Monday, September 18, 2017

3 inexpensive style tips for a collected Fall table

I had a hard time coming up with the title for this post.

The truth is...

I'm not good at making up snappy post titles, especially when this entire post began on a creative whim, right after I bought my first pumpkin of the season. But if you follow me on Instagram you already know this.

And hopefully you enjoyed my DIY pumpkin centerpiece.

But you know how one-thing-leads-to-another?

The next thing I know I'm staring at this centerpiece and reaching for a few wooden bowls and opening cabinet doors to find my wicker placemats...

Maybe the point of this post is that sometimes it's nice to pull a few things together without a plan and see what happens.

After all, that's pretty much how I got inspired about this casual Fall table and ended up sharing a few quickie tips today.

Hey. Maybe that can be my title, I thought. How about three tips, that sound good?

Because once I put the flowers on the table
 suddenly I had to have plaid next to this old copper colander I used for my centerpiece. Maybe it's just me. But there's something about a warm plaid that reminds me of autumn leaves and mugs of hot cider, especially after the cool blues of summer.

But ....who has the perfect plaid tablecloth in just the right color that you're envisioning in your creative little head?

Definitely not me.

So my first tip is one you probably already do.

I headed to the local fabric store, found the plaid fabric I wanted and bought a few yards. 

So here's my advice. Because finding the perfect tablecloth can often be expensive and time-consuming, skip the tablecloth and go to a fabric store.

Tip #1
Use fabric remnants instead of tablecloths.

Know the measurements of your table before you go. And once you're back home with your fabric simply cut it using sharp scissors, fold it over and press the edges. You can use a no-sew fusible web product, or in my case, just fold the edges over... period).

(note to self: use your iron more)

Next tip, let's talk napkins.

Tip #2 Transform plain white napkins with fabric paint and stencils.

Once I find my inspiration colors for my tables, I think about the napkins. Although I've collected lots of colors over the years, lately I prefer the simplicity of white ones. 

At the risk of boring you, I can't stop raving about the napkins my friend Carol made for me; personally I love the bold, graphic look of black numbers against the white and I find they go with a variety of styles, especially with the plaid on this table.


Plus, after washing them repeatedly I've discovered they still look great. So next time you want to add a special touch to your table how about getting creative with your napkins?

Fabric paint and stencils is all you need.

Tip #3
Incorporate vintage items into your centerpiece

And now, back to your flowers and the choice of a plain vase.

Or maybe a not-so-plain vase.

Yes, thank goodness for funky little thrift stores where you can find vintage coffee and tea canisters, dried out cutting boards-that-you-can-spruce-up, wood crates, cheap baskets or in my case, worn looking colanders. 

I love that color of old copper.

There are so many unique pieces that can look wonderful with flowers inside.

In the past I've put flowers with apples in my colanders and this time it's flowers with a green bumpy pumpkin.

Fun napkins. Fabric remnants. Flowers and pumpkins inside old things.

How about you?

Do you have a favorite styling tip for your table?


i'm linking up with these friends:


Brenda Pruitt said...

I just go with the mood. Where did you get your wood slice base? Your natural tablescape is gorgeous!

Cynthia said...

Love the way it all came together, Leslie! It's very fall looking without being predictable. I too use fabric for tablecloths, or sometimes scarves, blankets, and layering if the pieces are not big enough. Like the napkins especially! I have loads of white napkins, and could probably spare some to try out the idea of stenciling numbers. . .may even make a cool gift!

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

I love your fall table, Leslie! This morning I went to the Bachman's Ideas House and they had a plaid runner, and then I see your wonderful plaid tablecloth! I need some plaid!
Thanks for the inspiration!

Simply LKJ said...

Love it all Leslie. I too find I like what comes together on a whim. If I plan ahead too much, I always feel it looks too staged.

Susan Nowell @ My Place to Yours said...

I love hearing the "behind-the-scenes" of how tablescapes evolve! Your is perfect for Fall -- without being too Fall-ish! The non-traditional element of surprise is perfect!

Sarah said...

Lovely, Leslie! We have lots of copper pieces around here because copper is the one thing that my chef has collected over the years. He first started buying antique copper when he was stationed in Turkey. Mostly he has pots and pans which he uses on a daily basis. I occasionally "borrow" a piece for an unexpected vase or container for a plant or other uses. I haven't bought fabric for the table, but I often pull scarves or wool wraps from my closet to use on the table. Lap quilts also. My tip for easy fall decorating is buy an interesting pumpkin with a stem, tie a pretty seasonal ribbon in a bow around the stem, and use the pumpkin as a seasonal decorative object on a book or box or just on a table top. Just remember to put something under the pumpkin in case it gets a bad spot and begins to rot. ;-)
Happy Fall!

Blondie's Journal said...

All I need to see is Gwen Moss and I'm here---no title necessary.

Love the napkin idea. I have white napkins in abundance...I pick them up all the time in case I can't get an idea for a color scheme.

It's great that you just fold the fabric over. I can't sew and usually use the tape, but it's truly difficult to make a tablecloth for my round table.

Thank for the ideas!

Jane x

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La Contessa said...

They have GONE from my area of THE STATE!

I always build a TABLEScape from THE GUT!NEVER A for me ALL the TIME!

michele said...

I found myself nodding through this entire post. Yes. This is how I style and create moments...organically, not methodically or Pinterest-astically, it's just a keen eye and intuition. Omg the shot with your chandelier. And the last shot. It's dreamy and the thing Pinterest virals are made of because it doesn't look contrived or desperate. Right? There are 70 billion pics of people trying to copy Joanna Gaines down to the font on the 'gather' sign, so bring on the effortless, undone, spontaneous bursts of creative freedom that flow from a pure heart. And yay for no-sew! I love an unfinished, fraying edge. Again, it's not trying so hard. It's Euro-inspired. If I'm not sure about whether a vignette is too wonky, I think: wow, I am more French than the French and call it a day. xox

Leslie Harris said...

Sarah you always have such beautiful tables I'm not surprised I really love your  suggestions about quilts and scarves on the table. And how lucky to have a collector of antique copper in the family!  Wow, that piece from Turkey must be special-- not just for its beautiful color-- but for all those memories too. 
So good to hear from you dear.

Leslie Harris said...

Hi Brenda, I got those at Cost Plus World Market, I'm pretty sure they still carry them.
Thanks for the kind words. Happy Fall!

Leslie Harris said...

Cynthia thanks so much for sharing your own style tips, you're so creative! I gotta remember to pull out my scarves and blankets too. I hope you'r enjoying your September.

Leslie Harris said...

Thanks Lauren I agree, I even think that 'too staged' can make guests feel uncomfortable if it's formal too. Although with your personality you don't have to worry about that. :)

Stonecropsister said...

Hi Leslie,
such a simple suggestion, the fabric store, I'm going to place that on my want-to-do's- list for a nice fall weekend. My girls will be home for Christmas, and I imagine that there are all sorts of finds at fabric stores and fall markets that can be used to create that sense of individual style and feeling of home. I remember my Mom, four kids circling her at all times, and my memories of her using the tall black container (Black Label scotch?) and making candles, tall red candles for our tables at Christmas. I ask you!!! How would this ever happen in my life? With my mindset? and yet this is what I aspire to. and your blog has so much of this, it's beautiful. xx Nancy

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