Rustic Thanksgiving Decorations That Use Natural Elements
Rustic Thanksgiving Decorations

Making your own rustic Thanksgiving decorations is fun and frugal. You can use things you find in the yard or cheap items from craft stores. (If you’re like us, you probably already have craft supplies on hand.) You can do the same for Thanksgiving centerpieces.

Rustic Thanksgiving Decorations

Thanksgiving is a time of year when the evenings are getting dark earlier, the chill is beginning to set in, and the lovely autumn leaves of October are off the trees. The fairs and festivals of summer are over, and people are spending more time indoors. Rustic Thanksgiving decorations can help make this time cozy and inviting. Here are some ideas on how to create rustic Thanksgiving decorations.

Rustic Thanksgiving Pin

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Candle Wreaths

Candles are the perfect decoration for the darker days of late fall. They bring a cozy light indoors and provide a festive atmosphere. (Remember never to leave a candle unattended, and keep all flammable objects and decorations well away from the flame.)

Candle wreaths are fun because you can make them in all kinds of sizes and put them in bay windows, on sideboards, tables, and wherever it’s safe to have a candle. To make candle wreaths, you’ll need:

* Floral foam rings of various sizes
* Dried or silk flowers and/or leaves in fall colors
* Pillar candles and votive candles
* Clear glass holders such as hurricane shades for the pillar candles and clear glass holders for votive candles

  1. Cut the silk or dried flowers and leaves so that you have a stiff stem to press into the foam rings.
  2. Use a hot glue gun if you need to reinforce the flowers or if you don’t have a stem to push into the foam.
  3. Then place the candle holders and candles in the center.

Place the wreaths where they’ll be seen and enjoyed. You could even place one at each guest’s place at the Thanksgiving table and let them take the decoration home.

Pumpkin Vase

For a very rustic Thanksgiving centerpiece, use a pumpkin for a vase. You could also substitute a butternut squash or different kind of squash.

  1. Cut the top off of a pumpkin and hollow it out as you would for a Halloween jack-o-lantern.
  2. Inside, place a large plastic container full of water or floral foam (it doesn’t matter what the container looks like since it will be covered by the pumpkin).
  3. Place cut flowers such as mums and other seasonal plants into the floral foam or container of water until you have a nice arrangement.

Platter of Plenty

Rustic Thanksgiving Platter

Many households have more platters than they can use, even during Thanksgiving. Pull one out to use as a centerpiece or a decoration on a bay window or mantle. You’ll need:

*Colorful gourds
*Decorative field corn
*Fall squash
*Ivy (optional)
*Mums (optional)
*Attractive seed pods and/or branches from your yard (give young ones the job of collecting seed pods and branches to get them outside)

  1. On the platter, arrange the gourds, field corn, and fall squash on the platter.
  2. Put the tallest, largest objects in the center and work outward.
  3. Fill in with ivy, mums, and pretty seed pods and branches from your yard. This is also a great time to use all those acorns that are crunching under your feet outdoors.

Put the platter where you need a little color and rustic Thanksgiving decorations to make the room inviting.

Fall Fruit Basket

Place a fall fruit basket in a prominent place in your home and encourage family members and guests to partake. It’s healthy and beautiful. You’ll need:

*Attractive basket
*Dried or silk flowers
*Hot glue gun
*Brown and green tissue paper
*Plastic wrap

  1. Line the inside of the basket with plastic.
  2. Add the brown and green tissue on top of the plastic liner. (This is where your fruit will go.)
  3. Use the hot glue gun to glue dried or silk flowers to the outside of the basket, grouping similar flowers together.
  4. Fill the middle with fruit and set out for everyone to enjoy.

Be sure to keep an eye on your fruit basket so you can replenish it when it starts to look empty.

Rustic Thanksgiving Centerpieces

Thanksgiving centers around the table. That means the table centerpiece says a great deal to your guests and family members. When it’s a homemade centerpiece, it can be a conversation starter, and it shows your guests you care enough to invest some time in them.

Here are some rustic Thanksgiving centerpieces for your table.

Butternut Squash Vase

Butternut Squash

Our butternut squash vase is a lot like the pumpkin vase, but slightly different if the squash stands upright and has a tougher flesh. You’ll need:

*Paring knife
*Butternut squash
*Seasonal flowers

  1. Cut the top inch or so off of a butternut squash.
  2. Use a paring knife to dig/cut out the insides. Butternut squash flesh is rather tough, so use the paring knife to cut progressively-deeper circles around the inside edge of the squash neck.
  3. Scoop out the bulbous center with a spoon.
  4. Add water and seasonal flowers such as mums, straw flowers, and berry sprays.

If you make several of these, choose squash of various sizes and heights to add interest. Group them together to make the centerpiece.

Three Little Pumpkins

Have you ever been at the farmer’s market or grocery store, and wanted an excuse to buy those little pumpkins? Now you have one! For this centerpiece, you can decorate all three pumpkins the same way or vary them. You’ll need:

*Three small pumpkins (about the size of a cantaloupe)
* Hot glue
* Buttons
* Fabric ribbon in holiday colors, about half an inch wide
* Curly ribbon in holiday colors
* Hat pins with pearl heads
* White glue or decoupage medium
* Fabric scraps in holiday colors

Here are some general guidelines for the decorations, and you can apply them how you wish.


  1. Attach ribbons vertically to each pumpkin using white glue or decoupage medium.
  2. Coat the ribbon strips with glue, running your finger along the ribbon to scrape off excess.
  3. Attach strips from the base of the stem to the bottom center of the pumpkin.


  1. Cut squares of fabric and attach to the pumpkin with decoupage medium.
  2. Arrange another square on top of the first in a sideways fashion, so the corners of the first piece are showing.
  3. Then attach a button to the center of this arrangement using one of the pearl-top pins.

Decorate the pumpkin stems (and cover up your fabric ribbon ends) with curly ribbon.

Swan Gourds

Swan Gourds Centerpiece

Gather long, thin-necked gourds in various sizes. Make sure they have the stems attached, because these will be the swans’ bills. In addition to these, you’ll need:

* Grapevine wreath (the swans’ nest)
* Craft paint and/or permanent marker
* Pine cones, acorns, berries, and other “nest-like” decorations from nature
* Raffia
* Hot glue

  1. Use a little craft paint or a permanent marker to create eyes on the swans on the stem end. Feel free to add eyelashes, colorful eyes, whatever you wish.
  2. Tie raffia ribbons around the swans’ necks and nestle them in the grapevine wreath (which you will need to lay sideways).
  3. Arrange acorns, twigs, and your other “nest” items around them and attach with hot glue.

What rustic Thanksgiving decorations have you made? Share them with us in the comments.

Rustic Thanksgiving Decorations That Use Natural Elements

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