TABLE IT: Place Settings Four Ways - The Bend Magazine

TABLE IT: Place Settings Four Ways

The talented women behind each of our Spaces sections were tasked with creating a fabulous table setting, utilizing locally-sourced materials, for this holiday season

Photography by: Lillian Reitz

The talented women behind each of our Spaces sections were tasked with creating a fabulous table setting, utilizing locally-sourced materials, for this holiday season. Jo Anne Howell, Katy Jones-Gulsby, Terrie Moore, and Monica Benavidez share their top tablescape tips to help you achieve picture-worthy settings, no matter your style.

Jo Anne Howell – The Entertainer 

Tip 1: Serve Thanksgiving dinner on white plates to enjoy the vibrant colors of the meal. The white serves as a crisp backdrop for your fall harvest. Tip 2: Placing menus on each plate with the added touch of your guests’ names helps to create a memory on its own. Tip 3: Always set your holiday table the night, if not days, before your meal. This helps with time management the day of and allows you to focus on the cooking. 


Katy Jones-Gulsby – The Time Traveler

Tip 1: In my tablescapes, textiles are often the stars of the show. Contrasting patterns and textures bring a layered look and visual interest to the table. I love a patterned tablecloth! Tip 2: Don’t be afraid to mix patterns of china or types of glassware! Keeping the colors similar helps to keep a cohesive look, but mixing it up can be key to a fun table. Tip 3: Throw all of the rules out of the window. There are a million “table setting” rules, but doing what feels right for your family or event is always the right way to go.

Terrie Moore – The Taste Maker

Tip 1: Shop your home. Thanksgiving may look different this year, so using what you already own feels comforting and right. Just like a new pair of earrings can jazz up an older outfit, new napkins or salad plates can bring that same freshness to your table. Tip 2: Splurge on beautiful plants that can be enjoyed for months. Have the same plant delivered to those family members who won’t be gathering to share the vibe or surprise your guests and have them take one home.  Tip 3: Remember it’s not about the food or the decor, it’s about gathering and giving thanks. Don’t stress. Have fun. When we think about the ones who won’t be joining us, it’s ok if this year sharing pb&j on a paper plate is all you want to do. Number one rule: there are no rules. 


Monica Benavidez – The Unconventionalist 

Tip 1: Splurge on flowers for your Thanksgiving table and then enjoy them as you put up the tree over the weekend. While you’re at it, splurge on good wine, too. Tip 2: Mix and match your dinnerware/china. It keeps things interesting and you can have fun with it to create a gorgeous and memorable tablescape. Tip 3: Incorporate mercury glass candles into your setting. The soft candle glow will look so much better. The light reflects more and it adds some sparkle to your table. Remember to use unscented candles to not take away from the culinary experience.


Get this look: 

Napkin rings, velvet pumpkins, and smoked wine glasses – Park Seven Florals – Sandra Sauceda 

Get this look: 

Floral arrangement – Wild Veggie Bouquet, Mercury glass candle holders – Chic to Chic Furniture, Wine butler – Uncommon Art Decor 

Get this look:

Napkins – Gatherings, glassware and centerpiece – Shell & Pine

Get this look:

Plates and pottery pieces – Pilar, Black embroidered bird runner – the Otomi artisans Hidalgo, Mexico, Myrtle and rosemary topiaries – Wildflowers