Happy Thanksgiving everyone! This blog entry transcends a question to give thanks to my grandmother and all she taught me about this career, and life. It is inspired by her knack for throwing a curtain on a card table while filling an empty lemonade pitcher with lilacs from the backyard, all in the time it took for unexpected or forgotten guests to walk from the curb to the porch and be greeted by the screen door swinging open accompanied by her singing, “Finally!”
So when I read about “personalized, found-object collectable centrepieces” being a wedding trend for 2012, I think, “Trend? Me arse. Tanks ma b’ye but we be doin dat dare ting since Judas Priest made Sundees. Now G’waywitcha and yer trends before I puck ya in da moute.”
Or more simply put, ‘Thanks Nanni for truly instilling the belief in me that, “There’s always room for one more at our table.” And the skill-set to ensure that our table would win if there was ever an impromptu, “Who has the nicest table within four blocks?” random, might never happen, competition.
9 Reasons You Should Consider Making “Collectables” Centrepieces
1. Although popularly related to ‘vintage shabby chic’ or beach themes, this method can help create any level of formality or style. Whimsical? Of an era? Minimal? Dramatic? Romantic? Cultural? All of the above? It’s the selection of objects that define the vision.
2. Ultimately visual cohesion will exist through a colour scheme and common textures but don’t be rushed to establish them. Let your initial decor scavenger hunts and ongoing familiarization with the reception room allow must-have pieces, fabrics and/or finishes to inspire you.
3. Places to look: Flea markets, garage sales, attics, basements, closets, your aunt’s lavender farm, your uncle’s tool shed, Craigslist/Kajiji.
4. Choose objects that might elicit guest conversation or possible interaction: photos in a wooden recipe box, a real trophy, newspaper clippings about guests in a journal, a sailor hat on a stand that your grandfather wore when he proposed to the pill box hat at the next table over.
5. Don’t let colour or original purpose prevent you from considering a find that you love… you can change the colour or finish of almost anything and you’ll be surprised at how elegant pheasant feathers coming out of an upside down chandelier can look.
6. Collecting, shopping, packing, recording, transporting, cleaning and setting up on the day takes longer than you think and requires you to enroll a dedicated helper in the plan — far enough in advance that you trust them to make changes.
7. Full marks for sustainability! One stop further on the eco train would be to double your guest favours as decor by incorporating them into your table design. Kitchen herbs planted in 10 terracotta pots or mason jars or soup tins, leather bound books, gorgeous vintage ornaments in a cut crystal punch bowl or hanging from a branch standing in an antique ice bucket, jars of candy, or cupcakes and candles.
8. You don’t have to give the centrepieces away. Especially if their contents include early shower or wedding gifts that suit: the teapot, the photo-frame cube, martini glasses with floating dahlias, the birdcage, crystal candlesticks…
9. Permanent botanical keepsakes like assorted hob-knob milk glass vases holding paper flowers made out of whatever suits the couple best…paperback novels, copies of the wedding vows, sheet music, maps, or fabric flowers in apothecary jars.
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