Budget-Friendly Ideas for Flower-Free Centerpieces

Floral centerpieces are pretty -- but here are cost-effective alternatives to keep on hand for any occasion

Who doesn’t love the look of abundant flowers at the center of a festive table? But cut flowers are notoriously expensive, they're not environmentally friendly, and of course, they don’t last. As an alternative, try making a small investment in some of these centerpiece-building staples, and reworking them for glorious tabletop decorations to celebrate occasions all year long.

Paper Flowers

A Beautiful Mess

Hello, gorgeous! Instead of using live versions, whip up a batch of pretty paper flowers and save them for reuse whenever you need them. Or, make new ones to suit each occasion's color theme and style with this easy tutorial from A Beautiful Mess.

Potted Herbs

Everyday Occasions by Jenny Steffens Hobick

We're on board with anything that makes our lives just a little easier -- and a potted-herb centerpiece like this one from Everyday Occasions by Jenny Steffens Hobick is right up our alley. Simply plant a boxed herb garden for cooking use, and keep as a pretty windowsill decoration. When it's time to celebrate, just move your guest-ready box to the table for a fragrant, rustic centerpiece. 


Mason Jars

Petal and Print

Is there anything the humble mason jar can't do? Collect a selection in varying sizes and fill them with simple tea lights for an elegant centerpiece that's versatile enough for just about any celebration. See the look at Chellé Paperie



Karen's Soiree

Make a few (super easy!) paper pinwheels in a neutral palette, store them safely and use them all year long -- or whip up a few pretty pieces to go with any new occasion. See how at Karen's Soiree



Justin & Mary

Stack books with a few creative objects for a sweet, sophisticated look any time of year. Pull them right out of your archives, or scour thrift shops for finds in colors and shapes you love. Sixpence For Your Shoe designed this setup for a wedding; see more at Style Me Pretty


Upcycled Tin Cans

Cottage in the Oaks

We love the totally unfussy, down-home appeal of tin cans as simple centerpieces. Just remove the labels and reuse in the style of this cool look from Cottage in the Oaks


Kristyn Hogan 

A cluster of pretty candlesticks at varying heights -- either similar or totally different in form -- can make for a gorgeous tablescape all year long. See more pics of the look at Elizabeth Anne Designs

Alesandra Dubin is a Los Angeles-based writer and the founder of home and travel blog Homebody in Motion. Follow her on FacebookGoogle+ and Twitter.

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