3 Thanksgiving Centerpieces You’ll Love For a Long Time

Flowers are a nice touch to the Thanksgiving, but they don’t last forever. Instead, why not invest in a piece you can use from year to year, creating a traditional look that will become a family favorite. Here are three centerpiece options – and they all ship for free.

A potted pumpkin and gourd topiary with colorful maple leaves adds height to your table, and would look beautiful flanked by candles or all by itself.

This beautiful rustic lantern is filled with fall foliage and the LED lights will make it shine. Use one on a small table or three to create a show-stopping display.

A wreath may be a great accent on your door, but it also makes a great statement on your dining table. Place a pillar candle in the center, for an easy way to dress up the table.


Plan Your Thanksgiving Tablescape

The turkey is definitely the star of the Thanksgiving table, but Tom deserves the proper backdrop. In addition to breaking out your best dinnerware and crystal, create a holiday memory by carefully choosing the rest of the table setting.

Start with a tablecloth. Protect your table by using a tablecloth over a table pad. From crisp white to a rich autumn tone, you will add some color to the meal with the right cloth.

Photo credit: BlueCricketDesign.net

Here’s a great craft project you can do to create a personalized tablecloth. Simply purchase a drop cloth and decorate it with words that represent the things you’re thankful for.

Or don’t. Rules are made to be broken, so feel free to skip the tablecloth and let your table go au natural. Use beautiful placemats or table runners to protect the wood.

Photo credit: The Stir

Mix and match plates, silverware and glassware. Don’t worry about not having enough table settings; purposefully mix and match what you have and no one will ever know. You can even go ultra casual chic by using Mason jars as water glasses.

Let Mother Nature provide decorations. Fall is the time of year when everything outside is in its most colorful glory. Bring in gorgeous leaves and scatter them down the center of the table. You can also use a metallic marker and write names or reasons you’re thankful on the leaves to make them even more special. Place small gourds down the center of the table, and put cut flowers in small pots or thin vases. Add candles and you’ve created a gorgeous fall scene.

Photo credit: Bloom Designs Online

Make it personal. Finally, make guests feel welcome by creating personalized place cards. If you’re hosting friends who aren’t well acquainted, place a little bit of information about each guest on the place card as a way for everyone to get to know each other. You could also include a reason why you’re thankful they are your friend or family member.


Give Your Dining Room a Thanksgiving Magnolia Makeover

The kitchen and dining room get a lot of attention during Thanksgiving, and you can make yours shine by giving it a Magnolia Makeover. While Joanna Gaines is known for her farmhouse style, her Magnolia Home collection features traditional, industrial, modern and French-inspired looks as well. Here are three dining sets that would up the style level of your Thanksgiving Dinner.

Joanna’s Neoclassic Windsor Oval Leaf Table is a versatile piece that works with one or both leaves up or down. Its grooved shiplap top is hand distressed in Jo’s white finish for a casual vintage look. Pair it with a primitive farmhouse chair for a casual look or choose a colorful Parsons for something more modern.

If you love a more traditional style, choose the English Country Oval Table and Emory Side Chairs, which were inspired by original antique furnishings to offer a sense of history. Joanna designed these pieces to include classical ornament and details, such as decorative molding on the apron and a leaf medallion on the base. The combination is a polished and timeless look.

Add an architectural feel to your dining space with the Double Pedestal Dining Table from Magnolia Home. Joanna was inspired by massive corbel brackets from grand old buildings,  often recycled as today’s architectural antiques. The tabletop has a rugged shop floor finish, while Revival Arm Chairs add elegance and grace.

 

Which one of these dining sets will create the best Magnolia Makeover in your home?

 


How To Choose a Sleeper Sofa Bed: Your Buying Guide

The holiday season is a time to host out-of-town friends and family. If you don’t have a dedicated guest room, a sleeper sofa is a great option. More comfortable than an air mattress, you can use a sleeper sofa in your living space or create dual-purpose spaces, such as a combination home office and guest room or den and guest room. Because it’s more than just a place to sleep, you want to choose a sofa bed that will be comfortable day and night. Here’s what you need to know:

 

Measure the Room

When measuring your space, don’t forget to think about how much room the bed will take when fully extended. You don’t want to have to move a lot of furniture to use it. Sleeper sofas come in a variety of sizes, so you’re sure to find something that works with the space you have.

Sleeper Sofas Have Gotten More Comfortable

Gone are the days of thin mattresses that rest on iron bars. Today’s sleeper sofas now come with comfortable mattresses, including memory foam as well as regular innerspring.

 

Check the Seat Comfort

Your sleeper sofa will be used closed most of the time, so be sure to check the comfort of the cushions. Also make sure it fits the style of your room. You’ll find options that are casual, urban, traditional and modern, as well as fabric and leather upholstery.

Accommodate Guests

Sleeper sofas come in twin, full, queen and queen-plus sizes. Determine how many people you will be hosting to choose the right size of the pieces you need. You could combine a queen with a twin to host a small group, for example.

 

Test How It Opens

Opening and closing a sleeper sofa should be an easy task. Test how it feels and make sure it operates with minimal effort. You don’t want to have to ask guest to struggle before they go to sleep.


How to Host a Friendsgiving

What’s better than Thanksgiving dinner? How about two Thanksgiving dinners!! Family gatherings are important and traditional, but a growing trend is hosting a Friendsgiving, a special Thanksgiving-style dinner with your favorite friends.

Hold it before Thanksgiving to create a trial run for the big day, or after to make the most of leftovers or serve something completely different.

Here are some things to consider before hosting your Friendsgiving:

Consider potluck. Friendsgiving is the perfect time to hold a potluck, making it easier than Thanksgiving because no one person will be in charge of the entire meal. Assign specific dishes or a category, such as veggies or dessert. Or be bold and enjoy whatever dishes show up in hand.

Set a theme. Another dinner-planning idea is to choose a theme and have guests bring something that fits. For example, set a theme of Italian, Chinese farm-to-table or even deep-fried. This could be a nice break from your Thanksgiving leftovers.

Make sure to accommodate special diets. Check in with friends and see if anyone has food allergies or intolerances, or follows a special diet, such as vegan or Paleo. Then make sure you have enough on your menu to fill them up.

Think about drinks. If you are serving alcohol, plan how you’ll stock your bar. You can make it easy and serve just wine or beer. Or create a special cocktail for the day, such as a special martini or mixed drinks. Or set out what guests will need for the most common drinks.

Decide if you want a special décor. Thanksgiving dinner usually includes a special holiday tablescape with a centerpiece, place settings, napkins and place cards. Friendsgiving, however, can be as festive or casual as you wish.

Do you hold Friendsgiving? Share you favorite tips in the comments below!