Every Thanksgiving my boys are excited to see what our dinner table will look like. This may be because every other night of the year our dinner table consists of 4 cups, 4 plates with forks plopped down on them, and a few paper towels for good measure. This may paint a drab picture of my party planning skills, but I have set enough cloth napkin settings to know that my boys don’t generally appreciate the effort that is tablescaping – that is, unless it’s Thanksgiving. For whatever reason that golden brown turkey in the middle of the table just mesmerizes them, and they are totally into Thanksgiving table decor. Being a mom who knows an opportunity when she sees one, I take full advantage of this sudden (and fleeting) admiration of details. So in an effort to wow the family, each year I try a few new things to make our Thanksgiving table stand out. Here are a few ideas that I have been kicking around. Because we have sooo much in the way of food and plates to fit on the table, I try to keep the centerpieces to a minimum. Instead, I focus on place settings and unique details.
Is there anything homier (hey, its a word…) than a quilt? Quilts conjure up thoughts of homemade comfort, which makes them a perfect addition to Thanksgiving. This particular quilt runner, found at, also doubles as a hot pad to protect your tabletop from scalding dishes.
I like the idea of using these felt leaf cut outs as place mats for each seat. Although, I think that I would like to use a few different colors to give the visual effect a little more depth.
This cheerful little guy is perfect for brightening up plain place settings. And he is so simple to make.
These homemade leaves could add a lovely autumn touch to the table. They would pair well with the felt place mats mentioned above.
Perhaps, it was that Pilgrim play in the third grade, but I am a sucker for cornucopias. Usually they are too big and awkward or unsanitary to be truly functional. That is why I love this idea of using a practical item like a napkin to make something so fanciful.
There is really little to no reason why we would need menus at our house for Thanksgiving (or any day, for that fact). No one really care what I am making, as long as there is lots of it. But I can’t seem to shake the image of my kids’ eyes lighting up when they see these and realize that they get to order off of a menu.
And just for fun here are a few food turkeys that could make even your most uptight guests giggle.