8 Vintage Pieces for Your Perfectly Collected Thanksgiving Table

We're not only dreaming about that Thanksgiving turkey, we can't stop thinking about that perfect holiday tablescape, either.

As we get closer and closer to Thanksgiving, I'll admit: I've got nothing but gorgeous table settings on my mind.



©Rustic White Photography

Rustic White Photography

One of my favorite things to do for a holiday meal is mix in as many pieces of vintage decor as my tiny old table can fit. But if you're new to the vintage decorating game, you might not know exactly where to start.

Friends, I've put together my top tips for items you can look for at thrift stores and flea markets to help get you going with your own vintage tablescapes. You've got plenty of time to dress up your dining room for this year's festive soirees. Ready? Take a look.

Napkin Rings

Fun and Traditional Fall Table Setting

Fun and Traditional Fall Table Setting

Traditional table settings don’t have to be overly formal or lacking in individuality. Put a modern twist on traditional style with highly contrasted colors and classic patterns, such as botanicals or florals, in a larger scale.

©Rustic White Photography

Rustic White Photography

One of the easiest items to find and jumpstart your vintage table collection are old napkin rings. You'll often come across metal napkin rings in various shapes and sizes, like animals or other objects. If you get really lucky, you might even find an entire collection with your monogram.

Even if you can't find a full set of napkin rings, consider purchasing some different ones and creating your own collection. You could stick to a silver color scheme, use the same linen napkins and mix up each place setting with a different napkin ring to create some visual interest.

Unusual Placemats

Rattan Place Mat on Coastal Christmas Table

Rattan Place Mat on Coastal Christmas Table

Rattan place mats and a grass cloth tablecloth lend a casual, beachy feel to this coastal Christmas table setting.

Another favorite vintage table find is old placemats. Oftentimes I find rattan or wicker mats that, though mismatched, always work well together. If you find mats that are larger than what you might use for a typical place setting, consider purchasing them anyway and using them in the middle of the table underneath your serving pieces for the holiday meal.

You can also use vintage mats on buffet tables or cocktail tables to bring some variety and texture to your space.

Unique Objects as Vases

Table Topiary

Table Topiary

The dining table is set with blue plates and French Country accessories and greenery.

From: Fixer Upper

One of the easiest ways to get super creative on your table is with vintage vases. But think beyond a typical vase. This old lantern would work beautifully on a holiday table with leaves or dried flowers. You can use items such as vintage bowls for flower arrangements or even pieces such as creamers (without the top) for a small arrangement. For a fun touch, try using old shot glasses as a bud vase at each place setting.

Outside-the-Box Accessories

dog and bar - duplicate

dog and bar - duplicate

accidentally approved for MD. this is a duplicate . do not publish.

From: Kim Alexandriuk

Photo by: Photo Credit: Edward Addeo

Photo Credit: Edward Addeo

When it comes to centerpieces and objects of interest, look toward your own collections for ideas. These obelisks make a wonderful focal point on a side bar table. I have a collection of animal bookends that I've used on a holiday table (without the books!) and some 70's wooden fruit that I've spread on top of a buffet table to mix up the dishes I was serving.

No matter what you collect, you can likely find a fun way to incorporate it into your holiday table.

Serving Pieces

Simple Spring Sweets

Simple Spring Sweets

Save yourself some time and serve a few store-bought treats in addition to your favorite family recipe. Sweets get dressed up when displayed on pretty serving pieces such as vintage cake stands or saucers.

©Cheyenne Mojica Photography

Cheyenne Mojica Photography

Another easy entry point for those of you who are just starting out with vintage decor is serving pieces. If you're a baker, old cake plates and dessert plates are a fun way to dip your toes into the world of vintage. In addition to desserts, you can use these pieces for many other things such as hors d'oeuvres, rolls or side dishes such as potatoes or little cups of cranberry sauce.

Filled Apothecary Jars



You can also use a group of vintage items to set up a themed bar at your holiday gathering. These apothecary jars work beautifully for this popcorn bar, but could also be used for a candy bar, a toppings bar or even a nut bar.

Linen Napkins

Long Bread Baskets

Long Bread Baskets

Keep your breads contained in long bread baskets lined with linen napkins that will help catch crumbs and make clean-up easy. It's best to keep the bread toward the front of the table along with butter and butter knives to keep guests from reaching over taller items.

Photo by: Flynnside Out Productions

Flynnside Out Productions

You can often find sets of vintage linen napkins that can bring color to your holiday table. If you need eight or 12 napkins and are only finding sets of four, consider combining two colors together for your table. Or, if you're only finding individual napkins that you're loving, consider mixing up the table and using different napkins for each place setting.

You can also use napkins in your serving dishes such as a bread basket. I've even found some beautiful, old handkerchiefs that I've loved so much I've used them as cocktail napkins. Even if the color is not quite right, I tend to snap up vintage napkins when I find a good set in exceptional condition. You never know what color scheme you might be using on your next holiday table!

Mini Salt and Pepper Shakers



Learn how to dress up vintage salt and pepper shakers with this how-to from HGTV Magazine .

Photo by: Marko Metzinger/Studio D

Marko Metzinger/Studio D

Learn how to dress up vintage salt and pepper shakers with this how-to from HGTV Magazine .

If you're itching to get into the world of vintage table decor and are looking to start a collection, you might consider mini salt and pepper shakers. While modern tables typically have only one salt and pepper shaker, at one time these would typically be found at each place setting. You really can find some unique mini shakers at thrift stores or on eBay.

As with the napkin rings, you can either choose to stick to one type of metal, material, or theme, or you can mix things up and use a different shaker for each place setting.

