How to Make a Spider Centerpiece From Flowers

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Eek! It's the attack of the killer centerpiece! This spider centerpiece made from flowers is inspired by horror movies in which gigantic mutant insects munch on B-list actors. With its big bug eyes and flower-covered body, the spider is actually more adorable than menacing. Display it as a lawn decoration or a table centerpiece. Just don't try to step on it. It won't be pretty.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Things You'll Need

  • Floral foam
  • Knife
  • Bucket
  • Small plate
  • Black duct tape
  • Chrysanthemums
  • 2 protea flowers
  • 8 pussy willows
  • Scissors
(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Step 1: Carve the Floral Foam

In the floral supply section of your local crafts store, you'll find standard-sized bricks of floral foam that are 3 by 4 by 9 inches. Using a knife, carve the foam into an oval shape, rounding out the edges.

Tip

  • Purchase the floral foam made especially for fresh flowers rather than a floral foam for artificial flowers.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Step 2: Soak the Foam

Place the floral foam in a bucket of water. When the foam turns dark green, you will know that it has absorbed all the water it can. Then put the foam on a small plate.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Step 3: Tape the Foam Down

Tear the duct tape into 1/4-inch strips of about 12 inches in length. Tape the foam to the plate using the duct ape. This way, you can more easily move the spider around after it is completed.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Step 4: Cut the Chrysanthemums

To cover the body of the spider, you will need about three bunches of chrysanthemums. (A typical bunch contains about 25 buds.) I chose a red mum with a yellow-green center because the different colored centers would look like spots — a feature either cute or creepy depending on how you look at it. Cut the flowers, leaving about 1 inch of stem.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Step 5: Insert Flowers

Starting at the top, insert the stems all the way into the floral foam. Overlap the flowers slightly so you do not see any floral foam underneath.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

As you go down the floral foam with the flowers, angle the flowers outward so you can see the centers. Keep going until the body is covered with flowers.

Tip

  • The flowers at the bottom may need the stems cut to a longer length, about 2 inches, so that they can extend past the strips of tape around the plate.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Step 6: Prepare the Protea

Protea is a tropical plant with many different varieties. I chose a variety that looked like big eyes, removing the leaves and cutting the stem to about 2 inches. If you can't find protea in your area, any type of flower that can pass as eyes will work, such as sunflowers and gerber daisies with big centers.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Step 7: Insert the Eyes

Insert the eyes in the front of the spider's body, moving some of the flowers aside to make room for the stems.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Step 8: Prepare the Pussy Willows

The furry nubs of the pussy willows make the legs even creepier. Cut the ends of the pussy willow so that the length of each one is about 30 inches long. Before bending the legs, wrap a piece of duct tape at the midpoint to reinforce the joint.

Tip

  • If you can't find pussy willow, regular thin branches will do just fine.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Step 9: Bend the Legs

Carefully bend each leg where you wrapped it in duct tape. The tape prevents the legs from actually breaking, even if the branch or pussy willow is brittle.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Step 10: Insert the Legs

Insert four legs on each side of the body, making sure they are secured in the floral foam. They should be angled so that the legs are splayed out, rather than being parallel to each other.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)
(Image: Jonathan Fong)
(Image: Jonathan Fong)

Tip

  • If you're transporting the spider to another location, don't insert the legs until you've reached your final destination. That way, your spider won't get caught in doorways or have a car door smash its legs.

The chrysanthemums and protea are hardy flowers, so this arrangement will last a good week. But don't throw away the pussy willow, as they don't wilt; save them to make another floral spider in the future. This Halloween centerpiece will definitely have your friends and family screaming — with delight.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

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