Better Budgeting: Fall Pumpkin or Squash Centerpiece

Fall Pumpkin or Squash Centerpiece

Frugal Crafts and Homemade Gifts (featured column)
Submitted by Benetta Strydom

Fall pumpkin or squash centerpiece

Make this round floral arrangement as a table decoration during fall. A round floral arrangement has no front or back, so it is ideal to use as a centerpiece for a tea or dinner table.

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Materials:

One green water-retaining floral foam brick: The brick measures 3 inches x 4.4 inches x 9 inches. It is scored in 3 places for even sizing, but you can cut it to the desired size.

One medium-sized butternut pumpkin/squash.

Eight small patty pan squashes.

Greenery: I used ruscus, leatherleaf ferns and herringbone ferns, but anything similar will do. Using different types of greens adds texture to a floral arrangement.

Flowers: I used Golden Rod (Solidago) and Michaelmas daisies, but any small flowers will be suitable for this project.

Dried, red-colored ears of wheat.

A pair of standard scissors.

A sharp knife.

Spoon.

A large bowl of water.

Nine wooden kebab skewers.

Instructions: (with photos)

Cut the butternut pumpkin/squash in half. Use the spoon to hollow out the bottom half of the pumpkin. Using the pre-cut score lines as your guide, cut off half of the floral foam brick. Soak this piece of floral foam in the bowl of water. Do not push the foam under the water, but allow it to soak up the water on its own, or else it may leave dry spots in the foam which can’t be detected from the outside. After 20-30 seconds, or as soon as the top of the piece of floral foam is level with the surface of the water, remove the piece of floral foam from the water.

Use the knife and cut the floral foam to the correct size, so that it will fit snugly into the hollowed out pumpkin. Do not cut away too much at once ~ cut a few small pieces away, measure it to the pumpkin and keep on cutting and measuring until the foam fits into the pumpkin. The floral foam must not be level with the rim of the pumpkin, but must be about 1 inch higher than the rim.

Fall pumpkin or squash centerpiece 2

To make a round floral arrangement, the greenery and flower stems should all be cut to the same length. Using the height of your pumpkin as your guide, make a measuring stick from a kebab skewer. Measure a distance of 3 6/8 inches from the one end of the skewer, and make a mark. Then, add 1.2 inches from the first mark and make a second mark ~ the 1.2 inches will represent the piece of stem that will be pushed into the foam, whereas the 3 6/8 inches will represent the length of the flowers and leaves that will form the decoration. Use the measuring stick to cut all the greenery stems to the correct size, and remove any leaves from the 1.2 inches part of the stems that will go into the floral foam.

Fall pumpkin or squash centerpiece 3

Gently stick the greens into the floral foam, and press down on each stem until only the 3 6/8 inches is left sticking out of the floral foam. Be careful not to snap a stem when pushing it into the floral foam. Work symmetrically ~ what you do on the one side, do the same on the opposite side of the arrangement. Keep on adding greens until all the floral foam has been covered, making sure to keep the circular shape of the design.

Fall pumpkin or squash centerpiece 4

Fall Floral Centerpiece

Use the measuring stick and cut the eight other kebab skewers to the correct size. Push a kebab skewer into each patty pan squash, gently pushing so that the skewer will not push right through the squash. Gently stick the skewers with the squashes into the floral foam, again making sure to keep the circular shape of the design. Use the measuring stick to cut all the flowers to the correct size, and remove any leaves from the 1.2 inches part of the flower stems that will go into the floral foam. Gently stick the flower stems into the floral foam, again pressing down on each stem until only the 3 6/8 inches is left sticking out of the floral foam. Be careful not to snap a stem when pushing it into the floral foam and remember to work symmetrically. Use the measuring stick to cut all the ears of wheat to the correct size, and gently push each ear of wheat into the floral foam.

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Copyright © 2012 by Benetta Strydom. All rights reserved.

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