After all of the cleaning, but before all of the cooking, there is this moment that is perfect for setting your Thanksgiving table the proper way. The best part is that this moment occurs days before your guests begin arriving so no one has to lift a finger when it comes to table setting once the big day comes. If you think you want to be a little extra this Thanksgiving season, but aren’t sure where to start, we can help. Follow these tips to create an actual work of art with your dinner table this holiday season.
Step 1: Set the Tone
First things first, choose whether you’d like to use a tablecloth, a table runner, or both. We love the minimal look of a table runner, especially if you have a wooden table, but if you’re really going for a minimalist look, you can opt for no fabric and really show off your table.
Placemats are another simple way to dress up your table, and you can choose to use them by themselves or layer them to create depth and add more color and pattern.
Pro-tip: if you want both a table runner and a way to keep kids entertained during the meal, use butcher paper. It gives the table a natural look, the kids can draw on it, and after the meal, you can gather it up and throw it away – no washing needed.
Step 2: Create a Centerpiece
This is our favorite step when it comes to table setting because we get to be really creative. And the best part? You don’t have to spend a fortune. Hit up your favorite local thrift stores or dollar store to collect fall-like items to create your piece. Think old books, vintage vases, cranberries, pinecones, pumpkins, and fall leaves. If you’d rather keep things simple, never underestimate the beauty of fall flowers in an array of vintage vases lining your table.
Step 3: Consider Your Napkins
Cloth napkins are a must for nice dinners like Thanksgiving, so choose wisely. If you’re going with a natural table or simple runner and/or tablecloth, you can get as crazy and fun as you like with your napkin pattern, if you’ve opted for patterns within your runner of cloth, it’s best to keep it simple and solid with the color, but this can be a great way to incorporate an accent color within your tablescape.
Step 4: Time to Tablescape
Whether you’re using your everyday dishes or busting out antique China, it’s always a good idea to work with what you’ve got. Plates, silverware, and glassware look incredible so long as they match. Now the trick here is setting your table just right, so here are some tips, but you can of course alter anything you need to:
- Center the plate in the middle of the placemat or table area where your guest will be sitting.
- Place the dinner fork to the left of the plate, and the salad fork to the left of the dinner fork.
- Set the knife on the right side of the plate, with the serrated edge facing inward.
- Next, place the dinner spoon to the right of the knife.
- Set a glass above the knife, so it is above and to the right of the plate.
- Finally, center a folded cloth napkin on the plate.