Autumn-Fall Entertaining: 3 Autumn-Inspired Table Settings

Welcome to 679th Tablescape Thursday!

I had planned to create a table setting this week but life had other plans. I’ve been working on replacing my 14-year-old hybrid SUV for the past several months since the hybrid battery could go at any time and that would be a very expensive repair in the ballpark of $7,000 to $8,000–definitely more than I would want to spend on a car of that age.

So a few months back, I ordered a car. You may have noticed that car lots are mostly empty these days due to what car manufactures are calling a “global semiconductor delivery problem.” When you do luck out and find a car available, they are often selling for $5-10,000 over MSRP! Argggh! Ordering turned out to be the better and less costly way to go. Plus, ordering allowed me to get a few features/options that I really wanted which was important since I typically drive cars for a very long time. The shortest time I’ve ever driven a car was 11 years and the longest was 16.

Surprisingly, the SUV I ordered earlier in the summer arrived at the dealer this week, three weeks early! So I spent all day Tuesday and Wednesday running around doing car stuff, like getting an appraisal from CarMax for my existing car and handling all the other paperwork necessary for buying a new car. It’s been an exhausting but productive few days. I didn’t get home last night until 6:30 which, unfortunately, left no time to set a table and photograph it.

So for this Tablescape Thursday, I’m sharing three autumn tables in hopes they’ll provide some inspiration if you’re looking for ideas for your fall tables. Hope you enjoy these autumn-inspired tables!

(Click the title of any table setting below to view that table in full.)

A Woolly Autumn Fall Table Setting with a Cozy Pumpkin Centerpiece

Autumn Fall Table Setting, Red Candlesticks


Blue Willow & Floral Pumpkin Centerpiece for Autumn Dining

Fall Table, Blue Willow, Bark Edge Chargers


Autumn Table Featuring Spode Woodland China

Large White Pheasant for Thanksgiving Table Centerpiece


I’m looking forward to setting some holiday tables in the coming weeks! Looking forward to all the wonderful table settings linked for this week’s Tablescape Thursday!

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  1. A new car! What options does this one have compared with the old? CarMax offered me 5x more than the trade-in offer when I bought mine last year. (I had that car 24 years!)

    • They def offered me more than I expected and a little more than the dealer with whom I’m buying a car, so I’m going to sell to them. The appraisal they give is only good for 7 days. When I complained about that, the nice gentleman who helped me at CarMax said that car prices are fluctuating and changing so quickly, that’s why the estimate/appraisal is only good for 7 days. He told me that one guy brought his car in one week and when he came back a week later, they offered him $3,000 more than the previous week! The semi-conductor issue is a real problem! Apparently, Ford had to shut down the production of their most popular selling truck (F-150) for a month due to the shortage. It’s crazy time for the car industry!

    • Mia, I meant to say 24 years is amazing! Your car was considered an antique, right? I think after 20 years, you qualify for an antique tag, if you like. The dealer almost offered me the same as CarMax, but not quite as much. I liked the process of selling it with them.
      I forgot to answer your question about options. My new SUV has a GPS that will pair with my phone so I don’t have to carry around a Bluetooth speaker/device anymore. It has a lot little technology bells and whistles–nothing that’s earth shaking but just nice to have. Two features I really like are heated/ventilated seats. I’ve had heated but never ventilated. That will come in handy during the hot Georgia summers. It also has heated/cooled cup holders and they work! I was shocked by how cold they get–haven’t tried the heated function yet since I almost never drink hot drinks.
      Probably my fave feature is you can talk to the car/GPS and just tell it where you want to go without having to enter in the information into the GPS. So far, that feature seems to actually work.

  2. franki Parde says

    This truly is a nationwide issue!! We, too, are thanking our “stars” we purchased ours 4 months ago! Our grandson is “happy, too” as he’s purchasing our “old” car…there is “nothing” on the lots…that’s in “our price” range. Looking forward to your next report…time to “up my table top….” franki

    • It really is a crazy time to be buying! Glad you got your car when you did, Franki! That’s wonderful that it worked out so well for your grandson…that’s perfect!

  3. Thanks so much Susan and congrats on your new car!

    • Thanks, Jenna! Having a tough time remembering that the gear shift isn’t in the middle of the car anymore but is on the steering wheel. lol Muscle memory is a hard thing to break!

  4. Glad you were able to get your new car! I learned early on that buying a car can surely be a long and tiresome process, and eventually relinquished that whole process to my husband who doesn’t mind the negotiating and paperwork. Having read your blog for some time now I admire how capable you are in dealing with all kinds of life’s undertakings!

