Everybody think back to your very first time you hosted a dinner party. You probably decided to serve your signature dish. Why not? You had cooked it thousands of times before. But once you started planning for your party, you probably realized that cooking your favorite dish for a party of 8 or 10 people was going to be a very different experience. This time, you had to worry about the size of your pots, the timing, the sequencing and how to keep the food warm for your party to enjoy a perfect meal. Why am I telling you this? Because DIYing your own centerpieces has very similar challenges.
The challenge for DIYing amazing centerpieces is not the actual making of the centerpiece. The challenge is the scale, the timing, the delivery and how everything has to come together to create that cohesive look. That's what you ultimately pay a florist or event designer for.
In this post, I want to share a few insider tips that really helped my clients to create very successful DIY centerpieces and tablescapes.
Start looking for inspirations on Pinterest, Google or Wedding blogs, such as Style Me Pretty, ModWedding or 100 Layer Cake. The earlier you decide on a theme, the more time you have to plan for flowers and collect your table decor items. Be sure to also keep your venue in mind before deciding on a theme. In general, a rustic or boho look is more budget friendly, because you have more flexibility to mix and match vases, containers, flowers and other table decor items and still be able to keep the look. A classic look on the other hand tends to be more costly, because you want everything to look similar (same vases, same flowers, same decor, etc).
If this is your first DIY project or you are new to choosing a color scheme, it's always best to choose one main color, one accent color to make your main color stand out, and one neutral color (such as white, ivory or cream) to balance your display. While green isn't strictly classed a color in floral design because of the abundance of it in the stems and foliage of the flowers, there are many hues of green available as a foliage or filler. Choosing the right green as your foliage or filler to compliment your DIY centerpieces is still important.
Picking your color scheme may be difficult at first, but to stick with it is the really hard part. In today's world, where there are hundreds of tints and shades of one hue, it is so easy to get carried away and you may find yourself moving from one color scheme to the next. So make up your mind, don't get distracted and stick with your three colors. If you can master this step, I can promise you that you'll save a lots of time and frustration.
If you are so focused on your DIY centerpieces, it is easy to forget about all the other table decor items that can help with the overall look. So don't get hung up on flowers that are not available in the color of your color scheme. To my earlier point, you got 3 colors to work with. Let's say you picked a navy blue, ivory and pink color scheme and navy blue is your main color - don't sweat over finding blue flowers. Rather, deck your table with a navy blue table runner or navy blue napkins. If you prefer an ivory color table cloth or table runner, try to find some blue vases or containers and then use ivory and pink flowers (there are plenty choices) to incorporate your color scheme. Easy, right
While not everyone is a fan of minimalist tablescapes, less can be so much more! Minimalist tablescapes are characterized by subdued ( mostly earthy or natural ) colors with some accents as a sophisticated punch line and lots of repetition. The repetition can come from the place mats, table runner, plates/flatware setting, place cards, a simple garland or a single vine with a strand of twinkle lights & votives, a set of bud vases with whimsical flowers and fillers or a repetition of some stylish pots planted with wheat grass. Layering can also help to add sophistication to a minimalist table setting, but we'll talk about this in another blog post.
I want to close this post by reminding you that most flowers have a season. If you are eying those beautiful purple Ranunculus and you found them available to order in August, you will pay a premium price tag for sure! Also keep in mind that there is a fair chance your florist or flower mart may not get them for your event date and you have to work with substitutions. My point is - even if you can get purple Ranunculus in August, they come with a higher price tag and they won't look as fresh and are not as strong as they will be in February through May.
THOSE OF YOU WHO HAVE DONE DIY CENTERPIECES, WE WOULD LOVE TO HEAR WHAT ADVICE YOU HAVE. WHAT WORKED WELL FOR YOU AND WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE DONE DIFFERENTLY?