Dramatic Thanksgiving Table Setting
Todd Fiscus, a fixture on the Dallas event scene, nods to tradition but gives it a kick with a rich color scheme and adorable extra guests. “I found squirrel place card holders—I love them—and it snowballed from there,” Todd says.
He chose a black-and-lavender color scheme to give his Thanksgiving table more drama. No matter the food or style of the event, Todd swears by printed menu cards and place cards to dress up any occasion. But his number one holiday tip: Stress less about the details, and put more energy into the people. “Thanksgiving is about the people you love, not what you eat. Serve whatever you’re great at preparing—be it pizza or turkey. Just do it with love, and everybody will enjoy it!”
Table: antique from Joseph Minton; josephminton.com.
Side chairs: Louis Ghost Chairs in black by Kartell, available through All Modern; allmodern.com.
Chandelier: antique from Ann Koerner Antiques, annkoerner.com or 504/899-2664 for more information.
Add Black for Big Impact
Use a black place mat, napkin, and charger, but lighten the look with a white dinner plate. For a more traditional Thanksgiving color, try linens in chocolate brown.
Glass chargers: For a similar look, try Gold Rimmed Charger Plate from JAF GIFTS; jafgifts.com.
Linens: Pintuck Solid place mats and napkins in black by Pier 1 Imports; pier1imports.com.
China: Formal Affair by Lauren by Ralph Lauren, available through Macy’s; macys.com.
Knives, candelabras, and squirrel and acorn place card holders: by Vagabond House; vagabondhouse.com.
Place cards and menu cards: Missing Q Press; missingqpress.com or 214/673-8857.
Give Guests a Preview
Elegant letterpress menu cards add a nice finishing touch to the place setting and tell guests what yummy dishes are coming. Personalized, they will become mementos of the event for everyone to take home.
Combine Colors and Textures
Purple rex begonia leaves add a simple flourish and help tie the colors together. Todd added pewter leaves for interest around the table.
Arrange a Lush Centerpiece
Use a mix of French lavender, chive blossoms, anemones, grape hyacinths, roses, and rex begonia leaves to create a bouquet in varying shades of purple and pink. If you’re nervous about arranging an elaborate bouquet, Todd suggests finding an assortment of vessels that look good holding one flower each and then clustering them together.
Vases: Kaspar Vase in Slate Grey from The Import Collection; importcollection.com.
Choose a Charming Mascot
Provide a bit of whimsy to your gathering with a cute little critter. Pewter place card holders paired with letterpress cards pay homage to the humble squirrel.
Repeat as Necessary
Rectangular tables scream for repetition. Todd used four arrangements and two dramatic silver antler candelabras to complete his look.
Select Something Large and Something Small
The best-looking tables mix up the scale. Choose something big for dramatic impact, and finish with something small, such as these little votives. Success is in the details.
Candles: Root 12-inch Black Taper Candles, from Sample House & Candle Shop; samplehouseonline.com.
Give a Parting Gift
Send each guest home with a token of your gratitude. Todd treats guests to scented candles in beribboned black boxes. The fun squirrel card reminds guests of his mascot and the wonderful meal they shared.
Candles (in black boxes): 2-ounce candle from the Signature Collection by D.L. & Co.; dlcompany.com.