Guide to napkin folding for Thanksgiving


Table settings are an essential part of any dinner gathering, particularly the most anticipated meal of the season: Thanksgiving! With all the turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, rolls, pies, etc., things are bound to get a little messy. Needless to say, napkins are necessary. Especially for one who always seems to end up with a jam smear on her blouse… what’s a girl to do? Anyway, it is time to step up our napkin game and (attempt) to banish all spills and splotches! We’ve chosen six festive designs to DIY: 1) Boat, 2) Maple leaf, 3) Turkey, 4) Crown, 5) Leaf, and 6) Pumpkin.  These will put the finishing touch on your Thanksgiving spread and even impress your mother-in-law with the ever-critical eye!

Our favorite napkin colors for this project are linked HERE!

Friendsgiving Printables

Friendsgiving Printables

Friendsgiving Printables

Friendsgiving Printables

Although throwing a dinner party can seem daunting, let alone Thanksgiving, we’re making it easy for you this year! With our Friendsgiving Printables, you can (1) Send out invitations, (2) Set the table with placemats, (3) Set the table with place cards or invite guests to bring a dish to share and label it, and  (4), Send them away with leftover boxes. The key here is going potluck style: you be in charge of the turkey and perhaps a dessert, and then delegate the rest. This allows guests to contribute and bring a taste of their home to the party. Easy as apple pie!

Friendsgiving Printables

Friendsgiving Printables

Leftover boxes are a genius addition to any Thanksgiving feast because there is always so much food! And let’s be honest, those turkey cranberry sandwiches you make the day after are one of the best parts of the holiday!

Friendsgiving Printables

Friendsgiving Printables

Friendsgiving Printables

Friendsgiving Printables

What’s better than adorable and disposable placemats? These will make such a lovely and festive tablescape without breaking the bank!

Friendsgiving Printables

Friendsgiving Printables

And if you’re looking for a different style, try this one from two years ago! 

Photography by Clara Jones | Illustrations by Ashley Isenhour

DIY Friendsgiving Table Spread

Garlands and gratitude galore!  What better way to spend a season of gratitude than with friends.  This year, we wanted to deck out our studio with a Friendsgiving extravaganza!  We used our Friendsgiving invitations, found here, for some perfect garland inspiration.  No party is complete without an eye catching garland full of shapes and color à la Lars.  Because of the bounteous holiday celebrations this time of year, we also wanted everything to be damage free and temporary.  So we set out to find just the thing. Cue the new Command® Adjustables™ Hooks and Clips. 

Gratitude Tree with Acorn Favors


Gratitude Tree with Acorns favors

What’s your favorite part of Thanksgiving? Naturally, I’m a real big fan of the food. Who isn’t? In addition, though, my family has always taken some time out of the evening to reflect on the things that we’re really grateful for. Be it in the form of a list on notecards, shared verbally around the table, or in the form of a Gratitude Tree! A gratitude tree is a way to display the things you’re grateful for while creating a beautiful and seasonal display. Each dinner guest gets a paper leaf or a few leaves, and they write something they’re thankful for on each leaf. It’s a great activity to do at a Thanksgiving gathering.Gratitude Tree with Acorns favors

A bonus element to this tree is the Acorn Favors! Each acorn is actually an eos First Snow Lip Balm in disguise! Before you send your guests away after the big feast, tell them to take an acorn off the gratitude tree. This eos First Snow Sphere is the perfect gift to send your friends and family home with as the scent characterizes the cozy time of year. It’s fresh and crisp and smells SO good. Plus, your lips will be in need of some extra TLC with the winter chill on the way!

DIY Origami Cornucopia


Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays because I can always count on the same friends, family, and food being present. This is often the only time of the year when I get to see certain loved ones and consume the yummiest foods. Why oh why must we save all the apple and pumpkin goodies for such a short time? However, I do believe the traditional decor for Thanksgiving leaves a little (a lot?) to be desired.

