Are you looking to create a fabulous thrifted table setting? One that contains everything purchased from a thrift store?
I challenged myself to create such a thrift store tablescape.
A table setting using everything found at a thrift store. Not a consignment store. Not an antique gallery. And not an estate sale. Just thrift stores.
Not only was it CRAZY budget-friendly ~ I also LOVE how it turned out!
I don’t think anyone would guess that everything (well 95% of it) came from thrift stores.
Plus, what I used for a table covering isn’t a tablecloth.
It’s a curtain.
Actually, it’s a shower curtain.
I used a shower curtain as my tablecloth. And I LOVE IT!
It’s truly amazing what treasures you can find at a thrift store.
When I was young, I was a thrift store snob. I only stepped inside a thrift store to look for a Halloween costume.
I totally thought (in my naive head) that since everything in the store was donated. Items people no longer wanted. Therefore everything in a thrift store must be crap.
I mean ~ why would I want something that someone else got rid of?
I know I know ~ boy was I clueless!
There are amazing treasures to be found in thrift stores. You just have to be willing to take the time and hunt.
Thrift store shopping is a treasure hunt. At least that’s the way I think of it.
Before I delve into my table setting from thrift store finds, I’ve gotta tell you how cheap it was. And I mean CHEAP. Like, super budget-friendly!
The WHOLE thrift store table setting cost me $33.50!!!!
That’s for EVERYTHING!
I’ll total it at the end for you.
Now, check out how easy it was to create this simple thrifted tablescape…
How to Create a Fabulous Thrifted Table Setting
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As I mentioned above ~ 95% of this table setting comes from thrift store finds. There are ONLY two items I used that I didn’t purchase from a thrift store.
The flatware and the napkins.
I’ve never had good luck finding decent napkins or flatware at a thrift store.
The napkins are typically dingey. There are usually just two. And often times they’re stained.
Flatware is similar at my thrift stores. There are almost never complete sets. Usually, there are uneven numbers of spoons, forks, and knives. And they’re either bent, pitted, or not good quality.
So, I used my own flatware and my no-sew diy fringed napkins— everything else I purchased at a thrift store.
Step 1: Choose the table covering for your thrift store tablescape
Truth be told ~ I don’t have the best luck finding tablecloths at my local thrift stores.
They’re usually old looking. And NOT in a good way.
They aren’t pretty antique tablecloths.
They’re dingey, faded, and look very worn.
Ya know what I mean?
I find the same to be true with placemats. Though I occasionally get a little luckier with them.
And napkins ~ nope! Absolutely no luck finding decent napkins at a thrift store.
Which is why I said “table covering”.
I found this cute shower curtain at the secondhand store and knew it would make a great tablecloth. Plus, it was just $4!
My point is ~ think outside the box. If it’s a large piece of fabric that’ll cover your table ~ it’ll work as a table covering.
Step 2: Assemble your thrifted place settings
I have found thrift stores to be great places to find charger plates. There’s always a stack of them. And because they’re so cheap, you can easily spray paint them to match your tablescape.
So ~ pick up a set of charger plates for your thrifted place settings.
Then add your dinner plates. (I totally understand if you use your everyday dishes and don’t want to buy more from the thrift store).
Next, add a salad plate that coordinates with your table covering and charger plate.
I found all three of these pieces at thrift stores.
The charger plates were $1 each, the dinner plates were $2 each, and the salad plates were $1 each. That’s just $4 for each place setting!!!
Don’t you love the scallop-edged detail on the charger and salad plates!
Note: the dinner plates are from Hearth and Hand (currently being sold at Target). Obviously, someone purchased them, decided the plates didn’t work for them, and donated them. Lucky me!!!
Now add your flatware and glasses.
I’ve never found a decent set of flatware at a thrift store, so it is one of two things on this table setting that I didn’t purchase from a thrift store.
The glasses I found were $1 each. And there was a set of 6!!! That’s like the holy grail in thrift store shopping.
I just LOVE the smokey grey color and clean lines of them!
Then to round out the place setting from a thrift store, I added my own DIY no-sew linen napkins. (These are the EASIEST diy napkins!)
I folded them in a unique way that looks like a flower ~ to me.
Step 3: Create a simple centerpiece from thrift store items
When you’re thinking of a thrift store centerpiece for your table setting, it doesn’t need to be elaborate. It doesn’t need to have lots of items.
Sometimes simple is best.
I find that a pretty vase filled with faux branches or flowers is often a very attractive centerpiece.
And let me tell you ~ there are always TONS of vases at secondhand stores. ALWAYS!
So, find one that matches your table covering and picks up a color in your place setting.
I found my vase at a thrift store for just $3.50.
I love how the color matches the salad plates. And it’s clear, with a similar shape to my glasses.
Since this is a tablescape using thrift store items, I opted to not use fresh flowers.
I also chose to not use fake flowers, as the ones at my local secondhand store always look tired and cheap.
So I used faux stems that I found at the thrift store.
I love the airiness of them. They really complement the color and feel of the table covering. Plus, they don’t obstruct the view of my family seeing each other.
To complete the thrift store centerpiece, I added a pewter candlestick with a white candle to each side of the vase.
I felt that trying to add more was making it too busy and actually detracted from the look of the table setting.
Whadda you think?
Step 4: Show off your fabulous table using only thrift store finds
Now it’s time to step back and look at your simple thrift store tablescape.
Can you believe how cheap it was to create such a pretty table setting?
Mine came to a total of ….. $33.50!!
Isn’t that crazy!
Wouldn’t it be fun to see how cheap you can be to create your own table setting? Could you do it for under $35?
I bet you can.
So the next time you’re hosting friends or family, visit your local secondhand store and see what treasures you can find.
Then create a fabulous thrifted table setting.
And show off your awesome table to your friends. I bet they won’t believe you created a tablescape using only thrift store items.