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Inexpensive Thanksgiving Table Décor You Can Make Yourself

The cost of a big turkey, side dishes and drinks for a crowd can add up quickly, but when it comes to your Thanksgiving table decor, your budget can take a break! How? Whether you’re hosting a huge Thanksgiving dinner or a simple family gathering, you can still have a gorgeous Thanksgiving table using items from your home, your backyard or the local farmer’s market. From clever DIY acorn napkin rings to adorable gold pumpkin votives, these décor ideas will have your home ready for Thanksgiving Day for a fraction of the price. Read on for inexpensive Thanksgiving table decor ideas that you can make yourself.

RELATED POST: Thanksgiving Decorating Ideas From Your Backyard

Editor’s Note: Jennifer Lutz is the home décor expert at and knows how to get ready for any fabulous holiday or party in style!


DIY Thanksgiving Table Decor

1. Acorn Napkin Ring Accent

Gather a basket full of acorns from your backyard for a cute twine napkin ring accent. Tie a couple of acorns to your twine napkin ring to give your table setting an autumnal vibe, just like this one. Before using the acorns as accents, though, you need to clean and debug them. Wash the acorns in a bowl of water and then pat dry. Afterwards, put them on a baking sheet, and bake them at 200-250°F for an hour or so. Let them cool, and if some caps fall off, hot glue them back onto the acorns. You can also spray paint the acorns gold to give them a more glamorous touch.

2. Wheat Napkin Ring Accent

If you don’t have an oak tree nearby (thus you’re experiencing an acorn shortage), try using wheat for a harvest-inspired table. This will look great with rope or twine napkin rings. Tie a short piece of rope or twine around your napkin, and tighten it a bit to give your napkin some shape. Afterward, tuck in a small piece of wheat in between the napkin and twine to complete the look. Have the napkins pull double duty as card holders by printing or writing your guests’ names on cardboard and tying each name on the string.

Gold pumpkin votives

Gold pumpkin votives

3. Gold Pumpkin Votives

Metallics are an effortless way to make any table setting more fabulous. This simple DIY project from The 36th Avenue turns a small pumpkin into an adorable votive holder. For this project, take a miniature pumpkin and drill a hole in the middle. Clean up the edges and the hole, and then spray paint the exterior of the pumpkin a few times to cover the entire surface area. Your new, glitzy pumpkin votive holders can be used once dry. They’re perfect for adding ambient lighting to your table or around your dining room.

4. Apple Tea Lights

These apple tea lights are easy to make, and can be displayed in bunches! Choose apples in various shades to give your centerpiece visual interest, and use a melon baller to carve holes that fit votive candles. Prevent the apples from browning by sprinkling them with lemon juice or saltwater. You can also use cake stands to vary the apples’ heights. Check out the complete tutorial here.

Thanksgiving apple tea lights

Thanksgiving apple tea lights

Wheat table centerpiece

Wheat table centerpiece

5. Fall Centerpiece

If you’re looking for a simple design for an intimate get-together with friends, combine a few of fall’s natural items. A shock of wheat may not grow in your backyard, but with just a quick trip to your local farmer’s market, you can bring home a small bunch for your Thanksgiving table! Shop your house for a cute vase or jar to put your wheat shock in, and then add some medium-sized pumpkins, a lantern and some acorns to complete your centerpiece. Display them on your runner and light up the candle before serving dinner.

6. Pumpkins and Candles Thanksgiving Centerpiece

If you have a rustic box or rectangular serving bowl lying around the house, turn it into a display for your Thanksgiving centerpiece. For this project, layer the wooden box with some Spanish moss, and add some decorative berries and tuck them in the corners of your box, making room in the middle. Complete the look with some pumpkins and pillar candles. This how-to from The Idea Room also lists fruits as alternatives to pumpkins, so you can add apples or pears if you prefer.

A small safety reminder: don’t leave burning candles unattended. The moss is very dry and can catch fire easily, so make sure you snuff out any burning candles before calling it a night!

Thanksgiving Kids Table

Thanksgiving Kids Table

7. Kids’ Thanksgiving Table

Give the kids a reason to celebrate with their very own Thanksgiving table centerpiece. This project from Say Yes combines natural elements with seasonal décor to create a fun and exciting Thanksgiving table setting. Gourds, wheat, corn stalks and wild flowers are displayed along with woven pumpkins, candles and potpourri. Display along a runner and placemats made from craft paper, and you have a beautiful table where children can enjoy eating!

8. Tree Stump Candle Holders

Enlist someone handy with a chainsaw to help you with this project, and I swear you won’t regret it. Turn tree stumps into candle holders (or candle platforms) to add beautiful lighting to your Thanksgiving table. Choose tree branches that aren’t too wide, then cut them into pieces, with the tops and bottoms smoothed out. To offer visual variety, give your tree stump candle holders different heights. Afterward, light up pillar candles and place one on each stump. They look amazing next to some natural and painted gourds, and complement a very natural Thanksgiving display!

Bring a bit of natural beauty to your dining table without breaking the bank. With acorns, gourds and tree stumps, you can create a beautiful Thanksgiving dinner tablescape that your friends and family will enjoy.  Which Thanksgiving table décor idea is your favorite?

About The Author

Jennifer is the home décor expert at and knows how to get ready for the holiday season in style! Follow her holiday tips on Pinterest and Twitter.

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