15 (Easy!) Thanksgiving Table Decor Ideas for Every Style, Theme, and Menu

published Oct 28, 2023
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Thanksgiving celebration traditional dinner. Roasted turkey garnished with cranberries on a rustic style table decoraded with pumpkins, vegetables, pie, flowers and candles.
Credit: Shutterstock

Nestled between Halloween and Christmas, Thanksgiving often faces a “middle holiday syndrome” in terms of decor. Ghosts and black cats may still linger on your doorstep, while evergreens and candy canes hover around the corner. However, the beauty here is that the momentum of holiday cheer remains strong — and both pumpkins and garlands are fair game to have around the home, and especially in your Thanksgiving table spread.

So, how can we make Thanksgiving feel special and fresh each year while honoring the reason for the season? The answer’s right where you gather around to give thanks: the table decor. Whether you choose a more traditional route or want to experiment with a fun theme (did someone say Barbie?), coordinating a memorable meal with people you love is the top priority. Why not get a little creative with the process? With that, here are 15 Thanksgiving table decor ideas guaranteed to wow your guests. 

Credit: Leela Cyd

1. Fruity Fresh 

You might only think cranberries belong on your Thanksgiving table, but think again! Pomegranates, apples, and citrus are a great way to sweeten your spread. Dried orange slices are a trendy, sustainable, and chic way to spruce up the table — you can pick up Trader Joe’s Sweetened Dried Orange Slices or prepare your own at home in the oven. Lay the slices over a garland of dried leaves (we recommend eucalyptus), or craft a hanging centerpiece with leaves, star anise, and cinnamon sticks. Use any extras to garnish cocktails!

Credit: Joe Lingeman

2. Pumpkin Spice 

Embrace the fall spirit by displaying gourds and mini pumpkins along the table. (Trader Joe’s always has a great and colorful selection). Complete the look by adding dried leaves, flowers and, of course, pumpkin pie. These mini pumpkin pies are incredibly cute and easy to make!

Credit: Leela Cyd

3. Garden Party

Channel a sunnier season with a checkered tablecloth, fresh flowers, and warm hues. Rainbow carrots, assorted fruit pies, and anything else with fresh produce would be perfectly on-theme. We’ve got you covered with a handful of sangria recipes, including our Super Budget Thanksgiving Sangria. If there’s sun (and warmth) in your forecast, take things outside for the full experience. 

Credit: Joe Lingeman

4. Charcuterie

You can’t go wrong with selecting a charcuterie board as the star of the show. Assemble an aesthetic, autumn-inspired spread with mini gourds, yummy dips (our pumpkin goat cheese dip is a hit), prosciutto, and whatever else screams “fall” to act as an edible centerpiece. (And check out our Ultimate Charcuterie Board guide to get started with the basics.)

5. À La Carte

Handmade or digital menus are a thoughtful approach to elevating not only the dinner table, but also the eating experience as a whole. You can keep your guests well-informed about the evening’s courses by laying the menus over plates or securing them into frames along the center of the table. If you choose to go the electronic route, Canva offers a huge selection of free menu templates to personalize and print. 

6. Folklore

Bring the forest into your home and pay homage to the one and only Taylor Swift (think: rustic textures and colors with white pillar candles and dainty goblets — these cups from World Market are a steal and would fit in perfectly). It’s a woodsy moodiness that almost begs for a dress code of white boho knits, cozy layers, and plaid galore. Plus, you have the evening’s soundtrack already laid out!

7. Disco

Get funky with disco balls at Thanksgiving or your Friendsgiving celebration! Place them around the table and go the extra mile with these disco cups and wine stoppers from Amazon. Top things off with silver tinsel, mood lighting, and groovy tunes. With just a few pieces of decor, you can completely transform your table into a festive, shimmering landscape. 

Credit: Brittany Conerly

8. Mid-Century Modern

Tastefully throw it back while maintaining a modern and elegant feel. Let simplicity shine in the basic areas (i.e., plates and utensils), and bring out eclectic details in the form of wine glasses, candlestick holders, and accessories, like these signature starburst napkin rings from Amazon (think: if Don’t Worry Darling had a Thanksgiving scene).

9. Candlelit

Candlesticks are the “it girls” of dinner party essentials, so why not let them have their moment? Sit down for a mini craft sesh and spice things up with some acrylic paint and cute autumnal designs. Go for classic white candles and mix in a few fall shades with D’Light Online candles, or choose your favorite color combo!

10. Krafty

Riding the DIY wave, a roll of brown kraft paper is the way to go if you’re looking for a tablecloth and a workable seating chart in a warm neutral tone. All you need is paper and pen to bring this one to life. If kids will be at the table, add in markers and stickers for an instant activity! The look is simple-yet-eye-catching and, most importantly, cleanup is a piece of cake.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

11. Memory Lane

Thanksgiving dinner is an opportune time to resurface old-school projects, à la clay or handprint turkeys or autumn leaves, if you or your parents have held onto them for nostalgia’s sake. If you have kids in the house, it’s a great time to whip out some recent projects to display. Another easy and giftable option is to create and laminate collage placemats with kids’ drawings or photos of guests from holidays past. 

12. Cottagecore

There’s something about a candlelit meal paired with vintage dishware, assorted flowers, and fairy lights, all atop a cute tablecloth that works for pretty much any occasion. Embrace the simple way of life and allow food and decor to complement one another. (Setting a dress code would be the ultimate chef’s kiss.)

13. Barbie Girl Dinner 

Give 2023 internet culture a nod by organizing the quintessential girl dinner, Dreamhouse-style. It’s pink, fun, and full of assorted treats. We’ve got you covered with

Credit: July Ko/Shutterstock.com

14. Farmhouse

Take a minimalistic-meets-chic approach to Thanksgiving dinner with white and bright decor. Bring in color with big, blooming flower bouquets, add light with lanterns, and incorporate a serving basket or two — Target has some cute and affordable options — to tie everything together. Arranging bread or charcuterie in a napkin-adorned basket would be the perfect nod to farmhouse living.

15. Gratitude

Do something simple and sweet to give thanks this year by making name place cards for guests and writing down why you’re grateful for them. This could also act as a quick and intentional group writing activity before dinner. These card holders from Etsy are the perfect touch.