Get Creative with DIY Flowers!

We all know that the floral budget for a wedding can be quite hefty. So for all of you green thumb brides who would love a DIY project that can easily save big bucks, here are some gorgeous ideas for your reception table flowers from the experts at The secret is to keep the look simple, pretty and clean using white tulips and daffodils… the perfect blooms for spring and summer celebrations!

I love this crisp, bright display made with seasonally-appropriate seashells:

diy centerpiece tulips and seashells

How-to: To create the tightly bunched effect, gather 15-20 tulips (leaves stripped) in a cluster and wrap the stems so they are securely held together (use florist tape or a plastic tie). The stems should be cut 3 inches long so they are not seen in the vase. Fill the vase 2/3 full with small- to medium-sized seashells. Place the bunch of tulips in the vase. Carefully fill the remaining vase with the seashells. Gently add water to the vase using a watering can. Refill water level as needed.

This next creation is so easy to do, and it’s an ideal display for an outdoor wedding:

diy tulip centerpiece

How-to: Collect approximately 30 white tulips with the leaves attached. Fill a wide-mouthed vase (or glass ice bucket) half full with water. Gather the tulips in your hands and place in the vase. Once the tulips are set in the water they can be adjusted to create a free-flowing arrangement. Refill water level as needed.

Here’s another take on tulips with seashells in a taller container:

diy centerpiece tulips seashells

How-to: Remove all the leaves from the stems of 20-30 tulips. Snip the ends of each stem off but keep them long (about 12 inches) so the stems are approximately the height of the vase. Gather all of the tulips to form a bunch and wrap the stems so they are securely held together (use florist tape or a tie).

Using two vases — one large and one small enough to fit within the other — place the smaller vase inside the larger-sized vase. It is best if both vases are close in height. Using the seashells, fill the gap between the two vases. Then add water to the inside/smaller vase until 2/3 full. Place the tulip stems into the inside/smaller vase. Refill water level as needed.

These delightful daffodils evoke a woodsy, whimsical feel:

diy centerpiece daffodils in moss

How-to: These daffodils are known as Narcissus Erlicheer, or double daffodil Erlicheer. If not available at your garden center, Tete-a-Tete daffodils will give a similar effect. The moss-covered pots can be purchased at a garden center or craft store.

Remove the daffodils and soil from the plastic container and repot into decorative moss planter. If your moss planter is not watertight, simply place the plastic container of daffodils into the decorative planter, noticing any drain holes that may require a saucer to capture water. Water the flowers daily.

One of my favorites is this romantic ensemble of petite vintage vases filled with daffodils and branches, displayed on a silver tray:

diy centerpiece with vintage vases

How-to: Cut small-cupped daffodils at their base. Hold the daffodils up to each vase and cut the stem so the flower head touches the top of the vase. Repeat this for every vase. Snip some thin branches from a shrub or small tree and add to the vases to your desired height. Fill each vase half full with water. Refill water level as needed.

Keep in mind that how far in advance you can make the arrangements depends on what stage they were cut in. Tulips react very quickly to high temperatures. If your tulips have a tight bloom that hasn’t opened at all, they need a few days at room temperature to open so it’s safe to prepare the arrangements several days before the wedding. If they are already opening then they should be made the day before and put into a cooler (In this case you might want to have friends and family members do the honors as you’ll definitely have your hands full with other last-minute items!). Check out this chart to see how tulips will look as each day goes by and have fun creating your own fabulous floral displays.

tulip stages chart

—Diane Forden