Thanksgiving, and the entire holiday season, completely snuck up on me this year! If you are anything like me, you might be running a tad bit behind and are in need of a few last minute ideas and tips for pulling together the perfect Holiday Tablescape for next week! (Photo above is shoppable! Just hove over the image to click on available items!) Also, my dress is older from Needle and Thread! You must check out their clothing if you haven’t already. It’s seriously incredible.
You have to add these Maple Glazed Roasted Carrots, from Chloe Mackintosh (Boxwood Avenue), to your holiday menu. They are seriously to die for and so beautiful, if I must say!
It’s easy to get busy with the hustle and bustle and forget that you have responsibilities, like hosting your entire family, work colleagues or friends over, for a holiday gathering! Don’t worry, you aren’t the only one. I love putting together a pretty Holiday Tablescape that is full of personality but not too stuffy. As someone who loves making parties, and really everything in life, *extra* I’m also the first person get uncomfortable with a fancy table. Because, who is really comfortable with drinking out of +$100 water glasses?
When planning your Holiday Tablescape, you want your guests to feel comfortable and at home. Don’t get me wrong, I love fine China and would suggest everyone have some. But there is a time and a place for everything and I personally love to mix high and low, to create a Holiday Tablescape that is friendly and welcoming to everyone.
So this year, I thought it would be fun and different to share my tips for pulling together a beautiful and effortless Holiday Tablescape! My goal is to share my best tips for shopping for your holiday table and using what you have to make things beautiful and alot less stressful this holiday season! I hope you enjoy these tips and be srue to check out my Outdoor Thanksgiving Table from a few years ago!
7 Tips for Pulling Together a Last Minute Holiday Tablescape
If there’s one thing I have learned from viewing pretty tables and also seeing one’s that look like the person just bought the entire display, it’s the importance of layers. Layering is crucial to creating texture and mixing price points. It also make things look and feel more curated. For me, I prefer for things to look like I spent some time instead of just going out and buying every single piece that a store has paired together.
Try layering different china, or plate, patterns together to see what you can create. For this table, I used my Open Kitchen Collection dinner plates from Williams Sonoma layered with the gorgeous Chelsea Bird Mottahedeh China pattern from my mom. I love the balance of the detailed china pattern with a simple white plate. I also layered in other natural materials, candlesticks and votives and well as other textures and elements. The placemats are natural woven ones that we use daily. I love that they add a sense of nature and casualness to the layout. They allow the china to pop even more!
Borrow What You Don’t Have
This tip is going off of my never ending need to borrow things from my mom! If you’re just starting out in your home and haven’t had time to acquire as many entertaining pieces as you would like, simply ask one of your relatives if they have what you are looking for and if you could borrow it for your table. Sometimes, we all have something we haven’t used in a while that someone else could borrow. In fact, by borrowing it and using one of their pieces they might be inspired to pull it out more often! Borrowing things isn’t as dreadful as I make it out to be. I hate asking for help or to borrow anything, but people are always happy to help and might even be inspired by your style.
Ask For Help When You Need It
Whether you borrow your mom’s china or ask another family member to bring their favorite dish or wine, including others in the process really makes everyone feel comfortable and happy to participate. Try asking your sister, aunt, mother or mother-in-law for an extra hand in putting your holiday tablescape together. I truly believe anyone would be honored to be a part of your holiday. Sometimes we overwhelm ourselves for no reason. I’m someone who usually refuses to ask for help, however after experiencing the other end of that, I realize that some people enjoy being asked to give a hand in helping out. This not only makes them feel included, but it provides a sense of relief to you and let’s you in on some of their best talents and belongings!
Just because you volunteer to host a holiday party or gathering, doesn’t mean you have to do it alone. Often times, guests feel more at home when they are allowed to bring a dish! Try letting your family get a little more involved and see what fun you can have.
Buy Candlesticks At The Thrift Store
One of the handiest tips I have found, since moving out on my own and not being able to rely on my mother’s entertaining selection, has been shopping for candlesticks at Goodwill! I was in a time crunch for a styled shoot a while back and was desperate for some gold and brass candlesticks. My mom insisted that I go to the local thrift shop’s, before overpaying online, and I’m happy to report after hitting two Goodwill stores I had 12 assorted brass candlesticks and spent less than $25. Call me crazy, but you can’t buy one online for that price.
If you want a matching set or really nice brass, this probably isn’t for you. But, if you are like me and are going for a more romantic, mis-match look, head to your local thrift shop and I highly doubt you will be disappointed. Plus, you don’t have to pay a fortune or wait for them to be shipped!
Use Organic Materials
This is something I have learned from trial and error, but is also a very personal preference. For me, I have found that I truly think adding in organic materials to your tablescape really helps bring it to life. For this holiday tablescape, I found some fresh chestnuts at the Fresh Market to add in. At first, wasn’t really sure how I was going to use them, but I grabbed them anyway. We decided to pile them in small bowls and add them to the food plating. I love how they add rich color and texture to the table and bring about a holiday feeling!
If you feel that your table is missing something, run out to your yard and snip a few branches to add to your table, garland or flower arrangement. You can also add these to gift baskets and other decor throughout the holiday’s! Also, keep an eye out when shopping at your local grocery stores or gourmet market. Now is the perfect time to take advantage of all of the pretty produce and flowers that are available. Some of my personal favorites are brussel sprouts on their stalks, chestnuts, mini gourds and pumpkin tree bunches (see here at Trader Joe’s!).
Pick a Color Palette and Don’t Over Do It
I really am not fond of a serious color theme. But, I do think that a color palette is a good idea to have. For this table, we went with dark burgundy and other red shades, gold accents and soft white tones. Sometimes it’s easy to go overboard with a color scheme. Instead I think it’s best to just pick a few colors and try to tie them together. I know I keep going back to these plates, but I think they just really made the table. Their soft white background pulls out the floral arrangement, the mini gourds (or pumpkins) as well as the table runner.
As for the burgundy, I love this color because it doesn’t scream Thanksgiving or Christmas, instead it say’s elegant holiday season! Or at least, that’s how I feel! The burgundy taper candles add a deep color to the table and pair perfectly with red wine! This gold flatware is my absolute favorite, especially during the holidays! It adds a subtle glamorous touch while still being modern and functional.
Remember What Counts
At the end of the day, the food is the most important part of any holiday tablescape! If the food isn’t good, no one will even remember the beautiful table. Don’t get too wrapped up in the appearance of everything that you forget what’s important. Family, friends and food! Don’t overwhelm yourself by taking on too much. If you know a place that makes something better, buy their version. Make your signature items and let others bring something too! We all know that one Betty Crocker wife that shows with piles of dishes that all taste the same. It’s about quality, not quantity. And if you know her, don’t worry, everyone has one of those 😉
During the holiday’s, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and lose site of the true meaning. As a blogger, I love an Instagram or Pinterest Worthy table just as the next girl. However, it’s easy to let the appearance of something take away from the true moment. Anyone can make a picture look good. But, can they really throw a fun and enjoyable party?
I hope that you have found this post helpful and enjoy this holiday tablescape. I had so much fun putting it together and really enjoy writing these types of posts! The holiday’s are here, whether we are ready or not. I hope that you find comfort in knowing that you aren’t the only one that get’s overwhelmed or holiday stress! We all do! I would love to see pictures of your holiday tablescapes, so be sure to tag me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and send me snaps and emails! If you have any questions, I would love for you to leave a comment and we can chat! Everything featured is linked below as well as dupes for things I couldn’t find online!
Photography by Tiffany Sigmon