Thanksgiving Home for the Holidays Mode

Places In The Home is in full-on Thanksgiving Home for the Holidays mode.

Pre-planning broadens the window of time between Halloween and turkey day, and although I’ve pre-planned the stuffing out of my Thanksgiving decorating, time is tight.

Here is the extent of my Halloween decorating.

halloween-pumpkin-gifKitchen Ghosts on Tumblr

All things in full-on Thanksgiving Home for the Holidays mode slides right into the home for the holidays motif.

A play on words World Series style.

home for the holidays mode

I love planning the Thanksgiving tablescape, sideboard decor, scrumptious sides and delicious holiday desserts.

Searching for lovely tabletop finds that capture the essence of the holiday rivals that of decor and menu planning, designing and developing.


I’m seriously considering setting a place at our Thanksgiving table for the guys and gals of USPS, UPS and FedEx that serve our neighborhood route.

We see them more than some of the family members who will be breaking holiday bread with us, and they come bearing parcels and packages.

The Places In The Home Thanksgiving table is being set with a trio of china patterns.

Starring as the simple yet elegant dinner plate set is a simple white stoneware dinner plate with a gold rim from Dollar Tree.

White Stoneware Plates with Gold Rims, 8 in.

White Stoneware Dinner Plates with Gold Rims

Autumn by Lenox makes a first time appearance to the Places In the Home Thanksgiving table compliments of my brother.


The ex-wife left, the Lenox china did not.

Holiday desserts will be served on vintage ironstone dessert plates of unknown pattern.

Today’s Home for the Holidays inspiration gallery features Thanksgiving dishes of traditional and new-traditional pattern and color combinations for your holiday tablescape consideration.


Plymouth Gate ||  Ardencroft || Friendly Village
Harvest Acorn  ||  Alfred Meakin  ||  Friendly Village Pitcher
Painted Paisley || Plymouth Woodland  ||  Pumpkin Dish

As far as I’m concerned, the holidays have arrived.

Places In The Home is in full-on holiday mode, and with that the holiday show and tell begins.

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Lovely, Delicious and Holiday Spring Things

 These lovely, delicious and holiday spring things on a Good Friday offer a glimpse into the Places In The Home Easter holiday celebration.

garlic roasted carrots

Garlic Roasted Carrots.

Our Easter dinner table staple.

malted coconut cake

Malted Coconut Cake from Country Living Magazine.


Malted Coconut Cake for Easter from the Places In The Home test kitchen.

decorative cabbage

Artificial cabbage head decorations will become place card holders.


Seersucker napkins from Food52 make a seasonal debut into the spring tablescape rotation.


A Shepherdess Watering Her Flock by Luigi Chialiva (1842-1914)  {{PD-US}}  is a favorite painting and a favorite subject.

lamb statue

Gold-rimmed china, crystal and blooming wisteria for optimum serving, color and fragrance wow factor.

The entire dining room is filled with the sweet aroma of wisteria.

The fragrance notes should settle to a light floral scent for Sunday’s Easter dinner setting.

lovely, delicious and holiday spring things

Dave the Builder and I hope you and yours enjoy this lovely, delicious and holiday spring things Easter weekend.

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Halloween Not So Haunted House Favorites: Halloween Decorating Ideas

The flicker and glow from jack-o-lanterns, skull sconces and Halloween decorating ideas tricked out in Halloween spooktacular fashion will illuminate the evening and catch the eye of the costumed faithful.

skull-sconceSkull Wall Sconce from Moonshine Lamp on Etsy

Halloween decorating has taken on a life all its own in recent years.

Decoristas leave no moss covered stone unturned, no craft store unshopped, and no Halloween Pinterest board or Instagram account unseen in search and shop for the ultimate Halloween decor ideas.

flying-monkey“Fly, Fly, Fly.”  

I’m a traditional old soul at heart when it comes to Halloween decorations.

We keep the scarefest very G-rated as not to spook the little ones.

The most frightening thing at our house is the amount of calories in the bowls and bowls of candy.


In the vein of delight over freight, this Halloween decoration DIY is share worthy.

tissue paper bells ghoulsCountry Living

Construction-paper eyes and mouths glued onto white tissue-paper bells and then draped with cheesecloth brings forth a ghostly ghoul gang.


Black and orange rules the color palette, Monster Mash is the first tune on the Halloween playlist, and I’ve been known to break out an old pair of men’s cowboy boots, jeans, flannel shirt and stacks of yesterday’s news (0ld newspapers) creating a wicked good cowboy to help me pass out candy.

Speaking of haunting hits- here’s a few of the Places In The Home Halloween house favorites.

If your ideas of Halloween pumpkin decorating finds you in the no carve pumpkin zone, fret or fright not.


