Looking for beautiful fall table setting ideas on a budget? From table centerpieces to place settings, colour combinations and more, these simple decorating ideas make fall entertaining a joy.
Enjoying the fall season? I love decorating this time of year, especially when it comes to creating pretty tablescapes. Whether we’re hosting a small gathering or inviting the whole family over for Thanksgiving dinner, my approach to setting the fall table is relaxed and budget-friendly.
Over the years, I’ve shared many fall table setting ideas in various styles. Would it surprise you to hear that I basically followed the same process to create each one?
If you’re a bit lost when it comes to decorating your fall table, this guide will walk you through the steps. I encourage you to celebrate this gorgeous season and the abundance it has to offer. Let the hosting begin!
Start with the Basics
If you don’t already have some table setting essentials, I suggest starting there. Stock up on sets of basic white plates, flatware and glassware.
If the budget allows, go one step further and add neutral chargers and linen napkins too.
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For both of these fall table settings, I began with identical white dishes, gold-trimmed flatware and crystal wine glasses. I also used the same wicker chargers and striped linen napkins.
As you can see, they’re a good jumping off point for any tablescape.
Add a Table Centerpiece
Every fall table setting should include some sort of centerpiece, big or small. Here’s where you can start to create the overall look and feel of your table using seasonal items and colours.
For this tablescape, I created a pumpkin centerpiece using a wooden box from the thrift shop. A simple coat of paint, along with some pumpkins and gourds, and I had the casual fall vibe I was going for.
Another easy and inexpensive way to put together a table centerpiece is using flowers and foliage from your yard. Fall stems from the grocery store or faux fall florals are good options too.
I used burgundy mums, limelight hydrangeas and spirea for this fall arrangement. I also mixed in a bit of faux eucalyptus for colour variation and texture.
Probably the simplest way to create a table centerpiece is grouping candlesticks together. I love how they add a bit of height to this french farmhouse fall tablescape without taking up too much space.
Of course, candlelight is one of the best ways to create ambiance at the table. Quite often I use a mix of plain white taper candles, votives and tea lights.
Use What You Have
Once you have your foundation in place, it’s time to shop your home. Look through your cupboards and ask yourself: How can I decorate my fall table?
- What do I have that could add a bit of texture?
- How can I make my table cozy?
- What colours do I want to introduce or build on?
Think outside the box and use items in unexpected ways.
For instance, these small vintage green glasses easily became tea light holders. Mixed with the white mercury votives, they added a beautiful glow to this eclectic fall table.
Do you have an oversized chunky scarf that can be used as a table runner? What about a wood serving board that could hold pillar candles and acorns? Velvet ribbon that could dress up plain napkins? There are so many simple fall table setting ideas!
Add layers until your table is both functional and beautiful.
Thrifted Fall Table Decor
Not finding what you need? For most of my table settings, I pick up at least one item from the thrift shop.
Why? Shopping for secondhand decor is not only budget-friendly, but also a great way to ensure your table setting is unique. I still love these moody blue tumblers I picked up to decorate our Thanksgiving table years ago.
Be sure to check out my thrift store shopping and styling guide for tips.
Display Seasonal Treats
One of my favourite (and tasty ways) to dress up a fall table is using seasonal produce and baked goods. Nothing says fall like delicious apple pie, right?!
Trays, cake stands, pretty bowls, jars and other decorative dishes are a lovely way to elevate your food.
Your guests will love and appreciate these details.
FALL TABLE Setting Basics
To create your own simple fall table setting on a budget:
- Stock up on essentials to create a foundation.
- Put together a centerpiece.
- Add dishes and decor for function, style and mood.
- Display seasonal treats.
Most importantly, be flexible and embrace the creative process!
More Fall Entertaining Ideas
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Awesome table setting tips! Yes – vintage glasses can be used for many purposes – including tea light holders! Love this idea!