When planning a wedding, there are many little details that need to be considered. As with any event planning, it is always advisable to think ahead of time about what may be needed than to discover at the wedding that something is just not working or was a poor idea.
Wedding centerpieces are a perfect example of this, as often they are created and envisioned a certain way and turn out to be impractical (anyone who has ever been at a reception and found they could not see or talk to the other guests at the table can vouch for this). With this in mind, we have put together some tips for avoiding problems and ensuring the only thing everyone remembers about your centerpieces is how beautiful they are!
When choosing or making wedding centerpieces, here are some things to consider:
- Height: Centerpieces can vary from almost flat to quite towering, as in large flower arrangements or tall candles. Consider that guests will need to converse while sitting during the reception, and try to choose centrepieces accordingly. An arrangement that entirely blocks peoples’ view of each other could make for a long and awkward evening.
- Allergies: When choosing flowers, ask the florist about those that commonly cause allergic reactions, and perhaps avoid those. Some very beautiful flowers may be OK for the bridal bouquet, but not for a guest who must spend several hours seated two feet from them.
- Flames: More than one tablecloth, child’s hand or guest’s scarf has caught fire unexpectedly at a wedding, when inexpensive or ill-placed centerpiece candles were part of the scene. If using candles, ensure they are carefully placed within a centerpiece to avoid any complications.
- Size: When planning the size and shape of centerpieces, be sure to account for room on the table not just for place settings, but for extra food such as butter, breadbaskets, water glasses and wine bottles, as well as wedding favors that guests may place on the table while they eat.
- Season and theme: Centerpieces can be used to tie together the theme of the wedding reception. They can be the final element which marries the bridal party bouquets, napkin colors and any other decorative elements throughout the reception location. They can also be used to help express the theme or season, for example a fall wedding may have autumn leaves incorporated for the table centerpieces.
- Price-point: If budget is an issue, get creative. Even though this is an extremely special day, it is also only 24 hours, and many flower shops can charge extravagant prices for centerpieces when they know it is for a wedding. However, there should always be options that will allow for the color and theme requirements to be met. For example, candles and holders come at all price-points from low- to high-end, and flowers adhering to any budget can be chosen in your color scheme. Can’t afford red roses? How about red carnations, gerberas or day lilies?
- Portability: If the centerpieces are to be ‘won’ by people during the festivities, consider choosing something that is clean and fairly easily portable.
This should be more than enough to get you started. Remember to take advantage of the tips in our recommended Wedding Planning Guides – see sidebar for details. Happy wedding planning!