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Gilded Tablescape for Fall Holiday Entertaining

Hello Friends!  Welcome to a special week of holiday entertaining organized by the very talented Lory who blogs at Designthusiasm. She invited me to participate in Styled and Set, a Holiday Entertaining Blog Tour. All week you’ll enjoy creative inspiration from a variety of amazing bloggers. I hope you’ll find ideas for your own plans for fall holiday entertaining. I gave careful consideration when deciding what to share with you … and after much deliberation I chose a Gilded Tablescape for fall and Thanksgiving. (This post contains affiliate links.)

Gilded Tablescape with Pears


The inspiration for my gilded tablescape came from my set of vintage China. I acquired it in college so it’s been through many holidays and special occasions with my family.

Gilded Tablescape Set with Red Pears


Shortly after college, I remember taking a piece of my vintage Meito China (in the Toledo pattern) to the department store to find placemats and napkins, thinking I’d be stuck with white or gold. But the designer showed me there were many colors I could pull out from my China, like the olive green, ruby red, or yellow. And that moment was an eye-opener for me when it came to decorating and working with colors.

Vintage Toledo Meito China


And so, my gilded tablescape features sparkly gold votives, white candlesticks, gold-stemmed wine glasses, white napkins, gold flatware by Colin Cowie, and beautiful ruby red pears. All laid out on a tablecloth that’s actually a matelasse coverlet for a bed.

Gilded Tablescape with Vintage Meito China and Red Pears


I love the flicker of candle flames against gilded pieces.

Gold and Sparkly Candleholders


Gold and Sparkly Candleholders


A few twists of ribbon run down the center of the table, lending softness to the metallics.

Gold and Sparkly Candleholders


So why all the fuss over a table setting?  I enjoy making holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas special for my family. My mother always planned her holiday table settings and even as a kid, I enjoyed her special touches. She always set the table the day before the big event. She wanted to take her time and not be rushed.

Gilded Tablescape for Holiday Entertaining


My mother was with me that day long ago when I took a piece of my vintage China to the store looking for napkins and placemats. This will be my first Thanksgiving and Christmas without her. But she’s in my heart and never far away.

Gilded Tablescape for Holiday Entertaining


An important part of holiday entertaining is to include something memorable. This year I made “thankful books” for each person. I decorated plain, empty journals from the craft store and wrote each person’s name with a liquid gold pen. A gold-studded ribbon adds a touch of softness.

Thankful Books as Placecards


Inside, I wrote a note to each person, telling them what I love and admire about them. The rest of the pages are for them to fill throughout the year, jotting down what they’re thankful for. On a day when they’re feeling blue, they can read the notes and hopefully find their spirits lifted.

Thankful Books to Make for Thanksgiving Dinner


In the corner of my dining room, I’ve set up a small bar area.

Gilded Tablescape with Pears


I like having nearby surfaces for food and drinks so the hostess (me) doesn’t have to keep getting up to go fetch something from the kitchen.

Thanksgiving Buffet


On the buffet are yummy pumpkin bread rolls; I found the recipe at Handle the Heat.

Pumpkin Bread Rolls


Their little stems are pieces of pecans. Cute, and fairly easy to make.

Pumpkin Bread Rolls


Pears and grapes also take up space on the buffet. My family likes to snack a bit while dinner is being made and I’d rather have them grab a piece of fruit than crackers or other not-so-good-for-you munchies.

Tier of Pears


And of course, it’s not Thanksgiving without pumpkin pie made from scratch.

Pumpkin Pie for Thanksgiving Dinner


I hope you enjoyed my gilded tablescape and found a few ideas for your own holiday entertaining.  I’m anxious to have my family over to enjoy the new memories we’ll make.

Gilded Tablescape for Holiday Entertaining

I’d love to hear some of your family traditions that help make the holiday seasons memorable!

Be sure to visit the rest of the Set and Styled bloggers below. You’ll find plenty of eye candy and inspiring ideas.



Town and Country Living






Sand and Sisal



Zevy Joy



Life on Virginia Street



Design, Dining and Diapers



If you missed Monday’s posts:

Holiday Entertaining Blog Tour | Day 1

Designthusiasm | French Country Cottage | Cedar Hill Farmhouse
Kelley Nan | Bless’er House | Maison de Pax

Coming Wednesday:

Decor Gold Designs | So Much Better With Age | My Soulful Home
ZDesign At Home | Randi Garrett Design | Ella Claire

Coming Thursday:

StoneGable | The Enchanted Home | Savvy Southern Style
Shabbyfufu | On Sutton Place | Maison Decor

Coming Friday:

Sunny Side Up | Finding Home Farms | The Wood Grain Cottage
Setting for Four | Becky Cunningham

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  1. Love the gold guilded tablescape Jennifer!!!…and then see that beautiful pop of red!….The vintage china is exquisite….love that you leave a note at each setting telling them how special they are to you….and I am so sorry about the loss of your mother…This year will certainly be a little bittersweet for you.

  2. Jennifer your table is gorgeous! I’m all about the gold and the touches of red are so rich! Love your tips and that notebook is such a great idea!

  3. Jennifer, your table setting is exquisite! I love your beautiful China! I love the sparkle and shine of your gilded pieces. The notebooks are precious and so sweet! I’m sure your children will cherish them forever. The perfect touch for a Thanksgiving table. Everything looks so inviting.

  4. This series has been fun. I love the variations of your table. The red pears pop on the china, perfect. I remember the first time I realized I could grab colors from piece to decorate my rooms. I LOVE doing that very much. It’s fun mixing patterns too.


  5. Jennifer,

    What a beautiful post! I always love your table settings but this one really speaks my language with vintage plates and all that gilding… 🙂 It’s a lovely thought that your mom will be with you at your table in some way, through the memory of your dishes and your thankful booklets are so heartwarming, as well. I’m sure it will be a wonderful holiday!


  6. Such a lovely table, Jennifer!! I really love the red pears and red grapes together with the green pears for pops of color throughout your table! Happy Thanksgiving!

  7. Jennifer what a beautiful table and post! I love your pretty gilded china and the memorable touches you added to this elegant setting, gorgeous as always!

  8. I’m such a sucker for gold! This is so beautiful! I really love your idea of writing a note to each guest! I’ll be using that sentimental idea this year! Thank you for the inspiration! xo

  9. Jennifer – so sparkly & beautiful!! I love all the gold touches. I also I like to take my time and enjoy setting a beautiful table. It is kinda of a gift to ourselves & our guests to slow down and enjoy the beauty of the season. Hope you get to slow down a bit this holiday season and enjoy all the beauty you create.