Some of the very best memories are made around the dinner table, whether at a dinner party or maybe even just while chowing down on leftovers. Dining tables represent a place to sit down together and share a meal while also sharing time with one another: sit-down meals nourish both the body and the heart! With this simple truth in mind, we’re sharing a few of our favorite tips for creating a special dining environment on what is perhaps the ultimate in shared meals: Thanksgiving. The food is usually the centerpiece of this annual meal, but beautiful table settings can amplify the hard work you’ve put into that roasted turkey or sweet potato pie. Whether your decor taste leans rustic or elegant, keep reading for some seriously stylish ideas.
Tablescape Tips for Thanksgiving
A blue and white, rustic tablescape creates a welcoming vibe in an unexpected color palette. (Photo via Style Me Pretty)
If You’re a Rustic-Chic Chef
Stick to a perennially fresh color scheme of blue, white, and wood. Prints like ikats in blue and white create a warm and welcome basis for the rest of your tablescape, which could include items like natural white gourds, burlap or linen napkins, and simple white plates. We love the addition of natural spices here, too, like cinnamon sticks. Try tying up your napkins with twine and sliding a cinnamon stick through each for a cohesive look.
Moody foliage and sumptuous fabrics create a posh and elegant vibe for Thanksgiving. (Photo via Rose and Ivy)
If You’re a Posh Partier
Add a bit of mystery by using deep, jewel-tone colors and rich textures. A velvet table cloth in an eye-catching shade like plum or emerald green is a great place to start. From there, try adding lux greenery like cabbage roses and ferns. Gold flatware and candlesticks are a must to tie everything together.
Create a harvest theme using natural decor like pumpkins and herbs. (Photo via Casa de Perrin)
If You’re a Nature Lover
Go all out with a nature-inspired table! Start with a wood table and add a simple runner. From there, use glass vases and fill them with items like pine cones and acorns. Add fresh herbs like sage and rosemary into the mix, whether scattered across the table, in rustic mason jars, or even tied together and placed on top of each place setting. Branches, berries, and baby pumpkins all make sense within this serene tablescape, too.
Even More Ideas
- Use LED candles for worry-free ambience.
- Think of using fruits and vegetables within your décor: winter citrus adds a pop of color, while gourds bring in a traditional Thanksgiving vibe. Cinnamon sticks, pears, and oranges studded with cloves are all beautiful additions to the table.
- Incorporate metallic elements beyond your flatware: mercury glass candleholders and glittered pinecones will create a glimmering vibe.
Fall and winter bring a host of healthy-eating pitfalls — just ask Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. In addition to feeling tempted by decadent foods, people often don’t have extra time to cook thanks to busy schedules during the holiday season. Fortunately, if you live in the Metairie, Kenner, and River Ridge areas, there are plenty of fresh, healthy dining options to keep your hunger and your health in check. Unsure of what to order? No matter which restaurant you choose, nutritionists suggest swapping standard sides for a healthier pick like vegetables, choosing entrees that are steamed, trading white rice for brown rice, and skipping empty calories like bread or tortilla chips.
Shrimp and feta from Byblos. (Photo via Facebook)
Healthy Dining Options
Mediterranean & International
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Jefferson Parish harvests a hefty crop of fun things to do this fall. Take a look at all there is to do this October and November!
Shady trees, a paved walkway, and water features are all part of Lafreniere Park in Metairie. (Photo courtesy ExperienceJefferson.com)
Fun Fall Activities
Lafreniere Live! Fall Concert Series — This park is one of our favorites in the area, and on Thursday, Oct. 13 from 6:30 until 8:30 p.m., it’s also your spot for live music. Check out The Strays at this free concert taking place at Al Copeland Meadow Concert Stage inside the park. Vendors are on site for food and drinks!
Oktoberfest — Three straight weekends of German food, music, and beer with contests every single day (including Dachshund races!). It’s a whole lot of fun in Kenner’s charming Rivertown. Head there from 4 p.m. until 11 p.m. on Fridays and from 1 p.m. until 11 p.m. on Saturdays throughout October. Admission is $8, but kids ages 12 and under are free.
Junie B. Jones: The Musical — Rivertown Theaters for the Performing Arts takes on the beloved children’s book character Junie B. in this family-friendly play running Oct. 7-16. Tickets are $15.
