Anyone who has hosted a Thanksgiving meal knows the amount of preparation involved, and while we may have fewer gathered around us this year, the Thanksgiving table is still the heart of the celebration. Beverly has some helpful tips that will make setting your table a significant and joyous part of the occasion.
This has been a year of surprises. We can certainly be thankful for our newfound resilience. So, why not let your table express a little of that unpredictability? Thanksgiving plates do not have to be orange and brown or have turkeys on them. I find green to be a lovely neutral that brings life to any harvest time tablescape. I also like how white china or black and white patterns allow for a dazzle of color in placemats, napkins, and flowers. Even blue dishware can be a lovely compliment to the season’s oranges and magentas. Go ahead and try something different. Give your Thanksgiving table a fresh look this year.
As in good design, I look for a clear sense of color direction. Sometimes I let the dominant hue or theme of my china inform the rest of my table choices. Whether soft and subdued or bold and bright, I like to limit myself to only two or three colors. This not only simplifies the decision-making process but makes for a visually restful dining atmosphere. You can bring in as many hues and textures of one or two colors as you like and then toss in one strong complementary color for an exciting splash.
I love Fall walks with our grand nieces and nephews and our dog Bonnie. This year, you might take the children in your life for a nature walk to search for treasures like pinecones, sweet gum balls, pretty vines, magnolia leaves, and cotton bolls. Children have keen eyes for the hidden delights in nature. You could tuck some of your scavenged gems along with seasonal fruit into the Thanksgiving centerpiece or use them to create pretty harvest time place cards. A sprig of rosemary and a bit of twine or ribbon can make for a nice twist on the traditional napkin ring. Get outside, see the beauty, and let it inspire creative ways to dress your table.
The most important goal for any Thanksgiving table is to stir up good conversation and memories, new and old. Low, compact centerpieces make it easier to see, hear, and enjoy one another. Consider what will be needed during the meal and have it at the ready. A butter dish and knife and a pair of salt and pepper shakers on each end of the table will save interruptions. Position your water pitchers and wine coasters within easy reach to readily offer refills. By thinking ahead and pulling out serving pieces and utensil for every dish on the menu, you will prevent feverish dives into deep storage at the last minute. What about including table-talk questions on the backs of your place cards or asking guests to come prepared with a funny story from the past year? This might be the year for a party favor that adds a sparkle of humor to your table…
…like cleverly selected face masks?
Setting your Thanksgiving table can become a special part of the holiday tradition. It is a joyful demonstration of blessing and being blessed, so let each stage of the process remind you of another reason to give thanks.
We are certainly grateful for you. Happy Thanksgiving!