How to Create a Gorgeous Centerpiece

If you entertain often, coming up with fresh ideas for your table decor can be daunting. I think of my tabletop designs as outfits: Just like I try not to wear the same ensemble over and over again, I try not to repeat my table decor too often–especially in front of the same friends! It takes a little work, but in my new series I’ll be teaching you simple tricks that will help you pull off gorgeous tabletops without feeling overwhelmed. In no time at all you’ll be dazzling your guests. This week’s focus? Centerpieces.

Step 1: Start by picking a color scheme for your party. Draw color inspiration from the season, purpose of your event (i.e.: a Valentine’s Day party), or even from the type of food you’ll be serving. But instead of matching the colors exactly, think about using complimentary colors, such as sage and lilac.

Step 2: If you would like flowers or natural elements to be your focal point, consider using blooms that are locally grown and in-season to help keep costs down. You may also want to try herbs, plants, vegetables, or fruits–all in one or two colors. For an intimate event,don’t choose an arrangement that’s too large; you want your guests to be able to see each other across the table.

Step 3: If you’d prefer something other than an organic centerpiece, opt for objects instead. If you have a collection of any small items, group them together for a unique display. Other alternatives include one or more stacks of beautiful hardcover books, a small grouping of framed photos or a sculpture.

Photo: Pinterest

Photo: Christie Brooks

Step 4: Candles can either enhance an existing centerpiece or they can function as a centerpiece on their own. Depending upon the look you’re going for, create groupings of tiny votive candles, chunky pillar candles or even tall taper candles. In lieu of basic ivory candles, try exploring some colorful options. Finally, consider placing a pillar candle in a glass hurricane container and wrapping it with colored velum or lace. Or display it in a cut-metal candleholder to add more “wow” to your tablescape.

Step 5: For a cohesive look, the vases, vessels and stands you use in your centerpieces should be uniform in size or compliment each other in some other way. Aside from basic clear glass, silver and gold options, there are also stunning mercury glass, colored ceramic, hammered metal and faux tortoise shell glass options worth considering. You might even consider some non-traditional containers such as empty perfume bottles or vintage tea canisters.

More Must-Clicks:

Secrets to a Successful Dinner Party

Confessions of a Horrible Houseguest

Answer to Your Top 20 Cooking Q’s