Decorating Your Table on a Budget

Decorating Your Table on a Budget
Photo Credit: Julie Blanner

Depending on where you live, you’re probably seeing the signs of fall all around you.

And with fall comes time spent with family – and friends – as the year draws to a close and the dark and cooler winter months (for most of us) lie ahead.

This is also the start of the “holiday” season; a fact that’s evidenced by the bountiful decor that began to line store shelves before the weather even started showing signs of change!

And one holiday tradition that seems to span across all cultures and even all holidays is that of decorating the table(s) where we spend time with friends and family.

Formal, semi-formal or casual, each style of decorating allows us to create a look that reflects the hospitality that we wish to extend to those people who are a part of our lives.

And fortunately, it’s easy to set a beautiful table without spending a fortune…all it takes is a little creativity combined with smart shopping strategies.

Table decorating tips

Use a scheme

To help save money when decorating your table this year begin with a scheme.

Do you want to go with all natural elements such as pine cones, wood, or pumpkins from the grocery store?

Or, you could pick something you like from the dollar store and create a theme surrounding that item. For example, a black-and-white checkered tablecloth matched with items (e.g. tiny pumpkins) that you have painted to match.

Next, once you’ve chosen the scheme, source the materials. For example, if you’ve chosen a glittery theme, you can find things in your own backyard that can be used (e.g. pine cones covered in sparkly silver or gold paint).

Other tips and ideas

  • ⬥Create a sideboard where you can place the food. This will allow you to decorate your table to your heart’s content without crowding out the food!
  • ⬥Set the table before the holiday celebration. Set the plates and glassware upside down or cover with a light sheet to keep dust out of the dishes. This will take one more thing off your plate (pun intended) allowing you more time to enjoy the celebration!
  • ⬥Don’t be afraid to use a lot of decor on your table. Excess is what you’re after…choose something inexpensive and use a lot of it (e.g. mini pumpkins decorated with glitter and/or paint) and add supporting elements to it.
  • ⬥Metallic and twinkling lights really add sparkle to a “plain Jane” table.
  • ⬥Layer elements, adding one at a time until you get the look you want.
  • ⬥Include personal touches such as custom created place cards and/or specialty folded napkins.

Mini-Pumpkin Flower Pots

Decorating Your Table on a Budget
Image courtesy: Green Wedding Shoes

Painting or otherwise decorating mini pumpkins is a great, inexpensive way to create a truly beautiful look, but another option is to use them as flower pots!

Beautiful roses combine with pumpkins to create a truly unique look.

DIY Topiary

Decorating Your Table on a Budget
Image Courtesy: Kim Six Fix

Using a foam form from the Dollar Store and natural elements such as pine cones, nuts and large seeds, make a one of a kind topiary the centerpiece of your table.

Use nature

Decorating Your Table on a Budget
Image courtesy: Madigan Made

A quick walk can offer a bounty of nature’s colors to decorate your table. Using moisturizer and Mod Podge, it’s possible to these leaves can keep their color longer and avoid curling up. Here’s how.

13 Easy and Inexpensive Fall Decorating Ideas
Image courtesy: One King’s Lane

An even simpler way to use nature is to fill up clear glass vases or other large glass containers with miniature gourds and pumpkins.

Finally, the best way to decorate your table is your way, so don’t worry about following any particular tradition. If you like bright yellow and pink colors together and that fits with your personality don’t be afraid to use those colors when setting your holiday table.

Bottom line, you want your table to reflect your taste and your personality and to provide a warm welcome for your guests.

Here are some more like posts that may interest you:

Dinner Party Etiquette: How to Set the Perfect Table

13 Last Minute Table Decorating Tips

Four Thanksgiving Table Decorating Tips

Table Decor for at Home Dinner Parties