Blogger Kelley Nan Lopez understands that while the Thanksgiving turkey may get all the attention, the table upon which it is set truly the star! Known for her beautiful takes on “traditional with a twist”, we asked Kelley to create a tablescape that encompassed the reality of how most people decorate – in layers. Rarely does anyone buy an entirely new dish set for the holidays. Using the white plate as her foundation, Kelley layered in pattern, texture a touch of metallic into her traditional tablescape. In Kelley‘s own words, this is a table that she wanted to feel “bountiful”, “warm”, and “tradition”. To see what products Kelley used, hover the photo for a complete list!
Tips and photos by Kelley Nan Lopez
With classic entertaining staples (such as the PB brass candle holders, gold flatware, and napkins), it is easy to mix and match for the holiday by incorporating a few seasonal additions (such as the pumpkin salad plates. I like to truly customize the look by shopping at my local grocery store. In achieving a “plentiful harvest” centerpiece, nothing is off limits in the produce aisle!
I used the large gold serving bowl (which works beautifully with the brass candle holders) in the center of the table as a planter. I set three small mums inside, filled it with water, and then incorporated a few additional stems and cascading eucalyptus. A few fruits and veggies were also added. Instead of a standard runner down the length of the table, I used a golden and olive scarf.
When we host Thanksgiving, we pre-fill the water glasses before placing them at each setting. Having a special, statement pitcher on hand like the gold pitcher doubles as function and décor.
Another practice in our home is to serve the meal buffet style in the kitchen to allow more room for guests and a beautiful centerpiece. The day before the dinner, we always set out the serving pieces – bowls, platters, serving spoons – to plan ahead which dish will go where. This helps in the day-of preparation madness.
For special holidays, I always use place cards at each setting; this helps with the musical chairs and makes the most special dinner of the year feel like an “event”. The pumpkin place card holders are so easy, and, each guest can take their pumpkin home as a favor at the end of the day.
If you are expecting a lot of guests, it can be easy to go for the plastic cups/disposable plates. However, if everyone has a place to sit, try to resist. You don’t have to use formal china but even starting a collection of basic, white buffet plates will enhance your dinner party display which your guests will appreciate.
In our family, the same few are typically in charge of preparing and hosting the dinner, but my mom taught me that guests like to feel helpful. We don’t ask family members to bring dishes, but we usually try to assign everyone a small role. Uncle Jack always mans the Bloody Mary bar, my brother fills water glasses, my husband carves the turkey, someone asks the blessing, etc. I don’t put my guests to work but giving everyone a “role” has become tradition.
Do you know your Thanksgiving style? Check out our video to help you set the perfect Thanksgiving table!