If tradition is what you're after, here are a few ideas picked from many decorating sources.
1. Blanket the center of the table using a bed of bay leaves. Set up pinecones, lemons, clove-studded oranges, and limes on top. Tie bunches of cinnamon sticks using gold ribbon and place here and there.
2. Fill up a large wooden salad bowl with fruit and nuts, and tuck sprigs of rosemary.
3. Pears create a nice centerpiece. Set them up on a bed of ivy, moss, or wood chips.
4. A raw wreath of pinecones and seed pods is a great
centerpiece. Put a bowl in the middle of the wreath and fill with a flower arrangement.
5. Create a table decoration using a moistened ring of florist's foam. Cover the ring by sticking in lengths of boxwood, then add up white tapers equally spaced around. Fill the center with a bowl of cranberries, and sneak in sprigs of greens. This centerpiece would last through Christmas when you put it on a tray and maintain it damp. Supply colorful ribbon bows to the base of every candle for the holidays.
6. An all-white-and-green theme is refreshingly formal. A simple flower arrangement using white tulips or roses loosely set up in a white bowl or clear glass vase is adorable. Set the table using a white linen cloth and use deep green napkins. When you only have white, tie the napkins using green ribbons and slip in a sprig of fresh-smelling herbs.
7. Three miniature topiary trees, terra-cotta pots of herbs, ornamental flowerpots, spray-painted gold paper paint buckets are all suggestions for centerpieces.
Not Bound by Tradition?
If it's actually the last minute and you do not want to fuss, mix and match everything you've got for a colorful melangé. You don’t have to be bound by tradition. Use unusual containers and items to set a creative table. For instance, fill a basket with balls of yarn in fall colors, scoop up holes in the tops of fruit for candleholders, fill a punch bowl using twinkling Christmas tree lights, float flower heads in a silver bowl full of water, or employ a champagne bucket as a vase.