Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and I don’t know about you, but I always like to have a plan in place. Right after Thanksgiving we roll straight into the holiday season, with entertaining, family and friends visiting, shopping, and more!

I have some tips that will help you plan for a beautiful, relaxed and memorable Thanksgiving.


1. START WITH YOUR MENU. Because that’s the most labor intensive part. Write out what you will serve, even if your menu hasn’t really changed since 100 years ago. {!!you can add a “new” dish but will most likely have to include the tried-and-true dishes, too. For some reason our families like Thanksgiving to be the same every year.}

Also think about what people can’t eat — nuts, wheat? You don’t want to make a dish for each person; but you will want to offer a substitute for gluten-free guests, for example. You want a menu everyone can eat.


To start you off, my friend, chef Lisa Torres Hatfield is sharing her fabulous Italian Sausage and Dried Cherry Cranberry Dressing which she makes each year. Just the name alone makes me want to eat a bowl, as is… I make this but substitute the best gluten free bread I can find, as I’m allergic.

Lisa says: “Thanksgiving would not be right without this Italian Sausage and Dried Cherry Cranberry Dressing. This dressing makes it back on our Christmas table as well served with a crown pork roast.”

2. ADD ANTIQUES TO SET YOUR BEST HOLIDAY TABLE. Use what you love,  add a stunning antique to this year’s table settings…I shopped FrenchGardenHouse for some of these table settings, an antique centerpiece or table set with antique dishes, flatware and “accessories” is so personal, and always gets people talking.


Here is a table I set using blue dishes, and blue hydrangeas….think outside the box for your color palette! In a week or so I will be sharing my Blue & White Thanksgiving table setting…you are going to love it!


I’ve used this copper French Fish Steamer before….some of you may remember this post that showed how easy it is to make a stunning centerpiece using antiques….



This antique French Copper Fish Steamer is a natural for filling with flowers and fruit for your table. Here’s the HOW TO MAKE AN EASY CENTERPIECE.


3. ADD SEASONAL FUN. Thanksgiving is a holiday for everyone to enjoy each other’s company. Don’t take your home too seriously, a fun pillow cover will liven up any room, and bring a smile to everyone who sees them. They go with traditional homes filled with antiques, but also look perfectly happy in a contemporary interior.



Or how about using one of our exclusive Limited Edition French Buckets filled with branches on your buffet table?  Hand made by artist Robin King just for us in very limited quantities, almost sold out, once these are gone, they won’t be back until next year.


Squirrel French Bucket

Each one adds a touch of whimsy to your home, and expresses your personality, they’re only available from FrenchGardenHouse, are out of the ordinary, and of wonderful quality.



Turkey French Bucket

4. FILL YOUR HOME WITH SCENT. While your cooking will fill the kitchen and dining room with the scent of Thanksgiving, a luscious candle lit in the entry or living room lets your guests know you are thrilled they have arrived.



Our French Currant Verte Luxury Candle is back in stock for the season. Not the traditional fall scent, luscious Currant Berries, Apples and Pears combine to bring the harvest of Provence to your home.



5. SET UP A SELF-SERVE BAR. This makes your entertaining so much easier, plus it gives your guests a chance to “help” in a gracious manner.

It’s one of my best tricks for entertaining to include a drinks station, or bar, where guests can help themselves to a festive drink.





Any small area will work! All you really need is a tray, some glasses, and the beverages!



Over the next few weeks I’ll be sharing much more for you {and me} to get our homes ready for Thanksgiving and the holidays.  Please PIN THIS TO YOUR BOARDS ON PINTEREST for future reference.


YOUR TURN: Do you have a tip or wonderful idea that will help us set have an easy and memorable Thanksgiving? Please share with us, we can always use your inspiration!



    1. Thank you so much, Shannon! I appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment…
      I can’t believe we are heading into the Thanksgiving season already.
      Hope you have a beautiful day today,

  1. Lidy, I love all of your ideas. Think I’ll use your self serve bar idea which will free up some of my time making drinks.
    My husband would have a hissy fit if I changed the menu but this year I am on a gluten free, dairy free, oat free, soy free diet so I’m looking for side dishes to fit the bill. Any ideas?

    1. Alice, like you, I’m gluten free. I’m opting for lots of sides that are just fresh,and fabulous all by themselves, like vegetables. I have found that I can substitute most flour in a recipe with gluten free flour without a problem. Good luck!

  2. Thanks so much! I need to start planning my menu now and you’ve spurred me on.

    I so agree that family likes the tried and true at holiday dinners. But adding a small dish of this or that often starts new traditions. I’m going to make the sausage cranberry stuffing. Sounds incredible! I love the clove studded oranges, too. I’ve made studded lemons and limes for decor but these are gorgeous and can play a nice role in the holiday table.

    Lovely post, Lidy!

    1. Jane, I hope you love Lisa’s stuffing, it DOES sound amazing, doesn’t it?!

    1. Thank you for visiting Maria! Isn’t it so much fun to dream up our Thanksgiving tables?

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