Create the ultimate holiday centerpiece

Local design expert Nicholas Askew shares his method for making eye-catching and inexpensive arrangements.

A unique centerpiece will impress your friends and family, and add a touch of sophistication to your next holiday gathering. For tips on how to create a beautiful arrangement, we reached out to celebrated Lowcountry designer Nicholas Askew, who specializes in garden design and handcrafted Southern arrangements using cotton grown on his fourth-generation family farm.

“All of the products were grown on the family farm and all the decor you see are my #thriftfabulous finds from Hilton Head Island,” Askew said. “Since I’m addicted to blue and white, I gave the farmhouse dining room a little chinoiserie meets farm-to-table feeling.” Create your own masterpiece using these four steps:


Easy centerpieces for Thanksgiving or fall parties

Materials and tools needed: Southern magnolia, cotton, Miscanthus grass, pruning shears, turkey feathers, zip ties, wire and a metal centerpiece form.

Step 1: Bundle the Southern magnolia, cotton and Miscanthus grass using a zip tie. Repeat this step until you have reached the desired length for your centerpiece. I chose these three different foliages because they are Southern, farm-grown and festive for Thanksgiving.

Step 2: Using your metal centerpiece form, attach the bundles using zip ties or wire. In the pictures shown, I used zip ties and my wreath clamp machine, which simply clamps the wreath rings together. Most people do not have a wreath clamp machine, so zip ties or wire is just fine.

Step 3: Using floral glue, gently glue turkey feathers into the centerpiece. I love using turkey feathers because they add a pop of color and texture.

Step 4: Carefully add LED battery lights into the centerpiece. Make sure you tuck the wire deep down into the centerpiece so the string cannot be seen. By adding lights, it sets the mood for any dinner party or special occasion. I recommend buying the same color string lights as your foliage so you can camouflage the string of lights.

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