“What I love about Thanksgiving is that it’s purely about getting together with friends or family and enjoying food. It’s really for everybody, and it doesn’t matter where you’re from.”

Daniel Humm

In Canada, we celebrate Thanksgiving in October, so we have already enjoyed a turkey with stuffing, mashed potatoes and veggies and of course a slice of delicious pumpkin pie.  The menu was all very traditional, but when it came to decorating it wasn’t.  This year I was craving a subtle, elegant vibe and decided to go with white and gold Thanksgiving decor.  I have to say, it is one of my all time favorites!

Faux cream colored sunflower with white fall decor

Guess what the best part is though?  This color scheme can be taken right into the Christmas season!!!  Yes, I could swap out a few things and I would be ready to go.  I don’t know about you, but that makes me very excited!

Designing women tell all banner

Before I go any further, I should mention that this post is the October edition of The Designing Women Tell All and this month we are covering, none other than, Thanksgiving!   We are a group of designers who once a month share our knowledge and experience on anything to do with home or garden design.  At the end of this post, I will be sharing Kristy and Sheri’s posts, so be sure to check them out.

Do people decorate their houses for Thanksgiving?

Yes, they actually do and the reason why is because this is a holiday where we celebrate all that we are grateful for, and as such we invite family and friends over for a special dinner party.  This is not the time to do the bare minimum and just clean up your home, now is your chance to create an atmosphere of warmth, calm and love with your decor.

How can I decorate my house for Thanksgiving?

To make it extra special and make our guests feel how grateful we are to have them in our lives, you can decorate your home by:

  • sprucing up your front entry by adding a special welcome doormat, hanging a cheery wreath on the door, lighting lanterns with candles surrounded with fall plants and pumpkins
  • lighting some softly scented candles in your entrance or living room
  • adding natural elements like feathers, pine cones or fall leaves to a bowl on your entry table
  • placing a vase of sunflowers or other fresh flowers on your kitchen island
  • and last but not least, setting a gorgeous table with your best china, linens and stemware.
Front door with fall decor including white mums, pumpkins and sunflower wreath

Make sure your family and guests have no doubt how special you think they are!

How to decorate for Thanksgiving on a budget?

​”Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has plenty; not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.”

Charles Dickens

A turkey dinner with all the fixings can be costly, so saving money on the decor can be a real necessity.  Lucky for you, I have found lots of different ways to save when it comes to decorating and here are a few that are perfect for Thanksgiving:

  • start early by planting your own sunflowers and pumpkins so that you have a bountiful harvest to decorate your home with
  • year round visit thrift stores for tablecloths, a vintage table runner, cloth napkins, napkin rings, faux flowers and garlands, charger plates, china (especially white dishes), wine glasses, and wreath forms
  • check out dollar stores for fall decor, candles, napkins, and tablecloths.  The beautiful champagne gold pumpkins you see in my white and gold tablescape are a perfect example of what can be found at the dollar store
  • mums are inexpensive and large so even just one can make a statement at your front door 
  • try a simple diy like I did by making my own wreath.  I took an old grapevine wreath, wrapped a sunflower garland around it, added a few pumpkin picls and tied a satin bow
  • think about your Christmas decor and see what doesn’t scream Christmas but is appropriate for fall/Thanksgiving like pine cones, neutral garlands, simple gold candlesticks, gold cutlery, etc.
Sunflowers, pumpkin and mums
Pink mums with pink pumpkin
Top view of pumpkin lantern

Traditional Thanksgiving decor

​When we think of Thanksgiving, we often think of fall at the same time so autumnal colors like orange, yellow, and red are expected.  Some people intensify the fall color scheme and head towards jewel tones of burgundy and deep greens.  To achieve a traditional Thanksgiving decorating style, you would use:

  • regular orange pumpkins with corn stalks on the porch, 
  • bright fall themed pillows on sofas
  • garlands in earthy tones on the mantel
  • a colorful flower arrangement in the kitchen,
  • a tablescape consisting of an eye-catching centerpiece in fall colors, wood slices for charger plates, a faux fall leaf garland down the center with candles and mini pumpkins down the center.
Gold pumpkin lantern in tablescape

White and gold Thanksgiving decor ideas

​If you are looking for a more elegant Thanksgiving table, let me suggest using white and gold.  Not only is it easy on the eyes, it is also easy to style.  The key elements to keep it from becoming boring is to incorporate many textures and various warm gold accents.

​Tablecloths and runners

​If I had used a plain white tablecloth, this tablescape would have been so ho hum my guests would have fallen asleep when they saw it!

​Instead, I allowed the stone table to be the base and show through which gives a solid yet beautiful foundation.  Next a vintage white crocheted table runner topped with a solid narrower table runner provides dimension and interest.

Thanksgiving table decorated with white and gold decor

Table settings

​For these Thanksgiving table settings, a gold charger formed the base, topped with a vintage style ivory plate and bowl.  A crisp white cloth napkin with detailed edging and a gold “thankful” napkin ring provide the exact amount of bling needed.  

Gold charger plate with white vintage china and linen napkin with gold "thankful" napkin ring

​Placing the gold flatware in a burlap cutlery bag merges elegant elements with casual elements and allows the cutlery to shine!

White and gold table setting for Thanksgiving

​Simple stemless wine glasses with a wash of gold, keep the theme flowing without being “too much”!

