While the harvest moon arrived nearly two weeks ago, yesterday marked the official beginning of fall, and that means it’s time to get cozy! Here in Seattle, we’ve already seen a shift in the weather which put me in the mood to throw together a little tabletop to celebrate the changing of seasons. Perfect for a casual weekday lunch, or a post apple-picking weekend, here are five easy steps to creating a cozy harvest tabletop.

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Layer up those textiles: Whether it’s your table or wardrobe, fall is all about layering, so think of ways in which to combine the textiles in your home to create a cozy scenario for guests! Napkins, tablecloths, linens, blankets, you name it!

I started with a linen throw, and added this beautiful runner I recently purchased in the most perfect rust tone! I wrapped one of the banquette benches in a vintage quilt I found on a recent thrift hunt. The overall effect is super inviting and visually interesting too.

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Bring in fall foliage: Later in the season, when the leaves have really started changing, this is an easy step. Until then? go faux! I love this Japanese Maple from Balsam Hill and the way it instantly adds to the autumnal palette, and fills that corner so nicely! When the leaves do change, snip some large branches and put them in a vase on the ground, or use them on the table as a centerpiece!

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Plan an easy but seasonal menu: The best part about fall is SOUP! Such an easy midday meal, or course to a dinner. For our lunch, I did a butternut squash soup right out of the box. To fancy it up? A dash of buttermilk or creme fraiche, a topping of fresh thyme from my herb garden, and a pinch of pepper. Taking pre-made items and making them look homemade is my go-to trick for easy entertaining guys. Nobody knows, and nobody cares, as long as it’s delicious!!

Add a fresh salad with sliced apples, walnuts and goat cheese with a tangy vinaigrette to compliment the soup. And the best part? Apple pie!!

I love going apple picking in the fall, but whether you’ve made a trip to the orchard or the grocery store, put this must-have dessert on the menu. Again, I’ve taken a high quality, but store purchased pie and topped it with finely sliced apples to make it look oh so fancy. If you want to try this trick, top the pie with the apples, brush on some melted butter and a little graham cracker crumble, and give it a quick bake in the oven to heat up the pre-made pie and make the apples soften up a bit. Of course, it’s even better if you can make your own pie in the first place, but sometimes a gal just doesn’t have the time!

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Go simple with the centerpiece: Nobody’s asking you to bust out a major floral arrangement for an afternoon lunch, but it is nice to have something on the table! I love the way dried florals look in a nice vase – especially when the off up a little height! If it’s a small enough arrangement, you can keep it on the table during lunch, or take it off. Having little mini vase of foraged flowers can also do the trick! And don’t forget that food can be a centerpiece too. By putting the apple pie on a cake stand, we created a little trio of elements as a centerpiece instead of one big one.

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Create an autumnal palette: I probably should have put this as the first tip, but pay attention to your palette when creating any table setting! I let the items I had around the house dictate the direction I took with this table, but adding the pop of red in the maple tree was a really fun touch of bold color to break up the sea of rusty oranges and mustard yellows. Don’t worry about being overly matchy, just stay within one or two tones and you’ll be all set.

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