20 Picture-Perfect Centerpiece Ideas You Can Do in 5 Minutes
Whether you’re prepping for a casual weekend brunch or a celebratory soiree, adding some DIY centerpieces to your spread can take the occasion up a notch. Your guests will appreciate that you put a little extra time and effort into the party, and you’ll have a picture-ready piece of décor that sets the tone for the whole event. (You’ll also have earned a few bragging rights.) Best of all, including some centerpiece ideas into your party planning process could revive the habit among those in your circle—before you know it, everyone will be putting together simple centerpieces to zhuzh their tables a bit.
Opting for pumpkin centerpieces or other seasonal, simple table decorations is fine, but so is doing something interactive, or creating a centerpiece that works for any season. The key to a simple centerpiece is letting it speak for itself and not getting too hung up on this one (relatively small) component of the party. After all, the purpose of the occasion is to enjoy spending time with other people—focus on that, and your well-done centerpiece ideas will be a pretty afterthought.
For everything from a backyard party to a graduation celebration, there are centerpieces that suit the occasion. Make sure your centerpiece idea of choice pairs well with your skill set, crafting supplies, and available time, and you’ll have a bit of party décor that shines. When it comes to centerpieces, at least, it’s always an A for effort—though these fail-proof ideas are sure to shine.
This one is an interactive and heartfelt way to celebrate someone—Mom, a recent graduate, an expectant parent. Pass around strips of paper about six inches long and ask guests to write a message or a wish for the honoree. Twist the papers around a pen to curl them, then toss them into a large bowl. Have the guest of honor read the messages aloud during dessert.
Big blossoms, such as hydrangeas, roses, and peonies, look gorgeous displayed in an unused serving piece, like a soup tureen.
Related: Easy 15-Minute Party Centerpieces
Dress up your home with these stylish vases that take just minutes to make.
Float bright Granny Smiths in large, clear-glass vases (filled to different levels) for a whimsical still life.
A bouquet of colorful pinwheel lollipops stands steadily and cheerfully in a bucket packed with dry sand.
The rich tones of sweet peas and cabbages (yes, cabbages) work together beautifully in a creative combination.
Add jewel-toned fruit to a white bowl with sensuous lines for an easy arrangement. Look for fruits of differing sizes and shapes but with similar coloring, as with these plums and pomegranates.
What could be more delicious than a large footed vase sparkling with foil-wrapped treats?
Pair smooth objects (lemons) with smaller, textured ones (nuts) for a compelling composition. Show it off in a glass bowl with a pedestal for drama.
An array of brightly colored sodas or juices add a fun note to a dinner.
Paper Pom Poms
On a steamy night, set a casual table with a bouquet of hot-colored paper flowers, guaranteed not to wilt.
Bring a splash of sunshine to your meal with a vibrant partnering of daisies and oranges.
This tone-on-tone assemblage starts with miniature citrus fruits (key limes, kumquats) and Peruvian lilies bursting with color.
Modern Fruit Display
Flip containers (here, acrylic boxes and lids) upside down and arrange fruit on top to create a multitiered design.
Row of Daisies
A field of gerbera daisies and wheatgrass “grow” charmingly in a rustic table runner.
Mix and Match Vessels
Line floral arrangements down your table―if you don’t have enough vases, cake tins, jelly molds, and small ice buckets make surprisingly pretty containers.
Lush Carnation Display
Two humble elements—a wooden salad bowl and carnations—add up to something special. Cut the stems to three or four inches, arrange in a glass dish, and place in the bowl.
It’s November 1 and your pumpkin is still going strong? Trim off its top and hollow out the seeds. Arrange fresh flowers in a water-filled jar and place inside, or use dried leaves and twigs.
A galvanized tub becomes the base for a gathering of oversize leaves, like these from a magnolia.
For holiday decor, arrange pinecones—spray-painted gold or silver, if you wish—in vases and compotes of staggered sizes, and add festive ribbon.
Branches, whether artificial or the real deal, look striking in an arrangement. In a well-ventilated outdoor space, spray them with white paint, let dry, then display in glass bottles or vases.