Invent your very own throwback Halloween hashtag #TBH and channel decoupage days of basket purses and vintage milk cans past.

Remember these purses?

Earliest 1958 Caro-Nan signature penny wood purse Made for Vogue StoresEarliest 1958 Caro-Nan signature penny wood purse Made for Vogue Stores

Spray painted leaves, printables, and/or old photos – all great choices to decorate a no carve pumpkin with.


The Graphics Fairy



The Graphics Fairy

Glitter stickers, acrylic paint and a decorative furniture or curtain finial lend a designer touch and signature style to a Halloween pumpkin.


Stylish decorations don’t have to expensive to be impressive.

Create fab-BOO-lous Halloween centerpiece magic with a couple of dollar store feather boas, a witches hat, and a rhinestone pin.


You can get more bang for your harvest and Thanksgiving decorating buck by not carving the pumpkin and simply surrounding it with wow factor embellishments.


Mingle twinkle lights in and around the feather boas for mood lighting.

Wrap average party paper cups in high Halloween style with ribbon in your favorite designer pattern and color.


I like using fabric for tablecloths, table runners, and table skirting.

Velvet and lace add an elegant, creepy edge to the festivities.

Stretch Panne Velvet Velour Red FabricStretch Panne Velvet Velour Red Fabric

Telio Amelia Lace Black FabricTelio Amelia Lace Black Fabric

I stock up on pillar candles and dollar store glass containers and cylinder vases for my Halloween tablescapes.

glass hurricane

Glitter, black beans, candy corn or water dyed with food coloring make great filler choices.


This “may I give you a hand?” serving bowl from Target would make a fun centerpiece anchor.


Another dollar store run for Spanish moss, red apples and glow-in-the-dark insects, and you’re set.


Battery-operated LED votive candles produce the perfect lighting for pathway luminaries.

Safety first always, and this option is a safe alternative to traditional wick candles.

black-red-wax-drip-pillar-candlesI hope one or more of these Halloween decorating ideas offers inspiration for your Halloween haunted or not so haunted house soiree.

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From Coast to Coast: Seafood Cuisine of Summer

From sea to shining sea-coast to coast, summer is a prime season and reason for hosting a tasty boiled, steamed, or fried seafood cuisine of summer night dinner.


Fish Camp 8 in. Enamelware Round Sandwich Plates (Set of 4)

Lobster, crab, gulf shrimp, clams, sea scallops, mussels cod, haddock are in East coast season.


New England Clambake

Is anyone else thinking about the song, “Clambake” from the Elvis Presley movie of the same name?

Clambake, gonna have a clambake!

Happy As A Clam Two Tiered Server

Happy As A Clam Two Tiered Server

Good tunes frame a good time.

Seafood Cuisine of Summer

In keeping with the keep it summer simple rule of summer entertaining, I like the versatility a casual with an elegant twist style brings to the table or beach blanket.


Keep the look simple and keep the guests guessing what decorating and entertaining surprise you’ll pull out of your beach bag of tricks.


Building on a theme takes a lot of the guesswork out of decorating and tablescaping.

crawfish on canvas print

The summer season comes ready to go with a ski boat load of ideas for themed parties and get-togethers with a catch of the day menu.

August Wren Oyster Platter

August Wren Oyster Platter

A cool beverage and a hot night can be all the theme you need, but if you’re looking for other theme ideas here’s a list of suggestions:

Reelin’, Chillin’ & Grillin’ Summer Nights

Seafood Bake-n-Boil

Nautical and Nice

Tropical Tails

Shrimp on the Barbie Under the Stars

Blackened Teak Root Round Server

Blackened Teak Root Round Server

Majolica Palissy Small Lobster Plate

Majolica Palissy Small Lobster Plate

Crustacean Bib design by Sir/Madam

Crustacean Bib design by Sir/Madam

lobster-coastal living magazineCoastal Living

Ever wonder why lemon is the seafood plate accessory of choice?

baked tilapia

Creole Seasoned Brown Sugar Pecan Topped Baked Tilapia

Lemon wakes up the natural flavors in seafood and fish.

tied-lemon-wrap (1)

The bright bite of fresh meets citrus sweet and flavor balance is born.



Lemon wraps make a pretty plate presentation and keep the lemons seeds contained.


King crab, salmon, halibut, Pacific bay shrimp, sea scallops, swordfish, flounder, clams, oysters, calamari squid – Pacific perfection!


This Crab and Lobster Seafood Rolls recipe from Chef Resha at CarnalDish is seafood cuisine of summer scrumptious.  Click on the link for the recipe.


Seasoned to taste and region.


Zatarains shrimp crab boil


Put a southern spin on the seafood spread with a pan of buttermilk cornbread.

