15 Fall Table Decorating Ideas for a Festive Dinner

All that's missing is your favorite food. Pass the mashed potatoes, please.

Luca Trovato

A stunning autumn tablescape can come together so easily — just steal these themes and expert tips for creating memorable fall table decorations that guests will love. Plus, check out our 25 favorite fall centerpiece ideas.

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Erika LaPresto
Keep it natural.

Skip linens altogether and position magnolia leaves down the middle of your holiday table. The thick foliage creates a rustic runner.

Shop a similar look: magnolia leaf garland ($35, ), fall-themed place setting ($21, ), gold votive holder ($9, )

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Quentin Bacon
Decorate with metallics.

Opposites do work together if you have the right proportions. "Don't be afraid to mix metals on the table," says Lela Rose of this glimmering tablescape. Use cutlery and candlesticks in different finishes for a perfectly mismatched look.

Shop a similar look: blue wine glasses ($30, ), name card holder ($12, ), gold candle holder ($27, ), brown candlesticks ($19, )

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Jenna Elliott of One Eleven Photography
Make it romantic.

A jewel-toned table designed by Marlan Willardson and Laurén LaRocca incorporates burgundy, brass and lots of fruit. "We're always looking to explore new approaches at unpredictability while still embracing classic and seasonal elements," says LaRocca. "We love changing the color palette while still staying true to the essence of the holiday."

Shop a similar look: gold candle holder ($27, ), blue and gold place setting ($140, ), faux ranunculus arrangement ($82, )

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Go antique shopping.

If you don't have time to go out and buy fresh flowers, curate a centerpiece that doubles as a conversation starter. "I select artifacts my children or I have collected," says furniture designer Jan Barboglio. "These pieces have a richness of spirit, a softness of age and a story."

Shop a similar look: brown wine glass ($57, ), leather placemat ($23, ), wooden napkin ring ($13, )

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Stephen Danelian
Color coordinate.

Even beginners can master this tip: Match your decorations to your china, advises entertaining expert Lulu Powers. Purple plates pop next to fresh eggplants at her harvest-inspired dinner party.

Shop a similar look: green tablecloth ($52, ), green candlesticks ($19, ), green candle holder ($30, )

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colorful tablescape
Joseph Rey Au
Try something formal.

The holidays only roll around once a year, so bring out your favorite napkins and tablecloths that are too precious for regular use. "Using colorful linens — instead of white or ivory — can really give your table personality," says Jane Scott Hodges. 

Shop a similar look: orange placemats ($27 for six, ), orange napkins ($17 for six, ), orange wine glasses ($38, )

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michael aram tablescape
Tara Striano
Stay relaxed.

Best known as a metal artist — for fanciful designs inspired by nature — Michael Aram sets a friendly table. "I want a table that doesn't feel so perfect," he says. "You can relax because it's relaxed."

Shop a similar look: faux floral centerpiece ($56, ), metal and silver napkin ring ($25, ), pale blue napkins ($39, )

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Luca Trovato
Add a personal touch.

Don't limit flowers to the middle of the table. Give each guest their own arrangement like Janice Feldman's Thanksgiving set-up. "I do lots of single-bud bouquets, placed so you see the person sitting opposite you – so important," says the founder of Janus et Cie.

Shop a similar look: tall candle holders ($89, ), green place setting ($79, ), yellow buds ($180, )

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laura kirar tablescape
Kana Okada
Go glossy.

Add shimmer to your fall tablescape. Designer Laura Kirar sets a glossy table for a dinner party. "I kept high objects on one end and draped the gold mesh runner down the center, creating the effect of a waterfall," she says.

Shop a similar look: yellow table runner ($23, ), black cake stand ($67, ), red bowls ($76, )

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ralph lauren fall tablescape
Aimee Herring
Stay by the fire.

Ralph Lauren brings his classic all-American style to a supper for two near the fireplace. "Dining doesn't have to be confined to the dining room or kitchen," he says. "A fireside meal is intimate and inviting."

Shop a similar look: black and red napkins ($12, ), hurricane candle holder ($29, ), floral place setting ($111, )

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flower arranging
Aimee Herring
Make it bold and bright.

A feast for the eyes, Designer Charlotte Moss sets and exuberant table with pieces from her New York store. "Anyone can be a flower arranging genius with single blossoms," she says. "Just don't be stingy — use several vases in different heights."

Shop a similar look: tureen ($12, ), brown paper tags ($7, )

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house of brinson tablescape
William Brinson
Bring in all the botanicals.

Food and entertaining are favorite topics on Susan and William Brinson's blog, . Their tablescapes bring in elements from nature. "We incorporate succulents with cut flowers when we entertain. It's more like a landscape on the table, like nature indoors."

Shop a similar look: succulents ($8, ))

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tara guerard tablescape
Ingalls Photography
Add a vintage spin.

Charleston-based event planner Tara Guérard has a passion for vintage. With pieces from her curated collection on 1stdibs, she is spreading the love in this tablescape she designed. "If everything is vintage, it looks like a jumble," she says. "Layering in contemporary elements keeps things clean, and then the special pieces can really stand out."

Shop a similar look: green glasses ($37, ), oversized white vase ($95, ), pale blue tablecloth ($37, )

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carolyn roehm fall tablescape
Robert Millman
Try untraditional fun.

The classic color combo of blue and white creates a fresh feel for fall. "Autumnal colors just pop against a blue and white tablecloth. For the flowers, I took the oranges, yellows and reds of the fruit for inspiration," Carolyne Roehm says.

Shop a similar look: blue tablecloth ($18, ), green place setting ($45, ), galvanized vases ($16, )

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nicholas manville tablescape
Kana Okada
Set up a buffet.

Bergdorf Goodman's Nicholas Manville sets a welcoming buffet with chic marbleized pieces. "Everything feels natural, like a table in a Dutch still life painting," he says. "But once the guests arrive, this one will become animated."

Shop a similar look: marble plates ($62, ), yellow flower centerpiece ($82, )

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