We decided to mix things up and create an origami cornucopia, which is something I’ve been wanting to try for a while (with a rainbow of fruits and vegetables to fill it, of course!). After the paper crane costume we created for Halloween a few weeks ago, we went a little crazy over origami, and this is the fruits (literally HA!) of our labor! I LOVE how it turned out. The origami can be a bit time consuming, but it’s the perfect activity to do while watching those wonderfully cheesy Hallmark Holiday films. 

3 Pie Crust Decorating Ideas

3 Pie Crust Decorating Ideas

These 3 pie crust decorating ideas will give that extra bit of flair to your holiday desserts, and they’re super easy to make! You don’t have to be a baker (or an artist) to ace these pie designs.

Use a stencil on your Pie

Get the message across with a stencil on your pie. This “Give Thanks and Eat Pie” does just that with powdered sugar. Perfect for extra sweetness too!

I love how simple yet impactful this one is. Ashley came up with the idea to apply a stencil to a pie…genius! This one is great for the Cricut or Silhouette machine. And it’s perfect for your Thanksgiving pie!

Give Thanks and Eat Pie Stencil


  1. Simply download this file and cut it out on your machine or cut it out by hand. I used a piece of scrapbook paper to create the stencil.
  2. Set onto the pie. Not too firmly, it might take a layer of the pie off.
  3.  Sprinkle powdered sugar on top with a sifter.
  4.  Gently take the stencil with hands on either side so you pull it all off at the same time.


Give Thanks and Eat pie pie stencil
Cricut ready SVG pie stencil file.Matisse inspired pie crust idea.

Paint your pie crust with food coloring–The Matisse Pie

Last week while I was in NYC I attended the exhibition on Matisse’s cutouts at the MOMA (after getting bummed I couldn’t go to the Tate in London). I was inspired, so we came up with the Matisse pie, of course! Put those beautiful shapes to use!
Carli came up with this brilliant idea to paint the pie crust with food coloring. It went on so smoothly and bakes brilliantly.


  1.  Cover your pie with the dough to have a large surface to work with.
  2. Use a paintbrush to paint on your design with food coloring. We didn’t water down at all but used pure food coloring. We looked at images from Matisses’ paper cut-outs.
  3. Bake it in the oven for 10 minutes to brown the crust (you should have already baked the pie filling).
Matisse inspired pie crust.
Voila! If you want to throw your own tortured artist 
party, try out this pie crust decoration to incorporate Matisse!
Dot pie crust.

The polka dot pie crust decoration

Victoria came up with this fun and easy idea of decorating your pie crust.


  1. Roll out your dough and use the back end of an icing tip to punch holes into the dough like a cookie cutter.
  2.  Apply the dots to the perimeter of the pie then coming into the center of the pie filling and bake for the last 15-20 minutes of the pie cooking time.


Pie crust idea.

How will you be making your pies for the holidays? Tell me in the comments!

Have some leftover slices of pie? Check out our printable boxes for Thanksgiving pies and summer pies

Photography by Laura Sumrak
Baking and crafting by Victoria Riza, Carli Randolf, and Ashley Isenhour,

Macy’s Day Parade Tablescape

Macy's Day Parade Tablescape-8What are some of your Thanksgiving traditions? Maybe you go on a Turkey Trot the morning of Halloween. Perhaps you see a movie in the evening? I know a lot of people who watch way too much football 😉 One particular tradition beloved at the Lars Studio is watching the Macy’s Day Parade on the morning of Thanksgiving. The floats, the music, the dancing, it’s all so magical! As the cooking and baking preparations are well underway, we watch the parade march past Central Park and there is nothing better! Nostalgia at its finest, that’s what the holidays are all about, right? So we bottled up our love for that tradition and created this Macy’s Day Parade Tablescape for our monthly tablescape series complete with taxi car place cards! Say hello to your new Thanksgiving tradition.

Edited: The Today Show loved it so much they featured it on their Thanksgiving edition! 

See how to create the full tablescape after the jump!