Cornbread Pan – Pre-Seasoned Fish Impression Cast Iron


From coast to coast and sea to shining sea, seafood lovers know the world is their oyster.

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Set The Tone and The Table: Easter Tablescape Ideas Part 2

Today’s post wraps up the Set The Tone and The Table: Easter Tablescape Ideas Part 2 series.


You can’t go wrong with these cut-glass coolers from Dollar Tree.

The look is vintage, the material is quality, and the price is right.

Pastel dinner plates perfectly pair with Easter, spring and summer tablescapes.


One dozen decorative speckled eggs can be used in many ways past an Easter tablescape.




Creamy white.

Enough said.

dish towels

White herringbone dish towels with a singular green stripe put a spin of pastel on the dinner napkin situation.

Not too thick, not too thin, and completely washable and reusable.


Grosgrain knots and bows adds the finishing touch.

French rabbit printables from The Graphics Fairy used as place cards will deliver the ooh la la factor in vintage elegance.

Natural-History-Rabbit-GraphicsFairy21Vintage rabbit printable

A natural angel vine bird nest placed in the center of each dinner plate will lend a lovely look for spring renewal.


willow baskets set

Willow baskets lined with decorative plastic grass and finished with a fresh herb plant make an aromatic addition to an Easter tablescape and an even nicer parting gift for guests.

GO Home Rabbit Butter Dish

Sideboards need porcelain rabbit statue love too.

In varied heights and finishes, rabbit statues draw the eye and carries out the theme.

White Ceramic Rabbit Figurine by Alcott Hill

I prefer fresh flowers, but when Mother Nature or the local grocery store floral department and I are not in fresh flower sync with each other I’ve been known to go this route.

I keep a few artificial flowers on hand for decorating wrapped gifts and cupcakes.

A pastry piping Picasso I am not, and I’m not too proud to accept a helping hand in the decorating and adorning department from nature or the faux flower display at the dollar store.


Simply give the flowers a gentle wash and dry, cut down the stems to desired length and place them atop your favorite cake.

You will be surprised at how nice a spring flower cake actually looks.

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Places In The Home For The Holidays: Setting The Thanksgiving Table

Decorative options when setting the Thanksgiving table is a lovely thing!

Options allow us to take a slight step or total turn from traditional and/or expected decor choices.

The holiday table begins as a blank canvas ready to reflect a personal interpretation of holiday style and splendor.

Setting the tone for holiday magic begins with setting the Thanksgiving table.

holiday tablescape ideas

Traditional colors, shapes and accents associated with the Thanksgiving and Christmas tablescape have lead the way for years as the hallmark of holiday distinction.


Martha Stewart. Who else?


Traditional is timeless, but the updated classic beauty of new traditional style proves there’s a new and stylish sheriff in town.

dining room chairs

The mixing of styles, patterns and presentation invites rave reviews.

Begin a new tradition by one or two updated classics to your holiday tabletop and home decor accessories.


It is guaranteed to keep guests guessing and the holiday tabletop decor festive and fresh.

Holiday time “presents” the perfect reason to update tabletop and home decor accessories.


What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the term casually elegant?

Beautifully understated?





Simple sophistication?

tablescape accents

Stunning does not have to be expensive or labor intensive.

Simple is the whole point behind the concept of simple sophistication.

The above examples demonstrate how free, inexpensive and clever ideas produce elegant results.

Craft paper makes a super easy table cover.

Use a Sharpie to write heartfelt messages or quotes on the craft paper to be read by your guests.

I love the free place card template from Martha Stewart.

Martha is such a giver!

Now you know I couldn’t do an idea post without mentioning the Dollar Tree.

The free wheat bushel and ornate frame printable from The Graphics Fairy will make a wonderful header for a printable Thanksgiving menu.

Type it up,  place it in a decorative frame, and place it on the table or sideboard as an informative accent.


Happy decorating!

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Planning For The Holidays

Now that the calendar has turned to November I am no longer under obligation to avoid the elephant in the room.

I’ve contained my excitement long enough.  By all accounts we are in the presence of the Holidays, and I’m ready to get the planning, decorating, baking, cooking and tablescaping underway!

I don’t know about you, but I would have no problem settling in, getting cozy and planning for the holidays in this gorgeous space.

Laurel NestAtlanta Homes & Lifestyles Magazine

Holiday oversaturation is something I guess we all come in contact with in one way or another.

I came to better understand the commercial aspect of holiday shopping when the subject of holiday open house planning and prep rolled around.

A beautifully crafted holiday celebration complete with decoration and culinary delights does not just happen overnight.

Planning and budgeting for holiday gatherings and celebrations begins weeks in advance.

