A Rustic Modern Thanksgiving.

Welcome to Thanksgiving 2012. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year. It’s really the best. Non-denominational, all encompassing, it has a great message and its fun. Every year, I shoot my table on actual Thanksgiving day. That’s annoying… I have to stop cooking to take photos and write a blog post, plus real life means I’m seating ten + people on my table, and that I must use a tablecloth with that delicate rosewood tabletop. But this year, I enlisted Ashlina, The Decorista, and we styled up a fake Thanksgiving. I’ve been calling it Fake Thanksgiving all week, but in reality, it’s so easy, it could be real Thanksgiving for a lot of you. Just add a tablecloth and it’s real Thanksgiving for me.

Let me break it down for you. My “fancy” plates are really fancy, but I wanted to do something different this year. Last year, I used a neon orange tablecloth with Versace plates. See it HERE. This time, I had this direction in mind: rustic, minimal elegant, simple but not farm-y. And this is what Ashlina and I came up with. The thing about this table is that almost everything is inexpensive. Nothing is precious. I purposely wanted to use easily accessible products. I went back and forth with salad plates for two days, texting photos to Ashlina, Jenny and Christine. Then I decided, the simpler the better and scrapped them all. I used grocery store flowers, and made my idea of a modern cornucopia for an off-center centerpiece using fresh fruits and vegetables. The off-center was key, because such a tall and big cluster of things in the middle of the table looked really stupid, and as Jenny said last week- blocked views and took up the space for FOOD! I was THIS CLOSE to cooking an actual turkey for the photoshoot. THIS CLOSE. But instead I used more fresh veggies and flowers to represent the food. I wanted to make it look like Thanksgiving without being literal about it.

The stoneware like plates are from West Elm, they were on sale for $5 each. The wicker placemats are from Crate & Barrel. The black linen napkins I bought in bulk when The Conran Shop closed a store. The goldware I have had for a while – its available HERE, black glasses are vintage. Knives are by Berti. We pulled a striped stool by Made Goods up to the table for extra seating or the stray serving piece. I’m leaving it there from now on, it’s SO USEFUL!

I used the artichokes, persimmons(my new favorite prop fruits)  and baby apples to inform the floral color palate. The peach carnations are in a navy bowl I actually threw. Ashlina insisted on it and she was so right. The white carnations beside each place setting are in the DIY marbled chaser glasses from earlier this year.  I decided to add those because of the off center centerpiece. Why do carnations have such a bad rap? They are fragrant and beautiful and hold up so well!

Can you guess the DIY? Of course you can, it’s the napkin rings of course! I will post a tutorial, but they are pretty self explanatory. (Use sculpey to shape napkin rings, bake on 325 for 10 minutes.) Cookie and I made them. It’s a very easy activity to do with children. And they love it. I loved them too, because they leant an edge to the rustic placemat. They were also really easy to do, and free since I owned all the Sculpey from the Rue photo shoot. Each one is different and they definitely look handmade- but NOT homemade. If you get my drift: They look elegant and handmade, but not like junk.

The salt and pepper shaker are by Jonathan Adler, and they are so ME that I’ve actually been gifted them twice! Once by Albertina!  The gold glassware is vintage and it’s Ashlina’s. The three tiered piece is from the gift show, the sterling pitcher was a wedding gift.

Behind the table, you can see that I set the bar up on the sofa table. I have various places that I like to set the bar up on, but I’ve found that leaving drinks just out of reach (the sofa table is kind of like a dining server too… although I serve family style on the table, and buffet on the big window sills) is easiest. Plus I usually sit in the seat between the table and the sofa table, so I can facilitate  pouring. Easy access to ice buckets and beverages. Things that are cluttering up the table can quickly be moved by me right off.

The masculinity of the bar with the Mies van der Rohe chairs really does it for me. These chairs can be pulled to the dining table as well for extra seating.

Imagine a turkey where the berries are.

We did an adorable DIY with Cookie for the kid’s table, I’ll post it separately.

And HAPPY THANKSGIVING from Sketch42 & The Decorista! 

All photos by me, styling by Nicole & Ashlina.  

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  1. bravo,ladies!! when’s dinner?

  2. grace says:

    it looks great!!!
    love those black glasses, want to snatch them!

  3. Loveee all the details! Great job ladies!

  4. Looks gorgeous. Love the unexpected mix of black and white. X

  5. it looks awesome. not over done and nothing too fancy. i am totally going to do a fake thanksgiving too!
    mostly bc we are eating at my moms. but i want to make a pretty table dammit!

  6. love to see my favorites collaborate! xo.

  7. Lauren says:

    I want your seat cushions!

  8. mmish says:

    looks awesome i love the vibe! great job!

  9. Marielle says:

    I love everything about this! the veggies as center pieces, and the individual flower vases! so cute!! not to mention those little saltshakers ( did u purposely try to match them to that side table? lol)

  10. Marielle says:

    and of course the napkin rings! most importantly..

  11. First off…beautiful table!! Wao, I love it all. In love with the DIY napkins. I’m totally copying that for another time. I agree carnations are pretty cool…they look so full always and are cheap and add great color. I use the pink ones often. That is so funny that you had the salt and pepper shakers already!! ha! Well its great for big dinners because you can have a set at each end of the table! happy thanksgiving to you and your beautiful family!


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