Bring a touch of fall to your table by creating a striking centerpiece from tree branches and adding sparkle and elegance with hanging votives. Make your centerpiece very seasonal by dressing it up with autumn leaves and incorporating the vibrant colors of fall in the accents that you choose. Your fall branch centerpiece will adorn any occasion, from a Halloween party to Thanksgiving dinner or a fall wedding, with festive flair.
Choose an Autumnal Vase or Basket
For a rustic look, consider using a woven basket as the base of your design. To prepare the basket for being a branch centerpiece, first line the basket with plastic and insert a piece of florist's foam that has been soaked in water and plant food inside the basket. Woven baskets set an appropriate tone for a fall branch centerpiece given that the baskets often come in natural tones that echo the colors of autumn. If you would prefer to use a vase, look for a vase in gold, rust red or orange and fill with water, stones to weight the vase, and plant food.
Consider Your Foliage
Decide whether or not you would like to leave any foliage on your branches and if you would like to use real leaves on the branches, silk leaves, or artificial fall flowers. Using real leaves looks more natural, while using faux leaves or flowers allows you to fashion a more durable centerpiece that matches your color scheme. Using real leaves would make a solid option for a centerpiece that is only going to be used once, such as a fall wedding. However, for a longer-lasting centerpiece, remove all the natural leaves and hot glue silk autumn leaves or florals to the branches.
Arrange the Branches
Arrange the branches in your basket or vase, remembering that you will be adding hanging votives. Test whether your chosen votives will have enough room to hang from the branches by hanging one of them in the arrangement at different heights. Make adjustments as needed, arranging the branches more vertically if the votive hangs too low or trimming any branches shorter if need be.
Use Fall Ribbon and Tinted Votive Holders
For safety reasons, use battery-operated votives. Choose ready-made votive holders or make your own with heavy gauge wire covered with a piece of thin ribbon in an autumnal tone. Using votive jars with autumnal-colored glass will throw colored light through your centerpiece and really play up the hues of the season. Ready-made votive holders come in many finishes; choose a copper or bronze finish to keep to the fall palette.