You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.


  • ePAPER

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.


Welcome to

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

breaking news

Sister of alleged West Liberty shooter speaks, school to re-open

Centerpieces for Thanksgiving, DIY style

Money-saving tricks for your table.

While a perfectly roasted turkey is the undisputed star of the Thanksgiving Day show, getting the right atmosphere is also a must.

It can be tough to create an elegant setting, especially if you’ve blown your budget on food and wine. We asked local experts for tips on how you can create beautiful centerpieces for the Thanksgiving table for less.

1. Choose your container. Just about anything can function as a container for a floral arrangement. It all depends on the atmosphere you’re going for. For traditionalists, “the most popular container style for Thanksgiving is a cornucopia, and the second most popular is the traditional wicker basket,” said Barb Williams, a floral designer with Franklin Florist and Gifts. Low-cost wicker baskets and cornucopias are widely available in craft and hobby stores.

If you’re looking for the latest trend, metallic colors like bronze, pewter and burnished gold are popular this year. Another hot trend is heirloom containers — a very affordable option. “It gives people something to talk about around the table,” said Beth Mills, a floral designer at the Flowerman in Centerville. Heirloom containers can include any type of antique or family item from milk pitchers to porcelain vases.

2. Find your flowers. Seasonal flowers are generally the most affordable choice for arrangements. Most of flower selection is personal taste, but Mills recommended trying to match the table settings. She also said, “A brighter, vivid color like hot pink will enhance the other colors … it’s a little pop of color, a little surprise.” For example, if you’re using autumn tones, don’t be afraid to add a splash of a brighter hue.

Pay attention to the size of the flowers you use. Williams said, “Use a flower with line like snapdragon or larkspur, a focal flower that typically has more size to it, like sunflower or gerbera daisy, and some fill flowers like chrysanthemums and carnations. Finish with accent flower, which is similar to a fill flower.” She recommended seasonal accent flowers like golden asters. Be sure to accent your arrangement with greenery — try lemon leaf, myrtle or huckleberry to finish things off.

3. Prepare your supplies. If you’re putting your flowers directly into a vase, Mills advised, “You need to have lukewarm water. Cut the stems at an angle, don’t put greenery under the water line — this keeps it from getting funky.” You should also be sure to add flower food that’s formulated specifically for your flowers.

If you want a lower, longer arrangement instead of a traditional tall vase, you’ll need to use an oasis, a heavy sponge that gives food and water to the flowers. “You definitely want to soak the oasis in a floral vitamin and mineral solution,” Williams said. Be sure to allow adequate soaking time and cut your flowers to at least an inch and a half before inserting them into the oasis.

4. Create the arrangement. If you’re using an oasis, start with your chosen greens to create a framework for your design, then add the largest flowers second. Next, add your accent flowers and fill in any gaps. If you need a template, try searching for photos of similar arrangements online.

To finish it off, oasis arrangements lend themselves to candles well or you could go seasonal. “People are using small pumpkins … you can get little bags of pumpkins and gourds,” Mills said.

5. Keep it fresh. Unless you’re capable of magic (or you aren’t cooking), you’re probably not going to put together your centerpiece on Thanksgiving Day. You’ll need it to stay fresh for a couple of days, so be sure to think ahead. “You can take the flowers out and wash the vase,” if the water starts to look murky, Mills said.

Mills also suggested choosing certain flowers for their longevity and durability in hot, crowded rooms. “We usually always have roses, daisies, cushion mums, spider mums — things that will last the longest,” she said. “You can get at least a week out of roses.”

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in

Exercise of the Month: Dumbbell Flyes
Exercise of the Month: Dumbbell Flyes

Dumbbell Flyes help to strengthen the chest (pectoral) muscles. For maximum benefit, include them alongside other common chest exercises, such as Pushups and Chest Presses. This allows for developing strength on varying planes of movement. Primary muscles targeted include the chest and shoulders. Indirectly, Dumbbell Flyes work the upper back and biceps...
Ill New Carlisle boy, 4, gets to enjoy Disney
Ill New Carlisle boy, 4, gets to enjoy Disney

A Special Wish Foundation-Dayton Chapter is the only wish granting organization located in the Dayton region. For more information on how you can be part of granting a local child’s wish, go online to A child’s wish, no matter the age, is incredibly special. Almost all of us have looked into the night sky waiting...
D.L. Stewart: The circus is leaving town … finally
D.L. Stewart: The circus is leaving town … finally

News that the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus will fold its big top forever this May brought back a flood of happy, smiling memories for me. Ok, maybe not a flood, exactly. More like a droplet. In fact, my ONLY happy, smiling circus memory is from when I took my daughter to see one when she was six or seven years old. As the circus began...
Frostbite danger: Late treatment can lead to permanent damage
Frostbite danger: Late treatment can lead to permanent damage

Red cheeks and tingling fingers shouldn’t be considered a normal part of time spent outside on a frigid, winter day. Instead, these should be thought of as the beginning signs of something potentially dangerous. “Frostbite is a real condition that can be a threat to anyone who spends extended periods of time outdoors in cold weather,&rdquo...
Sleep problems? Try these changes in your routine
Sleep problems? Try these changes in your routine

Kettering Health Network is a faith-based, not-for-profit healthcare system. The network has eight hospitals: Grandview, Kettering, Sycamore, Southview, Greene Memorial, Fort Hamilton, Kettering Behavioral Health and Soin. If it has been a while since you slept like a baby, you are not alone. Many adults struggle to spend enough time in dreamland,...
More Stories