P is for Party Planning: DIY Wedding Centerpieces
I love the look of floral centerpieces at wedding receptions, but they can add a big expense to the wedding budget. As I planned my own wedding, I wanted beautiful reception tables that made an impression but I also couldn’t afford to spend a lot of money on flowers. My color scheme was navy and white with pops of lime green and bright blue. As I thought about my options, I decided it would be fun to use fresh limes in my centerpieces to pull in some more lime green. Limes are inexpensive and have such a gorgeous rich green color. Here is what I came up with for my DIY wedding centerpieces using fresh limes:
Wide mouth glass vases – 1 vase for each table plus a few extras for added decor
Fresh limes – 8-10 limes for each centerpiece depending on size of vase and size of limes
Large spider mums – one stem for each centerpiece, I used white but spider mums come in a variety of colors
Pitcher or watering can with a good spout for pouring
- Purchase your supplies. I found my vases at a local craft store. I watched for them to go on sale or used weekly 40% off coupons to purchase them. This takes some planning ahead to get the most bang for your buck. I also watched for limes to go on sale. I think at the time I was able to buy them for 4 for $1. They should last for a week or two before the wedding if you keep them in the refrigerator. Order the spider mums from your local florist so you can pick them up the day before your event. I used white spider mums in my centerpieces, but also had bright green spider mums added to my bouquets (see below).
- Prepare. After I had enough vases, I removed all sticker and price tags and then washed them thoroughly by hand. It was worth the time to make them nice and sparkly with no dust, grime or fingerprints. I also went through all the limes when I brought them home to remove their stickers and any loose stems or ends. I wiped them down or rinsed and dried ones that seemed grubby. This will ensure that your water stays nice and clear. The day before the wedding, I carefully added the limes to each vase and then packed the vases in easy to transport boxes.
- Assemble. On the morning of my wedding, myself and my maid of honor put the centerpieces together at the reception site. This is a task that can easily be delegated to a helper. I enjoyed doing it myself and it took very little time out of my busy wedding day schedule. After unboxing the vases, we used a watering can with a long spout to carefully fill each vase with enough tap water to just cover the limes. You can play around with how much water to use to achieve your desired look. The final step is to cut most of the stem off of a spider mum before floating it on the surface of the water. Easy and elegant!
- Display. I placed each centerpiece on a beveled mirror and surrounded them with small white votive candles for added ambiance after dark. Check with your venue to see what they provide – they may already have mirrors and candles that can be used. My favor boxes added addition splashes of color to the table setting.
- Clean up. Decide whether you plan to send the centerpieces home with guests or if you will keep them. We just drained the water out of the vases at the end of the evening and put them back in the boxes with the limes and flowers still in them for easy clean up. They could then be disassembled at home the next day. My mom spent much of the time I was gone on my honeymoon squeezing limes and freezing the fresh juice! Ha!
Here is a view of my venue during the day before the wedding. Don’t those lime centerpieces just pop on those dark blue table squares?
The centerpieces looked great after dark in the glow of the votive candles.
I bought a garland with faux limes that we used around the base of the cake stand. We also tucked in some extra spider mums to coordinate with the centerpieces.
What do you think? I was very pleased with how these DIY wedding centerpieces turned out. We received tons of compliments on them. Even the event staff at my venue thought they were a great idea. Be creative. You could use different kinds of fruit or slice your citrus fruit in half for a different look. Try different flowers as well. I would love to hear your ideas and variations. It really is possible to have gorgeous wedding centerpieces that don’t break your budget.
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