m doing my level best to set aside my own perfectionism. The struggle is real. 😉
This Thanksgiving, let’s purpose to focus on the sweet faces of those we love around the table – and less on having the Pinterest-perfect table setting.
From my table to yours, I’m wishing you all the peace and love the season holds.