Beach-Inspired Pumpkin Centerpiece

This craft comes together quickly and makes a striking fall centerpiece indoors or out.

Photo By: Image courtesy of Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Image courtesy of Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Image courtesy of Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Image courtesy of Melissa Caughey

Photo By: Image courtesy of Melissa Caughey

Make This Beach-Inspired Centerpiece for Fall

Each year with the arrival of fall, I can’t help but notice a more diverse selection of gourds and pumpkins available at pumpkin patches and local garden centers. This living centerpiece evokes memories of a bonfire on the beach while surrounded by water, sand and sea grasses dancing in the dunes. The blue pumpkin represents the sea, and a variety of air plants (tillandsia) mimic waving sea grass. The entire project takes less than 30 minutes to complete and makes a lovely centerpiece indoors or out.

Step 1: Gather Supplies

Here is what you will need: 1 blue pumpkin (approximately 12 inches in diameter) / 1 glass cylindrical vase (approximately 4 inches across) / 10 cups of beach sand (approximately) / 1 small candle (I used a tea light) / 5 air plants / 3 dried starfish or shells / Ink pen / Sharp knife / Glass plate. Note: Air plants can tolerate temperatures to 45 degrees F and can remain outdoors all year round in zones 9 and greater. Indirect sunlight and a weekly misting of water is all they require to keep them happy.

Step 2: Cut the Pumpkin

Invert the glass vase and center it on top of the pumpkin. While holding the vase, trace around the circumference of the vase with the ink pen. Remove the vase and set it aside. Increase the circumference of the circle that you just traced onto the pumpkin by approximately 1 ½ to 2 inches; this will serve as your entry to the pumpkin. Carefully cut around the outer ink pen circle with a sharp knife. Remove and discard the top, and scrape out the pumpkin until the entire inside contents are removed and the walls are clean.

Step 3: Add the Vase

Pour some beach sand into the empty pumpkin to act as a base for your vase. When the pumpkin is almost half full of sand, add the vase and continue to fill in around the vase until sand reaches the upper rim of the pumpkin. Now fill the vase half-way with sand. Insert the candle into the vase on top of the sand. Reminder: Never leave a burning candle unattended.

Step 4: Add Decoration

Tuck the assorted air plants into the sand around the vase. Add some shells or starfish for decoration. Place your arrangement on a sturdy glass or ceramic plate. Light the candle and enjoy. Inside a home at room temperature, this centerpiece lasts approximately 4 to 5 days, depending on the freshness of the pumpkin at time of purchase; it will last longer in cooler outside temperatures.