Back to Blog

How to Set the Perfect Fall Tablescape

By TULA Contributor and Partner, Partytrick

Set a table where everyone wants to sit

Your complete autumn decor guide

The leaves are changing, the weather is cooling down, and that can only mean one thing: fall is officially here. You've heard all about PSLs and sweater weather by now, so we'll skip to the good stuff. ;) This is the time of year when we all start to get excited about Thanksgiving and all of the festivities that come with it. One of the best parts of fall is decorating your home with all sorts of fall decorations. Read on to see how to create the perfect fall table centerpiece using pumpkins, leaves, and other seasonal items.

What you need:

  • Place settings: dishes, glasses, silverware, napkins
  • Decor: table runner, candles, candlesticks, placemats, glassware
  • Florals and branches: Can be faux or natural
  • Fruit and fall vegetables

Get started

1. Pick your base

We love kraft paper - it adds an extra element of texture and a rustic and organic autumnal look. Or, choose your best neutral cloth table runner to layer on top of a linen or farm table. Just be sure to steam it or lay it out to straighten out wrinkles prior to setting up the tablescape. Always be sure to note the care instructions on specific materials. Pro tip: use a blanket for a slightly different approach.

2. Assemble the centerpiece

Assuming you’re hosting family style, start by placing your largest platters in the center of the table. Placing them on the table empty helps give you an eye for how the table will look once you fill the platters with hot food and how much space you’ll have for decor. Then, add various vases of different heights around the platters. Decorate around the vases with candlesticks and smaller decorative dishes to create a beautiful fall-inspired design.

If you aren’t hosting a family style feste, you’ll have a bit more real estate to work with for setting your fall tablescape. If your table is rectangular, consider a runner style look. If your table is round, we suggest a larger centerpiece or a grouping of three arrangements.

Pro tip: The “Rule of Threes” design principle that any series of items is most visually appealing when displayed threes. Whether setting up three candleholders, three colors, three different buckets of apples, you'll notice it looks just right when you arrange in threes.

3. Embellish with decor

Add your fall decor! Add apples throughout the center of the table. From there, fill it in other fall fruits and vegetables like pumpkins, squash, and whole stemmed carrots. Be sure to use a variety of colors and textures to create a beautiful display. Sprinkle in some large leaves or display in tall clear vases for a seasonal look.

4. Arrange each place setting

We love layers! So, start with seasonal place mats or chargers to anchor each place setting. Then add a salad and dinner plate (stacked always looks amazing!), flatware, glassware, and of course an extra large wine glass for each setting. Finish off each place setting with something pretty—we love tying herb bundles around our napkins for a little extra flair. It’s easy to do and adds a beautiful touch and even more texture and dimension.

5. Finish off with more texture

We suggest that you layer in swathes of thick ribbon throughout the centerpiece. Drop tea light candles in votives on the table to lighten things up and add some sparkle and warmth. Or, consider adding mini gourds or fall leaves to finish things off beautifully.

Take a step back. Admire your work. Embrace that fall is here and you are ready to host. And don’t forget to point out where the food is when your guests come…they just may get caught drooling over the tablescape.

For more tips on hosting your best fall gathering: