Beautiful Neutral Thanksgiving Tablescape

A beautiful neutral Thanksgiving tablescape for dinner, with creamy white, gray, tan and lots of texture. Pampas grass and fresh flowers combine to create a gorgeous centerpiece for a long table. Use these ideas for the holiday or an elegant fall dinner party.

Thanksgiving tablescape for fall

Neutral Thanksgiving tablescape ideas

Every year I try to create new Thanksgiving ideas to inspire you to host and entertain. This year’s design is gorgeous for the holiday and works for a fall dinner party too.

This neutral table decoration combines modern, traditional, and texture into layers of beautiful details. The neutral tones make the food pop with color when it’s served on the table family-style.

I’ve covered every element of setting a Thanksgiving dinner table from place settings to fall centerpiece ideas to food presentation, and more.

neutral Thanksgiving tablescape
neutral fall table setting

Gorgeous fall tablescape

These fall table setting ideas work for Thanksgiving or a soup dinner party as it incorporates autumn tones, bowls, and cozy elements.

Let’s talk tabletop details. I started with our long farmhouse dining table and kept it uncovered. The rustic wood adds warmth and charm to this neutral table setting.

Next, I added a macrame table runner to add texture and break up the broad expanse of the table. It will also be a great padding to sit hot dishes on when we serve dinner.

beautiful Thanksgiving table setting

Place settings

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The key to creating beautiful place settings for dinner tables is to layer the fundamental elements. Things like a place mat, dinner plate, dessert or salad plate, and a soup or salad bowl.

I started with the fantastic leather place mats. They inspired the direction for the rest of the table. Mine are from Target but these are similar, but a little darker.

This is the cream colored dish set I use and I absolutely love how they look and feel. The gray plates are from Target but here’s a gray set that is similar and also has that matte finish.

Add details

Add lucky wishbones to the table and let guests make a wish and pull them apart at the end of the meal. These are one of my favorite Thanksgiving traditions and you’ll see them in most Thanksgiving tablescapes I’ve done.

Go an extra step and make conversation ribbons with them. You can use paper strips instead of the ribbons too.

To round out the setting add some interesting glasses and utensils. I’m known to collect pretty glasses so I added some of those here. And I am in love with this brushed gold flatware set that’s designed like my black set

leather place card

Place cards

Next, add interest with casual place cards that incorporate a natural element.

  • Here I purchased a thin piece of crafting leather and cut it into rectangle strips. I cut a notch into one end to give it a flag effect.
  • You can use a white or silver sharpie marker to write guests names on the leather.
  • Finally, use a sharp craft knife to cut a small slit into the leather strip. Slide it onto a single strand of wheat and lay it casually across the place setting.
fall centerpiece, pampas grass in white vase

Fall centerpiece

You won’t find pumpkins on this neutral Thanksgiving table setting. But you will find simple elegant bouquets of dried pampas grasses and a few fresh flowers tucked in.

I’m crazy about this dried grasses trend. They’re the epitome of how beautiful nature can be, even when it’s not colorful flowers.

  • Add two vases to a long farm table instead of one. That way the centerpieces balance out the table length.
  • You can purchase a single fall flower bouquet and divide it among two vases.
  • Fill the majority of the vase with freshly cut or dried pampas grass. There are lots of varieties including large fluffy heads, and small feathery plumes.

PARTY TIP: Our neighborhood has lots of pampas grass growing in common areas. I drive around and cut a few stalks from several different locations so as not to disrupt the look of any of them. Of course you could always plant your own too!

Thanksgiving wishbones

More Thanksgiving table settings

Thanksgiving table with turkey

Easy dinner menu

It’s time to talk turkey, and all the trimmings! Here’s a hassle-free solution for first time hosts, super busy time-crunched hosts, or anyone who doesn’t want to cook for 2 days straight. 

This Farmhouse Feast was all provided by Bob Evans Restaurant and it makes the easiest Thanksgiving dinner to prepare. It serves 8-10 people.

Here’s the list of items included:

This holiday meal is packed cold. It comes with a complete set of heating instructions and only takes about two hours for everything to be ready to eat. Delivery is available at select stores, or you can order ahead for pickup.

Thanksgiving turkey on platter

Different Thanksgiving dinner ideas

Have you ever ordered your holiday meal? We’ve done it a few times over the years and I have to say it provides a nice break from cooking. It’s a great idea for Friendsgiving, or gatherings you have before or after the holiday.

You know what else would be an awesome idea? If you purchased a meal for a family in need! 

Restaurants know how important it is to share holiday meals with family and friends. And they’ve made it easy to do so.

Thanksgiving table setting with food

How to serve Thanksgiving dinner

If you have the room to do it, serve Thanksgiving food on the table in traditional family-style. Just remove the centerpiece vases from the table and place them on the buffet or elsewhere. Then place the food down the center.

If you’re table is smaller you can always set up the food on a buffet table. Start with the turkey and ham and place the side dishes after that. Rolls are last or they can be passed around the dinner table.

Prepare a dessert buffet (see below) separate from the savory dishes. Add a hot pot of coffee or cider with it.

dinner table with food
easiest Thanksgiving dinner ideas

Food presentation ideas

Here are my best tips for dressing up the food you cooked or ordered, so it looks like homemade.

  • Plate the turkey and ham on platters and surround them with herbs and fruit. Use sage, rosemary, bay leaves, and thyme. Fruits like kumquats, figs, orange slices and cranberries are perfect seasonal picks.
  • Sprinkle some chopped parsley on top of the corn.
  • Add a few sprigs of thyme on top of the macaroni and cheese.
  • Dressing gets a color boost with sage leaves and pomegranate arils.
  • Drizzle some melted butter over the mashed potatoes and sprinkle with snipped chives.
  • Use a small grater to shave some orange peel over the cranberry relish. Pop in some fresh mint to finish it off.
Thanksgiving pie table
pies on table

Dessert table

Set up a pie table or Thanksgiving dessert buffet with the pies and pumpkin bread. Provide whipped cream and ice cream if you like. Set up a coffee bar or other drinks to go with it.

These pies are ready to eat but we like to heat them in the oven at 350 degrees for about 30-40 minutes. That way they’re hot with that fresh-baked taste.

how to pack Thanksgiving leftovers

Thanksgiving leftovers

Provide some take-out boxes and bags so guests can take home extra food. This turkey fried rice is great for lunch using leftover turkey!

I like the Kraft brown containers because they’re biodegradable and they look nice on the table. Provide parchment paper or wax paper to lay down so the food moisture doesn’t soak through.

See how easy Thanksgiving dinner can be? Get more Thanksgiving ideas on Pinterest.

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