A Table of Thanks

When I was in my 20’s I discovered Sandra Lee, a celebrity chef and founder of Semi-Homemade, a concept and virtual empire which outlined the premise that anyone can entertain and decorate within their own budget of both time and money.  “Tablescapes” as Sandra refers to them, or beautiful themed table settings, are one of the things Sandra Lee does best.

I have learned a lot from her and in the last ten years, I’ve created more pretty and fun table settings than I can count.  It’s a wonderful and inexpensive way to make a special occasion even more memorable.

This year, I created at table setting for Thanksgiving that is simple and affordable using virtually all items from the dollar store!

If I do say so myself, the table turned out to be really stunning.  The pieces are neutral so they could be used for pretty much any occasion, in fact, I think they’d transfer nicely for use for New Year’s brunch.

I simply walked around Dollar Tree (my favorite dollar store that never lets me down), for about an hour, picking up this and that to come up with my table.   The only items I did not buy at Dollar Tree are the table cloth (I invested in a nice, huge white canvas cloth from Target for $20), and the pieces of felt I used for placemats (which were 39 cents each at Michael’s).  I even bought the silverware at dollar tree for 50 cents each!

Let’s start with the place settings.  I simply placed a piece of felt at each setting like a place mat, topped it with a white plate with a silver lining, and then a cream colored satin napkin.  I then typed up some of my favorite short quotes about thankfulness, printed them out, and inserted them into dollar store frames.  Each guest can take their framed quote home with them.


You could use these picture frames as place cards and pick out a special quote for each of your guests.

I simply tied the cutlery together with a length of ribbon.  Use a loose knot so your guests don’t have to fumble with untying them.


I found these darling little bottles of sparkling cider and placed them next to a gold rimmed wine glass, overturned and tied with ribbon.


For my centerpiece, I used three vases filled with rocks, a candle, and some sticks sprayed with gold paint, all set atop some square mirrors.  My table is set for six, so I’d suggest using four of these for a table of eight.


I think anyone would feel at home sitting down to this setting.


Here are a couple of pictures of it all together.



This table took about an hour and a half to shop for and about another hour to put together.  I actually bought enough items for a setting of eight and that totaled about eighty dollars for everything down to the silverware.

I know that it may seem like a huge feat to cook that huge meal AND set a beautiful table, but putting in a couple of extra hours a few days before Thanksgiving will really give your delicious dinner the beautiful platform it deserves.

Not to mention a festive place for the beautiful friends and family you sit down to share it with.

Whether you have one person or many with whom to share your feast, may you remember the worth of love, friendship, and family this holiday.







  1. This is beautiful! I especially love the quotes, and it is all so pretty and festive.

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