Create Your Own Ambience: Easy Thanksgiving Centerpieces

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You say you enjoy all the fuss for Thanksgiving — a special stuffing recipe, several pies, and all the side dishes everyone loves so much — but you are at a loss for dressing the table? Don’t fret; here are ideas for handmade Thanksgiving centerpieces that are easy and quick to do, even if you’re not an inveterate crafter. Dried citrus “slices” can dress up an array of candles; on a tiered serving plate, arrange small gourds, pumpkins, and dried fall around the layers. Or, on that same plate, gather clear glasses, fill them with candy corn, and stack them over a leaf arrangement — tied with orange, red, or gold ribbon, it’s striking. Talented with color? Paint “highlights” on pumpkins and gourds, coat with clear lacquer, and arrange in a cornucopia shell — for rave reviews.

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For textural detail, glue dried beans, peas, or lentils in wide horizontal bands around fat candles or pumpkins — or layer them in colorful stripes in a clear glass and insert a candle in the center. Glass containers make terrific candelabra trimmed with cranberries, acorns, pecans or walnuts, dried flower petals, or even dried corn. If you prefer just flowers, fill a wooden planter with orange and white roses and lime-green foliage for instant smiles. A large footed trifle dish can hold gourds, Indian corn, and small pumpkins for simple elegance; for a look that’s both soft and warm, crochet “flowers” in various colors and group them in a hollowed pumpkin (or pumpkin-shaped dish). Your choices are wide — take a look at some of these ideas and have fun!

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