Park-A-Boo — Lafreniere Park is at it again with fun programming Oct. 21-23 with their Park-A-Boo event. Costumes are encouraged at this safe Halloween event featuring trick or treating, activities, a boo house, and more for families with kids ages 13 and younger. Food booths will serve up kid-friendly favorites like pizza, hot dogs, and soft drinks. Admission is $8 for adults, $6 for kids, and free for children under 2.
Bucktown Seafood Festival — Head to 1600 Lake Avenue for music and food all weekend during the 19th annual Bucktown Seafood Festival. Deanie’s seafood provides the grub, and you’ll hear music from bands like Contraflow and Category 6. There will also be rides and games for all ages plus a crafts fair, raffle prizes, and more.
Hocus Pocus at Muss Bertolino Park — The City of Kenner screens the Disney favorite on Oct. 29 at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free, and costumes are encouraged! There are also games and photo opportunities starting at 5:30 p.m. prior to the screening.
Funny Girl — Jefferson Performing Arts Society in Metairie presents this classic musical theater performance Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. from Nov. 4-13. Tickets are available from $30.
1776 The Musical — Harness your patriotism just in time for elections at this Rivertown Theaters event running Nov. 4-20. Tickets from $36.
Oyster Festival — On Nov. 11-13, check out Oyster Fest at 3978 West Esplanade Ave. in Metairie. This local community fair features live music, crafts, games, kids’ activities, and a whole lot of oysters! Admission is free.
Pecan Festival — With Thanksgiving in mind, the Pecan Festival is overflowing with pecan dishes (including pie!). Admission is free and includes live music, games, and plenty of family fun.
Kenner Christmas Village — Ring in the holidays at this annual event lighting up Main Street USA in the Rivertown historic district starting on Nov. 27. Admission is free to this festive holiday village, studded in Christmas lights and animated scenery from 5:30 until 8:30 p.m. throughout the holiday season.
Fall fashion is always a favorite – this is the time of year when we can pull out our sweaters and boots (or perhaps buy some new ones!). But what about your apartment? Keeping a tight budget in mind – so you can splurge on that new sweater – we’ve collected a few great fall decorating tips from our 1st Lake Properties designer for fall decorating. Follow along to learn how to spruce up your place for the season. The results are easy on the wallet full and of aesthetic impact!
This fall vignette from Craftberry Bush features a variety of textures that bring the outdoors in.
Affordable Fall Decorating Ideas
Use cozy colors
One of the easiest ways to update your apartment for fall is to keep an autumn color palette in mind. Our designer suggests incorporating yellows, golds, browns, grays, and oranges as accent colors using items like vases, dishtowels, tablecloths, and plates. Thrifty options to find seasonal accent pieces include stores like TJ Maxx and Amazon. Or, you can literally thrift! Goodwill is great for bargain hunting: try this Goodwill locator to find a thrift store nearest your apartment.
Swap out your curtains
Bring in the same colors mentioned above, or create a more earthy and textured look by using clips and a painters cloth. You can purchase painters cloths at a store like Lowe’s for less than $15 a piece. Use curtain clips (order them on Amazon!) to hang them.
As the temperature cools down, you can add warmth through color palette and texture. Items like pillows and blankets are a great way to create varied textures and add a cozy feel to your space. Pumpkins and gourds are another great way to add texture and create a natural, autumnal affect. Our designer suggests throwing some white pumpkins into the mix to create a cohesive look. Who doesn’t love a good pumpkin farm? Here’s a link with pumpkin farms around the area.
Add a seasonal scent
Candle warmers can be found for $15 or less at Target or Bed Bath and Beyond (Goodwill, too!). Purchase a scent like pumpkin spice, cinnamon, or maple so your apartment smells just as cozy as it feels.
Rethink your foliage
Floral arrangements always look beautiful inside apartments, but you can up the ante during the fall by incorporating rich colors and other types of vegetation: sunflowers, gourds, and grains of wheat (fake or real!) create an autumn harvest aesthetic.
Bargain hunting tips
We’ve already mentioned some of our favorite affordable stores like Goodwill, Target, and Bed Bath and Beyond. Michael’s and Hobby Lobby are two other bargain-friendly stores located close to many of our apartments. Plus, you can use Hobby Lobby’s weekly 40% discount coupon. Happy fall!