Ten Ideas for Decorating Your Thanksgiving Table

Creative and Inexpensive Ways to Celebrate

When it is my turn to host Thanksgiving, I always aim to do so with creativity, beauty, and fun. I also want my guests to feel at home and know that they are welcomed and appreciated in my house. I enjoy decorating my dining room table for my guests on holidays and special occasions. Below are ten creative and inexpensive Thanksgiving decorating ideas of mine that you can try this holiday season.

Ten Ideas for Decorating Your Thanksgiving Table

1. Arrange Fallen Leaves Under a Clear Table Cloth Cover. This idea is a personal favorite of mine. I love searching for the right leaves with my nephews. Find ones that you like and gently wipe clean. Make sure that they are dry. Arrange them on top of your Thanksgiving table as desired. Cover the table with a clear table cloth protector (you can find these at home stores and dollar shops).

2. Transform Gutted Gourds and Small Pumpkins into Festive Tea Light Holders. Purchase a few gourds and small pumpkins from your local farmer’s market. Cut them open from the top and discard the top part. Remove some of the inside so that there will be room for a tea light to be placed within it. Use tea lights that come with small aluminum holders. (Do not place the top back onto the gourd or pumpkin that contains a burning candle in it as it will burn!) Arrange on your table and/or bar.

3. Choose an Amber, Russet, or Golden Yellow Table Cloth. These colors will work well with assorted leaves on top of them (as suggested in my first idea). Amber, russet, and golden yellow fittingly represent the autumn season and flatter china and crystal glassware.

4. Use Fall Colored Taper Candles. Tapers will add a touch of elegance to your Thanksgiving dining experience. You can find them at most home goods stores; and yes, plenty of dollar shops, too. (For more information on how to use candles to dress a table, see:

5. Make Table Napkin Holders with Fallen Leaves. Glue three fallen leaves to a black or white plain pony tail holder. (Simple craft glue is fine. A glue gun can also be used, if need be.) Allow to dry. Add your table napkins and add one to each place setting at your Thanksgiving table. At the end of the evening, remove the leaves and save the pony tail holders for next year’s Thanksgiving crafts!

6. Create Name Placement Cards with Fallen Leaves. This one is a great child friendly task. Glue two or three leaves together to make a cluster. Allow to dry. Next, glue name placement cards (using two inch by three inch autumn colored construction paper pieces) to the top of the clusters. Write the names of your guests on them and place on top of each person’s plate or wherever you feel looks best on your Thanksgiving table.

7. Design a Thanksgiving Table Centerpiece with Fallen Leaves, Branches, Sunflowers, and Mums. Use a clear glass vase (from the dollar store). Glue fallen leaves to it. Allow to dry. Arrange sunflowers and mums (you can find these at your nearest farmer’s market, florist, or supermarket) in the vase. On a sturdy flat tray, scatter more leaves. (Spray a small amount of hairspray to the leaves to keep them in place.) Place the tray and vase on your Thanksgiving table. Finish by adding some fallen branches on top of the leaves.

8. Use Autumn/Thanksgiving Themed Serving Plates. You don’t have to go out and buy a whole new dish set — just purchase a few seasonal serving plates to enhance your dishes and china.

9. Create Dangling Leaf Finials for Your Dining Room Windows. Use shirt pins to affix clean fallen leaves to a string of twine. (You can make it as long or as short as you like, depending on the size of your window.) Use an s hook or bent paper clip to hang from your dining room curtain rod. Make at least one for each side.

10. Have a Scarecrow as Your Special “Guest Star” Thanksgiving Buddy. Have an empty seat at your Thanksgiving table to spare? Make a scarecrow and sit him/her down at the table with you! Your guests will love your wild sense of humor and appreciate your creativity. This one’s guaranteed to get a few good hearty laughs!

I hope that if you are hosting a Thanksgiving celebration this year, you will take the time to decorate your Thanksgiving table for your guests. It doesn’t really take all that much time and effort, nor does it have to be expensive and difficult. Your efforts will show your guests just how thankful you are to have them in your life . . . and giving thanks is what this holiday is all about.

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