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Wow your guests with this dramatic Thanksgiving table setting

Tracy Wharton black calgary centerpiece centrepiece dining room drama dramatic family flemmish harvest holiday interior design kale sophisticated thanksgiving unique

Tired of hand turkeys and dried corn? Here's a unique table setting for you and your guest to enjoy. 

This tablescape is all about the harvest and takes its dramatic look and palate from Flemish paintings that celebrated nature's abundance. The colour scheme is unexpected and the elements are natural and sophisticated, but this is a look that is easy and inexpensive to put together. 

We start with a paper runner for the tabletop rather than linen. I used black wrapping paper and this is especially handy if you find you are pushing tables together for a large group. Running the paper end to end down both tables will help unify the look of the table. 

I used metallic pen in gold (make sure it isn't going through to your table) and after setting the table, I wrote an "I am thankful for:" beside each place setting. Metallic pens are provided for guests to work on their lists during dinner. I also hid a message under the centrepiece so when it's moved to the side for the turkey, guest will see "Glad you're here" written beneath. 

I am lucky to have white china that I inherited from my mom. This makes it easy to be versatile with table settings, but if your dishes have colour in them, try and pull that colour out into your centrepiece. I used chargers with a wood look to them as I want natural elements to play centre stage. 

The centrepiece is mostly edible although an ornamental kale from my garden sits front and centre. I used several varieties of kale with different colours and textures to build this display onto a long breadbasket that can easily be set onto the sideboard if you are serving dinner family style. Keeping in mind my colour scheme of rich green and purple (which look great against the black tabletop) and my white china, the kale, small white squash and turnips pull this look together. Metallic accents and glassware add sparkle and also really stand out against the black. 

I have these lovely gold rosemary napkin rings, but if you don't have napkin rings that work with this table, here's an easy substitute. 

Take a bit of twine, a place card (if you are using them) and a sprig of rosemary or another herb you are using in your dinner to tuck into the napkin. Woody herbs like thyme, rosemary and savoury work best. 

Lower the lights, bring out the turkey and enjoy this dramatic, sophisticated setting with your family and friends. 

Happy Thanksgiving!



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  • Jean on

    I can imagine how this beautiful and dramatic table setting is pure magic in candlelight. Thank you for a great idea.


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