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Take a break from flowers and bring a bit of the forest indoors.
Instead of using a runner, gather a bunch of colorful leaves—or buy some from a craft store—and scatter them down the middle of the table. Dress up everyday white dinnerware by layering on patterned plates. Natural woven placemats and napkin rings add a layer of texture.
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Go with the glow of candlelight and rich harvest hues like burgundy and chocolate.
Arrange lanterns of varying heights in a row to add visual interest without blocking the sight lines of guests seated across from one another. For a similar effect, choose glass hurricane lamps or candlesticks.
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Make a grouping of candles and fragrant bouquets the center of attention.
Transform simple glass cylinders by filling them with dried seedpods, acorns or other nuts before adding pillar candles, and arrange them in a cluster. Position bouquets at either end of the table. An easy way to mix and match plates with varying patterns: Place a small colorful print on top of a big two-tone motif.
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Mix Flowers in with Fall Accents
Casual mixed arrangements of roses and sunflowers in birch bark-wrapped pots give the table a dose of fall flair.
Originally published in the October 17, 2011 issue of Family Circle magazine.