​Table decor

​In the middle of the table, rather than having a colorful or elaborate Thanksgiving centerpiece, I placed a large candleholder with a white pillar candle surrounded by mini white pumpkins in a sturdy gold serving bowl.

White and gold Thanksgiving table

Trailing out on either side of the centerpiece is a faux garland made up of grapevine, simple greenery and large pale ivory sunflowers, mini sweater pumpkin picks, simple gold pots with faux daisies and twig pumpkins in them, and sleek gold candlesticks.  

The dollar store glass champagne gold pumpkins stole the show though in my eyes.  They are just the right amount of glitz in this elegant Thanksgiving dinner table.  It really is little things like these small additions that take your holiday table up to the next level.

Gold pumpkin with gold pot with twig pumpkin in it

Creating a waterfall look at the end of the table with the garland cascading over the edge, flanked by two large white lanterns with a large white mum finishes the look.

White lanterns with white mum in front of table

The setting

​In many areas, the weather is still perfect for outdoor dining at Thanksgiving.  Even in Canada, although our Thanksgiving is much earlier than the US, we were able to eat outside very comfortably.  When in doubt, keep a few cozy blankets nearby in case your guests are cold.

White and gold Thanksgiving decor on table outside

​The beautiful setting of the lake in the background with yellow fall trees was not something I could pass up because the way the sun pours in late in the day makes everything look even more beautiful!

So now that I have explained both traditional and an elegant white and gold Thanksgiving decor them, what do you think – do you prefer the white and gold or the traditional Thanksgiving table? Let me know by leaving a comment below.


​“If you are really thankful, what do you do? You share.”

 W. Clement Stone
Three sweater pumpkins

Thanksgiving is the time to share your blessings with others, so be sure to think of someone who may be sitting home alone.  Imagine how you could brighten their Thanksgiving day just by inviting them.

White and gold Thanksgiving decor on a table

Now it is time to check out the other Designing Women and see how they decorate for Thanksgiving!

Designing Women Tell All banner with photos of three women

Sheri from Savvy in the Suburbs is from Texas and owned and operated a successful interior design business for most of her adult life.  Now she is enjoying fluffing her own nest, spending time with her family – three married children and five grandchildren, and growing in her relationship with the Lord. As she joyfully enters the last season of her life, she relishes family time and believes in the old adage: God first, family second, all else third. She is enjoying the opportunity to share this truth as well as her years of design expertise and love of all things home.  This month Sheri is sharing all her tips on how to create a beautiful Thanksgiving dining room.

French farmhouse dining room

Kristy from At Home with Kristy is also from Texas, is a homebody at heart and very passionate about creating a warm & welcoming home environment for family and friends. Kristy has a BS Interior Design and has worked as an Interior Designer for 35 years specializing in Residential Interior Design. She is a planner, perfectionist, & big picture thinker, but also loves getting lost in the weeds perfecting every detail. Kristy loves sharing her knowledge and expertise to inspire, encourage and empower others.  This month Kristy is sharing an unforgettable Thanksgiving celebration with a fall harvest hayride themed kids’ table.

Fall harvest hayride childrens table

How about some winter inspiration? I have this beautiful and easy winter wreath diy that can last right through to spring. Just click this link.

Winter Wreath on modern front door with lit birch trees flanking either side

Or if you are interested in the hottest new Christmas design trends, just click here.

2023 Christmas Decor Trends with blue Christmas ornament

Or if you are looking for a more traditional Christmas front door decoration, this old world santa hat is fantastic. Just click here.

Christmas Wreath Alternative

Looking for a little retail therapy?

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Should you decide to purchase something, as an Amazon Influencer, I will earn a small commission from qualifying purchases at no extra charge to you. Earning this commission, is what assists me to continue bringing you this free content. I thank you so very much for your support!

Gold Thanksgiving napkin rings

Thankful napkin rings

Farmhouse white table runner

Rustic linen table runner

Gold candlesticks

Gold charger plate

Matte gold cutlery

Burlap cutlery holder

Gold glass pumpkin

White lanterns

Sherpa pumpkins

What do you think?

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  • Crystal
    October 15, 2023

    Love all the white and gold decor! The view is wonderful.

  • Jenna
    October 15, 2023

    I love what you did with the white and gold colors! So beautiful! And I loved the twist of having it outside!!!

    • Crystal
      October 15, 2023

      Fantastic! So happy to hear this. Thank you

  • Sheri
    October 15, 2023

    I absolutely LOVE your white and gold Thanksgiving theme! And you gave great step by step details on how to recreate the look. Great tips! And oh by the way THAT VIEW! It’s so incredibly stunning.

    • Crystal
      October 15, 2023

      Thank you so very much Sheri! Try as I might I can never steal the show from the view hahaha!!!

  • Kristy Mastrandonas
    October 15, 2023

    Oh my goodness, Crystal! Your outdoor Thanksgiving Tablescape is absolutely breathtaking…from the beautiful white and gold centerpiece and place settings to way you’ve created the pretty cascading feature at the end of the table to that fabulous view…everything is superbly styled! I also love all of your great table decorating tips and ideas! And love how you can easily transition this from Thanksgiving to Christmas with just a few switch-a-roos! Well done, my sweet friend!

    • Crystal
      October 15, 2023

      Thank you so very much Kristy! I always feel so much better when you like what I have done!!!