Bring glorious fall nature indoors for your Thanksgiving table, contrasting it with bright gold and creamy white and adding personal touches with simple crafts and free printable.
I love Thanksgiving with it’s focus is on being thankful for what we already have and the focus on family, friends, traditions, and good food – all the things that warm my heart. I don’t do a lot of seasonal tablescapes but I always try to have a new Thanksgiving table, because I find it so fun and meaningful to create.
We can use fall’s abundance of natural items like leaves and pumpkins, and since the focus of the holiday is the meal, it seems right that we spend a bit of time making the table we’ll be sitting around lovely. But not over-the-top, since you all know I’m a simple and easy kind of decorator and crafter!
I did not buy one thing for this table – I shopped the house and yard and crafted up a few things to make my older plates and things look fresh. And by crafted up, I mean spending a few minutes:
- cutting and adding paint to some wood slices
- glittering mini pumpkin stems
- creating a ‘Thankful’ printable to show through some clear plates (that you can download, too!)
- cutting some tree branches into fun place card holders.
All fun and doable – plus I got to use one of my $2 burlap coffee bags again – bonus!
Besides the crafts, I really want to illustrate how you can create a coordinated look even if you don’t have the ‘right’ number for your guests. For example, I wanted to use some thrifted basket weave chargers, but I only had four instead of six. That’s when I remembered the gold chargers I’ve had for years (remember when gold was popular in the late 80’s? It’s nice that all my wedding dishes are back in vogue!) and when I realized I could combine the wood-burlap-basket look I was originally going for with a bit of glam from the gold and brass.
In the end, I love the juxtaposition – I find it much more interesting than either the rustic or gold themes separately. Oh, and did you notice my clear plates are different sizes? Probably not! Just use what you have and enjoy.
4 Quick and Easy Crafts for your Thanksgiving Table
1. Chalkboard Round Thankful Tags: The whole table started from an idea to have a chalkboard-looking sentiment under a clear plate. I created the printable first using a circle graphic I found here to make the printable. I cut them out using a circle cutter (I’m using a different one, but this example would cut them similarly) and just set them under the thrifted clear plates. Perfect.
Want to use these “Thankful” circles, too? You can use them like I did or I think they would make perfect “thankful tree” ornaments, too – punch a hole in the top, string with jute and let people write what they’re thankful for on the back before hanging on branches you’ve brought in from outside. Or just toss them around the table and let everyone write their thanks on the back right at the meal.
Click the link below to download:
2.Tree Branch Place Card Holders: Make place card holders from tree branches using these directions – you’ll also see how to make the chalkboard place cards, too, that coordinate with the Thankful tags.
3. Glittered Pumpkin Stems: Simply coat the stems of real or faux pumpkins with glue using an artist brush, cover with glitter and let dry. Gold glitter coordinated with my plates, brass candlesticks and chargers, but any color would look great – shimmery iridescent or silver stems would be fun, too.
4. Wood Slice Chalkboard Sentiment Decorations:
- Cut 1/4 to 1/2-inch slices from a tree branch about 2 1/2-inch diameter using a miter saw
- Paint one side with flat black paint (or chalkboard paint if you have it, but I’ve found flat black works just as well), leaving a bit of the wood to show on the edges and let dry.
- Once it’s dry, ‘season’ it by rubbing a piece of chalk over the painted surface and then wiping lightly with a cloth.
- Use a chalk marker to write sentiments like, blessed, love, family, friends, thanks, harvest, fall, etc. I did find that because the surface is a bit rough, the chalk markers showed up better than regular chalk.
I used these around the centerpiece and inside the glass terrarium, but they would also work as napkin rings by drilling a hole in the top and using twine or ribbon to tie them to your napkins.
As usual, I didn’t have a grand plan when I started setting the table, but after seeing what I had to work with and creating a few things to coordinate with them, I love how it all came together – just like I had a grand plan, ha! Do you start with a vision when doing something like this, or do you let it come together as you see how things work together?
Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links and by clicking on them you help support AOC at no extra cost to you – thanks so much! (Oh, and you can always read our entire disclosure page here.)