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More families gather together at the table on Thanksgiving than for any other holiday, so if it's your turn to host, you want everything to be perfect. Setting a traditional table can seem like a challenge if your tastes don't run to the type of Americana most closely associated with piles of plaid and hand-painted plaques with cutesy sayings.

 


The design concepts of country and sophisticated are no more mutually exclusive than turkey and cranberries are. With a little planning and some creativity, setting an upscale tablescape that is warm, welcoming and traditional is easy as pie.

Start from the bottom up with your linens. Solid colors work best with patterned plates and vice versa. Few things are more classic or elegant than a crisp, white tablecloth but you can also use other autumn colors such as amber, pumpkin, sage, eggplant and deep brown. Consider a table runner to add visual interest and break up the expanse of bare cloth in the center of the table.

Placemats and napkins should contrast with or complement your tablecloth and each other. So, one possible linen palette would be a pale pumpkin tablecloth printed with sage green leaf outlines, solid sage placemats and napkins that exactly match the tablecloth.

Napkin rings add sophistication to any tablescape, but for a traditional Thanksgiving, consider hammered pewter, wood or glass in autumn colors to echo your overall theme. Other fall themes include leaves, autumn vegetables and fruits and animals more associated with autumn and winter such as pine cones, owls and deer.

Another way to add instant elegance is through the use of chargers, which are flat plates slightly larger than your dinner plates. They are not meant to be eaten off of, but sit decoratively underneath your place settings and stay on the table until the dessert course is served. Look for chargers in pewter, wood or fall-toned glass to add a level of elegance that fits with your traditional holiday theme.

Centerpieces are where so many new hostesses make their biggest misstep. If you have staff to serve the different courses or are laying out your feast in the style of a buffet, you can decorate the table as ornately as you like. Glass candlesticks in autumn colors and in different sizes are beautiful and warm, as are pewter, silver, gold and wood candlesticks. Scatter small piles of nuts in the shell among the candlesticks as well as clean, intact, natural leaves or excellent paper or fabric facsimiles. Scatter raw cranberries about for a touch of color.

Keep the centerscape low enough to make conversation effortless. If you are using candlelight, make sure that there is enough illumination for everyone to see their plates and each other.

Choosing a centerpiece for a feast served family-style requires that it contain no more than three pieces ? a centerpiece and maybe a candle at either side. You don`t want to spend time dismantling the decorations so that you can place the serving dishes, so keep it simple. A silver vase of vintage-colored roses or a clear glass vase of marigolds with lemon slices, cranberries and cinnamon sticks floating in the water are sophisticated, traditional and simple to remove when dinner is ready.

Figure out how many courses will be served and place all of the flatware and plates on the chargers or placemats. Flatware should be placed so that your guests start with the pieces on the outside and work their way in. Dishes and bowls should work the same way, so that as each course is finished, removing the bowl or plate removed reveals the next one to be needed.

Finally, don`t forget the small touches that tie a tablescape together. Individual salt and pepper sets, place cards and even small, handmade gifts do not only add to the beauty of your tablescape but to the enjoyment of your family and friends.

The decorating experts at Upscale Country know that a great dinner requires a sturdy and attractive foundation, so check out the beautiful selection of dining tables at http://www.dunelm-mill.com/shop/furniture/ for the one that best welcomes your family home.



Everyone loves a party; especially in the winter, it seems.  That is, according to a 2012 survey that reports the winter season is the most popular time of year to host a social event at home.  In fact, more than six in 10 survey respondents said they've planned and hosted at least one winter holiday dinner at their home within the past three years.  Additionally, more than half have hosted an adult event including birthday parties.

 

 Entertaining is just as big today as it has always been.  After 9/11 and most recently the recession, more and more people are staying in and choosing to entertain friends and family in the comfort of their own home.  

These wine glasses are very popular for bridal registries, housewarming gifts, and most recently they are sought after for hostess gifts.

 

 

 

 




We knew it was time to change the front porch furniture around.  So, we went to our trusty black urn that we have used for just about everything.....

 

 

....and had a little fun!!!  Ending up with this....

Stop by and check it out -- it looks even better in person!!

See ya Friday for Moonlight Madness!!




Fall is a great time to bring earth tones in to your home!  Celebrate the season by transforming your indoor and outdoor living space.  Your front porch is a wonderful spot to welcome your guests with hints of the season by adding a few pumpkins, gourds, and ears of corn to a basket.  A bale of hay can also be a perfect landing spot for your child’s carved pumpkins.  Tying corn stalks to your porch columns instantly transforms it to a fall festival! Add some color with a burnt orange ribbon.  Even your outdoor space can be warm and cozy!




Do you have an old grapevine wreath? Hang it on your front door! Leave it plain for a more natural look or add a rich velvet ribbon for a dressier version. You could even add some colorful berries and acorns! Your front door wreath will be an easy switch as seasons come and go!

