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Versatile Vases: Moll Anderson’s Tips on How You Can Use One Great Item for Many Parties

Garden Party Table

Vases are one of my favorite versatile—and affordable—items that you can use over and over again as centerpieces at many different parties. I’m always searching for cool matching vases at great prices. You can find them anywhere from online stores to TJ Maxx or Home Goods to a floral wholesaler. You don’t need a huge variety of different vases, just a few of the same kind will do.

Here are two examples of recent parties in which I used vases as centerpieces and how you can too:

Backyard Town and Country Garden Picnic
For the casual elegance of an afternoon lunch, I used the large vase and filled the base with green apples and poured water over the top. Above the apples, I arranged pink peonies (one of the most sensual flowers you can get) and green hydrangeas; then filled in with greens from my backyard to save a little extra money. The arrangement turned out to be elegant and a real show stopper. Ambiance is easy during the daytime by simply using the beauty of your yard. Trays of chilled champagne and goblets of iced tea topped off the afternoon with an elegant touch.

South Beach Party Table

South Beach-Themed College Graduation Bash
In celebrating the most recent college graduate from the family, I wanted to create a hip, cool South Beach vibe. Here’s a perfect example of getting the most out of your budget by saving where you can. It was a nighttime party, so more accessories were necessary to create a hot and modern South Beach vibe—like Pucci-esque table cloths, ghost chairs, neon lighting and of course a DJ to send pulsating music throughout the evening. I wanted to use what we already had for our centerpiece, by using the same vase from the garden party but switching up the style of arrangement. This one is super chic and super cheap.

For this centerpiece, just add black, smooth stones (you can find them anywhere from Z Gallerie to World Market to your local craft store) to the bottom of the vase, enough to reach just about two inches high. Next, fill the vase with water to about four inches above the rocks. Then, snip the tops off of four fabulous hot pink Gerber daisies, and let them float on top of the water! Voilà! Cool and minty mojitos chilled the hot “South Beach” evening and kept the party going.

Remember, when choosing a vase, clear glass is the most practical and versatile. It can look completely different every time. Cost per use is the key here. Using the same vases over and over with a new look will get you to the point where they become practically free!

Whether you use the container with a few beautiful blooms tucked inside or make a statement with stems spilling out the top, it’s easy to come up with a new fresh look every time you entertain. Then you can spend more time enjoying the planning of your next party and spend less cash.

For more centerpiece suggestions subscribe to Better Homes & Gardens magazine.

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Moll Anderson

About Moll Anderson

Moll Anderson is an accomplished interior designer and lifestyle expert who infused the interior design world with a fresh new way of thinking with her first book, Change Your Home, Change Your Life®. She is known for her sensory-scaped approach to design featured in her newest book The Seductive Home™. Anderson, an Emmy-winning entertainment reporter, has served as guest and designer on national television shows and has been featured in popular women’s magazines. Get to know Moll Anderson at