Grab your stretchy pants y’all – It’s Thanksgiving week!! And even though I am recuperating from surgery, I won’t let that put a damper on our turkey day plans! I still fully plan to stuff my face, even if it’s in small quantities, and am already dreaming of deviled eggs and pumpkin pie. (Give me alllll the carbs!) In fact, I started setting our table up early knowing I’ll be pretty useless the day of, lol. There’s something so special about hosting a holiday meal and getting to set the tone for making memories. That being said, here’s some tips for setting your Thanksgiving table and making it festive to gather ’round!

fall festive thanksgiving table setting


Start with a Base

Lay down a tablecloth or table runner as your base. Not only is it pretty, but it will protect your table as well! I found this beautiful one at Michael’s (now on clearance)!

Build your Table Settings

Think of your table settings as layers. I like to start with a round placemat, then a charger, which is basically a large decorative plate, then your dinner plate and salad/dessert plate. Still with me? lol I know, a lot of plate stacking. I like to use white dishes for most occasions because they are neutral, but I actually liked the color and texture of our normal dinnerware so I used those this time around.

Linen Napkins

Cloth napkins and napkin rings are an easy way to ‘fancy up’ your table, and you can either keep them subtle, or use a fun color or print if you plan to go with a more neutral table covering. I love white cloth napkins because they’re easy to throw in the wash and bleach after! (Especially if you have kids at the table, or better yet, maybe just give them a paper napkin and call it good lol.)

Pretty Little Details

Place cards and little embellishments are extras of course, but to me, they’re the most fun and offer a personal touch! Place cards can be as easy as handwritten cardstock, and for funsies I added some floral stem leaves.

Flatware & Glasses

If we want to get real technical here, there is a right way to arrange utensils. My guests could probably care less where they are, haha, but it’s still useful to know. When I arrange flatware I always think of that scene from Titanic where Kathy Bates says “start from the outside, and work your way in.” Just remember forks go on the left — smaller fork far left — and you’re golden. For cups, I added these beautiful hammered copper moscow mule mugs because they instantly reminded me of fall. I’ll probably add regular glassware for water as well. (Kids all get spill-proof sippy cups, lol. Sorry babes, no moscow mules for you.)


How you decorate the rest of your table depends on whether you plan to put food out versus buffet style. We have a smaller family gathering, so we put the dishes of food on the table which means whatever I use as decoration will get moved. That being said, I decided to keep it simple with a fall floral arrangement, candlesticks, and some small pumpkins.

& that’s it! That’s a simple way of setting your table for Thanksgiving. Now, excuse me while I dream of stuffing and other coma-induced foods from now until Thursday. 🙃

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