Set a Gracious French Country Harvest Table

FrenchountryHarvest Table
Autumn is my very favorite time of year to invite guests to my FrenchGardenHouse! If you have been my friend for any length of time, you know that when I entertain, I prefer fairly easy food prep, so I can spend my time setting a beautiful table with my antique dishes.


Setting a beautiful French Country table is easy!  I set my table with a linen cloth {can I just share that I love linen?!} and layered an antique grain sack runner over it. Originally produced in big rolls, each hand woven roll had a unique pattern so that the miller could identify whose grain it was. Farmer’s wives and daughters often not only wove the fabric, they sewed their own grain sacks to take to the miller.


On top of the linen tablecloth and the runner, I placed a few antique French compotes. Stacking is my favorite way to get some height on a table. The centerpiece doesn’t always have to be flowers, I arranged these glorious dark purple grapes, bright chartreuse green pears and miniature white pumpkins on the compotes. I love how they look, and guests could take the fruit and eat it together with dessert.


I mix and match dishes for almost every place setting. Sometimes I stack or layer a few plates, for this meal, we were having a huge bowl of Alsace Soup, so I set each place with just one large antique French shallow plate. I love this kind of plate, they are shallow, so you can serve soup, or a large salad, or use them to plate a meat and potatoes dinner too! On this end of the table I’ll bring out loaves of crusty bread on an old French breadboard right before dinner.



The napkins are these fantastic linen embroidered hand towels I just got for the shop, embroidered with “Bon Appetit”, they are large, and get softer the more times you wash them. They make the perfect napkin. Each place setting features mix and match silverware, rediscovered and collected from some of the prettiest antique and vintage silverware pieces from 1800 to 1940, and then regrouped into delightfully mismatched sets.



I stacked a few antique leather covered French books and missals and topped them with a glass Saleron {Salt cellar} for fun. Your tables should always be interesting, and have a little touch of quirky!


The pretty name cards are copied from an antique card, I photographed it and printed it out on my computer. You can buy name cards, print your own, or make your own. There is something about writing a guest’s name, and setting a place at your table just for them that makes every guest feel welcome and special. That’s the kind of gracious entertaining I love. Entertaining doesn’t have to be a grand affair, one little touch like a hand written name card is what will make your guests remember what a special evening they had with you!



As I said before, no flowers on this table. I bought this amazing pumpkin at the Farmer’s Market, I love the cream and green color. It looks perfect atop a stack of plates. I picked it out because it still had the little leaf, of course it promptly fell off when I took it from the car inside for its photo moment. A little dab of glue and it was back to how I envisioned it!


My English teacart is set for a simple dessert after dinner. Nothing really fancy, more of the shallow bowls, vintage silver spoons to serve a fruit cobbler with coffee or tea. {Maybe some vanilla bean ice cream too!}

Having friends over for dinner doesn’t have to be overly grand. Make easy to prepare food, set a pretty table, and enjoy being a gracious host or hostess!
{ps. You can find all the compotes, dishes, linens and more in the Kitchen and Linen departments.}

Please sign up to receive my blog posts in your email “in” box- above right, and never miss a post!

18 thoughts on “Set a Gracious French Country Harvest Table”

  1. Such a lovely fall table, Lidy. Your layered table cloths form the perfect foundation and I love your stacked compotes filled with fruits of the season. You are a wonderful hostess!

    1. Thank you Diana, I am so ready for our temperatures to drop to fall. Sweater. check. boots. check. fall decorating. check. pumpkin coffee. check. I’ve got it all! Fall, I’m ready, please arrive!

    1. Joanne, thank you. I know you love blue and white, it’s always crisp, fresh and classic!

  2. I love your tables, Lidy. They have that relaxed European feel that so many of us love. I sometimes feel that when I set a table for company it feels sort of stiff so I glean a lot of ideas from you. I love linen, too…I’m going to have a look at your shop. The fruit rather than flowers is so refreshing. Love everything and I’m going to check out the soup recipe! 🙂

    Jane x

    1. Jane, I’ve had great fun reading your latest blog posts. Relaxed and European, that’s a good thing! The soup is good, you know I’m more about spending time decorating than actually cooking. I want to food to taste great, but be easy. Let me know how you like it!

  3. Jean Van

    Hi, Lidy,
    I really enjoy seeing all your pretty settings and get so many ideas as well, I have your MILK MAID I just love her and have had her for about 40 years and it is such a pleasure seeing all the pretty dishes, good job and happy Oct.
    Jean in Sunny Ca

    1. Hi Jean, thank you! I love her too, she was one of the very first things I ever purchased at an estate auction, she was my very first “keeper”. {She weighs a ton, she is made of marble!}

  4. Nancy Pianfetti

    Hi Lidy, As always, your table looks beautiful!! You decorate and create stunning vignettes with such ease…that is truly a gift!!! My Great Grandmother was born in Alsace so I’m going to check out your recipe for Alsace Soup. It is certainly soup season here in the northeast and I love to keep adding recipes to my collection.
    Have a wonderful day and I know your guests will enjoy your dinner party!!!
    Much love,

    1. Thank you Nancy. The soup is a very simple recipe, feel free to add or subtract according to what you have available. And thank you for your sweet compliment. You are always so encouraging. xo Lidy

  5. Hi Lidy,
    Love your tablescape, it is really lovely and welcoming.
    Really liked how you did your centerpc. with all the pumpkins, pears and grapes, looks very pretty. I just love these white pumpkins but they
    are not easy to find in Florida. I found some at my grocery store on Sunday,
    but most of them looked bruised or spotted, so only managed to get 2 of them.
    Did y’all ever get to watch a Heartland episode?? Everytime we watch it, it seems to get
    better and better, so it has been a hit for us.

    Take care and hope you are enjoying Fall. We are at least in the early
    hours of the day.

    Blessings, Nellie

    1. Nellie, thank you so much for the visit and your comment. We haven’t watched Heartland yet, but we are starting tomorrow! I am looking forward to it, especially after the recommendation you gave it.

  6. GORGEOUS!!! I adore what you have done. The look is so sophisticated and, yet, homey. It is perfect for autumn – or anytime.
    Michelle from

    1. Thank you Michelle, I love tables like this. Sometimes, I’m all about over the top gilt and Limoges, and sometimes it’s French relaxed. I actually do, and am crazy about, both sides of the “French” style coin. Country and Parisian Elegant, it just depends on my whim!

    1. Thank you Tracie! It was such a pleasure to meet you and your darling daughter. I hope to see you again!

  7. Cynthia White

    This table setting is perfection! It really gets me in the mood for the Autumn harvest. I absolutely LOVE it!

  8. Thank you Cynthia! It was a magical time with our guests, too. Happy {almost} Fall!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top