Your centerpiece is often the first thing your guests notice about your table. Have fun experimenting with color, theme and found objects to create fun, eye-catching displays.
Flower power. A single bouquet was once the go-to dinner table fixture. For a more modern look, line up a row of smaller vases down the center of the table and place a few blooms in each. Pay attention to the height of each arrangement to be sure guests can easily see each other across the table.
Sweet tooth. Why should kids have all the fun? Visit a sweet shop and fill clear-glass jars with old-fashioned favorites such as rock candy and big, swirly lollipops. Even peppermints, foil-wrapped chocolates, and other grocery-store staples can be playful choices. An extra perk: Your centerpiece doubles as dessert!
Collectibles on parade. Whether you collect salt-and-pepper shakers, toy soldiers, or miniature baskets, a tabletop cluster of your cherished possessions is sure to be a hit. Stagger the height of the pieces by placing some on a cake stand or a trivet and others directly on the table.
Fanciful fruit. Sometimes the simplest ideas are the most eye-catching, like towers of fruit in a big glass bowl or clear vase. Choose a single color scheme that coordinates with your table linens, like only green apples or only lemons. If you use artificial fruit, boost the fragrance factor by placing a fruit-scented dryer sheet at the bottom of your bowl or vase before piling fruit on top.
Shore thing. Hosting a summer get-together? Place a row of outdoor lanterns or hurricane lamps down the center of the table and then arrange seashells, beach glass, dried sea stars, or decorative river rocks around the base of each.
Before you start, coordinate. Crisp white linens complement any arrangement, but why not choose a fun color or pattern to liven up the table even more?