In a non-traditional year like 2020, it’s nearly impossible to imagine what it will feel like to celebrate Thanksgiving. With festivities getting pared down to just our “quaranteams” or immediate family, it’s arguably even more important than usual to bring a bit of festive spirit into your home.
Creating a space that feels resminsinct of traditional Thanksgiving decor but also takes into account the present circumstances (i.e. limited ability to shop, smaller gatherings, conservative spending, etc.) may feel like a challenge, but it’s certainly not an insurmountable one. Ahead, I’ve rounded up six easy ways to decorate for Thanksgiving this year, no matter how much time or money you have to spend.
1. Add a hint of nostalgia with a tablecloth
There’s something so delightfully traditional and nostalgic about tablecloths. Give a nod to the “good old days” with a simple linen style, or ask a family member to borrow one from their collection. I love using them for any occasion that I want to feel extra pulled together, and tossing them in the washing machine afterward makes cleaning up a breeze.
2. Create inexpensive arrangements with fall foliage
Forage fallen branches inside and showcase the autumn colors with an extra-tall arrangement—perfectly suited for a mantel or entryway table. It’s totally free, adds gorgeous texture and color, and can easily be swapped out and refreshed as needed.
3. Break out the cloth napkins
Not only are cloth napkins an environmentally-friendly choice, but they also instantly elevate any sit-down meal. You can opt to create a formal place setting with them at each person’s seat or simply keep a few stacked on your bar or coffee table if you’re having a more casual, low-key evening.
4. Dim the lights
If I’ve said it once I’ve said it a thousand times: If you want to create some ambiance, turn off your overhead lights. If your home is like mine and didn’t come equipped with dimmers, then don’t fret—you’ll just need more candles. (That’s the excuse that I use, anyway.) Tall tapers give off the best, brightest light, but feel free to mix in some hurricane glass vases or low votives for variety. The more, the merrier!
5. Use dried flowers or wheat grass as a stress-free centerpiece
This low-maintenance centerpiece can be thrown together in mere moments before dinner is served, so if this is your first time cooking a Thanksgiving dinner, it’s a perfect, low-stress option. I love the idea of bringing in family heirloom vases for this, if you have them, since it feels like a sentimental nod to the extended family that may not be able to join you in person this Thanksgiving.
6. Dine al fresco
If you live in a warmer state or plan to gather outdoors for Thanksgiving to take extra precaution, consider adding some simple garlands or twinkle lights overhead to elevate your table setting. This simple over-the-table rod by Terrain couldn’t make it easier to add seasonal decorations, and at just $68, you’ll definitely get your money’s worth when you use it again in spring and summer.