A beautifully decorated table can turn an ordinary meal into a special occasion. While elaborate centerpieces have their place, sometimes simple is best. Easy centerpieces allow the food and conversation to take center stage. With a little creativity, you can make stunning centerpieces using common household items. The following guide will provide ideas to deck your table with easy yet eye-catching centerpieces.

Pick Theme-Appropriate Decor Items from Around the House

Look around your home for items that fit your theme. Almost anything can become part of a creative centerpiece display. Here are some ideas for repurposing common items:

Fruits and Vegetables

Fresh produce makes colorful, edible arrangements. Try citrus fruits, berries, apples, pears, mini pumpkins, or gourds. Utilize contrasting shapes, sizes, and colors for visual interest. Arrange on platters, in bowls, or pile in baskets. Spritz with water to keep fresh.

Houseplants and Flowers

Greenery instantly livens up any table. Use leafy houseplants, fresh flowers, herbs, or trimmings from your garden. Place small pots at each setting or make a bouquet for a shared display.

Candles and candle holders

Grouped candles create cozy, romantic lighting. Use pillars, tapers, tea lights, or various shaped votives. Glass containers like vases, jars, and hurricanes protect wick flames.

Books and bookends

Stacked books make casual literary centerpieces. Choose titles to match your theme and use bookends to keep upright. Wrap book covers with decorative paper for a uniform look.

Rocks, shells, and natural items

Bring nature indoors with pinecones, stones, sand, feathers, seashells, or driftwood. Use items found in your region for authentic seasonal decor. Display in bowls, on trays, or directly on the table.

Craft Quick DIY Centerpieces

With simple materials from a craft or dollar store, you can fashion creative centerpieces in no time. Some fast options include:

Tissue paper flowers

Make gorgeous tissue paper blooms following online tutorials. Wrap strips around chopstick stems and shape into roses, peonies, dahlias, and more. Cluster in vases for instant elegance.

Paper pompoms

Cut cardstock into circles, fold into rounded shapes, glue edges together, then fluff. Suspend with fishing line or pile in bowls. Make them any size or color scheme.

Paper chains

Loop strips of decorative paper into colorful chains. Drape them down the table or shape into rings around vases and candles. Personalize them by spelling names or writing messages.

Map bowls

Mod podge pages from an atlas or old book onto plastic bowls. Once dry, fill with flowers, river rocks, seashells, or other items. Choose maps related to your theme.

Washi tape vases

Transform plain vases and jars into works of art by wrapping them with strips of decorative washi tape. The thin, brightly patterned tape is available at most craft stores.

Keep It Simple with Natural Elements

Less is often more when it comes to centerpieces. Never underestimate the beauty of fresh greenery and organic materials collected from nature.

Ferns and foliage

Display fresh green ferns and ivy spilling out of containers. Intersperse other greens like eucalyptus, olive branches, magnolia leaves, or rosemary.

Fruit and vegetable slices

Arrange slices of lemons, limes, oranges, apples, pears, kumquats, or cucumbers in footed bowls filled with water. The water keeps them fresh and adds shine.

River rocks

Place natural river rocks, pebbles, or sand inside clear vases or jars for quick elegance. Use rocks in tones matching your color scheme. Light candles in between for a fire and water display.

Wood slices

Cut cross-section slices from tree branches or logs. Sand the edges smooth. Place votive candles on wood rounds of varying heights down the table.

Pinecones and acorns

Display distinct pinecones for organic texture and natural beauty. Intersperse with hazelnuts still in their frilly husks or shiny brown acorns collected from under oak trees.

Upcycle Common Household Objects

Take a second look at random items around your house. With a little imagination, you can repurpose many ordinary things into extraordinary centerpieces.

Teacups and mugs

Use dainty teacups, mugs, and coffee cups to hold small floral arrangements. Mismatched china adds whimsical charm. Surround with tea lights for a cozy effect.


Fill vintage-style metal birdcages with flowers or candles to create shabby chic charm. Look for decorative cages at flea markets or DIY paint plain ones.


