Thanksgiving is right around the corner. As the hostess, you’ve undoubtedly made up your to-do list in preparation for the big day. Turkey? Check. Potatoes? Check. Cranberry? Double-check. Now, what about your place settings?
On an episode of Suite Living, I demonstrate how to make adorable acorn place cards and raw wood chargers that will enhance your beautiful Thanksgiving table.
Every hostess wants to impress her guests – putting a little effort into the place settings is bound to do just that!
The Place Card
Place cards are an easy way to up the ante of any gathering. This version is inexpensive to make, and its charming, homemade feel is sure to make your guests feel welcome. For the acorn portion of this project, you’ll need some wooden beads, some twine, scissors and hot glue.
1) Making the ‘Acorn Cap’ – Leaving about 12”-14” of slack, glue the twine to the wooden bead. Keeping the slack to the side, start wrapping the other end of the twine around the top half of the bead, securing it with glue as you go.
2) Another Layer – To give the cap a more substantial look, I wrapped and glued another layer of twine. When you’re finished, cut the twine to the same length as the slack left at the start.
For the leaf portion of this project, you’ll need some cardstock or watercolour paper, markers or watercolour paints, a pair of scissors, and a hole punch. You can use a pen or marker to write your guests’ names on the leaves, or you can use stamps and ink as I did.
1) Draw and Cut – Draw an oak leaf shape on your cardstock or watercolour paper. Oak leaves have wavy borders – don’t overthink it, you can’t mess it up! Cut out the leaf. Repeat this step for each place setting.
2) Taking Names – As previously mentioned, you can use a pen or marker to handwrite your guests’ names on the leaves. However, I chose to use letter stamps and ink for something a little different. (a great project for kids!)
3) On the Border – Using either markers or watercolour paints, add a coloured border to each leaf. This is a great way to pull in any colour from your dinnerware or table accents.
4) Punch a Hole – Using your hole punch, make a hole at the base of the leaf. Next, thread the twine of the acorn ornament through the hole and tie a small knot at the back of the leaf.
These place cards will add that finishing, festive touch to your tablescape and also make a cute “take-home” for the kids!
To coordinate with the raw wood napkin rings which I made on a previous episode of Suite Living, I’m using raw wood to make chargers for each place setting. For this project, you’ll need some fine-girt sandpaper, a clean rag, mineral oil and a large disc of raw wood. If you just happen to have some large stumps lying around, then this is the perfect project for you. If you don’t (comme moi), you can find these boards at salvage yards and most craft stores.
1) Sand it Smooth – Sand the board in the same direction as the wood grain.
2) Oil it Up – Using the rag, liberally apply the mineral oil.
3) Let Dry – It’s important to let the oil fully absorb into the board overnight.
This project also does double duty as a gorgeous cheese board! Click here for the Coral TV instructional webisode.
This charger is the foundation of the place setting – talk about a showstopper! I’ve shown three different place setting looks, all using the same DIY projects: the blanket-stitch napkins, the wooden rings, the acorn name cards and the wooden charger.
With these rustic, woodsy projects, your place settings will set the perfect mood for a memorable autumn feast!
Head on over to my ‘Video‘ page to see the full webisodes of each of these DIY projects!