Tips For the Home:

  • Add instant texture to a room with a luxurious throw in the colors of the season, in velvet, chenille, or soft wool.
  • Freshen the air and beautify rooms with a vase full of aromatic herbs or Eucalyptus branches
  • In the waning light, candles placed throughout your home add a touch of romance (Daylight Savings Time ends 11/7).
  • Bring in the rich hues of fall with accent pillows – an inexpensive update with big punch.
  • Transform a space with one great lamp and the soft glow of a fluorescent bulb.
  • Help guests feel welcome with a lightweight robe, throw-away slippers and a couple of good books.

Tips For the Thanksgiving Table:

  • Blend the new with the old: use your grandmother’s china with modern dishes.
  • From interior designer Michael Trahan: Brighten up the deeper colors of the fall palette by making seasonal fruit your dining table’s focal point. Fill two large jars with lemons, or Granny Smith, Fuji and Gala apples.
  • Use your good silver, but don’t spend time polishing (except utensils) – the patina gives the table a rustic feel.
  • Let your kids set the table. With a few basic guidelines, their creativity will shine.
  • Use familiar items in different ways:
    • Put a cloth napkin, folded in half lengthwise, across the middle of a placemat for visual
    • interest & color.
    • For a unique centerpiece, find two different short containers (5-6" tall) with a wide mouth: For example, a pottery vase, mini-ice bucket, beer stein, watering can, or terra-cotta planter, and fill one with silverware and another with rolled-up cloth napkins.
    • Use an old quilt, as the French do, as a colorful tablecloth.
    • Update your tableware with great local finds. Benicia shops have new, used and antique serving dishes, glasses, napkins, place settings and silverware and more.


Benicia’s many retail shops and antique & consignment stores are full of great finds for reasonable prices. From budget-friendly items to investment art, Studio 41,, is the go-to source for tableware, candles, gourmet food items and gifts, handcrafted & made in America. First Street, Arsenal and Southampton shops carry candles, table & home accessories. Try Hip Chick Designs or Consignment Arsenal for great vintage bargains. Kindred Spirits, Honeysuckle Rose and Blue Goose Antiques have a wide range of antique options to personalize your home and table. Find colorful throw pillows and unique lamps at IronHorse Home Furnishings, Lindsay Art Glass,, has hand-blown glass vases and one-of-a-kind lampshades. Bookshop Benicia,, carries new AND used books.