Light up the table. “Candles are great,” said O'Shields. “If you’re going to go with pillars, I like to do more than just one set. It’s nice if you can kind of repeat them all the way down the table and do them in a little cluster. If you don’t have candleholders, you can hollow out the inside of a small pumpkin and use that as your holder. That would look great going all the way down the center of a table.”
Sharon Kleinman of Transition by Sharon Kleinman advises bringing the outside indoors. “I like to take to autumn leaves and scatter them down the table,” she said. “A friend and I baked a cornucopia and shellacked it and filled it with vegetables. I also like to tie napkins with different things like raffia or a ribbon and add a flower to it.”
Another designer who incorporates foliage is Sallie Kjos, of Grey Hunt Interiors in South Riding. “One thing you do is gather fresh leaves and press them in wax paper so that they are preserved and flat,” she said. “When you are setting the Thanksgiving table, put the platter down — without the turkey — and place the leaves around it to make a decorative border. You can also do that around the dinner plates. It’s easy to do and it’s free, but it’s very festive and looks almost like a placemat.