Create a Vintage-Style, Mismatched Tablescape

See All Photos

Something Old + Something New

A collection of blue, white, pastel and gold plates made up of hand-me-downs and new purchases were used to create this colorful, mismatched dining room tablescape.

©Rustic White Photography

Sort Dinnerware

To successfully mix and match otherwise mismatched dinnerware, you'll need to edit what you've got. First, gather an assortment of dinner plates, salad plates, saucers and chargers, keeping only those with complementary colors. Any plates that clash with one another should be taken out of the mix.

©Rustic White Photography

Choose a Consistent Color

For proper balance, use one dominant color throughout the tablescape. In this dining room, the dominant color in the dinnerware is navy blue. Since the complement to blue is orange, antique floral plates with layered shades of orange, pink and coral are used as well-balanced accents.

©Rustic White Photography

Layer Shades of the Same Color

Designers often layer several different shades of the same color to add visual depth to a room. This process works well with a mix-and-match table setting, too. While the dominant color for the tablescape is navy blue, different shades of this same color are found in the floral patterned plates.

©Rustic White Photography

Layer Patterns

When it comes to mixing patterns on a tablescape, you can't go wrong. To use a mix of different patterns effectively, be sure to vary the scale between large, medium and small designs.

©Rustic White Photography

Use the Same Placemat

It's best to use the same placemat or charger throughout the tablescape to avoid the overall look from becoming too cluttered. Here, woven seagrass placemats were used to contrast texturally against the smooth finishes of the plates.

©Rustic White Photography

Tie In Antique Flatware

In addition to the plates and chargers, continue the aged motif throughout the tablescape with antique flatware. For a rich contrast against the blues, a set of vintage utensils with darkly stained wood and antique brass was used.

©Rustic White Photography

Choose Complementary Flowers

To coordinate floral arrangements with a mix-and-match tablescape, use flowers with colors complementary to those found in the plates, chargers and saucers.

©Rustic White Photography

Use Unexpected Objects

When it comes to centerpiece ensembles with eclectic style, consider using unexpected vases and candleholders. Here, vintage brass goblets were used to hold orange roses. A grouping of brass horse busts in the same finish adds flair.

©Rustic White Photography

8 Fall Table Settings You Can Set in Minutes

See All Photos

Modern Americana

Celebrate the season with an all-American palette of red, white and blue that features a warm, autumnal twist. To add texture, layer bright reds and blues with tablecloths, napkins and placemats made of natural materials.

©Rustic White Photography

Elegant Earth Tones

Bring an organic touch to your harvest table by layering pumpkin and mustard tones. For a textural approach, mix in woven seagrass chargers or placemats underneath ceramic dinnerware.

©Rustic White Photography

Crisp and Clean

Sometimes the less-is-more approach is best. Choose one color and a mix of creamy neutrals, then add a simple, organic accent for a seasonal touch. Here, we used an oversized silk leaf as a charger to bring a graphic element to the ensemble.

©Rustic White Photography

Traditional With a Twist

Put a modern twist on traditional style with contrasting colors and classic patterns, like large-scale botanicals or florals. Finish the look with an antiqued turkey napkin holder that's perfectly in season.

©Rustic White Photography

Classic Blue and White

One of the most popular year-round color schemes for both decorating and entertaining is blue and white. Adapt this duo for your fall table by introducing brown accents through wooden chargers, vases or candleholders.

©Rustic White Photography

A Mix of Warm and Cool

Apply creative color contrast to your fall table with a mix of warm and cool hues. To avoid a summery look, stick with faded blues with gray or brown undertones. Here, we used warm shades of tan and cream for balance.

©Rustic White Photography

Neutral Metallic

Play with sheen by layering various metallic hues. While silver and gold tones are timeless and loved by all, shades of champagne and bronze feel a bit more unique and can take on a more masculine vibe.

©Rustic White Photography

Light and Bright

For an unexpected look this season, go against the grain with non-traditional fall colors. Mix various shades of blue and white, then add depth to the look with chargers, napkins and placemats made of organic materials, like woven seagrass.

©Rustic White Photography

Make It Monochromatic

Take a tone-on-tone approach to your fall table by layering shades of the same color. To keep the overall look from becoming flat, introduce a variety of materials through glassware, textiles, vases and chargers.

©Rustic White Photography

Keep Reading

Next Up

Setting Up the Perfect Thanksgiving Table for Kids

Give little ones a place to dine, draw and more.

15 YouTube Videos to Watch for the Best Thanksgiving Table Ideas

Wow your holiday guests with these unique Thanksgiving table decor ideas straight from the depths of YouTube.

10 Hosting Essentials to Make Your Thanksgiving Table Shine

Wow your guests with a chic holiday table that's perfect for year-round use.

Quick and Easy Thanksgiving Centerpieces You Can Make in Minutes

Creating a show-stopping centerpiece for your Thanksgiving table doesn't have to be time-consuming. We have easy ideas for arrangements you can pull together on the fly.

10 Hostess Gift Ideas to Bring to Thanksgiving Dinner

Discover simple and unique gift ideas that your Thanksgiving host or hostess will love.

12 Thanksgiving Dessert Recipes That Aren't Pie

Put on your stretchy pants, and let’s get to business.

19 Thanksgiving Crafts the Kids Haven't Tried Yet

The turkey's prepped, the table's set, now it's time to get ready for those pint-sized guests. 

10 Glam Metallic Table Accessories Perfect for Your Holiday Parties

Dress up your holiday table with brass, silver and gold for a luxe look that will wow your guests.

Meet the Team

Get to know the talented writers and editors of HGTV's show and design blog. 

Go Behind the Blog

From the Archives

Take a look back at our past posts, from entertaining and design trends to up-and-coming HGTV shows.  

Read All Our Past Posts