Ceramic turkeys, dishes and glassware for Thanksgiving decor
Vintage turkeys, fresh mini pumpkins, vintage linens and dishes work together to create a nostalgic and welcoming vibe.

Thanksgiving tablescapes

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. I love the traditional food — turkey and cornbread dressing, mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, yeast rolls. Hmmm, I’m falling into a carbohydrate coma just thinking about it.

But even more than the food — well, OK, tied with the food — is creating inviting Thanksgiving tablescapes. I love hauling out the vintage linens and dishes and finding new ways to mix them up. Here are some ideas that I hope will inspire you.

Ceramic turkeys lined up on a table
My turkey collection is ready-made for the Thanksgiving table.

VINTAGE TURKEYS: I’ve been picking up vintage turkeys for years. They include this hand-painted brown mottled turkey from the 1970s; the turquoise turkey behind it, circa 2005; and the small turkey candlesticks and salt and pepper shakers from the 1940s and 1950s.

A brown cross-stitched tablecloth
Vintage linens are perfect for Thanksgiving.

VINTAGE LINENS: I’m always on the lookout for beautiful linens. I can’t believe that some woman spent hours and hours working on these gorgeous tablecloths and now they sell for a couple of dollars at an estate sale. I feel as if I’m preserving and honoring the work of these anonymous women when I put them on the table.

Plates, glasses in fall colors.
A mix of vintage dishes from different eras create a vibrant yet nostalgic look.

TURKEY NAPKIN RING HOLDERS: My mother gave me a set of these turkey napkin ring holders in the late 1980s. I’ve stumbled across a few more over the years to add to my collection. I have never hosted Thanksgiving and not used these precious napkin ring holders.

Turkey plates and napkin ring holder, assortment of plates and glasses
Vintage turkey napkin ring holders are part of the Thanksgiving tradition.

A BLUE THANKSGIVING: I also love using shades of blue for Thanksgiving. It’s a little more unexpected. A blue runner, blue glassware and blue dinner plates set the tone.

Blue, gold and brown dishes and ceramic turkeys on a table.
Blue, gold and brown create a fresh, unexpected Thanksgiving color scheme.

TURKEY PLATES: I found these turkey salad plates at Christmas Tree Shop many years ago. I use them almost every year, no matter what color scheme I go with.

WOODLAND CRITTERS: For a completely different look, bring together the colors of fall with vintage ceramic squirrels, wood candlesticks and embroidered vintage linens. For more woodland decorating ideas, see this post.

Brown ceramic squirrel dish on table
A vintage squirrel dish is perfect for a fall or Thanksgiving centerpiece.

OWL PLATES: These owl plates from Anthropologie (yes, I know, a splurge!) fit the woodland theme perfectly. I layered them onto a gold-rimmed vintage dinner plate and brown and mauve fringed napkin. They’re lovely for fall or Thanksgiving tablescapes.

A repurposed mirror tile makes for a wonderful charger.
A repurposed mirror tile makes for a wonderful charger.

REPURPOSED MIRROR CHARGER: I found a set of 12 vintage mirrored tiles for $1 at a garage sale. Yes, all 12 for $1! They make amazing chargers for these Thanksgiving tablescapes.

Old dog in turkey leg hat
Pippa likes Thanksgiving food, but honestly, the decorating kind of wears her out.

Sources for vintage linens and dishes for Thanksgiving tablescapes

Other tablescapes to inspire you

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