When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around.
- Willie Nelson
Thanksgiving is tied for first place (with Christmas) when it comes to favorite holidays in my book. What I love most is that it is a holiday dedicated to gratitude. It is so easy to get caught up in your day to day life and comparing yourself with others and Thanksgiving is a time to slow down with intention and appreciate everything around you. With that said, if you are hosting, stress is generally inevitable. And if you're anything like me, you're running around until the eleventh hour trying to channel your inner Martha at every move. As I've hosted more and more holidays, I've learned that the rumors are true: people stand and will always stand in the kitchen (no matter the size) until they are forced to sit at the table. No one really notices much of anything until they are sitting down, which is why I always focus the majority of my design efforts on making a killer tablescape. Here are five easy ways to elevate your table and impress your guests:
1. unique FLATWARE
Flatware is one of the easiest ways to spruce up your table. My go-to is usually gold, but there are a lot of other great color combinations out there. Buying new flatware doesn't need to break the bank either. My favorite budget friendly spots are Amazon and Target.
2. CANDLEs, candles, and more candles!
This may sound pretty obvious, but I think candles are one of the most overlooked, budget-friendly additions to a tablescape. Overloading your table with candles provides a wow-factor. I recommend doing an assortment of sizes, whether you're using pillars, votives, tapered, or a combination of all three varieties. Adding different heights to your table gives it depth and character. If you have a bunch of kiddos around, or are paranoid about open flames, there are plenty of authentic looking LED options out there. For me, brass candle holders with tapered candles will always hold a special place in my heart. I love the way they add vintage elegance to the table and the candles seems to come in any color (I usually order from Amazon). Believe it or not, I have sourced of my brass inventory from Savers, Goodwill, and Salvation Army. It's like treasure hunting for adults.
3. PLACE SETTING ACCENT
Putting a little something at each person's place setting is a nice way to make your guests feel extra special. I love the idea of a mini wreath (seen below). I ordered these mini grapevine wreaths (3") from Amazon, but you can also find them at many craft stores. Then, I took pieces of spiral eucalyptus and cut them into 1.5-2.5" pieces and stuck them into the grapevine. It's as easy as that! Best part about eucalyptus is the way it dries. These mini wreaths can be repurposed post-Thanksgiving for wine bottle accents or napkin holders. An alternative DIY is to take a piece of rosemary and tie it into a wreath using a piece of ribbon. Not a fan of wreaths or crafting? Tape a scratch ticket under each plate or put one under your guests' napkins and you'll be asked to host Thanksgiving forever.
Florals are a great way to add beauty to your table. However, a lot of people are intimidated by the thought of making an arragement. My best suggestion is to buy one of the same type of flower or greenery and put it in a vase or multiple vases. I am partial to white florals in this case, as I think their simplicity adds an understated beauty, but any can color work.
5. a nice bottle of bubbly
Let's be real, when people see fancy bubbles they are intrigued and want a sip. What better time to spoil your loved ones than with a bottle of celebratory wine for a toast at Thanksgiving? Not only does it make everyone feel a bit fancy, but it's a nice excuse for someone or everyone to take a moment and express their gratitude for one another. Not to mention seeing a bottle of Veuve or Dom on the table might get people to evacuate the kitchen faster. If your guests aren't into bubbles, buy a special sparkling beverage, such as a Belvoir lemonade. It's always more fun to make a toast with something other than an everyday drink.