Thanksgiving Hat Tradition Plus DIY Tutorials

These thanksgiving hats were so much fun to create! Think of the possibilities with this! Well, we decided that everybody needs to adopt this tradition, so we came up with a few ideas of our own. Of course, they are meant to be ridiculous. Think of Aunt Edna sporting a candy cornucopia at the dinner table!
Above, we have the pumpkin pie hat and popcorn ball fascinator. Below, brown paper turkey hat.

Start a new tradition of making hats for each other to wear on Thanksgiving like this turkey hat.

Start a new tradition of making hats for each other to wear on Thanksgiving like this candy cornucopia fascinator.
Above, candy cornucopia. Below, the pinecone hat.
Start a new tradition of making hats for each other to wear on Thanksgiving like this pinecone crown.
See below for step by step tutorials.
Photography by Cassidy Tuttle
Crafting by Hillary Gallip, Ashley Isenhour, Victoria Riza, Brittany Jepsen


Thanksgiving Hat: Pumpkin Pie Hat by Brittany Jepsen


  • Orange cardstock
  • White cardstock
  • Beige cardstock
  • Silver mirror paper
  • Glue gun
  • Cardboard
  • Scissors
  • Craft knife


  1.  Cut a circle out of cardboard. I made mine 10″ in diameter.
  2. Cut out a smaller circle within that circle. This should fit the size of your head. I would start by making it a bit too small and make it larger if necessary.
  3. With your silver mirror paper, make the perimeter of the “pie tin”. My paper wasn’t large enough so I had to make 3 strips to go around the whole perimeter. I made mine 2 1/2″ tall.
  4. Glue the strips into place with your glue gun.
  5. With your beige paper, make strips of paper 3″ tall and accordion fold them about 1/2″ wide. This will serve as the crust of the pie. My paper wasn’t long enough so I had to do it in a few strips.
  6. Glue the crust into place by dabbing a bit of glue onto the accordion folds then onto the pie tin every so often. It’s a delicate process.
  7. Make the top of the pie with your orange piece of paper. Cut it into the shape of a circle slightly smaller than the perimeter of the pie and cut it down if necessary. Glue it into place by putting glue along the bottom so it sticks to the crust.
  8. Top it off with a dollop of whip cream. Create this by cutting out a circle in white and cutting it into a spiral. Stretch it out a bit so it has some height. Glue in place.
In the picture above I’m holding a single piece of pie. Check out how to create it on Studio DIY.

Thanksgiving Hat: Candy Cornucopia by Hillary Gallup


  • Waffle cones (I got a few from Cold Stone)
  • Candy in fruit shapes
  • Ribbon
  • Glue gun


  1. Bending the waffle cornucopia is very delicate, so that’s why I bought several in case I messed up.
  2. Dip the end of the cone into water for 8-10 seconds to soften the cone, then immediately stick the cone in the microwave for 10 more seconds.
  3. After you pull the cone out, you can manipulate the end how you want. I turned it up a bit to create that cornucopia shape.
  4. Prop up the end under a marker to support it, and let it dry for an hour.
  5. After gathering all the fruit candies I could find, I placed them onto the cone & superglued them in place.
  6. I attached the cornucopia to a headband-supported ribbon and wrapped it around my head.

Thanksgiving Hat: Turkey Hat by Ashley Isenhour


  • Brown paper grocery sack
  • 2 brown paper lunch bags
  • Glue gun
  • Scissors
  • Tape measure
  • Cardboard
  • X-acto knife or box cutter
  • White paper
  • Colored paper scraps
  • Craft paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Pencil


(We adapted this tutorial from One Charming Party)
  1.  Draw a large oval onto a piece of cardboard. Measure the circumference of your head, then draw a circle with the same circumference in the middle of the oval. Use an x-acto knife or box cutter to cut out the oval and the circle within the oval. This will be your “platter.” Paint the platter desired color and allow to dry.
  2. Lay the brown paper grocery sack flat. Cut the sack apart vertically into two sections. One section will be about 1/3 of the width of the bag and the other section will be about 2/3 of the original width.
  3. Discard the larger section. Cut a few inches off of the opened end of the smaller section of the bag. Use scissors to fringe the cut edge of the smaller section. Cuts should about 1″ deep and 3/4″ apart.
  4. Turn this section of the bag inside-out. Don’t turn the corners of the bag all the way, as this will give your “turkey” a rounded appearance. Fold the fringed edge of the bag under so that the fringed edge is hidden. Fold the two corners of the open end of the bag under and hot glue in place. You will be left with a paper dome that will be your turkey body.
  5. Hot glue the fringed, folded under edge of the turkey body around the edge of the circle cut out of the cardboard platter.
  6. Carefully turn both paper lunch bags inside-out. Again, leave the corners unturned to create the rounded end of your “drumsticks”. Flatten one paper bag. Use your fist to mold a concave, cupped shape on the closed end of the bag. Twist the open end tightly to make a drumstick shape. Repeat steps with other paper bag.
  7. Cut two 2″ strips of white paper. Cut fringe along the edge of the strips about 1″ deep. Use hot glue and wrap one of the strips around the twisted end of each drumstick. Tousle fringe with fingers to give them dimension. Hot glue around the cupped edge and secure drumsticks to either side of the turkey body.
  8. Cut thin strips of colored scraps of paper. Crumple strips and hot glue into place strategically around turkey body. This is your “stuffing”.


Thanksgiving Hat: Popcorn Ball Fascinator by Victoria Riza


  • Coffee filters
  • Hot glue gun
  • Cellophane wrap
  • Headband
  • Ribbon
  • Scrap paper to use as candies in the popcorn ball and yellow paint diluted with water to spray onto the popcorn ball if you want it look more like caramel or butter popcorn (optional)


1. Take coffee filter, pull at the center, and twist.
2. Take twisted coffee filters and hot glue together to form a ball.
3. If you want, you can spray or flick paint onto the coffee filter ball to make it look more like popcorn.
4. Let dry if you do step 3.
5. Take scraps of colored paper that’s used for candy, and glue into the popcorn ball.
6. Wrap the ball in cellophane.
7. Tie off with a bow.
8. Glue onto headband in desired position. Use a piece of poster board to secure ball on the headband.

Thanksgiving Hat: Winter Pinecone Crown by Brittany Jepsen


  • Pinecones
  • Spray paint
  • Cardstock
  • Glue gun


  1. Create a base to fit onto the head with a piece of cardstock. Secure with tape or glue. I made mine 2″ wide
  2. Glue the pinecones onto the paper
  3.  Spray paint white


SO, are you going to adopt the tradition???? Too fun, right?!

Looking for more Thanksgiving ideas? Gather your friends to make these fun hats and create a Friendsgiving Table Spread!

Rainbow Paper Pumpkin Tablescape

If you’re looking to colorize your Thanksgiving table for the upcoming festivities, this Rainbow Paper Pumpkin tablescape is just the ticket! Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays and is the ideal time to create a really beautiful tablescape.The beauty with this arrangement is that not only is it colorful, festive, and beautiful, it’s paper and completely disposable, making it perfect for a meal with kids. You don’t need to worry about broken dishes or decor, you can simply enjoy the meal and the company!

Rainbow Paper Pumpkin Tablescape

Each pumpkin is made from 1 piece of ASTROBRIGHTS®paper and some craft wire, making it extremely inexpensive to boot. Astrobrights Paper offers the most vibrant colored paper and we were so enamored that we knew we had to create a rainbow arrangement. We used almost the colors in the Spectrum Assorted Cardstock pack to create a beautiful rainbow.

See how easy it is to replicate with Astrobrights Paper!

DIY Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade Tablescape

We’ve loved using Anagram for other balloon projects, like our DIY Jingle Bell Balloons for Christmas, and more recently, our Halloween Ghost Installation

Balloon projects are awesome because they don’t require a ton of skill (although they can be time-consuming depending on how big you go) but they always look impressive and joyful! They’re one of those projects that are hard to mess up. I am very excited to share this balloon installation because it has just as much impact, but needs significantly less time than our past balloon projects!