When the first leaf hits the ground so do my feet.



I’m running full speed ahead straight towards fall, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

I find what works best for me is to evaluate what decorative and tabletop items will transition beautifully from holiday to holiday.

Take color palette choices for example.

A red vase filled with black roses used at Halloween can reinvent itself as an appropriate accent in complementing holiday color on both the Thanksgiving and Christmas tablescape.

Another wonderful option is to go with gold and silver accessories for the all important touch of elegance.


I refer to the metals as the holiday neutrals.

Orange goes a long way as a color consideration for fall, Halloween and Thanksgiving decorating, but have you noticed the different shades of orange being used in all forms of Christmas decorating?

Verdant, eggplant, mocha and curry are also finding a place on the holiday color wheel.


The Kerr jars I used on my fall tablescape will soon be filled with homemade pear preserves and a dual decorative purpose for Thanksgiving.

These chalkboard style fall food gift labels designed by Lia Griffith and hosted by are designed for your own text.


I’m giving the pear preserves in decorated jars as “I’m thankful for you” gifts, and the labels will serve as the place cards for our Thanksgiving tablescape.


Click on the image below to download the PDF.

chalkboard labelsLia Griffith

Over the next few weeks I hope you will join me for the Places In The Home For The Holidays series.


I will be featuring  new and classic posts full of  home decor accessory resources, ideas, tips, talking all things turkey, recipes and helpful holiday suggestions for feathering and decorating your home for the holidays nest.

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Seasons and Settings: A Seasonal Tablescape

Fall and Thanksgiving are seasonal first cousins.  I like to intertwine the two and hit upon the best of the best.  New traditional is a wonderful concept that I definitely embrace.  It incorporates the classic standards together with new trends.

seasonal tablescape

One of the biggest considerations in the art of tablescaping is reining in the costs. Taking that into consideration, the basics of  seasonal tablescape 101 is to bring good foundation pieces to the table.  Classic accents will pay for themselves over and over again, tablescape to tablescape.

Miles Redd

Fabric, ribbon and mesh in core holiday colors are interchangeable with other holiday themes.  I have tablescaped the heck out of $1.00 burlap bags,  and mastered the art of reinvention by mixing and pairing china and crystal  patterns.  Nature provides endless inspiration for centerpiece ideas.

traditional home decor

I pushed back from the keyboard and took an “eye”dea stroll around the house with the intent to set from within.  Setting the table with items I rediscovered here at home produced a ‘tween fall and Thanksgiving tablescape with a nod to nature and traditional fall colors.

tablescape ideas

Last year I style spotted items perfect for a Thanksgiving tablescape, but me paying full price for seasonal items is a rare occurrence.  This girl will wait a good clearance sale out with the patience of Job.  It paid off when I timed a visit to Hobby Lobby just right last year and got my 80% clearance on!  Included in those items was two yards of home decor fabric and one yard of green burlap. The wheels of creativity began to turn.

no-sew table runner

A standard table runner doesn’t offer the width needed for our kitchen table.  A tablecloth is too much.  If you can’t find what you want, make it or fake it.  I am no seamstress.  Hem tape is a wonderful invention.  An iron gets hot…real hot. My mouth is no prayer book.  The DIY 40″  X  70″ not really a runner, and far from a tablecloth, but exactly what I wanted came out perfect with straight lines and rocking corners.

porcelain fruit bowl

I’ve stared at the vase in the image below for months.  It has been sitting on the counter in the man cave kitchen, basically in my way.  Turns out the vase served as the starting point of inspiration for the centerpiece. Brown and green eucalyptus and grapevine branches are inexpensive ways to add filler volume and color.  Backyard hydrangeas bloomed in time for me to cut and begin the drying process.  Pheasant feathers give good fall and Thanksgiving decorating, but can be rather costly.  The hunt for a good deal on pheasant feathers began a couple of months ago.  Ebay came through with an auction for ten 20-22 inch feathers.  Determination, luck and a winning bid  of $3.91 sealed the deal.

fall centerpiece

I filled the vase with Aromatique Creme Caramel potpourri.  The remnant yard of burlap and a decorative tieback found at Goodwill embellished the neck of the vase and camouflaged any signs of stems.

fall placesetting

Can you tell what I used for a charger?  Dave the Builder’s stockpile of  12 X 12 floor tiles came in handy for this unique use.


Dinner napkins tucked in Kerr jars with vintage flatware and brown velvet ribbon ties creates an all-in-one display.  I tried the look with and without fresh rosemary.  The jury is still out on this one.  Kerr jars keep with the theme and intent of this tablescape idea- use items from around the house with an emphasis on natural fall elements and colors.


Simple and uncomplicated never fails to set a beautiful table.