    • Thanks, Maureen! Appreciate that so much! It is a bit nerve-wracking–buying a car, I think mostly because there are so many unknowns. The process was actually pretty straightforward in the end. Glad I don’t have to worry about it again for a long time!

  5. Wow – so glad you got the car situation settled, and got what you wanted as well! I’m so happy to be back from my summer hiatus – your tables are just gorgeous! And I can’t wait to dive in to all the great posts! Thanks so much for hosting for all these years – your blog is a treasure trove of inspiration!

    • I hope you had a wonderful summer, Barbara! So nice to take a break sometime! I thought about you a few times and was hoping all was well. Happy autumn to you!

  6. I would also, like info on how to deal with car dealers and how to get the best deal. I bought a new car 2020 car in Dec. of 2019 and glad that I did as they now don’t make this car any more. One tip I have is that if you belong to a Farm Bureau and if you buy a ford product you can get $700.00 off the price of the car. Don’t know if that’s everywhere in the USA but in the town in Illinois that I live in it is the case. Just little info like that, is things I would like to know about so I am passing it on. Oh it only cost 70.00 to join the FB.

    • Hi Robin. We joined Farm Bureau (CA) as well with plans to use it for our new car purchase. When we got to the dealer they asked if we belonged to COSTCO and their rebate was much larger and we were not allowed to use two rebates. If I had realized this beforehand I would have upped our membership.

    • That’s a great tip, Kathleen! Unfortunately, (at least for the car I wanted) there are no incentives or discounts available anywhere right now due to the desperate shortage of semiconductors. They are predicting this may last through next year, as well. I hope it doesn’t.

  7. Sharyn Kimbrough says

    Susan, can you give us more details on your car purchase-I’m not understanding how you “order” a car. I did really enjoy your blogging about it as I may be in the car market soon myself. I look forward to your blogs each day.

    • Hi Sharyn, I thought I’d chime in since I’ve ordered a car. It’s been many years though, so some things may have changed and I’m sure Susan will answer when she has a chance.

      In my case, I knew the model of car I wanted. My husband and I had done some research and having already owned another car of that brand and liked it, we were confident we wanted that same brand, just a different model. So it helps if you already have an idea of what you want. We then went to the local dealership to see what they had. The first thing I noticed was they didn’t have the model car I wanted in the color I wanted. And there were specific safety features I wanted as well. So I told the fellow exactly what features I wanted, what model and in which color. As it turns out, he was able to locate a dealership in another state close by that had exactly what I wanted and he literally went and got the car and drove it back for me. The only miles it had on it were the miles he put on it by driving it back, lol. It was great. That was 15 years ago and I’m still driving that car and still love it. (My husband has been bugging me for years now to get a new car – but I just don’t see the point, honestly.)

      If another dealership doesn’t have the exact car you want, it’s possible your dealership can locate one with the manufacturer and snag that one for delivery. Just go talk to someone at your dealership and they should be able to guide you through the process. Good luck!

    • Sure! Back in the day (meaning last year and prior years) you could go to a car dealership and actually see cars to test drive. If you found one you liked but they didn’t have it in a color that you liked, they could place an order for the car in the color and with the features that you wanted. Nowadays, many manufacturers are having drastic shortages of automobiles due to the chip shortage and due to shipping issues, so there are very few cars available to test drive at the dealerships. Where I purchased my car, my sales guy said that normally about 50% of his customers order a car to get it built exactly in the color and with the features they want and around 50% buy from what they have on the lot. Now, almost everyone is ordering out of necessity because they have so few cars in stock. I remember one day we were talking on the phone and he told me that they only had 3 of the SUV I was buying and they were all green. So if someone wanted that SUV right then, they would have to go with a green one…or else place an order (like I did) and wait 12 weeks.

  8. I’m old enough to remember when ordering a car from the dealer was the norm!!! One ordered the exact color(inside and out) and options that you wanted. Lots of colors from which to choose also. Best of luck with the new car!!!

  9. Congrats on the new car! Did you go hybrid or electric? Mr. P is still driving his hybrid Lexus after 15 yrs, going on 16 now. He wants electric (not me!), and mentioned new potential tax breaks among talking heads for electric vehicles. Buying cars, buying houses…..this whole world is crazy. Love the look back on tables for fall. Do you think there’ll be a shortage on dishes??! Lol, bloggers will be fighting in the aisles, I can see it now.

