Call us basic, but we SoCal girls can’t help but love FALL. There’s something magical about sharing time together while were gathered ‘round. But here’s the real secret to taking any gathering from common to captivating: Tablescaping. Trust us, you’ve heard all the girlies talk about this, but just to give you a refresher, Tablescaping is the art of decorating a dining space that sets the mood for your meal. It truly is an inviting art that gets guests to settle in, enjoy the moment, and stay awhile. If you’re planning on hosting family, friends and loved ones this holiday season, here’s how you can artfully curate vibes – that are effortlessly chic (you’re an LA Girl, after all).
Mix-and-match White Dinner Plates
If you’re going to host frequent or large gatherings, it’s a good idea to invest in enough plates, glasses, silverware, and linens so you don’t have to spend the budget on rentals. Throughout the year, collect assorted all-white dinner plates, which are incredibly versatile for any occasion. Look for different patterns and textures around the rims. The subtle variety creates depth and interest to the table. We love these plates from Pottery Barn.
Colored Glass Goblets
These are our favorite to put out anytime we’re hosting! Colored glassware is an easy way to introduce a theme and they look stunning as water goblets next to clear wine glasses. A tip when you’re on the hunt. Try to pick colors that can be used for at least two seasonal events each year. For example, Amber glasses are on-trend for Thanksgiving, and pair beautifully with pops of pink and gold at a Spring soirée. Here are some beautiful colored glass goblets from West Elm.
Dyed Gauze or Cheesecloth
If you’ve invested in a nice table, ditch tablecloths entirely and build upon your table’s natural elements like the wood or the marble. Always have linen pieces at your table to lend a soft, pillowy richness against the sharp lines of your dishes. For this, we love using dyed gauze or cheesecloth. Both are great to use as a long runners or napkins. You can find them in every color imaginable—here are some our favorites from Etsy and Amazon.
Vintage Crystal Serveware
This is one of the easiest ways to instantly elevate your dining table. The best part? Vintage crystal pieces are surprisingly inexpensive and easy to source, and will always be in style. You can find a ton of pieces at antique stores and thrift shops. Look for glasses, bowls, platters, plates, and other unique serving pieces in varying shapes and sizes. One of our favorites is this unique 5-piece set from Macy’s.
Assorted Bud Vases
Fresh flowers are a tablescaping must! But, when you have a table full of dishes, linens, candles, and food, large floral arrangements can really get in the way. If you’ve ever tried to talk over or around a centerpiece at a wedding, you know what I’m talking about! Instead, weave a flat leafy garland on top of your table runner and scatter in several assorted bud vases. This is a great way to make one bouquet go a long way, and each mini-arrangement has its own shape and personality. Here is a great set of vases from Amazon.
Wooden Boxes & Crates
If you’re serving up buffet style, place wooden boxes or crates under linens to create flat pedestals at different heights. Place your serving dishes on top of the pedestals, then drape & bunch the linens in a flowy manner to create an elegant and appealing buffet display. This helps bring height to your tablescape and is pleasing to they eye. We love these Amazon wood crates.
Dry Erase or Chalk Mini Signs
These are so versatile and you’ll always find a use for them when hosting. You can use them as place cards, to label foods like assorted cheeses or pies, or as an elegant way to flag allergens for guests. You can also use them for a tablescape “mock up.” Here is the perfect set from Amazon.
Pro Tip: The night before Thanksgiving, lay out all of your serving dishes and play around with them to see which is most suitable for each of the foods you’re serving. Then, set a sign inside each dish for stress-free serving on the big day.
8×10 Picture Frame
When you’re hosting Thanksgiving or any holiday gathering for a group, your guests will appreciate knowing what’s on the menu (especially if you have some unique looking casseroles going on). Pick up a simple gold 8×10 frame and type up your menu in calligraphy font, print it out on nice paper, and display it in the picture frame at the front of your buffet. This is a great way to add some height and introduce a new element (words) to your tablescape. Guests will appreciate not having to pose the awkward question “ummm what is this?” in conversation. We love these chic gold frames from Amazon.
BONUS! Trending Tablescapes
Pink for Thanksgiving? Groundbreaking! Try a dusty mauve, oxblood, and bold magenta color scheme to create a rich and alluring table. Start with a rust colored gauze runner, then layer on white or matte black plates, dark napkins, muted pink goblets, and gold rimmed wine glasses. Either gold or rose gold silverware will do. Finish the scene with brushed pewter candlesticks, gray or taupe taper candles (here are some of our fave Amazon candles), and fresh fruit weaved amongst a leafy garland (black grapes, red pears, and plums). Complement this enchanting tablescape with a profusion of vibrant blooms, including Black Dahlias, Hellebores, and roses.
Chateau Chic & Blue
We like to think that if Cinderella was hosting a holiday dinner at her castle, this is how her table would look. Dusty blue hues, mismatched crystal glasses, and delicate china create an elegant and whimsical scene fit for any princess. We love these chic crystal glasses from Macy’s. Drape a grayish-blue velvet table runner down the length of your table, lined with antique candelabras, ivory tapers, sparkling crystal glassware, navy or light blue napkins, and antique silver cutlery. Next, layer vintage china to gracefully frame your decadent feast. Let your floral elements draw inspiration from the blooms you might find in a french garden, and the serene hues of lilac, sage, and winter white.
Harvest Hues and Autumn Blooms
We love the earthy colors of Autumn: warm reddish browns, vibrant oranges, and greens. For a fresh take on this color palette, incorporate organic elements such as apples, pears, persimmons, pomegranates, and figs. On a taupe runner, layer neutral dishes (here is our favorite set from Crate and Barrel) with olive green napkins and simple glassware. Finish your table with colorful clusters of autumn flowers and tea-light candles.
Now that you’ve set the table, make dinner easy by picking up the meal at one of our fave LA restaurants. Happy Thanksgiving from our table to yours!