Decorating Your Way to the Perfect Thanksgiving Table

Friends sitting and standing around a Thanksgiving table in their manufactured home kitchen.

Here are some helpful tips to relieve you of some of the stress that comes with holiday decorating – Thanksgiving style.

When you think of Thanksgiving, what are some things that come to mind? For most, it’s the thought of a time where leaves change, families gather and most importantly, turkey is eaten. While it’s easy to get caught up in the stress of perfecting recipes and planning to host guests, we can’t let the most fun part of Thanksgiving get left behind: decorating.

We’ve already given you a few tips for hosting the perfect Thanksgiving, so let’s chat about how to make the day really sparkle.

The Table

When setting the table for your meal, the options are endless. Try following these style guides to achieve the look you’re going for.

Thanksgiving table with red and orange décor.

Formal Tablescape:

  • Your nicest dinner plates
  • Bread plates
  • Wine and water glasses
  • Full silverware settings (from bread knives to salad forks — the whole shebang!)
  • Cloth napkins with napkin rings or arranged nicely
  • Taper candles in beautiful candleholders
  • A formal centerpiece — this could be a charcuterie board as shown above, a floral arrangement or even an array of pumpkins.
  • Glass or crystal pitchers for refilling water glasses
  • Place cards with guests’ names in a scripted font

Sunflower filled vase sitting in the center of a Thanksgiving table.

Casual Farmhouse Inspired Tablescape:

  • Minimalistic dishes — like solid white ceramic plates or even bamboo disposable plates
  • Mason jars for drink glasses
  • Burlap table runners or a buffalo check tablecloth
  • Linen napkins
  • A rustic-inspired centerpiece like a wooden box with pumpkins or greenery
  • Family style serving dishes that friends can pass around the table
  • Skip the place cards for a more casual setting and let people socialize and get to know each other

Kid-Friendly Thanksgiving Tablescape:

  • Non-breakable dishes like heavy-duty paper or bamboo disposable plates
  • Mason jars or disposable glasses for drinks
  • Butcher or craft paper tablecloths with crayons for kids to doodle on when they get bored at the table
  • A fun, colorful centerpiece like colored flowers or a turkey-inspired centerpiece
  • Buffet serving style to prevent food spills
  • Let the kids make the place cards! There’s nothing cuter than a hand-drawn turkey and your name written by sweet little ones!

The Outdoor Space

Couple roasting a marshmallow over a fire outside their manufactured home.

If your family is anything like mine, they’ll flood the house and within a few minutes all the guys will make their way to the patio or back porch.

Thanksgiving is the perfect day for cozying up by the fire pit or starting a game of touch football in the yard. So, it’s a good idea to get your patio or porch ready ahead of time, and always be aware of fire safety!

Here are a few ways to make the outdoor space a place for gathering:

Other Décor Ideas

Flay lay of a pumpkin pie with the words “hey pumpkin” on it.

  1. Set up a poster or jar where people can write down what they are thankful for this year! Take turns sharing or trying to guess who wrote what. This can be pretty and special!
  2. Create a turkey-day message for your letter board. Don’t be afraid to make it cutesy and cheesy!
  3. Remember, you can never go wrong with pumpkins and candles!

Decorating for a big event doesn’t have to be a big ordeal! Work with your home décor style and strive to make your friends and family feel welcome and at home. And remember, everyone is there for the food and the memories, so don’t put too much pressure on yourself to decorate like a pro.

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