Spring Celebrations … DIY tips for making centerpieces

by Trenda 

With the coming of Spring there are a lots of opportunities for celebrations.  Whether you host a Spring Luncheon, a Tea Party, a Cinco de Mayo Fiesta, a Kentucky Derby Party, a Mother’s Day Brunch, a Graduation dinner, or wedding buffet (whew!) one of the first things you’ll need is a centerpiece to “anchor” your tablescape.  Putting together a centerpiece can be daunting task.  Recently, I was asked to make the floral arrangements and decorations needed for a Mother/Daughter Tea for the Women’s Ministry at our church.  Today I am going to share some of the tips I used when I made the 25 centerpieces needed for the Tea … tips that helped make this job easy and fun!

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1.  The first thing that you need to decide in making your centerpiece is what color and type of flowers you are going to use.  Unless your arrangement is all roses, the general rule of thumb in flower arranging is to use at least 3 different sizes of flowers for visual interest.  Do you want your centerpiece to be elegant, rustic, casual, playful, spring-y, lush, or whimsical?  These questions will help you decide what type of container to place your flowers in.  The theme we wanted to portray for our Mother/Daughter Tea was a combination of three themes: a springtime/rustic/casual elegance theme.  Springtime flowers were chosen … daisy’s, daffodils, tulips, narcissus, and wisteria (none too fussy!) in a profusion of spring colors!

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2.  Mason jars dispel any hint of stuffiness and had dainty embossed filigree on the fronts and added just the right touch of casual elegance.  Then, to add texture and a hint of rustic flair, I hot-glued a strip of burlap ribbon edged with lace around each Mason jar.

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3Whenever you work with flowers that are a part of a bouquet, cut each stem from the bunch and trim off all the leaves to make them easier to arrange.  To determine the length I wanted my flowers in the centerpiece to be, I gathered the stems of my largest sized flowers (the Daisy’s) and bent the heads of the flowers so they looked natural.  Then I cut the stems so my flowers would stand upright in the Mason jar, with the blooms gently draping over the rim.

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4.  The Mason jars I used will be used again for other events.  For ease in changing out arrangements, I wrapped clear packing tape near the flower heads (so the tape wouldn’t be seen) to keep each arrangement together and so they can be easily removed.

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5.  The smaller flowers … the tulips, narcissus, and daffodils had much smaller stems and were easy to tuck into the arrangement of larger flowers already taped together.  These smaller flowers extended beyond the tops of the daisy’s so they would “peek” over the top of the arrangement, adding dimension and interest to the bouquet.

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6.  The last thing to add to any centerpiece is the “filler.”  The filler ties the whole arrangement together.  Like the name suggests, filler “fills” in the gaps of the arrangement and  “softens” the look of all the separate flowers and unites and blends them into one arrangement.  The filler can be … small flowers … baby’s breath … grasses … decorative filament … eucalyptus … seed pods … or any variety of decorative picks.

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The filler I used for these centerpieces were tiny flowers and buds with leaves.

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Look at all these sweet little arrangements … jars of Spring ready to be placed on the table!  Wouldn’t they look charming dangling from a shepherd’s hook lining the walkway to a woodland wedding or filled with sunflowers along the way to a bbq and barn dance?  Hmmm … perhaps another DIY on a future post! 🙂

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Wishing you “beaucoups of bouquets” and many happy Spring celebrations! (:

From my cottage to yours ~ Trenda 

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This week I’m joining:

Marie-Helene from Kingsbury Brook Farm

Chloe Crabtree from Celebrate & Decorate

Part 2 of … Feathering the Nest by Trenda

In Part 1 of “Feathering the Nest” I asked … “What do you enjoy collecting?  Whatever your passion is, use those items to decorate and “cozy up” your home.” 
The most frequent question I have been asked, over my years of decorating is …  “How should I decorate my home?”  Decorate your home with the things you love!  For those of you that “need a little help” figuring out what you love in decorating or what you like to collect, that’s what I want to help you discover, today.  

Home … the perfect nest

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In Part 1 of “Feathering the Nest” I asked … “What do you enjoy collecting?  Whatever your passion is, use those items to decorate and “cozy up” your home.” 

