Tuesday, November 9, 2021

A Place at the Table ~ A Harvest of Ideas

Do you take joy in setting a beautiful table whether
or not it's for one, two, or a group?

Welcome to the 
Thanksgiving Tablescape Blog Hop 2021
Thank you to Rita, our amazingly organized and 
talented leader and author of the beautiful Panoply
Each account in this hop offers abundant inspiration for creating
your own holiday table and ambiance.
Links are at the end of this post.

~ Autumn ~ 
My  Favorite Season
It's rich tapestry of colors and textures 
warm both my heart and soul.
Choose gratitude!
Set each place with a joyful heart and 
savor the special times around your table.

Traditionally, we have enjoyed gathering guests to
share a meal around our Thanksgiving table,
some years hosting as many as twelve or more.

This year, as in the previous two years, we'll be a party of two.
With that in mind, I've pulled from past settings to offer you a harvest of ideas of how to make even the simplest of settings special.

It doesn't take much effort to create a welcoming place
setting for yourself, your spouse, or a table filled with guests.

Natural elements are an inexpensive way 
to add autumn texture and interest.

Wander your own garden or take a walk in nature
to gather acorns, seed pods, and leaves.  
I often add in sprigs of bittersweet that I buy at the flower market.

I readily admit I am a dishaholic, but I rarely add holiday specific 
dishes to our cupboard.  I'd rather bring a holiday look to the
table through a mix of dishes, linens, and accessories.  

In the spring of 2012, I was the lucky recipient of a set of 12 dinner plates in Sacred Bird and Butterfly.  Thank you, Cherry Kay!
Originally a Chinese export pattern from the 1800s, 
it is now available through Mottahedeh.  
As you may notice from my photos, it's a pattern I reach for often.
It's a favorite during the autumn season, though Cherry Kay frequently styles this pattern for a Chinoiserie theme.  

Sacred Bird and Butterfly
This is a Chinese export pattern of about 1800.  The Chinese word for Butterfly, tieh, is a word which expresses the wish that the owner might live to a ripe old age.  The pattern was evident in colonial Charleston, SC, a prosperous seaport and cultural center. Licensed by Historic Charleston Foundation. (Mottahedeh)

Some years ago, enchanted by the whimsical artwork of convivial foxhounds, playful pumpkins, and the festive autumn harvest, I added several sets of party plates in Juliska's Autumn Country Estate.  

Sold in sets of four, each plate depicts a different charming scene of the English landscape.  The delicious shades of pumpkin spice reinforce the cozy autumn feel of gratitude of the season and make these favorites I pull out year after year.  Juliska's Country Estate collection was designed in collaboration with renowned UK designer and painter, Deborah Sears of Isis Ceramics.  The Autumn series is long retired, but Juliska still offers a Country Estate collection.

Color, texture, and a touch of whimsy is my mind 
set as I pull together a place setting.

A dish stack imbued with the 
rich colors of fall offers a cozy ambiance, 
  especially one that sits on a ring of autumn leaves.  

With just the two of us, I don't hesitate to buy a pair of plates
 from time to time when I spot something like these 
Pleasant Run dinner plates from MacKenzie-Childs.

Add a seasonal theme topper on the plate stack as a fun
way to add a holiday touch to solid colors void of pattern.

Seasonally embroidered linens are 
another easy touch to acknowledge a holiday.

A dish stack of different patterns, a cloth napkin, and a 
fun napkin ring are perfect details to spice up a table setting.
I mix in lots of plaids and tartans using both textiles and dishes.

Use a variety of plates for a stack, 
much like you would frame a painting.
Think about color, pattern, and shape 
to give your stack interest.

Or layer textiles under the plate at each setting.
I often use these natural linen ruffled hand towels 
to add in another layer of texture and interest.

Layering different size placemats is another way to 
add a fun new dimension to your plate stack.

Here is a different look with a ruffled 
burlap placemat as the base.