    • Thanks, Rita! I wanted to go strictly gas this time after getting the nasty shock of finding out that my hybrid battery was only warranted to 120,000 miles AND costs $7-8,000 to replace! Last I heard, electric cars only go around 400 miles before they have to be charged, which can take a while. It’s 500 miles from here to my son’s home and that trip is long enough without having to stop somewhere for an hour or two to charge up a battery. I never stop to eat, just get something in the drive-thru and keep on going, so I wouldn’t like having to stop and wait on the car to be charged. If you’re buying it strictly for everyday driving and can charge it each night, that would probably be a fun option. I wonder what the batteries cost to replace in electric cars.
      lol Oh no, that would be a tragedy for sure…a shortage on dishware! 😉

  10. Love that you are able to find the car of your dreams and it’s ready for pick up at the dealer. We ordered a diesel car back in 2017 and at that time there was a backup at the docks. By the time we actually took ownership we had a 2018 model and had to do some re-negotiating on price. The wait was forever! I think I read that electric batteries are now lasting over 200,000 miles. I do think it’s easier to sell your old car to the dealer. It might be hard to sell on your own with the battery life low and the cost of a new one. A buyer might not want to take on that expense. Oh, and I passed on a 2004 Dodge Dakota and 2007 Caliber to my son. He’s still driving them. Love all your place settings!

    • I don’t think my battery is electric in my old car. Not exactly sure how it worked but I never had to plug it in. Basically, whenever I was braking, it was self-charging. For example, if I went through a drive-thru, it would go into battery mode since I was driving very slowly…just creeping along without the engine running. If I was sitting for a long, long time…like 10-15 minutes, the battery would get depleted and the engine would kick on. Then once I started driving again, each time I braked the car, the hybrid indicator thingy on the car would display a graphic that showed the battery being charged back up. I remember my sales guy saying that braking charged the battery and I could see that occurring in the graphic. I love that kind of technology. Just wish he had also told me that the battery could die any time after 120,000 miles and I’d have a 7,000 repair bill. I would never have bought a hybrid if I had known that since I typically drive cars until they are at least close to 200,000 miles. I drove one to 325,000 miles.
      Yeah, selling it to CarMax was really easy. I would totally do that again in the future.

  11. Julie Huff says

    Just got a new (to me 2018) car. We’d been saving the Dave Ramsey way for a car for 5 years. We were shopping for months, when we pulled the trigger in Sept, the car price went up $7k in 5 months. I work in the automotive industry and we deal with rolling plant shutdowns because of the chip crisis. It’s so hard.

    • Wow! I’m sorry it went up like that, Julie! I had expected when I first started shopping and saving a few years back that I’d get around $3,000 off the MSRP. That seemed to be the going rate with dealers. I ended up having to pay MSRP and consider myself lucky to have only paid that because many of the dealerships in my area are charging well over MSRP. My sales guy said that a few of the sales people he works with are quoting over MSRP to their customers. Never thought I’d pay full price but it’s the market these days for new cars that are in demand. I’m glad you were able to get the car you wanted. It’s stressful I know–shopping for a car!

    • Julie, one thing I should add is I ended up receiving around $3,000 more for my car when I sold it than I expected, so I guess it all evened out in the end. I hope if you were selling a car, you were able to get a better price, as well. Ironically, the same thing seems to be going on with house right now. I’m not exactly sure why that’s happening with the housing market, but houses are selling for a premium now…at least they are where my son lives in Ohio.

  12. Cyndi Raines says

    Congratulations on your new car Susan! And so happy for you that you were still able to get a good offer on your former car. I am enjoying our (new to me) car we purchased in January after driving our other van for 16 years and yes, thankfully, we were able to sell it and still get a good return on it. Houses are going quick here to, but not ready to make that change. As long as I can keep up with the yard work, I will stay and enjoy the fruit of our labor.

  13. Hi, Susan!

    I have been reading your blog for several years now, and I really enjoy it. You are the best. I am wondering how do I upload photos of my tablescapes. I have been tablescaping for over 25 years and still decorate my kitchen table each month. Please help!



  14. Congratulations on the purchase of your new vehicle! We just bought one a couple of weeks ago and yes, it is quite the process finding one these days. We keep vehicles for a long time also and found ourselves with two vehicles with almost 200,000 miles each! And one was 18 years old and the other 12. Yikes! We started looking back before the pandemic and then of course, that shut down test driving. We started looking again in mid Spring and finally zeroed in on what we wanted in early summer. Then finding the exact model/color we wanted was surely a game of cat and mouse! A dealer would call to let us know one was in and before we could get there, it would be sold! We were just before resigning ourselves to ordering one and a new one unexpectedly came in to the dealer we were working with. We pounced on it the very next morning. We were very fortunate that this dealer was not increasing the cost over MSRP but they did not offer any type of incentive or rebate. Just glad the process is completed. Still trying to learn all the new bells and whistles! Ha! Hope you enjoy your new purchase! And the housing /real estate market is on fire in my area also (lower Alabama). Crazy times right now for sure.

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