12 Holiday Centerpieces to Spruce Up Any Style of Table
Gather round the table and get ready for a delicious holiday feast. Much of the holiday season is spent enjoying festive treats and mixed cocktails, but you need somewhere to serve the food and drinks first. The table you plan to sit down at with your guests or the buffet where you'll display your tasty bites and sips can benefit from a festive upgrade in the form of a beautiful centerpiece.
These centerpiece are essentially the glue that holds a holiday party together, marrying essential elements of dinner duties with style. You'll have ideas for sophisticated place settings, festive napkin folds, and gleaming china and serving sets at the ready, and these centerpiece ideas become the star of a fantastic holiday spread.
Florals are always welcome for the holidays, and a classic is shown here: fresh paperwhites. Taking inspiration from the snowy landscapes outside, these paperwhites will turn heads in their birch-covered pots. The addition of reindeer moss helps elevate the flowers, which can be harvested from winter gardens or sourced from local florists and home centers in your area. Among platters, trays, and serving bowls, flowers stand proud and lovingly invite your guests to take a seat.
But Christmas celebrations also give hosts a chance to play with more vibrant colors and materials that only come out once a year. From glowing candles to edible candy displays, all of these holiday centerpieces embrace some of the most creative tactics known to interior designers. Our editors share the very best holiday centerpieces and how you can nail the concept in your own home.
You don't need to melt any wax in order to make these candles; both taper and topper are made with beeswax sheets, available online and at crafts stores, where you can also buy wicking.
Sequined Christmas Trees Centerpiece
A gleaming grove of triangular trees makes an enchanting centerpiece. Cut from pearlized card stock, the trees are trimmed with loose sequins and small paillettes. You'll need to cut two triangles out for each tree; find the midpoint, fold it using a bone folder, and join the two triangles with glue. You'll then let it dry before adding sequins and other features on the tree's exterior.
Golden Globes Centerpiece
To create a soft glow—especially desirable around the dining table—try placing LED votives inside these "snow globes," which are white pendant-light fixtures, in three sizes, that are covered with clear shard glitter.
Shop Now: Westinghouse White Acrylic Globe, 10", $27, homedepot.com. Westinghouse Handblown Gloss White Globe, 6" and 8", from $6, homedepot.com. FloraCraftn Diamond Dust Glitter, $10 for 14 oz., amazon.com.
Glittered Bowl Candle Centerpiece
Give some sparkle to your flame with this ingenious candle holder. Start by blowing up your balloon to a desired size; in a bowl, mix equal parts fine glitter and découpage medium (two tablespoons of each covers one large or two smaller balloons). With a brush, apply a generous coating of mixture to the top half of the balloon. While still wet, sprinkle on tinsel glitter. Set dry half in another bowl and let it dry overnight. Then, pop the balloon with a pin and discard; if desired, paint the inside of the holder as well.
Moss and Flowers Arrangement Centerpiece
An amaryllis and orchids in complementary colors make a cheerful display nestled on a buffet table. The blanket of moss hides the individual pots, so the plants appear to sprout up from the ground.
Glittered Sugar "Plums" Centerpiece
These glistening fruits appeared in Martha's first Christmas book and in the premiere issue of Martha Stewart Living. We updated it with coarse sanding sugar, a large-crystal sugar that adds extra sparkle. Use fruit that's firm, dry, and at room temperature, and simply baste the fruit in egg whites before dusting in sugar. Allow to dry for three hours before displaying them on your table.
Mini Conifers Centerpiece
Make your mantel look amazing with a colorful assortment of vintage and inexpensive evergreens. The bottle‐brush variety are readily available online and at crafts stores; the miniature ones were plucked from a model train set. Votives make the snow‐dusted landscape sparkle.
Shop Now: Department 56 Bag-o-Frosted Topiaries, $12.50, department56.com.
Evergreen Terrarium Centerpiece
Welcome guests with this elegant assortment of outdoor plants. A large brass bowl and ice-like glass mulch elevate the grouping. Get started by placing a thin layer of mulch at the bottom of the bowl; then arrange conifers (in original plastic nursery pots) in the bowl. Position tallest plant slightly off-center in back to anchor its composition. Fill in with rest of plants, leaving an inch around rim. Finally, add bits of bubble packaging to keep pots in place, then finish with a top layer of mulch. Be sure to keep it in a protected location outdoors. If temperature drops below 20 degrees, move it to a garage or other unheated, sheltered location.
Seasonal Floral Deer Centerpiece
Even the smallest dollops of red (in this instance, a few ranunculi, miniature roses, and parrot tulips) will stand out when set against ivory walls, pale wood, white china, and silvery ornaments. Gray-green eucalyptus pods and pine needles create a muted backdrop for this festive centerpiece.
Shop Now: Martha Stewart Collection Metallic Deer, $32.50, qvc.com.
Painted Glass Votive Centerpiece
Create a trail of brilliantly lit candles with this simple DIY addition to a votive holder. Tape off the top outer edge of a clear glass with masking tape, and starting at the top and working downward, squeeze a thin coat of glass paint over the entire surface. The paint drips evenly down sides while drying. To dry, snip an inch off a paper-towel roll, and set the bottom of the glass on top of it, so the paint doesn't accumulate along the base. Let paint cure according to manufacturer's instructions.
Candied Mushroom Centerpiece
While this frosted centerpiece isn't actually edible, your guests wouldn't guess just by gazing upon its crystalized appearance. Cut styrofoam balls in half to create mushroom caps and place them on pipe cleaner stems; you'll need to frost them with glitter, and then cut out moss to fit upon smaller gift boxes. Glue the moss to the top of your boxes and place your "candied" mushrooms atop it all.