   

Is that pumpkin pie I smell baking in the oven?  Easily get warm, fall scents by the aroma of a burning candle.  Not only will your home smell like you’ve been baking all day, but it also gives off that warm and cozy feeling with the flickering flame.  It warms the soul on those breezy fall evenings! Don’t forget your mantle and windowsills, also a perfect spot for holding a candle.

    

Use any surface space to bring the looks of the season in by adding dried leaves, small pumpkins, or non-specific season decorative items, but in a fall color palette; such as filling mason jars with a variety of dried beans.  Lean two or three fall themed or colored prints on your mantle.  Place candle holders at one end and a gourd or pumpkin on the opposite side.  A beautiful garland would tie your look together for a finished look.

  



Adding those warm hues to your living area can be easy and doesn’t have to be an over-the-top project.  Switching out your throw pillows, a warm snuggly throw draped over the back of the sofa or arm chair, or take it a step further and  use fall colored slipcovers! You can also change out your light-airy curtains for a heavy fabric to keep that chilly draft at bay!

Fall is a great time to catch up with an old friend! Make a cozy spot by pulling a couple comfy armchairs off in a corner where you can talk the evening away with a cup of hot cider while the flickering candle warms the area.

 

Centerpieces are a must have for this particular season.  One tends to have more get-togethers now and everyone always finds themselves gathered around the dining room table.  A centerpiece can be ANYTHING.  It does not have to be a traditional round or oval floral arrangement placed in the middle of your table.  The sky’s the limit when it comes to centerpieces! Try using a vintage wooden bowl filled with leaves from your yard.  Stack fresh apples on top for you and your family to pull from when needing a snack!  Choose a centerpiece that can be added to or altered a bit every week.  Table linens can also be added for a pop of color.  You want your dining room table to be inviting, not stuffy and un-touchable.  Throw an unexpected element in your centerpiece! It could be a great conversation starter!

    

Family time is so precious these days with life’s busy schedule!  Make time for family activities; go apple picking, carve pumpkins out by a bonfire, etc.  Gather on the porch with a warm blanket and a cup of hot apple cider and visit!

  

Decorating for seasons can be easy and inexpensive using natural elements and by using decorations you already have in your home.  Choosing pieces that will easily transition from season to season can be easy! For instance, pinecones, berries, and twigs will be useful for both fall and Christmas.  Simply swap the acorns in a clear container out for a few snow covered ornaments! Easy.

Happy fall!






We're getting to the time of year when most people transition their home decor.  One of the easiest ways to change-up things is with arrangements.  This is one of our more busier times of year to do custom arrangements for people. 

Here is a recent staff favorite.  We love it outside!!  Where would you put it?

 

Looking to make some subtle changes?  Stop by, point out items you like, or bring your own with you!  We'll help you put pull your look together!

 

 




Ok, so sometimes while we're right in the middle of a project we tend to get a little sidetracked...like yesterday.  We're in the middle of transitioning the store to Halloween and suddenly decide we need to update this piece that we've been meaning to do for some time.  We paint furniture all the time, why the delay in getting this piece done?  And, why did we decide yesterday was the day?  Don't know, but it was a fun break!!

Before...

After...

 

 This picture doesn't do it justice because it's actually more of a turquoise, not baby blue!

 




A pareo (also called a sarong in certain parts of the world) is a wardrobe staple in the tropics. And every reason why they love them there – stylish, lightweight, versatile – is why you gotta have one here. The only problem? How the heck do you tie it? Whether you’re a knot know-it-all or all thumbs, there are many simple ways to tie one that’ll look a lot better than the oversize t-shirt or (gasp!) hotel towel you almost considered wearing. These 6 options take only a minute, even mere seconds, to do (no mirror required) so you can do them anywhere. And because a pareo takes up very little space, it’s easy to tuck into your carry-on. That way you’re ready to hit the beach or have drinks on the deck when you arrive – even if your luggage doesn’t!

Wear it, share it. Is there a creative way you like to wear your pareo that isn’t shown here? Post your photos on our Facebook wall. (You never know – you could even be featured on our blog.)

Long or Short Skirt
The quickest and easiest option, it’s ideal for hiding hips while showing as little or as much leg as you want.

 

Bandeau Dress
Shows off your beautiful neckline, elegantly hides any lower “trouble” zones.

 

Crossover Halter Dress
Provides more coverage on top while adding drama to your neckline. Keeps your middle under wraps too.

 

Twist Front Halter Dress
A little more playful, it brings modern style with secret sensibility – balancing a fuller bust, softly shading hips or a little tummy bulge.

 

One shoulder Dress
It doubles as a dress to instantly transition from pool to party mode.
Note: requires a bit of flexibility or you may want to ask your BFF to help. 

 

Shrug
Flowy and carefree, it hides those little imperfections gracefully and tastefully.

-The Lands' End Blog

 Try any one of these styles with our new pareos!

 




Green

From what we put in our homes to what we wear...

calm, fresh, healthy...spring!

                      




This week's staff favorite is our pearl and wire garland.  With a generous 24' in length, we are wrapping it around everything from baskets to hurricanes for a fun look!  Pair it with some jute rope for a rustic, primitive look too!

 

 

 

 





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