Set pillar candles inside glass, metal, or ceramic lanterns for soft illumination. Use lanterns of varied heights and styles down the center of the table.

Bottles and jars

Upcycle empty glass bottles and jars by filling them with flowers, twinkle lights, seashells, candy, or sand. Use varying shapes and sizes for an eclectic look.

Picture frames

Stand classic silver frames vertically around candles or small floral bunches. Choose antique styles for vintage appeal or brightly colored frames for a playful look.

Cake stands

Display wreaths, flowers, fruit, or stacked books on the raised pedestals of cake stands for instant height. Nestle tea lights in between multi-level stands.

Draw Inspiration from the Season

Match your centerpiece to the current season or holiday. This adds festive flair while showcasing nature’s timely bounty.


Celebrate springtime with delicate blooms like tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, and lilacs. Display flowering branches and sprigs of baby’s breath.


Create a summery scene with daisies and sunflowers mixed with seashells and sand. Fill glass containers with lemons, limes, or seasonal berries.


Welcome autumn with mini pumpkins, gourds, and maple leaves. Accent with bittersweet, dried foliage, acorns, and votive candles.


Sparkle in the winter with pine sprigs, holly berries, pinecones, and metallic accents. Float cranberries in vases or pile pomegranates in bowls.


Incorporate symbolic items into holiday centerpieces like feathers and eggs for Easter or pinecones and poinsettias for Christmas. Get creative with themed colors.

Make Mini Masterpieces Kids Can Create

Let kids design their own artsy centerpieces. Provide seasonal materials from outside like leaves or pinecones plus art supplies like glitter glue, pom poms, craft sticks and pipe cleaners. Supervise as they build and arrange their mini masterpieces at each place setting.

Choose Low Profile Designs

When decorating a smaller table, lower profile centerpieces allow guests to converse comfortably. Here are some compact ideas:

  • Short vases of flowers
  • Low bowls filled with seashells, fruit, or rocks
  • Small potted plants or succulents
  • Small stacked books or covered blocks
  • Votives circling a low candle pillar
  • Mini watering cans holding flowers
  • Shallow trays displaying moss, leaves or flower petals

Keeping centerpieces below eye level maintains sightlines so guests can see and interact with each other.

Mix and Match Multiple Options Down the Table

Why stick with one standard centerpiece? Create visual interest by mixing and matching multiple centerpiece styles interspersed down the table. Here are some pairing ideas:

  • Candles next to lanterns
  • Succulents beside river rock vases
  • Watering cans flanking a birch log slice
  • Mini terrariums alternating with freshly cut flowers
  • Pinecones bordering citrus fruit displays
  • Book stacks separating green garlands

The contrast between high and low, natural and formal adds charming variety.

Choose Durable Elements for Longevity

When planning centerpieces in advance, select sturdy materials that will last days or weeks without maintenance. Here are some durable options:

  • Artificial flowers, branches, and greenery
  • Wax flowers and fruit
  • Faux succulents and boxwood sprigs
  • Fabric flowers
  • Dried botanicals like pampas grass,baby’s breath, statice, and eucalyptus
  • Ornaments
  • Seashells, stones, marbles
  • Terra cotta pots
  • Ceramic containers
  • Wooden signs or letters

These types of items can be arranged early and left in place through days of celebrating without wilting or spoiling.

Get Creative with Nontraditional Materials

Almost anything can become centerpiece-worthy with an inventive spirit. Raid your pantry, craft cabinet, or junk drawer for inspiration.

Kitchen Items

Stack tea tins or arrange stainless steel measuring cups filled with flowers. Create sculptures from silverware or make towers of spice jars wrapped in twine. Float candles in pots and pans filled with beans, lentils or rice.

Arts and Crafts Supplies

Fill clear containers with pom poms, googly eyes, buttons, felt flowers, or colorful bits of ribbon. Use items like clothespins, paint swatches, and patterned scrapbook paper to embellish candle displays. Paint and decorate plain terra cotta pots.

Sentimental Finds

Incorporate special mementos into table displays like old children’s toys, vintage gloves, doilies, sports equipment, framed family photos, seashells from past vacations, or antique eyeglasses. Share the memories as you spark conversation.