Using a tray at the table offers 
a simple, unexpected look.

If we are entertaining guests, 
I like to include place cards at each setting. 
Even with a small group, the guests feel special
knowing that there is a spot specifically for them.

I also like to send guests home with a party favor.
It's a way of saying, "I thought of you!"
Above a mini grapevine wreath from the Dollar Store 
embellished with raffia and bittersweet did double duty 
as a place card and a fun inexpensive party favor.

With Christmas just weeks after Thanksgiving,
a fun autumn theme ornament makes a great favor.
Just tie on a card with the guests name, 
and it serves as a place card as well.  
I look for ornaments with an autumn feel 
in the After Christmas Sales to 
pack away for the following Thanksgiving.

Package tags make great little place cards, easy
to tie onto an ornament, a box of candy, 
or even the napkin.

Even if it's just the two of us, a little gift for my husband
is part of his place setting.  A chocolate turkey never disappoints!

Candles at an evening setting add a special glow and say to 
those at the table, this is a special time with you.

Candles add a touch of
romance for a table for two.

Flowers as a centerpiece can be simple or elaborate. 
Just remember to keep them low!  
Dinner conversation is as important as the food on the plate.

Use the buffet or dessert table to showcase more flowers
and special details that reflect the theme.

Holiday meals are a fun time to share bits and pieces
of holiday themed collectables from through the years.

I leave you with this paper plate stack.
I spied these cute paper products at the grocery store.
These would be adorable at a child's table or 
to send leftovers home with guests.

Happy Thanksgiving, Friends!

Hop on over to these accounts where more inspiration awaits.
Everyday Living - We Gather Together
Home is Where the Boat Is - The Softer Side of Thanksgiving
Panoply - Thankful
Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One - Home for the Thanksgiving Holiday 2021
Pandora's Box - Leopards and Checks
My Thrift Store Addiction - Vintage Thanksgiving Breakfast Table
The Little Yellow Corner Store - Celebrating Thanksgiving a Little Differently
Me and My Captain - Football AND Thanksgiving
Life and Linda - Thanksgiving with Elegance
The Painted Apron - Pumpkins and Pickups
Corner of Plaid and Paisley - Thanksgiving 2021 - A Bit Boho
Living With Thanksgiving - Blessings at Thanksgiving
Belle Bleu Interiors - A Heart Full of Thanksgiving
The Bookish Dilettante - We Gather Together


    The summer we married, my husband was in graduate school, and I was employed as a teacher. We took a portion of our savings that summer and purchased a sailboat. We christened our Catalina 22, “Hyacinths For The Soul” after Saadi’s poem. Our "Hyacinths" provided years of pleasure.


    1. Sarah, I love your harvest of ideas and beautiful tablesettings. I’m swooning over your Pheasant Run plates, gorgeous arrangement and layering of different dishes and linens. I love the idea of an autumn-themed ornament or turkey as a place marker and fun takeaway. Hobby Lobby’s ornaments are 50% off, I’ll have to look for a ‘Tom’! As always it’s a treat to join you at the table and hop with you. Happy Tuesday. ♥

    2. Lovely settings with all of your special dishes - someday you will have to share where and how you store them all! We always blame the generation before for our dish addiction in my family...I blame mom, she blamed her mom, Nana blamed her mom, and so on.....I guess its in the genes! I love the dishes you bought from Cherry Kay - they are lovely! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving to you and Monnie

    3. Hi, Sarah! What a fun trip through the years looking back on many of the lovely and inviting tablescapes you've created for the Thanksgiving holiday! (I miss regularly interacting with Cherry Kay! I know she LOVES Mottahedeh!) You brought uniqueness and love to each. The Juliska "Country Estate" collection is one I have long admired and keep an eye open for when I am out at estate sales. No luck thus far, but fingers crossed! I have those same gold and white 222 Fifth "Gold Leaves" oak leaf/acorn dishes, and I love to use them fall through winter! I am inspired by all the little touches on each table, particularly those at the individual place settings. Thanksgiving is one of the most personal and heartfelt holidays, and the celebration calls for meaningful touches that speak to the depth of its overall meaning. You hit that every time!

      Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

    4. Sarah, what a wonderful way to begin my day. Your tables are a feast for the eyes!

    5. What a wonderful round up of Thanksgiving table ideas Sarah! You have so many gorgeous things, but the special way you have of combining them is magical! I gasped when I saw the napkins tied with the ribbons, dried flowers and mixed flatware! So much delicious eye candy, thank you!

    6. How clever you are Sarah to give us such inspiration from your past Thanksgiving tables. So many ideas to store away for next year. Thanks for your inputs into this Thanksgiving Season.
      Kari @ Me and my Captain

    7. Absolutely gorgeous Sarah. love seeing all of your fabulous tables. How special to win Cherry Kay's Sacred Bird and Butterfly plates. Juliska's Country Estate collection is beautiful. Don't you just love MC Pheasant Run plates? So much eye candy for people like us who love dishes. The amber turkey is gorgeous. Love how you layered plate stacks. How sweet the small chocolate turkey is. Your chef I am, sure appreciates you little touches. You have shared some beautiful inspiration Sarah. Wishing you and your chef a beautifully blessed Thanksgiving.

    8. Sarah, your collection of dishes is beyond amazing. I love Juliska’s Country Estate and how fortunate to win Sacred Bird and Butterfly plates, stunning! I so enjoyed looking back over your gorgeous settings of beautiful linens and tableware. You always offer fabulous eye candy. Happy Thanksgiving!

    9. Sarah, you have an amazing collection of dishes to use! Viewing all the different tables has been inspiring. I love the MC Pheasant Run plates. And like you enjoy putting together table settings for a crowd or just a few people!

    10. Dearest Sarah,
      Those were lots of lovely table settings for Thanksgiving!

    11. Sarah, so many great ideas and tips for setting a seasonal table! Like you, I often include a special little favor, like candy or an ornament. Loved seeing your bounty of dishes and tableware —a feast for the eyes! Especially your various turkeys on display. I’m constantly on the lookout for old turkey planters, platters and salt/pepper shakers, but they have been very hard to find these days.

    12. These are all great ideas, Sarah! I love using natural accents and the way you've added them to your table settings. Blessings, Cecilia @My Thrift Store Addiction

    13. Sarah, your post is a feast for the eyes! You do whimsy so well and your style always delights. Your special pieces add elegance and sophistication. I can't say enough good things.

    14. Sarah, it's so much fun to see this beautiful round-up post: your creativity is amazing! One thing that I noticed is that you have several beautiful orange plate sets. They are all so pretty! I also noticed your MacKenzie-Childs Wittika peanut collection. They are all so pretty, and I can see how they would make any fall vignette or tablescape special. I will visit this post several more times because there's so much to see and appreciate!

      Happy Thanksgiving!
      Ricki Jill

    15. It's fun to see so many ideas unfold. I especially like how you deftly style plates and other dinnerware in multiple combinations. The orangeish-reddish flatware is very striking.

    16. Sarah, I've enjoyed your round-up of past Thanksgiving table settings. Such a feast for the eye and so much inspiration. You have such a wonderful collection of special and beautiful dishes of patterns and colors, something for all seasons. Your special talent for arranging and stacking, mixing and matching, results in such beautiful tables. I appreciate all of this loveliness and will use as a reference in setting my own Thanksgiving table. Happy Thanksgiving Sarah.......

