Host a Rustic Fall Open House Party

Fall marks the beginning of the holiday entertaining season and is also a great time to entertain outdoors, inviting over family and friends for a casual get-together before the craziness of shopping and holiday prep gets going full steam. 

Photo By: Marian Parsons, Mustard Seed Interiors

Photo By: Marian Parsons, Mustard Seed Interiors

Photo By: Marian Parsons, Mustard Seed Interiors

Photo By: Marian Parsons, Mustard Seed Interiors

Photo By: Marian Parsons, Mustard Seed Interiors

Photo By: Marian Parsons, Mustard Seed Interiors

Photo By: Marian Parsons, Mustard Seed Interiors

Photo By: Marian Parsons, Mustard Seed Interiors

Photo By: Marian Parsons, Mustard Seed Interiors

Photo By: Marian Parsons, Mustard Seed Interiors

Keep It Casual

Fall is a beautiful season for outdoor entertaining. Bring a large table out in the yard and set up a buffet for a casual pre-Thanksgiving get-together before friends scatter across the U.S. to visit family. 

Set Up a One-of-a-Kind Spread

The holiday season is stressful enough without feeling like you have to go shopping for decor for every party. Just use what you have on hand, things you love, and things that have been collected over time. Ultimately, the look created with those items will be more interesting and personal than a bunch of trendy holiday decor picked up at a store. 

Seasonal Flowers + Fruits

Fill a jar or two with seasonal flowers picked up at a local farmer's market or grocery store (or even clip some dried hydrangeas from your own yard.) Mix those with pumpkins and in-season fruits, like apples and pears, for simple but pretty table decorations. 

Mix + Match Plates

Don't worry if your guests outnumber the dishes you have in a matched set, just use plates that are in the same color family or style and it'll lend an eclectic look to your spread. Tip: Vintage luncheon plates, which are smaller than standard dinner plates, are the perfect size for children. 

A Collected-Over-Time Look

Hosting a party is a good excuse to shop your house to look for pieces that can stand in to serve food, hold napkins and flatware, or to even use as fun design elements. Don't worry about everything matching or being made for fall decorating. Look for elements that speak to the season and reference your style. What works together might surprise you!

DIY a Pedestal in a Snap

When setting up a large table, it's important to serve items at varying heights so everything is visible and easy to reach. If a cake pedestal isn't handy, turn a wide-brimmed bowl upside down and stack a plate on top. Voila! Instant pedestal. 

Get Creative With Serving Containers

Mix in a few wood slices, cutting boards, or marble pie boards to use as serving platters. Not only do these options increase the amount of serving dishes at your disposal, but they'll add a lot of visual interest.

Put Flea Market Finds to Work

An old milk crate is put to work in a new way – holding soda and water bottles for guests. A nearby container provides ice so guests can enjoy their beverages chilled if they like. With temperatures cooling off in November, icing down drinks isn't necessary, so this keeps drinks handy and does double-duty as a clever display.

Add Rustic Design Elements

Sneak in a few extra rustic touches by using old pieces in a creative way. This antique tulip bulb crate was turned upside down and becomes a perfect pedestal for serving pie and other sweet treats.

All in the Details

If store-bought food items are being served, take a minute to add a homemade detail. Candy and caramel apples get a quick personal touch with a piece of jute twine tied around the sticks.

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