Contemporary Southwestern Eco-chic Outdoor Entertaining-
Use of classic natural elements (fall leaves, pumpkins, gourds, etc…carved out and used as planters for southwestern succulents and cactus (which can be transplanted when the season ends), with modern casual melamine tableware made to replace disposable plastic and Styrofoam tableware, but durable and casual enough for outdoor entertaining
Deconstructed Modern Fall Tablescape- Simple Organic elements from this time of year (fall branches, river grasses (cattail and pampas grass), river rock, feathers, leaf clippings, simple flowers, etc..)deconstructed into single elements, displayed in modern glass holders, with fiery fall colors making the design statement, and modern shaped tableware, also in fiery fall colors
The key is to start with Natural organic elements, really try to stay away from the plastic contrived look that can be found in many seasonal displays. My favorite way to collect elements for my fall table is to take a field trip up to the high country like the Mogollon Rim, or Sedona and Oak Creek. This is the perfect time of year to hike, and find objects such as fall branches of oak leaves, maple, and sycamore, acorns, walnuts, river rock, cattails, feathers, fern clippings, whatever strikes your fancy. If a field trip is not on your calendar, try your local garden center and find fiery red and plum succulents and cacti, hollow out pumpkins and gourds, and plant the southwestern plants into the impromptu vases. Clip lemon and olive branches from your trees, and simulate a Mediterranean harvest with pomegranates, lemons, figs, pears, and grapes, and replace a cornucopia with a rustic Italian olive oil urn, spilling over with the Italian Harvest.
Go over the top with traditional décor of pumpkins, gourds, nuts, and corn, by adding gold leaf to the pumpkins and fruit, follow directions on the craft package, and age the guilding with antiquing glaze. Find cork wine toppers from your local kitchen store, and super glue acorns or faux crab apples on top and then guild with the gold leafing. Metallics are extremely hot design trends, and will add fire and flair to the traditional tablescape.
My best advice is to not overthink your fall table, use the materials and colors that make you the most happy, that evoke “warm fuzzies” in you, as this is the time of year for warmth, reflection, and nurturance. Simply add a twist, trying to not be too contrived, that surprises your guests when they admire your table.