Our Thanksgiving Table Setting

At our house, we serve dinner buffet style (setting out all the food in the kitchen so people can pile their plates high) which means I get to have some fun with the table since it doesn’t have to accommodate a million platters and serving bowls. And I figure that even though Thanksgiving is typically a holiday full of orange, red, yellow, gold, and wheat tones when it comes to table decor, who says that’s the only way to do things? Methinks there’s more than one way to skin a cat cook a bird, so I had some fun with a rich green and blue palette thanks to some free wine bottles I’ve been working into our home’s decor for a while (topped with some simple taper candles inspired by a recent Pottery Barn catalog).

The addition of some cheap-o clearance napkins from Crate & Barrel and our regular everyday plates, cups, bowls, and silverware along with my funny ceramic squirrel (for a splash of quirk) completed the picture.

Oh and that stuff on the cake stand? Pumpkin bread. So delicious. Although it’ll probably all be gone well before Thursday rolls around. One downside to working at home: constant eating. But that’s also an upside.

The result is still pretty festive and inviting, even if it doesn’t scream Thanksgiving (although it does seem to whisper it thanks to the mixed nuts, the tan runner, the ceramic squirrel, the woven glasses, the gold place cards, the wheat tones in the napkins, and the big plate of pumpkin bread).

Here’s a source list, just for fun – white plates: Linens N Things thanks to our registry, patterned fabric napkins: Crate & Barrel on clearance, cups: Sur La Table on clearance, yellow & green bowls: gifts from a friend (but we’ve seen similar versions at TJ Maxx), cake stand: TJ Maxx, silverware: a wedding gift from my mom from Crate & Barrel, ceramic squirrel: West Elm, bottle candlesticks: various already owned wine bottles & Pellegrino bottles soaked to remove the labels, white taper candles: Target, tan runner: Target, table & chairs: Target, floating shelves: Ikea.

So that’s the state of our table right now. Any practice place-setting going on at your house? What are you guys doing for T-giving anyway? Anyone else hosting family? Or traveling in the name of face-stuffing? And while we’re on the subject, what’s your favorite Turkey Day fare? Mine is stuffing. John’s is pumpkin pie.

Psssst- We went Nursery Crashing again over on BabyCenter. Check out that amazing baby haven here.


  1. says


    I love your table and so look forward to the day when the hubby and I can have people over to our place for Thanskgiving. I think it will still be another few years of driving to all the relatives…

    What is the large framed picture on the top of your floating shelves??? It looks so intriguing!

    love the blog,

    • says

      It’s a botanical print from Ikea. It’s a wood tray with two branches of greenery. We got it super cheaply in a pack of three prints (the others are also hanging around the living room and one used to be in the guest room).


  2. says

    Love the candles in the bottles! So cheap and easy. And kudos to you for continuing life as normal while getting ready for your move! We’re living with my parents temporarily, waiting for our new place to be ready, and it feels impossible to celebrate the season the way we normally do. Glad your still able to!

  3. Jennifer Gessner says

    Quick question about the pumpkin bread (I am almost 9 months pregnant & can only think about food it seems…lol). Did you make it yourself? If so, did you use canned pumpkin? I know you are conscious about BPA in can linings & I was wondering if you had a brand you used or just used any brand for some wonderful pumpkin bread. Thanks so much!!

    P.S. The table setting is wonderful! :)

    • says

      It was actually a bagged powdered mix given to us by John’s sweet mom, so we didn’t have the BPA can issue. We are conscious about that whole debacle, although we’ll admit that we do occasionally use canned items, we just try not to overdo it and rely on them all the time.


  4. Jennifer says

    If you don’t want to soak the bottles and only have a few minutes, get a bottle of Goo Gone. It takes labels off in seconds.
    My parents are hosting T-Day this year. Hopefully in the future we’ll be able to host one year! I have a pumpkin bread recipe that is to die for. I’m making pumpkin bread and pumpkin pie this year. Mmmmmmm…

  5. says

    Great idea – nice, refreshing touch! I wonder if I’d eat less if I had to get up and go into the kitchen to get the food vs. it sitting right in front of my face on the table? LOL…Happy Thanksgiving to you guys!

  6. Carie says

    Ok, your tablescape is pretty and all but you seriously have a friend/family member named Carie-Ann with only ONE “R” ? You have no idea how much this excites me as I too only have ONE “R”. I have never met another person (still haven’t MET but whatever!). So thanks for making my day.

  7. Lori H says

    Heading out of Richmond for Thanksgiving. 29 people in a small farmhouse. Good times! And it wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without the mashed potatoes!

  8. says

    The wine bottle candle holders…. LOVE! They seem like such and obvious candle stick alternative. Thanks for sharing. I can’t wait to set my own up! Oh, and your quirky little squirrel… LOVE him too :)!

  9. says

    Good for you!! Despite being so busy with your new baby and the upcoming move, you are still paying particular attention to making the upcoming holiday special.

  10. says

    We have been hosting Thanksgiving for 9 years at our house. Can you believe I have NEVER had a centerpiece in all those years? I always just set out our regular place settings and leave the center of the table bare (we also do buffet-style serving). It’s embarrassing, really, because I’ve simply never thought of having a centerpiece before. I have been uber-inspired by blogs such as yours this year, though, so I’m going to put forth the effort this year and come up with something … even if it is last-minute!

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