No table is complete without a centrepiece! The gorgeous arrangement of flowers, candles, and decorations make for a beautiful and memorable visual anchor for your next gathering or event.
A centrepiece is defined simply as the collection or arrangement of items to be used as a decorative focal point on a dining table or to hold necessary items during a dinner service. We know it as a term to describe the most important part of décor in any gathering or formal event.
The eyes of everyone around a table are naturally drawn to the centre, so spending a little extra time and care on this element of decor means that a stunning centrepiece will be certain to be both noticed and remembered.
Since the advent of formal dining, the desire to display symbols of abundance and prosperity has been represented in the centrepiece
For centuries, since people began gathering at a table to dine, centrepieces have been the primary adornment to display symbols of wealth, prosperity, and social status. In fact, the origins of the centrepiece – decorative arrangments of flora and fauna, celebrating nature and the seasons – can be traced back to Ancient Greek and Roman civilizations. Rather than the focus on the arrangement, however, it was the vessel in which it was contained that was showcased; the natural elements serving to highlight the more precious.
After a waning of popularity during the Middle Ages, where the focus shifted to a display of the foods to be consumed rather than decoration, decorative centrepieces saw a resurgence through the Georgian, Victorian, and Edwardian times with the need of hosts to demonstrate taste and status. Aristocracy and middle classes embraced the centrepiece as a way, much like the Greeks and Romans, to showcase their silver with the arrangements grand and large, including heavy ornamentation among the natural elements such as wide, tall candelabras.
While certainly more modest today, the intent to create a beautiful focal point for special events and gatherings continues.
As your guests gather let a beautiful centrepiece accentuate the occasion, the food, and the festive mood!
Make your event that much more memorable with beautiful arrangments of seasonal greens and florals. Whether rustic, contemporary, or classic there’s a beautiful centrepiece to suit, making your table pop! with festive flare. They don’t have to be extravagant – not at all! Even a modest, simple addition of decorative greens will bring your table to vibrant life.
And you don’t have to wait until Christmas to purchase your arrangement! During the winter and Christmas season, there are so many amazing, beautiful smelling greens used in floral design (cedar, Carolina sapphire, white pine, white fir, and so on).
Get your centrepieces early and with a few tips to help them last, winter greenery (which should always last longer than your flowers) has been known to last until Valentine’s Day and even beyond.
- WATER DAILY!!!
- If you heat your home with wood, hydration will be even more important as you run the risk of dehydrating your floral arrangements a lot faster. Use a humidifier or simply diffuse water and your favourite essential oil into the air via a steel kettle on top of your woodstove, a pan on simmer on the stove top or with an essential oil diffuser. Your home smell wonderful, and your flowers – and skin! – will be healthier!
- Trim flower stems occasionally. Roses, in particular, need to be trimmed every 3 –5 days. Simply reinsert back into the design. If you have a vase arrangement, refresh the water frequently (every 4 –5 days) to keep it clean.
Refreshing your Christmas Arrangements
- Take a photo of the arrangement from all sides.
- Use the skills and talents of your friendly neighbourhood florist (and don’t forget to bring those pictures!!)
- Show your florist the photos and ask for fresh stems. At this point, you are free, too, to change the colour scheme of your floral arrangement. For instance, your original purchase was an arrangement of white and chartreuse toned flowers; as it’s closer to Christmas, you’d now prefer red, white and pinecones or berries. Your florist will be happy to offer guidance as to the best types of stems to use for replacement.
- Take home your fresh cut stems of flowers (this time of year they should always be wrapped in a warm air bubble in a bag to protect the flowers from freezing).
- Set yourself up with your arrangement, fresh flower stems and a sharp paring knife on a good sized countertop or table… let the fun begin!
- Lay out your fresh flowers so you can easily pick them up without harming the head of the flower.
- One at a time, remove the old flowers noting the length and type of cut the florist has done, choose your fresh stem, copy the cut and place it in the same or similar location of the original flower. Always being careful to angle your stem down into the floral foam (if utilized) so that it gets maximum water exposure in the arrangement. Try not to push and pull the stem into the floral foam multiple times as this damages the stem and destroys the foam.
- Repeat the above until all old flowers are removed and fresh flowers have replaced them. Voila!!! New, fresh Holiday arrangement!