We previously mentioned on this blog that setting out a place card for each guest at your holiday dinner is an easy, elegant way to make your event stand out from the rest. Feel free to keep things simple -- all you need is some high-quality card stock, such as Reich Paper's popular Savoy series cotton paper, and a good pen. However, if you have the time and inclination to get a little creative, check out these clever ideas from Better Homes & Gardens and House Beautiful:
- Apples: Entertaining blog Stylish Spoon shows us how to tie a bit of twine around an apple stem, threading it through a place card. Cut the paper to look like a little apple leaf for an extra cute twist. You could do the same with pears, either plain or painted the color of your choice.
- Banners: Cut your card stock into narrow strips, then cut out triangles on either end to make a banner shape. Roll the paper to give it a freshly unfurled look. Extra points if you arrange it on top of a tiny wreath of cranberries or pinecones.
- Bouquet: Fashion a diminutive bouquet out of flowers, leaves, wheat sprigs, decorative grasses or evergreen. Attach the name card with ribbon. You could also use a small piece of Indian corn in the husk!
- Cork: Make a slit halfway through a wine cork and slide the place card inside for an elegant table setting. For a fun, kid-friendly twist on Thanksgiving, attach bits of colored paper to make a tiny turkey.
- Leaves: Carefully place a brightly colored autumn leaf under or next to each place card.
- Napkin rings: Tie the paper to a bit of pretty twine and wrap it around your fine cloth napkins to make rustically elegant napkin rings.
- Pinecones: Gather pinecones from the backyard (or the craft store) and prop your place cards against them.
- Quotations: Print or hand-write seasonally appropriate quotations under each guest's name.
- Ribbon: Tie a pretty piece of ribbon through a small slit or hole in each individual piece of paper.
- Rosemary: Take a note from food blog Spoon Fork Bacon and punch holes along the top of place cards, then thread a small sprig of rosemary through the openings. You could also use a tiny bit of evergreen.
- Squash: For each guest, pin a simple place card to a tiny, decorative winter squash. Little pumpkins are particularly appropriate for Thanksgiving, but small acorn, sweet dumpling or carnival squash would also work well. If you'd prefer a table setting with a little more height, you can also attach the paper to bamboo skewers.
- Vellum: When you want a particularly sophisticated look, layer Reich Paper's CT vellum paper over a larger piece of sturdy card stock (such as our Savoy or Odeon paper). Write your guests's name on the vellum, perhaps even using a gold or silver ink pen.
If you would rather not assign your guests seats, then simply skip their names and write or print a holiday greeting on your place cards instead (such as "Give thanks" or "Merry Christmas").
Regardless of how you decide to personalize your place cards, be sure to use only acid-free card stock like the kind available from Reich Paper. Because it is free of corrosive chemicals, our paper will last for years, making a wonderful memento of your special holiday meal.