The theme for this project is…(drumroll please)…The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade! If you’ve been a Lars reader for a while, you might recognize this project from four years ago. I love using the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade as a theme for Thanksgiving day parties. It’s so fun and makes for a clever twist on the normal turkeys and leaves everywhere this time of year. I am all for traditions, but this might be the perfect year to replace your mom’s ancient fall tablecloth with this unique theme (though I love that too!)

Bring The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade To Your Own Feast

As soon as the realization hit me that the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will not be the same this year, I immediately knew this was the year this project needed to be revamped. We still don’t know all the details for the actual parade, but like everything else this in 2020, it’s sure to be different. We do know that nobody will be watching the parade in person, including New Yorkers, but for most of us that doesn’t change that we can watch the parade on TV. Luckily my panicked googling confirmed at least that much. 

My one consolation is that I can bring the parade to my very own Thanksgiving party this year! We partnered with Anagram to make this Thanksgiving theme bigger and better than ever. This year, create an entire balloon installation with the directions below. We even included printable versions of the cityscape to make your decorating as simple as possible, without sacrificing the wow factor.

How To Make Your Own Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade Tablescape


  1. Figure out how long your table is and how much you want to fill of it with cityscape. One copy of our printable cityscape should fill about 3’.
  2. Cut out the buildings and attach them to foam core.
  3. Cut out the buildings with a craft knife.
  4. Use glasses to prop up the city scape (or make your own stands by creating a wing attached to each one)
  5. Blow up your balloons with a pump and seal shut. 
  6. Attach them to a balloon stick and then attach to the backs of the city scape with tape
  7. Set your table! We included these printable taxi cab place cards to complete the look.

For our table, we used plates from Knot and Bow, cups from Knot and Bow, napkins from Oh Happy Day. 

Creating this wonderful balloon centerpiece for your Thanksgiving holiday will bring some much-needed cheer. Plus, like all our balloon projects, you can reuse them every year! This balloon installation would go wonderfully with our Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade Printables.

This post is sponsored by Anagram. We love our sponsors who allow us to create beautiful original content!


Thanksgiving Tablescape

Thanksgiving Tablescape

This post is in partnership with World Market. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that allow The House That Lars Built to keep creating original content!

I often feel that Thanksgiving can get swallowed up in the midst of Halloween and Christmas celebrations. We go from Halloween candy on the shelves straight to Christmas trees in the shopping aisles! Thanksgiving can get lost in the mix! And although Thanksgiving is not commonly celebrated with tons of decorations or loads of candy, it is one of my most favorite holidays. A day dedicated to spending time with those you love most, expressing gratitude, and making and eating delicious food. What more do you need? Oh, I know: a gorgeous Thanksgiving tablescape to plan the day around!

Thanksgiving Tablescape

In all honesty, this is one of my favorite tablescapes we’ve ever done. It’s just so stunning! World Market provided the most lovely options to create our turkey-themed setting. I loved using a more untraditional color palette for Thanksgiving. And that flower arrangement was made completely from foraged blossoms and greens by the talented Allison Baddley of La Fete Floral. It’s absolutely dreamy with that golden fern! With a tablescape like this, there’s no way Thanksgiving could get lost in the mix.

Take a closer look at all the elements to create your own gorgeous tablescape for the holidays!

DIY Printable leftover Pie Boxes

Leftover Pie Box Printable

Whether you use these printable leftover pie boxes as an adorable upgrade for tupperware, or as thank you gifts or favors following the feast, your guests will love these! I’m tempted to make pie simply to use these pie boxes! Each box fits one slice, which might encourage portion control for some… As for me? It’s the perfect excuse to snag a few different flavors! Simply download the file and follow assembly instructions. There are designs for pumpkin, pecan, cherry, and apple. Let them eat pie!