Calla lilies are classic, sophisticated flowers, often included in wedding bouquets and centrepieces for their clean lines and crisp colours. Believed to symbolise magnificent beauty, calla lilies are as breathtaking standing alone in a slim column vase as they are grouped with candles, pearls or other flowers. The pure colours allow the flower to mix easily with greenery, ribbons, coloured roses, daisies or a variety of other decorations, and the long, thick stem adds to the bold statement made by a single-flower centrepiece.
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Things you need
- Calla lilies, real or artificial
- Trumpet vases, glass bowls or other containers
- Flower foam or sculpting clay
- Crystal sprays, feathers or reeds
- LED lights, twinkle lights or decorative crystals
- Rubber bands
- Shells or rocks
- Mirrored tiles
Choose whether you will use real or artificial calla lilies for your centrepieces. Fresh calla lilies provide a striking look but are costly, particularly if not in season, and require water in the vase or vessel. While artificial lilies may not achieve the realistic look, they are more versatile, less expensive and allow for do-it-yourself centrepieces.
Choose the primary hues from your wedding theme as the base colours of the centrepiece, and use lighter or darker shades to complement the pieces.
Determine the type of centrepiece you want to display. If other elements of your wedding are big and opulent, topiary-style centrepieces with lilies featured in tall vases will fit in nicely. If your wedding has a more understated feel, lower centrepieces with the lilies in bowls or shorter vases would be better.
Preparation and design
Choose a vase or stemware that will stand high enough off the table that guests have an unobstructed view. Apothecary jars, pedestal stands, Eiffel tower vases, trumpet vases and tall martini glasses are all good starters for tall centrepieces.
Prepare flower foam or another absorbent material to keep live lilies moist and prevent wilting. You may have to avoid certain vase fillers with live lilies, and you definitely want to avoid twinkle lights or LED lights in the water. Add crystal fibres or round crystals to camouflage the material holding the lilies, and include sprays of crystals or peacock feathers to complement the lilies.
Mount artificial flowers in vase filler, flower foam or a bit of sculpting clay. In narrow vases, you will have such a full arrangement the mounting may not be necessary. Arrange the lilies with other flowers, crystal sprays, feathers or reeds, and mix in LED lights, twinkle lights or decorative crystals.
Choose a vessel for your flowers that will not obstruct sight lines and conversations. Fish bowls, mint julep cups, floating candle bowls and apothecary jars can all be excellent vessels for calla lily arrangements.
Trim the stems of the lilies to prevent the weight of the flower from breaking the stem at the top of the vase. Fresh lilies in a floating bowl or low vase will not require any flower foam or mounting material. To keep the flowers loosely organised, tie them or rubber-band them.
Float a single candle in the middle of the flowers, or float several candles with the cluster of lilies in the centre of the bowl. You may also opt to submerge a single lily, with a close-cut stem buried in a shell or rock, in a short glass vase with a floating candle on top.
Mix artificial lilies in low vases or urns with pearl sprays, other flowers, peacock feathers and strings of twinkle lights to create a striking arrangement. Arrange the twinkle lights to peek between the blossoms and leaves, or bundle them at the bottom of the vase to create indirect lighting at the table.
Surround a tall centrepiece with scattered crystals, pillar candles, petals, shells or rocks. Place mirrored tiles or square mirrors under the base of the vase and wrap twinkle lights along the stem of the vase to create attractive indirect lighting.
Surround lower centrepieces with tea lights and votive candles, either in clear glass cups or cups colour-coordinated with the centrepieces. Add smaller mirrored tiles, but avoid crystal scatters or petals to keep the table from looking overcrowded.
Arrange curls of satin ribbon with crystal sprays to create a base for the centrepiece, particularly if it is a simple single lily or cluster of two to three blossoms.
Styling the centrepiece
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