Let’s talk tablescapes!
But first, if you’re asking yourself, “What is a tablescape?” You’re not alone. It’s a somewhat made-up word used to describe a beautifully and creatively set table.
Anytime you go to set your table for a dinner party or holiday, you’re creating a tablescape – whether it’s traditional or not!
But one thing is for sure. Tablescapes are so fun to create and can really help bring out some personality in your home if you let them.
Think of your table as a blank canvas with limitless possibilities. In addition to the necessities like plates and napkins, you can add all kinds of texture, layers, centerpieces, and so much more.
Still not sure what to think? I created fun tablescapes for fall and winter that I’ll share with you and walk you through my process to show you just how limitless your possibilities are!
Plus, I’ll share the ‘tablescape template’ I created in the fall that allowed me to seamlessly transition my tablescape for Christmas with minimal effort.
CREATE A TABLESCAPE WITH EASE (EVEN IF YOU’RE NOT SURE WHAT A TABLESCAPE IS)
If you know me, you know my home is full of florals and greenery and gives off a whimsical, farmhouse vibe. I wanted to carry this over to my table as my style is really a part of my personality (and yours is, too!).
I also didn’t want to spend much money (if any) on putting my tablescape together. Prior to this, I simply had a burlap table runner and a centerpiece on my dining room table.
AND I also didn’t want to create something that I would have to completely change every couple of months if I wanted to keep a tablescape up.
Because of all these reasons, I chose the following wisely and in a way that could be used as a template moving forward.
CHOOSE YOUR THEME & COLOR SCHEME
I cleared off the centerpiece but left the burlap runner. I knew I wanted to keep that texture. I then needed to figure out exactly what my theme and color scheme were going to be.
My theme was… well… me for lack of a better term. A little whimsical with a whole lot of greenery. And because I wanted to be able to reuse most of it throughout each season, I wanted to keep my color scheme pretty neutral.
START IN THE CENTER AND WORK YOUR WAY OUT
I started with the centerpiece/focus of the table.
I knew I wanted to add some kind of layering effect to the burlap, so I added a second charcoal and white striped table runner for fall. But I didn’t just lay it flat — I bunched it up and weaved it across the table. This helped to add dimension and texture to the table while limiting the need for color.
I then grabbed some greenery I had in the house (it’s from Hobby Lobby) and weaved it throughout the runners as well.
I knew I wanted to keep my burlap table runner for all seasons, so that became one of my template items, or items that would remain the same each season. The added second table runner would be an item I could switch up for each season.
For Christmas, I added a neutral runner with a subtle forest green pattern. You catch my drift, right?
For spring and summer, I’ll look for one that’s a little lighter and brighter.
DON’T FORGET TO ADD HEIGHT!
Next, I needed to add some height! I found my amber bottles at Target from the Hearth & Hand collection earlier in the fall season, so I decided to pull them in! I placed the largest bottle in the center of the table and staggered the other two on either side.
Once I added the two white pumpkins I found at Michael’s, things were really making sense to me, and I was feeling it!
The centerpiece is another place to switch things up for each season! I switched out the amber bottles and pumpkins for a single Christmas tree statement for the winter season. Easy!
For spring and summer, I’ll likely add a planter with spring florals or something that ties the table into the season!
DISCOVER LOW-COST ALTERNATIVES
I asked my sweet 3 year old to head to the backyard with her dad to pick some of the fall weeds that were growing at the back of the yard — I thought they’d be the perfect addition to the amber bottles to add a little more height and whimsy without costing a cent!
For winter, grab some sticks, pinecones, or evergreen branches! Or simply go without the help from nature!
In the spring, add fresh flowers, potted plants, or replace the amber bottles with blue bottles instead.
GRAB YOUR PLATES, AND MIX AND MATCH
Because I was going for more of a whimsical feel, I decided to mix and match a bit here. I used my gray dinner plates on the outer four table settings and the white dinner plates on the ends of the table.
I grabbed my sadly only set of cloth napkins (I know what I need to go find more of now!) and started to play around with them. I decided a mix and match effect was necessary here, too!
I tied up two napkins with twine for the end place settings and placed folded napkins under the salad plates on the outer four settings. The mixed and match (yet coordinated) vibe was speaking to me!
Use neutral dinner plates and napkins so you never have to change them up for seasons! I kept my dinner plates and napkins exactly the same for my winter tablescape and simply switched the appetizer plates from the embossed plates to neutral Christmas plates and called it a day!
In the spring/summer, I’ll likely look for fun appetizer plates with florals on them! Because you know me and florals….
MAKE SURE THE CENTER OF YOUR TABLE COMMUNICATES WITH THE PLACE SETTINGS
Once that was done, I grabbed a few more weeds and tied groupings together with twine to place on top of each salad plate and secured a few on the tied up napkins as well.
It’s always fun to tie in centerpiece elements throughout your place settings too – almost like it’s spilling out on the whole table while still feeling like a cohesive design plan.
If you choose to add pine cones or branches for winter, simply make the switch from your fall weeds/florals!
In the spring, use wildflowers picked from your yard, faux spring stems, or fresh spring flowers (especially if you’re hosting a dinner party!)
GET CREATIVE TO AVOID SPENDING MONEY
Things were looking good, but there was one thing missing. I had searched around for chargers, but the only set I had certainly didn’t match the style I was going for here (and I wasn’t about to go out and buy more)!
I needed another layer though – at least on the outer four place settings. So I thought for a minute, and while I did I glanced up and saw the hoop wreaths hanging on my dining room wall.
Light bulb! What if I created a few hoops to use as chargers for those plates? I grabbed the materials I had on hand and proceeded to create these simple and easy DIY Hoop Wreath Chargers!
A DIY hoop wreath charger like this can easily be used for every season! I knew I wanted to use white berries throughout fall and winter, so I simply kept my chargers as is.
In the spring, I can switch the berries out for a spring flower accent! Reuse, reuse, reuse!
ADD FINISHING TOUCHES FOR A COHESIVE DESIGN
Because I had leftover faux white berries from my wreaths, I decided to cut off a few bunches of them and add them throughout the greenery on the table, and suddenly it felt complete!
So by simply clearing my table and allowing my imagination to run wild, I was able to create a tablescape that screamed “me” while still being well designed and in line with the rest of my home. Plus, it got my creative juices flowing and energized me!
Again, I left the berries from fall to winter because that was my plan all along! In the spring, I’ll leave the greenery (part of my main template) and add in spring florals instead of berries.
To recap how I created a template with my tablescape, let’s go over a quick recap!
My base tablescape template (the items I don’t plan on switching out for each season) includes:
- Burlap table runner
- Neutral dinner plates
- Neutral napkins
- Hoop wreath chargers
The items to change out from my template each season include:
- Second layering table runner
- Appetizer plates
- Florals (to add to greenery, centerpiece, or hoop wreath chargers – optional)
My entire tablescape template will remain the same. I will always include:
- Two table runners
- Dinner plates with appetizer plates and napkins
- Hoop wreath chargers
By creating this system of sorts for myself, I only need to think about changing the items in “change out each season” category (so just the centerpiece, appetizer plates, second table runner, and optional florals).
This tells me exactly what I need to shop for or find in my home and where it will go! It makes the entire process much simpler for me. I hope it makes sense for you too!
NOW GO PLAN A DINNER PARTY!
I hope it was helpful to walk you through my process and share a little insight into how I go about creating cohesive yet creative designs!
I hope you also got a sense of how I create templates of sorts to make it easy and inexpensive to switch up decor each season.
Now to actually plan a gathering to have people over so it doesn’t go to waste!