The most frequent question I have been asked, over my years of decorating is …  “How should I decorate my home?”  Decorate your home with the things you love!  For those of you that “need a little help” figuring out what you love in decorating or what you like to collect, that’s what I want to help you discover, today.  

 A cheery welcome gleams from the lamplight reflected in the large mirror over the fireplace and again in the mirrored frame of the bird picture.  A bright green bird looks stunning, placed next to the contrasting blue and white porcelains.    

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“What do you love to collect?”  Just think what gives you a little “thrill” whenever you see that item sitting on the shelf of your favorite store or sitting in a darkened display in an antique store.  Sometimes it’s buried under a pile of “store jumble” or it’s the last item hanging on a peg, in just the color you needed!

The muted colors of this pheasant blend perfectly with my collection of loved,  worn and faded antique books.

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Whenever you see your particular “eye candy” your pace quickens, even though you remind yourself not to get too excited as you “unearth” your treasure, all the while you are hoping “it is” what you “think it is!”

These are the things you love and that you are passionate about … and what you should decorate your home with!  It may be lots of different things.  For me it’s violins, birds, feathers, bird nests, bird cages, squirrels, acorns, pencils made from branches, books, antique flower frogs … just to name a few! (;

Beatrix Potter’s “Peter Rabbit” is opened displaying the beautiful illustrations that are fitting with the garden paraphernalia I have scattered about the desk.  The little water bucket and watering can look charming holding pencils and paintbrushes instead of the “expected” flower arrangement, they usually hold.  Also fitting with  the theme of gardens, I’ve placed 2 of my antique flower frogs; one for propping the book page open, the other … just for keeping the other “frog” company! (:PicCollage[367].png

Or … you may like collecting items that follow a theme … anything associated with birds, vintage  garden tools and signs, a nautical theme, or beach themes.

This little table holds a twig lamp and all things bird-y and dear to me … a miniature and ornate cloche shelters a blown glass hummingbird that belonged to my precious sister, long-since “graduated” to heaven … a special teacup and saucer that were once my grandfather and grandmother’s that I’ve tucked a tiny nest into with a little hummingbird hovering above … and a plump, mercury glass bird, nestled between them.  Look at that beautiful, midnight twilight gleaming beyond the window!

PicCollage.pngDo you have a passion for collecting items that are a particular color?  Do you find yourself irresistibly drawn and buying collectibles and items in the perfect shade of peacock blue or sunny yellow?  Use those items you have in matching colors and group them together to make an impact and visual point of interest. 

This collection on my desk is unified in color and theme.  A chartreuse green watering can is filled with pencils and paintbrushes … another “impromptu” pencil cup is really a flower planter and is also chartreuse green.  The little frame beyond with bird houses is colored, again, in chartreuse green and complimentary shades of plum, a sweet gift from our beloved daughter that says … “A mother’s love is what makes a house a home.”PicCollage.pngSee how I unified different collectibles in my bookcase by using chartreuse green repeatedly … chartreuse green watering cans … book jackets … mossy rocks … planter … and little water pail.

An etched glass jar holds a collection of ferns and mossy rocks  and maintains the garden theme while evoking the mood displayed on the book jacket, “The Secret Garden.”  A large silver acorn and a mercury glass mushroom are all part of the magic in a “secret garden” and who else do you think resides there? … a couple of Frog Prince, of course! (:

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When you use and incorporate the items you love in decorating, your home will begin to be the haven you desire and will have the “cozy” feeling you’re longing to create.  Why? … because your home will be filled with the things you love and the collectibles that make you happy and reflect “your taste.”  A home you’ll love coming home to!

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Look how the textures of the hydrangea, the filigree on the planter, and the scrolling on the word ‘TRUST’ all compliment each other and make this arrangement visually interesting with the use of texture.PicCollage[386].png

Thank you so much for spending some time with me today!  I’d love to hear from you and I am truly delighted, reading what you have to say.  Please leave a comment, below.  Don’t be alarmed when your comment doesn’t post, immediately.  Word Press makes sure each post I send or that I receive hasn’t any SPAM attached … “it’s a good thing!” (:

From my cottage to yours  ~  Trenda