DIY Centerpiece How-Tos

Step-by-step tutorials make it easy to create stunning centerpieces from start to finish. Follow along to make these beautiful yet easy offerings:

Crystal Candle Centerpiece

Materials needed:

  • Glass bowl or vase
  • Flat marbles, beads, or crystal stones
  • Pillar candle
  • Candlestick (optional)


  1. Fill your glass bowl or vase with crystal stones, marbles, or beads. Choose colors that coordinate with your table décor or linens.
  2. Place a pillar candle in the center, either directly in the stones or placed in a candlestick for height.
  3. Surround the base of the candlestick with a layer of coordinating crystals or beads.
  4. Arrange the glass container in the middle of the table as a gleaming focal point. The candlelight will shine beautifully through the clear and colored crystals.

Book Stack Centerpiece

Materials needed:

  • Stack of 4-6 hardcover books, approximately the same size
  • Decorative book cover paper or wrapping paper
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Double sided tape or glue


  1. Cover your stack of books in coordinating paper to create a uniform look. Wrap the paper fully around front, back and spine, using double sided tape or glue to adhere.
  2. Fan the books attractively, alternating vertical and horizontal placement. Stack the books in a staggered staircase or pyramid shape.
  3. Top the book stack with a special memento, flower arrangement, or candle.
  4. Display your decorated book stacks down the center of the table or at each place setting.

Mason Jar Terrarium

Materials needed:

  • Glass mason jars
  • Small plants like mini cacti, succulents, air plants or starter herbs
  • Pebbles or marbles
  • Moss, soil, or sand
  • Figurines, rocks, or other decorative items (optional)


  1. Fill the bottom of the mason jar with pebbles or marbles for drainage.
  2. Scoop soil, sand, or moss on top of the rocks to cover.
  3. Arrange small plants inside the jar, pressing roots into the soil. Insert figurines or other decorative items if desired.
  4. Place lid loosely on jar. The condensation will water the mini terrarium, providing humidity.
  5. Set the creative mason jar plant displays down the center of the table or at each place setting.


What are some good centerpiece ideas for a Christmas dinner table?

For Christmas, try using evergreen clippings, poinsettias, pinecones, cranberries, candles, and holiday figurines. Arrange wrapped gifts or stack holiday cookies and desserts. Incorporate classic Christmas colors like red, green, gold, and white.

What are quick and easy centerpiece ideas for Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving centerpieces can include fruit like apples, pears, dried cranberries, nuts like acorns and walnuts, small pumpkins and gourds, wheat stalks, cornucopias, candles, and autumn leaves. Stick to seasonal fall hues.

How can I use flowers from my garden as table centerpieces?

First see what is currently blooming in your garden and yard. Choose a color palette that coordinates. Snip fresh flowers and greenery. Display in vases, pitchers, or mason jars. Trimmings like vines, herbs, and ornamental grasses add texture.

Where can I find inexpensive items to make DIY centerpieces?

Check discount stores, dollar stores, thrift shops, and even garage sales for candles, vases, baskets, frames, and nontraditional items to upcycle. Raid your pantry and craft cabinet for jars, tins, and embellishments. Use backyard clippings.

How do I choose centerpieces that won’t obstruct conversation at the table?

Lower profile options work best for intimate gatherings where you want guests to interact comfortably. Consider using shorter vases, low bowls, or displaying slender items vertically like lanterns and picture frames. Arrange smaller groupings instead of tall statement pieces.

Set a Stunning Scene

Crafting the perfect tablescape is a fun and rewarding way to set a festive mood for your event or everyday meals. Start with your menu, color scheme and overall aesthetic, then get inspired seeking decor from around the house, yard, and craft store. Repurpose common objects to make one-of-a-kind centerpieces. Let your creativity run free playing with different shapes, heights, textures and materials arranged just so. Keeping designs simple, fresh, and seasonally appropriate results in easy, eye-catching centerpieces that enhance gatherings without overshadowing the purpose – connecting with friends and family over good food and warm memories.