What to wear on Thanksgiving – Based on the table

Three scenarios based on what the table will look like.

Thanksgiving can look and feel vastly different from household to household.  Some Thanksgivings are buttoned up formal occasions.  Some are nothing short of an annual booze fest.  Anticipating what the dinner table will look like should tell you a lot about what the host expects of your attire.  Three options follow, each built specifically for a different Thanksgiving table scenario.  Here’s to hoping you have plenty to be thankful for on Thursday.


White Table Cloth: Blazer & Sweater by BR, Wool trousers by L.L. Bean, Shirt by Blank Label

Shoes by Gordon Rush, watch by Citizen.

Uh oh.  The Mom-in-Law takes Thanksgiving real seriously huh?  Lemme guess.  There will be candles lit?  Barely audible classical music accentuated by little conversation and the constant clinking of silverware and glasses?  Sounds like a hoot.  The idea here is to dress up but not look like you’re ready for a board meeting.  The blazer is a real slim fitting corduroy so it’s fall appropriate but not formal.  The peak lapels add some dressed up character.  Tweedy wool trousers will match texture with the cord, and the color in the shirt and sweater provide some life.


Standard table w/ a kids table to one side:  Shirt by Target, Shoes by CK, Tie by TheTieBar

Add a tie bar to keep your front gravy free

Probably Grandma’s house.  Where the TV is on, kids are running around, but once the bird hits the table the focus is on the table and family.  Dressing up a bit isn’t out of the question.  Grandma will  like it.  The knit tie and chambray shirt are as casual as a shirt and tie gets.  The chinos should be a washed flat front and no crease.  Textured shoes also dress it down.  Find an old sport chrono, slap a leather NATO strap on it, and you’re set.


Your Lap in front of the game: Sweater by BR, Watch by Timex, Shoes by PF Flyers

The only thing stuffed up is the bird.

God bless it, if you’ve never spent Thanksgiving this way, promise yourself you will at least once.  Totally relaxed but still respectful.  Go with a navy crew neck over a more substantial oxford cloth or other white button down.  Keep your dressed up super dark jeans on the hanger, and instead grab the old pair that are well worn, have faded a little, but are still clean and free of rips.  Top it off with an easy watch and classic sneakers in case a football game breaks out.

Top Turkey Photo Credit.  The bird wears a wool blend bow tie from Lands’ End Canvas.