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Blog posts tagged with 'thanksgiving dinner'

Thanksgiving Entertaining: Decorate Your Table for Thanksgiving!

Hosting a Thanksgiving celebration can be both exciting and intimidating. From the turkey prep to the table settings, nerves and expectations are high. If it is your first year as a host, or even your 20th, we’ve rounded up a few Thanksgiving entertaining ideas and tips that will help make the day satisfying for both you and your guests. Here are a few easy steps to make your Thanksgiving dinner a success!

It Starts with the Table: When it comes to setting the tone for your Thanksgiving celebration, there’s no better place to start than with your table setting. Play off of the natural rich colors of autumn by incorporating deep reds, browns, orange, gold, and green. Select a stunning table runner to drape over the edges of the table, and scatter small pumpkins and gourds as a fun way to incorporate natural elements. Of course, starting with a stunning dining table will provide the perfect landscape for your decor and ensure your guests have adequate seating and dining space. Furniture of Dalton has a stunning selection of in-stock dining sets that you can take home today to accommodate any size gathering or style. From large farmhouse tables to elegant dining sets, we have you covered! Visit our Pinterest page for more table setting ideas.

Gorgeous Roxbury Dining Table at Furniture of Dalton 

Exceptional Service: With COVID-19, how your guests are served may look a little different this year. Buffet-style is traditionally a great way to allow your guests to sample all of their favorite dishes. If you have a small gathering with immediate family, this style of dining may suit you well. However, if you are hosting a larger gathering, consider having individual servings lined up so guests can grab and go. Incorporate your serving dishes into your decor for an easy and simple setup.   

Photo by HGTV 

Incorporate Kindness: Remember the spirit of Thanksgiving and extend love and grace to your guests by keeping them at the center of your mind when it comes to table decor and food. Keep centerpieces and other table settings at eye level so guests can mingle and chat with unobstructed views. Be sure to ask if any of your guests have dietary restrictions like a dairy allergy or if they are vegetarian. Be sure to have options to accommodate these preferences so your guests feel welcome and acknowledged. 

Sweet Endings: At Thanksgiving, dessert is as much of a main attraction as the turkey. Arrange cakes and pies on stands of varying heights to display your sweet spread, or pass cookies and pastries around the table family style. You can also prepare desserts in individual serving containers so guests can grab and go. Don’t forget to serve tea and coffee along with dessert to keep guests alert after the infamous turkey coma that is sure to ensue.

Encourage Lingering: While Thanksgiving is undeniably about the food, the true testament of a great celebration is when your guests want to stay after the meal to mingle and enjoy each other’s company. Help facilitate the lingering with plenty of casual seating. Include a DIY bar for guests to make an after-dinner cocktail. Be sure to enjoy the fun yourself. After all, you deserve it!


Photo by Samantha Hammack 

Thanksgiving is truly a time to reflect on all of our many blessings and create cherished memories with friends and family. We hope these tips and ideas help make your Thanksgiving celebration one you will remember and enjoy! As you prepare your grocery shopping list and pull out family recipes, let Furniture of Dalton help you with all your entertaining needs. We have on-stock options for small and large gatherings that you can take home the same day! Visit us on Black Friday and enjoy free same-day shipping within 50 miles of the store. Book an appointment on Facebook, message us on Instagram, or call us today at (800) 262-3132. From our family to yours, we hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving celebration!

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Everything you need to know about setting your thanksgiving table

What You Should Know In Order to Set Your Dining Room Table for Thanksgiving

Organizing Thanksgiving at your home can be a lot of stress - between being responsible for cooking dinner, hosting family and friends, and the dreaded clean-up afterward.

To take the worry off your hands for the holiday, here are ideas for decorating your Thanksgiving Day dinner table, no matter the size, shape, or number of guests you are accommodating.

Table Of Contents

  • Table-Setting Types

    • Size

    • Shape

    • Baretop or Tablecloth

  • Tips For Setting Tables

    • Formal

    • Informal

    • Adults Only

    • Kids Tables


Table-Setting Types

The process of decorating a table depends on a few variables dealing with the table itself.

You wouldn't decorate a big rectangular table the same as you would a small circular table.

The elements of size, shape, and material all play into how you will ultimately decide how to set your fall holiday dinner table. 

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With a small table for Thanksgiving Day dinner, it is a wise choice to limit the amount of table decor. 

An overuse of table decor clutters the surface and could interfere with the necessary items - such as plates, drinkware, wine bottles, and of course, food!

If space is a concern, consider opting for benches for your guests to sit on instead of individual chairs, as this saves room around the table.

For larger tables, you have more space to place decor, and the option of a larger centerpiece and smaller pieces on either side are able to be exercised.

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Thanksgiving Dinner Ideas


Rectangle. When setting a long banquet style table, it's all about balance.

If you are decorating with a tablecloth or runner, you need to know the length of your table. 

The arrangement should be the length plus 12" of fabric that hangs beyond both ends of the table.

A rectangular shape allows you the option to spread out decorations across the length of the table, and not just focus on the exact middle.

This way, you can decorate with a row of short vases down the table that all your guests can enjoy looking at.

