Did you know the average bride spends 10-15% of their budget on centerpieces? Wow. We spent maybe $200 in total on our centerpieces (26 of them, flowers and all!) and spent the leftover money elsewhere. They were absolutely beautiful. See for yourself…
DIYing Your Centerpieces:
If you’re willing to do a little bit of work yourself and have some bridesmaids, friends and family members to help you, then it’s a piece of cake (pun totally intended).
We had long rectangular tables, which made a traditional floral arrangement in a vase rendered useless since it would leave the rest of the table looking rather naked. Instead, we built long planter boxes out of pallets! Lowe’s let us take as many as we wanted. Gotta love free!
Here’s what we did:
- We broke the pallets apart with crowbars, hammers, and whatever else we could find and plucked out all of the nails with pliers.
- Then we reassembled them into long, skinny boxes. Travis used a pneumatic stapler to attach the sides and the bottom.
- I (very quickly and messily) stained each box with a dark walnut colored stain. The dark stain covered up any inconsistent wood tones, weird printing and footprints pretty well. They went from super ugly, to really cute in a matter of seconds. (Like always, Travis doubted me until this step.)
- Then we drilled two holes in each end of the boxes and tied on rope to form handles.
- Then I glued foam sheets to the bottom of each planter because I was so paranoid the rustic-y wood was going to leave fabric pulls or tears in our table linens.
Then we were left with 26 of these really cute little planters for the cost of just the rope and foam sheets.
Filling the Planters with Pretty Things:
First of all, our plan was to grow wheatgrass. I know, weird right? But I found a few photos online for inspiration and I thought it sounded like a good idea. So we planted a few boxes of wheatgrass and then tried ryegrass seeds too. We ultimately turned to ryegrass since it grew much fuller with smaller seeds. It grew incredibly fast!
The only problem… we tested growing the grass during the warmer months. It grew very well and quickly in the warmth and humidity. Since our wedding was at the end of September, it just wasn’t warm enough for the grass to grow. Naturally, I was freaking out! I won’t lie. I cried a few times over it. But just remember, it’s just one day. Really it is. And there are bigger things in this world worth crying about. So I flipped off the feel-sorry-for-my-wedding switch and moved on. Two days before the wedding and I abandoned the plan. All of the grass was dumped in our backyard (where it is now FLOURISHING btw) and moved on to plan B.
Plan B: Moss
We refilled the planters with soil, and then used moss to make a covering on the top.
Nope, we didn’t use dried moss.
Nope, we didn’t order it from a florist.
We used shovels to skim it off the ground our own backyard! Lol! Everyone thought we were totally crazy, and we WERE! We really were. And to add to the total craziness of my bride-brain… we didn’t have enough moss in our yard so we went to the park next to our house (as the sun was setting, of course, so our neighbors wouldn’t know we had lost our minds) and dug up even more moss. Lucky for us, our neighborhood is full of it. I really didn’t want the fakey dried moss. The real stuff looks so much nicer so I was on a mission, and to be totally honest with you… it looked SO MUCH prettier than the grass could have ever looked.
We filled floral tubes with water, poked dahlias and white roses in each one and spaced them out evenly in the planters. I bought curly willows, cut them into 5” lengths and poked them randomly at the base of the flowers. I also cut leaves from my mom’s plants in her backyard (I don’t think I ever confessed this to her) and added them to the planters as well. These centerpieces came together quickly but it was very nerve-racking.
They were untraditional, gardeny, shabby-chic, and meshed so well with the look of our wedding.
We bought the flowers from globalrose.com and fiftyflowers.com. They were shipped quickly and were beautiful! Both companies had great customer service and kept me updated by personally calling me a few times. I would highly recommend them both.
Reselling After the Wedding:
I had a really hard time letting go of those planters, even though we MADE money on them. We only kept one, but I wish we had set aside one or two more. After spending so much time and losing actual blood during this project from numerous splinters and cuts from the pallets, I’d say I formed a bond with them. Travis had no attachment to them (He only gets attached to old college textbooks. DON’T GET ME STARTED on that subject! Lol)
The bride who bought the planters from us is planning to fill them with mason jars full of flowers. The boxes add more of a decorative touch than setting the jars directly on the tables. I’m sure they will be beautiful and maybe look something like this photo below!?
Reusing Our Lone Planter:
As I mentioned above, we only kept one…. tear. But it has become a permanent centerpiece on our dining room table. I switch out the candles and foliage each season.
Christmas (those are stuffed shells btw… yum!):
I plan to get a little more creative with filling it in the future.
Other Wedding Flowers:
(All of our flowers were ordered online and shipped to my house.)
In the bouquet and cake topper: white dahlia mums, white roses, white anemones with green centers, green hypericum berries, lemon leaves, green button mums and dried lotus pods.
A family friend arranged our gorgeous bouquets, cake topper and boutonnieres. She did an amazing job!!! Wouldn’t you say?
So now you know that DIY centerpieces can be just as beautiful as traditional centerpieces at a fraction of the cost. Happy wedding planning, brides!