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Thanksgiving and Fall 2015 Trends and Traditions

Design Trends

It may feel like summer here in the Southwest; but fall is in full swing. Halloween has passed, and now we gear up for the Thanksgiving holiday and festivities. Hayrides, walks through pumpkin patches, touring the changing fall leaves, food and wine harvests as well as family gatherings create a warm, inviting atmosphere. Here are a few of our favorite color and design trends for this season:

Nature’s Bounty

From wine grapes to apples, wheat to wild rice, the season’s crops reflect the bounty of the food around us. Decorate with pumpkins and apples as the lead characters - with corn, squash and pears, along with accents of
walnuts, pecans and sunflower seeds.

Farmer’s market displays in the front yard include wooden wheelbarrows and baskets of fruit and vegetables, alongside the friendly scarecrows in overalls, plaid flannel and check scarves. Aged, painted signs line the walkway, showing country store sayings like “Pumpkin Sale,” “Autumn Hay Rides” or “Corn Maze Fun.”



Table settings display cut-and-bound stalks of wheat over floral arrangements. Herbs are placed in canning jars to be used as drink ware. Ceramic pots, chicken-wire baskets and galvanized buckets line the buffet.
Material embellishments include homespun cotton, rope, burlap, flock embroidery, grosgrain ribbon and buttons. Finish Nature’s Bounty with the fragrance of hot apple cider, pumpkin latte, baked pears and brown-sugar


The First Thanksgiving

Celebrating the first Thanksgiving guests, the Wampanoag, or People of the Dawn, were the pilgrims’ guests at the first Thanksgiving in America. To decorate in honor of the first Thanksgiving, start with patterns of duck, turkey, Indian corn, nuts, pumpkin and squash along with expressions of thanks everywhere with sayings like “Blessings,” “Family & Friends,” and “Give Thanks.”



Add décor with tribal geometric patterns, woven grasses with triangles, bows and arrows, birds, fish and pilgrims’ hats. Floral arrangements include cattails, feathers, berries, wheat, leaves, small shells and small gourds.

Tables are set with ceramics adorned with fall-foliage motifs, birch-bark wrapped candles, wooden platters and bowls, as well as blocky accessories such as turkeys with worn edges. The final touch for The First Thanksgiving includes a fragrant mix of cedar, roasted corn, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and herbs.

Not-So-Scary Scarecrow

Change out the scarecrows from Halloween's frightful and scary creatures into happy-go-lucky straw characters. Wicker and straw figures beyond scarecrows add to theme and include deer, owls, birds’ nests and haystacks.
Include handcrafted sisal mats, raffia-covered accent tables and sea grass boxes and baskets.

Create a front porch dotted with vine gourds and pumpkins, pine cones and pressed metal lanterns and floral shapes. The front door carries wreaths made with twigs and grasses, feathers, rope and wildflowers.



Tables settings are lined with floral arrangements featuring straw, fall flowers, twigs and autumn leaves. Dishware is inspired by autumn-leaf patterns while glassware is heavy and unrefined. Ceramic is matte and worn with piercing patterns.


Nostalgic Times

Looking to Thanksgivings past through rose-colored glasses, to the '40s and '50s, when homespun ruled. The highlight is the passing down of Thanksgiving traditions from generations past, along with a favored decoration,
platter or serve ware. Family gatherings around the table after time spent watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade bring joy and laughter.

The front yard and porch are littered with pumpkins and gourds, haystacks and cornstalks. Neighbors are invited in for hot apple cider, caramel apples and homemade treats.


Interior décor showcases more pumpkins and gourds, corn and wheat stalks, along with turkey motifs. Retro-style artwork from the '40s and '50s showcase nostalgic images of times past, set alongside treasured family photos.



Food is the highlight of the table setting, with grandma’s pies and preserves waiting to be eaten, the turkey waiting to be carved and the sweet potatoes drizzling with molasses. Between these delicacies, the table setting is elegant, country glamour. Leaves, gourds, pine cones, apples and berries make a floral statement with table cloths and napkins in paisley, checks, dots and stripes.

