Fall tablescapes set the mood and create an enjoyable dining experiance. Although they look complicated, creating your own beautiful table setting is more straightforward than you think! In this post, I’m eliminating the guesswork and sharing my five insider tips to achieve a picture-perfect fall tablescape!
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What Makes a Great Fall Tablescape?
My dearest memories surrounding the holidays are tied to the dining experience. My mom would use all her pretty dishes, light candles, and make the best home-cooked meal for us to gather around.
Decorating a tablescape can be as simple or extravagant as you want. It really just depends on the occasion. Either way, natural, earthy, and effortless table decor is my favorite way to get that high-end, elevated look. So, if that’s your style, you’re in the right place!
Although I’m not a professional, I’ve discovered a few tricks of the trade that have given me results. All these tips would be helpful for any type of tablescape you decorate, so be sure to bookmark this post for future reference!
What is on a Tablescape?
The essential elements of a tablescape are the same from season to season. Contrary to what you may think, you don’t need a bunch of fancy pieces to create a perfect fall tablescape. Use what you have and slowly add pieces to your collection, upgrading in quality when you are able.
- Linens – Tablecloth, Runner, and Napkins. Neutral hues set the backdrop for a beautiful tablescape. 100% linen is highly durable and looks great for casual or formal events. All you need to start is one tablecloth or runner and a set of 6-12 napkins. Consider a subtle patterned napkin to add variety.
- Candles – Tapered, Pillar, and Tea Lights. Candles set the mood and bring a warm and welcoming ambiance.
- Candleholders – Candlesticks, Votives, Pillars. Candlholders are great to protect your surfaces and add various heights to your table setting.
- Pottery + Ceramics – collect special pieces that will show off flower arrangements and add texture to the table.
- Wood Bowls – Perfect for serving food or holding decorative accents.
- Wood Boards – A beautiful rustic way to display appetizers, bread, fruit, and veggies.
- Glassware – Keep a versatile collection of glassware that can work for a variety of beverages.
- Plates, Bowls, & Cutlery – Neutral tones will work for any occasion and allow the food to stand out.
TIP: Before buying everything new, try vintage shopping or thrifting. All of these items can be bought second-hand, and using unique old pieces brings so much depth to the design.
Shop the Look
5 Insider Tips to Easily Style a Perfect Fall Tablescape
Whether you are planning your table for Thanksgiving dinner or another occasion, a fall tablescape sets the mood and atmosphere for creating special memories with family and friends. If you want a picture-perfect fall tablescape, keep reading to learn about my 5 insider tips that will get you results!
TIP: Before planning your tablescape decor, create a Pinterest board titled Fall Decor or Tablescapes. Add 10-20 photos to fall back on for inspiration and guidance as you create your table.
1. Choose Fall Color Palette
Select 1-2 accent colors and keep the rest neutral.
Fall Color Ideas:
- Shades of brown, gold, and mauve.
- Muted and muddied color tones.
If you struggle to pick a color, look to nature and reflect those accent colors in your design. Take a nature walk for inspiration, reference your Pinterest board (see tip above), or search Pinterest for “Fall Color Palette.”
The accent color inspiration for my fall tablescape came from the brown-gold Asian pears and deep plum-colored grapes and figs, all of which are seasonal fruits.
TIP: Balance warm and cool tones. Fall colors are warm, so consider silver accents vs. brass to add a cool tone to the color palette.
2. Incorporate Natural Seasonal Elements
Designers use natural seasonal elements on their tablescapes. Fruits, vegetables, herbs, and nuts add an abundant and earthy look to a fall table.
Create a centerpiece by arranging veggies or fruits in a rustic wooden bowl and placing them in the middle of the table. Additionally, consider how you can work these foods into your meal, so they have a dual purpose. For example, the main centerpiece in my fall tablescape is entirely edible!
Don’t stop with the centerpiece; add clusters of these elements down the center of the table. Sprinkle nuts and arrange whole and halved fruits or veggies in clusters for an effortless look.
Natural Fall Elements:
- Root Veggies: Acorn Squash, Artichokes, Beets, Brussel Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Sweet Potatoes, Pumpkins.
- Fruits: Figs, Apples, Pears, Grapes, Persimmons, Pomegranates.
- Nuts: Acorns, Walnuts, Pecans.
- Herbs: Sage, Rosemary, Thyme, Mint.
TIP: Fall tablescapes don’t have to be all about pumpkins; there are many other seasonal fruits and veggies to choose from! For pumpkin tablescape inspiration, check out my first fall tablescape here.
3. Layer Textures
Layering a variety of textures creates interest and depth. Lean into earthy, rustic accents for a cozy Fall vibe. Try incorporating a mix of vintage and new pieces if possible.
Fall Tablescape Textures You Need:
TIP: Consider the textures of the food you will serve and use that to your advantage. For example, a rustic loaf of bread wrapped in linen and displayed in a stone bowl or various shapes and textures of food on a charcuterie board.
4. Create Various Heights + Subtle Movement
As with anything in a design, you want to keep the eyes interested and moving, so a tablescape is no different. Using various heights of objects and subtle movement is critical.
Alternate candle stick heights, preferably keeping the tallest ones on the ends of the table so it doesn’t block the guest’s conversation. As you can see in the photo above, I created a subtle zig-zag pattern with candlesticks and greenery rather than having everything straight down the center of the table.
TIP: Create various heights by placing books or bowl upside down under the tablecloth or runner.
5. Ditch the Fake Greenery + Flowers
Designers use real greenery and flowers in their table arrangements. While there is nothing wrong with faux stems and greenery, using natural plants brings life and energy to the tablescape, creating a high-end look.
Although fake stems may seem more cost-effective because they can be reused yearly, that’s not always the case. If we’re honest, we usually buy new stuff every year anyway!
On this fall tablescape, I used half a bundle of eucalyptus ($3.99), three pears ($4), and about four figs from a large container ($4). A grand total of roughly $12. Alternatively, one faux stem can run about $3.99, and it takes a lot of fake stems to create an arrangement!
TIP: Try real greenery on your fall tablescape; if you hate it, you can always go back, but I promise it will help you achieve the tablescape of your dreams! Alternatively, if you have faux stems, mix them with real greenery, making them less noticeable.
How do You Make a Perfect Tablescape? Step-By-Step Guide:
- Create a pin board titled Fall Tabelscapes. Add 10-20 tablescape inspiration photos. Refernece these as you asseble your tablescape.
- Lay out the tablecloth or runner.
- Place your main centerpiece in the middle of the table. Build the rest of the table decor off the centerpiece. Be sure the centerpiece is low enough so guests can still see each other.
- Stagger candles in a subtle zig-zag pattern on either side of the centerpiece, alternating in various heights. If possible, keep tallest candles on the ends of the table so they are not blocking the guests view.
- Weave greenery between the candlesticks.
- Add natural seasonal elements (ex: seasonal fruit, veggies, herbs, or nuts.) Display these in clusters down the table, or in a beautiful textured bowl. To add extra texture and interest cut a few pieces in half and display alongside a full piece.
- Add place settings, cutlery, glassware, and napkins.
- Light candles, pour the drinks, and enjoy the atmosphere you’ve created!
These 5 insider tips will make decorating your fall tablescape a breeze. Comment below with your favorite fall tablescape tip!