(ARA) - Before you know it, the friends and loved ones you cherish most will join you for Thanksgiving dinner. Whether you'll be serving the traditional turkey with all the trimmings, or your signature dish, how you set the stage will be the key to making this holiday a memorable one.
That's not to say you need to go out and buy new furniture and paint the dining room for the occasion, but "A few carefully chosen pieces can make all the difference, and a good place to start is with the table," says Suzanne Wilkins, an expert on residential interior design and space planning, who works both in the private sector and as an instructor at The Art Institute of New York City.
Because Thanksgiving is a fall festival, start by putting down a yellow, orange or red tablecloth symbolic of the season, then build from there. You can find everything from seasonal place settings and centerpieces to serving dishes and serve ware. Among the many offerings are quilted leaf place mats and napkins, and plates, bowls, baking dishes and coffee mugs graced with scalloped details in brilliant shades of pomegranate, pumpkin, eggplant and lime.
Once the table is set, you can move onto ambiance. Put seasonal candles on the table, and throw a log in the fireplace, if you have one. Another decorative accent to consider is an additional place for people to sit both before and after the meal. Look for an inexpensive upholstered nook set that doubles as a storage bench. After the holidays, it can serve as a place where the family can enjoy breakfast, and the kids can do their homework. Courtesy of ARA Content.