From The Runways

Pantone’s Fall 2015 Runway report predicted a number of colors in the fall 2015 palette line up. The evolving color palette weaves earthy neutrals with a range of bold color statements and patterns to reflect a landscape of hope, fun, fantasy and all things natural. Designers are looking to styling and fabrics to define both a masculine and feminine interpretation of hues and color combinations. "Juxtaposition of color from opposite sides of the spectrum emphasizes poise and confidence on the runway,” said Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. "The Fall 2015 palette is rooted in multi-faceted, androgynous colors that can be worn to portray effortless sophistication across men’s and women’s fashion; it is the first time we are seeing a truly unisex color palette."


Dried Herb, PANTONE 17-0627: “An olive green shade once thought of as strictly safari or military, PANTONE 17-0627 Dried Herb has been elevated into a color we now perceive as sophisticated and chic. Closely related to nature, Dried Herb is an organic shade redolent of nature’s earthy fragrances.”

Desert Sage, PANTONE 16-0110: “A cool and soothing greenish gray, PANTONE 16-0110 Desert Sage is the ideal neutral. Timeless and unobtrusive yet at the same time stylishly powerful enough to make an impactful
statement on its own, Desert Sage speaks to this feeling of naturally inspired colors that remind us of things that are real and not invented.”

Stormy Weather, PANTONE 18-4214: “Reminiscent of the sky on a gray, overcast day, PANTONE 18-4214 Stormy Weather is dependable, cool and above all, constant. Implying quality and luxury, Stormy Weather is a powerful blue gray shade that is strong, protective and enduring.”

Oak Buff, PANTONE 16-1144: “Just as the sun comes out after stormy weather to bring us cheer and a glimmer of hope, PANTONE 16-1144 Oak Buff is a mellow, comforting and warming shade that brings good feelings.
Another one of nature’s illustrious shades, the golden yellow Oak Buff acts to nurture and comfort.”

Marsala, PANTONE 18-1438: “Interesting on its own and a wonderful contrast for other hues, PANTONE 18-1438 Marsala is a winey red-brown that adds finesse and savoir faire. Rich and robust, Marsala incorporates the warmth and richness of a tastefully fulfilling meal, while its grounding red-brown roots point to a sophisticated, natural earthiness.”

Biscay Bay, PANTONE 18-4726: “A lush and elegant teal, PANTONE 18-4726, Biscay Bay splashes up against more heated tones with its cool touch. Combining the serene qualities of blue with the invigorating aspects of
green, the cool and confident Biscay Bay inspires thoughts of soothing, tropical waters, taking us to a place that is pleasant and inviting.”


Reflecting Pond, PANTONE 19-4326: “Thoughtful, contemplative and composed, PANTONE 19-4326 Reflecting Pond is a cooling blue with a lot ofdepth. Conveying a message of credibility, Reflecting Pond is a serious shade that speaks to our need for stability and security.”

Cadmium Orange, PANTONE 15-1340: “A nod to the ‘60s and ‘70s, PANTONE 15-1340 Cadmium Orange evokes a sentiment of optimism, fun and fantasy. Both playful and sophisticated in its appeal, Cadmium Orange is a warm, welcoming and subtly dramatic orange shade that is striking enough to stand on its own or act as a bold contrast.”

Cashmere Rose, PANTONE 16-2215: “A play on the ‘60s with a twist of today, PANTONE 16-2215 Cashmere Rose is a tactile and soft pink hue and renders exactly what it promises. Cultivated in its richness, Cashmere Rose is a gentle and composed pink that is more upscale than downtown.”

Amethyst Orchid, PANTONE 17-3628: “Indicative of our affection for color, PANTONE 17-3628 Amethyst Orchid is the jewel in the crown. Intriguing, vibrant and somewhat sensual, the enigmatic Amethyst Orchid is an
extraordinary hue that is unique, bold, creative and exciting.”


Happy Thanksgiving!

Images by Getty Images, iStock Images and with courtesy of Pantone Color Institute. For more information on Pantone, visit