Italian centerpieces are surprisingly simple with an emphasis on subtle design that doesn't overpower the table setting. Elegant Italian centerpieces often incorporate candles and natural elements from the outdoors such as leaves or tree branches. Options for Italian-inspired centerpieces can range from rustic elegance to more formal Tuscan-inspired table toppers that serve as a backdrop for crystal votive holders, pewter vases or bowls full of floating flowers.
Pewter Bowl Containing Flowers
Fill a decorative pewter bowl with water and add floating red and white rose blooms for a quintessential Italian centerpiece that showcases the country's symbolic flower with simple elegance. Pewter bowls and vases are extremely popular choices on Italian table settings, and a large, low bowl filled with water and topped with floating rose blooms allows guests to converse at more intimate table settings without visual obstruction or heavily ornate distractions. Use a tall, substantial pewter vase filled with long-stemmed white roses for grand tables at more formal gatherings such as banquets and weddings where the center of the table is more isolated as a focal point.
Italian Grape Cake Garnished With Grapes
For a warm fall or winter gathering, lay an old-world-style runner across the table (brocade fabrics range from rich reds and browns to light sage greens). Let the runner serve as a backdrop for a crystal cake stand displaying an Italian grape cake. Italian grape cakes originated in Tuscany for making good use of leftover grapes that were too small to go to press. Recipes for grape cakes are readily available online. Garnish the cake stand and cake with freshly rinsed traditional Italian grapes such as the red Barbera varieties. Arrange the grapes to cascade down the cake plate, which presents an inviting opportunity for guests to converse and sample grapes before a meal is served.
Votive Holders or Pillar Candles Surround With Fruit
Arrange a group of crystal votive holders or pillar candles in varying heights at the center of your table. Fill the holders with yellow and spring-green votives. For pillar candles, opt for one color such as cream or pale yellow to ensure visual continuity. Garnish the table scape with lemons, limes and long sprigs of rosemary (available at most retail garden centers year-round). Rosemary is a Mediterranean herb commonly grown in Italian gardens. Rosemary makes a convenient garnish for meals as well as a long-lasting, woodland-inspired centerpiece. This centerpiece makes an elegant but affordable arrangement that adds cheerful ambiance to the table any time of year.
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images rose rose image by trottier samuel from Fotolia.com grapes image by AGphotographer from Fotolia.com rosmarin image by Christian Jung from Fotolia.com
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