    17. Wow, there is a lot to take in here!! What is so special about your look back at so many tables - is that all of them would be just as beautiful today- they are all timeless and gorgeous!! It is obvious you have a special talent for combining the right pieces tip-off create such lovely place settings and tables. Thanks for sharing all of your wonderful tables with us. It is always a pleasure to hop with youšŸ§”Wishing you a beautiful Thanksgiving

    18. Hi Sarah. What a wonderful assortment of tablescapes. I love the mix of patterns and the various layering and stacking. I am so fascinated with the Pheasant Run dish(es) by McKenzie Child. It is so unique and elegant. I crave that chocolate turkey. The large floral arrangement along with your gold and brown checkered McKenzie Child collection is absolutely dramatic and stunning. The cake stand is such a gorgeous piece to your collection and the cake......well....I would love a yummy piece. It has me craving a slice of this pretty and delicious cake. Happy Thanksgiving.

    19. I came away with so many ideas from your post, Sarah, and it doesn't get any better than that! First, you have me thinking of using a tablecloth. I love the rustic look of my thirty year old Pottery Barn dining table but I think family and friends know it well by now! So I'll be on the hunt for something and I'm going in the direction of yours. I also like the way you have elevated the pumpkins and now that I think of it, I have some chunky candleholders in my collection of decorating "mess"! The bittersweet looks wonderful, too, and I was recently admiring it at my grocer. I'm going to be a real thief this year from your post!!

      All the rest is pure and festive beauty, and I think I'll also go the route with the paper goods for take home food and for dessert-at some point you have to draw the line when it comes to dishwashing!

      Loving that there are so many doing tablescapes. I need to get back into that to appreciate all that I've accumulated.


    20. Sarah: You sure have selected many wonderful table settings here from your photo stash. I have one of those turkey cups and saucers like your first photo. I love all of these table settings and find them enchanting. The MacKenzie-Childs pieces are awesome!

    21. Wow, Sarah, each and every table setting just oozes with gorgeous details. Your collection of elements are superb, and your gift for assembling unique and attractive beyond compare. I truly love each and all of them. I noticed your gateleg table for two - another brilliant item to have in the inventory for serving, whether it's two or more. Classic, stylish, timeless. That's you! Thank you for bringing this talent to the hop. You are appreciated!

    22. Sarah, I feel like I have just been looking at a beautiful magazine. You are so talented! All of these tables are absolutely gorgeous. You have thought every detail out so well and given us all such wonderful ideas for our entertaining. I am swooning over the Juliska plates. Your advice is perfect about using non holiday specific china and introducing seasonal linens and accents to create the perfect holiday look. I hope that you have a happy and blessed Thanksgiving!

    23. Oh wow, I have to agree with Shannon, this has been such a beautiful trip through so many gorgeous table settings! I keep thinking I have seen the prettiest, and then I scroll down and see another! I do love Juliska plates, I treasure the Forest Walk ones! I try to just pick up seasonal salad plates and use them with my regular solid color dinner plates. Thanks you for sharing all of your beautiful tabletop inspiration with us! Happy Thanksgiving!!

    24. I think Rick and I will be a party or two, too. We'll do the day after with the kids. Right now we're trying to decide if we want to invite anyone or just chill. I'm 50/50. But we would love to be guests at your table, which is absolutely beautiful -- so full of fall and Thanksgiving colors and accents. I love the china (what's not to love with turkeys?) and the white pumpkins are a really lovely touch. It's all beautiful, Sarah. Happy Thanksgiving.

    25. Wow, so many beautiful tables and ideas! I love the little touches like the placecards and favors. Thanks for sharing at the TFt party. :)

    26. This is amazing, and I've featured it at the TFT party. Thanks for sharing! :)

    27. Sarah, I always think the setting you are showing right now is the most beautiful and then you do the next one! You have such a beautiful selection of china and accessories that I think I can always pick a favorite and then I can't!..Happy Thursday and Happy Thanksgiving my friend..xxoJudy


    Thank you to each of you who take the time to leave a comment. I read and appreciate each and every one and will respond to any questions. Your notes are the only way I know who has stopped in for a visit.