Circle. This type of table is best for an intimate feel to a gathering centering around food and great company.

The eyes of your guests will be drawn to the center of the table; since the middle is the focal point of everyone's gaze, have your centerpiece be low-profile but a conversation-starter.

You can use cloth runners to make an "X" across the table for something different. Circular tables are ideal for this pattern.

Oval. This shape has decorating elements that draw from both rectangular and circular tables.

It has the length element of a rectangular table, but the focal point seems to be the middle just like a circular one.

However, unlike a circle, the "X" pattern with runners doesn't work as well on an oval table, as it has an awkward length fighting against this decorating idea.

A tablecloth with a runner down the center of the table works just fine on this table shape, and the use of benches is something to consider here as well.

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If you own a table that looks beautiful undressed, try building a theme to enhance the natural vibe of your bare tabletop.

Placements are a great way to show off your naked tabletop while still protecting it from heat and spills.

When opting to use a tablecloth, skip the one you use every day.

Replace it with one that is a fall print or a rich, autumn-inspired hue, like burnt orange, olive green, or chestnut brown.

This color selection for the cloth will help set the base for your Thanksgiving table's fall theme.

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Tips for Setting Tables

With any type of table setting you are going for - formal, informal, adults, or kids - there are a few universal tips to know. 

Holidays are a time to celebrate with family and friends, and the use of place cards makes guests feel welcome into your home, and give a personalized feel.

Using name cards will help to avoid awkward family moments when guests seat themselves, which could create potential problems.

You want to avoid centerpieces that could take away from the meal, like scented candles or a larger-sized centerpiece that will interfere with food placement and dinner conversations.

No one likes to talk through a tall object in the middle.

Instead, think about small, fall-themed items like pumpkins or acorns. These add a festive theme to your Thanksgiving table.

Keep the overall theme for the setting simple: a table can look too busy if there is a lot going on with colors, clashing patterns, or embellishments.

Don't let this discourage you from mixing opposing items; combine high + low, vintage with new, and solid colors + patterns. Have fun with it! 

The secret to a fabulous holiday table is to use layers. A table with or without a tablecloth should have a great runner, candlesticks, and a centerpiece. Each place setting will look even more special if you use a plate charger, special holiday napkins, and lovely napkin rings. Of course, multiple serving utensils and glasses for different beverages adds to the glamour. The more layers, the bigger the 'WOW' factor!" - Carol C. Youd, Lead Designer at Furniture of Dalton

You can also mix-and-match the four types of table settings: formal, informal, adults, and kids.

Formal kids' tables are something rare, but a treat to create, and informal adults' tables are an easy choice when you have a long guest list.

Just don't stray too far from a simple, clean theme.

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The use of a charger - a large, decorative base setting that other dinnerware is placed on top of - adds an ambiance of elegance and class to a table setting. 

Cloth napkins also give off a feel of an upscale experience.

Opt to use a cloth tablecloth instead of a synthetic one. 

Formal settings invite a fancier display of the flatware as well.

For reference, forks go on the left, as spoons and knives are on the right.

Place them in the order that they will be used, with the first utensil being farthest away from the plate.

However, even a formal table does not require using your finest china.

Instead, large, plain white dinner plates are a good choice.

And, they are able to be used for casual dining as well.

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For an informal dinner (and easy clean-up!), you can use plastic flatware - just make sure it's functional and not flimsy.

When hosting a casual Thanksgiving dinner, set the table without a cloth, especially if the table has an attractive wood top.

Placemats protect your tabletop, while still providing a backdrop for your decoration's theme.

You can use everyday plates and drinkware.

There is no need to fuss over little plates designated for bread and butter - guests can put bread directly on their dinner plates.

To enhance the fall holiday mood, consider a few special pieces, such as a modern vase or a themed platter.

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How to Set Up Thanksgiving Dinner


For adult-only tables, place drinkware in the order they will be used.

If you are unsure of what order they need to go in, remember the phrase: "water, white, red." 

You can add all the specific types of forks and spoons that would be used (salad, dinner, and dessert forks; spoon, tea, and dessert spoons).

You can choose to go formal or informal with the adults-only table, depending on budget, time, and the length of your guest list.

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Brightly colored paper or plastic plates and a 3D-paper turkey centerpiece are dead giveaways of a table intended for children.

Plus, non-glass serving ware is ideal for children to use because no one will need to worry about potential broken China.

"Is dinner ready yet?"

"When are we eating?"

"I'm bored."

"There's nothing to do."

Ah, the usual complaints from the mouths of children when the holiday meal is cooking.

If this is something you're going to deal with on Thanksgiving, we have a solution for you. 

Use a scroll of Kraft paper instead of a tablecloth so kids can draw on it.

This will keep all the children occupied until dinner is ready to be served.

The kids will be entertained, and you don't have a tablecloth ruined from crayons and markers.

After all, isn't being entertained one of the goals of a holiday dinner?

We hope that this article helps your dinner go off without a hitch, and we wish you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving!


For more information, check out some of these Additional Links:

  • Fall Inspired Home Decor Ideas

  • Give Thanks! Decor for Dining

  • 7 Best Apps for Planning Room Layouts

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