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8 Tips for Styling Your Thanksgiving Table

It's hard to believe Thanksgiving
is only one week away!
The season already seems to be going so fast -- 
it seems like November has barely started. 

In the spirit of the holiday,
I've compiled 8 of my top tips for 
styling your Thanksgiving table!

Whether or not you already have a style in mind,
these tips are sure to bring some 
fresh ideas to the table!

1. Set-up early

Creating a table scape is the most fun
when you have the time to do it at your leisure!

I like to start setting up about
a week before Thanksgiving,
since it gives me time to come up with a scheme,
gather pieces,
and pull it all together.

This also gives you time to
grab pictures
before everyone comes over!

For inspiration, I typically like to go back
and look at pictures from my tables in years past,
and then look on Pinterest for a few fresh ideas.

Once I have a concept,
it’s easy to start pulling from what you already have,
and then can fill in the gaps with a few trips to the store!

2. Collect white plates and clear glassware

Since Thanksgiving is all about the food,
white dishes ensure the meal is a focal point.

I collect all different types of
white and cream dishes
throughout the year in sets of two,
so every place setting is a little unique.
Layering plates also gives the table more depth.

As for glassware,
I like to pull from our collection of clear ware,
such as our classic bubble glass
and clear milk bottles
which I fill with water for the table.

3. Use mixed materials on the table

Throughout the years,
I have styled our table with both
a tablecloth and without,
sometimes opting to let it serve as
the great wooden farm table that it is.
When I do opt to cover it,
I prefer to go to the fabric store
instead of resorting to a traditional tablecloth,
because there are so many more options
and I can get a piece of fabric that fits our custom table properly!

Felt, canvas, flannel, and fabric with natural cotton fibers
are all great options that will
give your table some extra texture.

On top of that, I set chargers at each place setting,
and choose either
slate, wood, ceramic, or metal
depending on the feeling I’m going with.

If you’re looking for an easy charger idea,
head to your local hardware store and
check out their tile section.
Our slate chargers were originally roofing tiles!

4. Incorporate fresh greenery and produce

Integrating natural elements
is always my favorite touch on the table.

There are many different ways you can achieve this,
such as adding herbs on each place setting,
creating a succulent centerpiece,
or incorporating potted bulbs on the table!

You can also incorporate fresh leaves,
squash, or air plants --  
it can be as simple as
things you can pull from your garden
or the grocery store.

Since we live in Southern California,
I like to add citrus
to bring a bit of a socal vibe to the table.
Kumquats at each setting
are a great way to bring the element in
without letting the color over power the table!

5. Use candles and twinkle lights for ambiance

Candles are such an easy way to add
drama to a table,
and they create a beautiful light
after the sun goes down.

I like to keep a basket filled with extra candles on hand
so it makes using them often more doable.
If you burn through the ones that are out,
you always have backups!

In addition, last year I used twinkle lights
on the table which ended up
becoming a staple in my holiday decorating!

Incorporating them on to a tablescape is easy
since they are battery operated,
and can be easily woven between
greenery or around candles!

The fine wires deem to disappear at night,
leaving only a soft twinkly light that creates
a beautiful ambiance.

During dinner,
I prefer to keep our overheard lights dim,
and let the candles and twinkle lights
do most of the work!

6. Add a bit of whimsy

In recent years, I’ve started collecting
fun woodland salt & pepper shakers
to be used on the Thanksgiving table.

We have enough for each couple
to have a set at the table,
eliminating the need to pass across
and adding some whimsy to the scape!

Target and Crate & Barrel are great sources
for fun salt & pepper shakers
if you’re interested in adding them
to your table this year!

7. Create personalized place cards

Place cards are not only
utiltarian for helping guests find their spot
(especially if you have a large crowd),
but they also add another
textural element to the table!

I typically pull out our
miniature chalkboard canvases
which are placed on
little easels
at each place setting,
and each guest’s name is written in chalk.

You can also use
roughly torn paper to add a rustic look,
or even do calligraphy!

8. Have leftover boxes on hand

At the end of the meal,
there are usually so many leftovers
and it’s fun to send everyone home
with a bit to enjoy some more!

You can pick up
craft or white bakery boxes
to have on hand,
and then everyone can make a little to-go pack!
Festive stickers like these from Cost Plus
are a fun addition, too.

Wishing you and yours
a wonderful Thanksgiving
and a lovely start
to the holiday season!

As always my friends,

I wish you love and joy
as you style your life


  1. I love your home posts. The table is so inviting. I'm sitting here waiting for my invitation to pop through the letterbox 🙏. Hugs and best wishes for a joyous time next week, x.

  2. Beautifully done, Tamera. Happy Thanksgiving to you and the Fam!
    Should a reader be looking for white plates/sets and clear bubble glasses same as featured, I'm selling my collection, raising money for Breast Cancer Treatment. Please message me over fb if Tamera has inspired you with her amazing style! - Denise Pagett

  3. Tamera - thank you for all the great ideas; I am definitely going to take your advice. You're so imaginative and creative.

  4. So beautifully done Tamera. The kumquats look so pretty and seasonal, and your sets of animals adorable. So inspirational.

  5. So beautiful Tamera. But then again, everything you create is beautiful. I'm going to your Pinterst page right now. You are incredibly creative.