Money Saving Tips for Creative Summer Center Pieces

As discussed on the Pete and Brenda radio show,  June 9th, 12:40 and 9:40 PST       

My niece, who is getting married this summer, asked for my help with the center pieces for her wedding.  This blog includes an example of a process for designing any centerpiece whether it’s for your home or a larger event, and also some money saving ideas, which are especially important if you have several tables to decorate.        

Begin by defining your budget.  This is not the fun part, but it’s very important unless you have a lot of time to waste.  If you’re creating center pieces for a special event, look at the total number of tables you need and divide by your budget… You may quickly find out you don’t have a lot of budget to work with for each table, and that’s where a little creative thinking and advance planning can really come in handy.       

Only paper in your budget is not a bad thing... Created_by_Emerson_Made


Perhaps paper bags are in your budget. Source: Martha


You don't have to spend a lot for a beautiful table center piece


My niece’s original plan was to just use mini wedding cakes as the table center pieces, but then she realized when those are pulled away for cake cutting, the tables will be bare!  Consequently this is a last minute request and there isn’t a whole lot of budget allocated for these center piece replacements.  She provided me with her wish list and ideas, and then I’m going to surprise her with the end result.  Here is her wish list:       

 1.      Birdcages on half the tables, (painted in Robin’s egg blue), just like these…       

Key objects of desire


 This is the wrong style of bird cage, but the deor inside is very applicable to our application…     

Bird cage as center piece


These are spendy.  I found some less expensive options, but she really loves these and they will take up most of the budget… if they can be shipped in time!       

2.      Bird’s nests on the other tables such as these homemade nests…       

2nd object of desire


Adding branches around the nest would help give it more presence


These are adorable and very inexpensive, which is great.  The downfall is the time it takes to hunt for the branches and make the nests, but fortunately I’ll be able to get a work crew together since I have a big family including several sisters and nieces!        

However, a little bird’s nest on a large 8’ round table will just get lost, so I’ve had to come up with some ideas to add to them.       

3.      No fake birds.         

Understandable… since there are a lot of tacky ones out there and they could ruin the rustic yet classic look my niece is after…        

These birds won't enhance the au naturelle theme


 4.      Wooden eggs in the Robin’s egg blue color.       

Custom color painted wooden eggs


  5.      Burlap.         

She loves the look of burlap.  It may sound funny, but check out some of the amazing looking burlap table runners below… They are spendy however, so my plan will be to improvise and make our own.       

Burlap table runner


Burlap table covering


Burlap table runner


Rustic burlap


Here is some additional inspiration for tying these elements together.  I will post actual pictures after the wedding so you can see how they turned out…       

Burlap table top inspiration


Au naturelle inspirational vases


Burlap tablecloth


Burlap table top center inspiration


Burlap on the summer table


Burlap on the table


Burlap summer eco chic center piece


Burlap on the table


Branches and burlap used in center piece



Branches as table center piece



Moss coordinates well with theme we're after


Home made center piece ideas



Sticks and wood in table center piece



Birds nest as table center pieces



Same idea could be incorporated into our theme



Natural table decor inspiration


Cost saving tips:  The challenge is finding cost affective pieces. Typical candle/votive holders and vases can add up very quickly! You can save by using alternative pieces… wine and beverage glasses. I found some great options at World Market with their stem-less glassware! The stem-less champagne glasses would make excellent vases, and there are several shapes of stem-less wineglasses that are great options for candle holders! If you’re having trouble finding inspiration, look at holiday décor examples. There are tons of examples out there for Christmas and other holiday decorations that you can borrow ideas for such as these…    

Goblets with Candles


Thanksgiving table decor



Thanksgiving table decor



Layer pieces to add color



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