How To Make Centerpieces for a Beach Themed Gathering

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Beach themed events are always in style and centerpieces that bring the allure of the beach right to your table are perfect, whether you’re in the city or actually on the beach. In this video for eHow I show you how to make a centerpiece that can be used for an elegant gathering or placed on your hallway table as a seasonal display.

To start the video click the image below or click here.

Centerpieces that bring the allure of the beach right to your table are perfect, whether you’re in the city or actually on the beach.

beach themed centerpiece @AnAppealingPlan @KraylFunch #entertaining #tablescapes 700x


  • Round Glass Vase
  • Sand or Crushed Oyster Shells
  • Miniature Adirondack Chair
  • Seashells in Various Sizes
  • Dried Coral

Begin by putting the crushed shells in the base of your vase. You can also use sand, if that’s more readily available to you. Place the Adirondack chair inside of the vase, settling it just as you would on the beach. Next, place the shells in, grouping them naturally as you would see them on the beach.

Add any other items that you have found at the beach, such as this dried coral and place it right inside.

This Beach Themed Centerpiece is are perfect for weddings and gatherings that are fun and casual, or elegant and romantic. Use your theme as a guide when you create your centerpiece.


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Easy Spring Jelly Bean + Birds Nest Centerpiece

Is it me, or are jelly beans a sure sign of spring and that Easter is on it’s way! Create these fun jelly bean bird nest centerpieces using green moss, and other hints of spring, such as bunnies and butterflies.  In this short video for I show you how to easily make a jelly bean centerpiece for your spring tablescape.




For this centerpiece you will need:

  • Tall Cake Plate
  • Moss
  • Moss Runner
  • Jelly Beans
  • Small Birds Nests – two sizes
  • Faux Butterflies

Begin with two different size bird’s nests. I like to use different sizes because they add a little bit of variety and also are great cups for the jelly beans. You’re then going to have two different types of moss, one is a flat moss and is actually a live moss, and the second is a table runner that you can cut into two different sizes. You’re going to spread out the table runner, the length of your table or just right in the center. Place the cake plate right on top. We’re going to next put the singular moss piece right on the top of the cake plate to start to create a moss bed.

Bring in the small and large bird’s nests. Layer them slightly and put them on an angle to add a little variety. You can also add one to the base right on top of your table. Begin placing the jelly beans inside of the nests. Each nest will hold a variety of colors and amount. Once you have the jelly beans in place in their nests, you can start to add in the different elements. Here we’re going to add in a little butterfly. You can then bring in other items that are spring themed, such as a larger bunny or any other items found around your house.

This centerpiece will be perfect for a baby shower, Mother’s Day or Easter brunch tablescape.

Just for you! My Spring Entertaining Checklist. Download, print out and make your next gathering as enjoyable as a spring breeze.

Read more about creating jelly bean centerpieces and search my other videos on my YouTube Channel.


Gardening: What is a Topiary?

Topiary Quote #GardenTip @AnAppealingPlan

topiary     noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Art of training living trees and shrubs into artificial, decorative shapes. Topiary is known to have been practiced in the 1st century AD. The earliest topiary was probably the simple development of edgings, cones, columns, and spires to accent a garden scene. This architectural use gave way to elaborate shapes such as ships, hunters, and hounds. The fashion reached its height in Britain in the late 17th and early 18th century but was displaced by the so-called natural garden.

What is your favorite style of gardening, Formal or Country or somewhere in between? Tell me about your favorite garden in the comments below. And of course if you like this post be sure to sign up to receive our FREE updates by completing the form below.


DIY Garden Themed Centerpieces

Garden themed centerpiece @AnAppealingPlan #garden #floral #entertaining 403

Garden theme centerpieces are perfect any time of the year as they can reflect what’s going on in your own garden so they can be used summer, spring, winter or fall.

To view the video click on the image or click here.



  • floral oasis
  • fishing line
  • water
  • sheet moss
  • floral sticks
  • garden sheers
  • dried craft mushrooms
  • decorative butterflies
  • 3-4 flowers stems

To cut the oasis, use the fishing line to draw a straight line down the center. Once you have this cut it will fit nicely into your container. If you need to take additional off the sides, just use your fishing line to make it the size that works for your container. Place the moss on top.

Once you have your moss in place use your floral sticks to place the mushrooms. Your floral sticks come in varying lengths. Cut them to size depending upon the height of your container. Place them in the oasis, leaving a little bit on top sticking out. Start to place the mushrooms on top of the sticks. The mushrooms should have a hollow center which allows them to sit right on top of the sticks.

Fluff up the moss as needed then continue to place the different colored mushrooms on top of the sticks. Push them down a little bit further if needed.

Once the mushrooms are in, use the floral sticks to create a hole to push your flowers into. The sharp end works really well. I also recommend using flowers that have a stronger stem. They will push easily into the oasis as opposed to a loose stem which will not. Start to place your flowers into the wet oasis and then move the box around filling in.

Create a natural look by grouping the flowers together. Once that is done you can start to bring in other woodland or garden items.

This garden inspired centerpiece will bring the garden into your home and table.


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Go Ahead Play With Your Food. Super Bowl Dip Centerpiece

 Super Bowl Party Dip Ideas - Guacamole football field dip with veggies

“Go ahead… Play with your food! Super Bowl Dip ideas.” Tweet this.

What do we love more than the actual Super Bowl? Super Bowl food of course. Show your spirit on your table creating centerpieces made with food. This spin on the traditional guacamole dish pairs well with the always popular Blood Mary Bar! Mix in your team color to show your spirit!
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  • Rectangular Dish
  • Large Serving Platter
  • Guacamole
  • Salsa
  • Sliced Olives
  • Sour Cream
  • Tomatoes
  • Tortilla Chips

Begin with a clean rectangular glass Pyrex dish. Place guacamole in dish, spreading it out in the center,  leaving the edges and sides empty so you can place the salsa in there. Place salsa on one side or “end zone”, spreading it out. Do not to push it over the edge into the guacamole. In the other end-zone place the sliced olives.

Use the sour cream to make the lines on the field. To create straight lines put the sour cream into a pastry bag, or a Ziploc bag. Push it to one end and simply cut the corner off, and that creates your own piping bag. Now, take your piping bag and put it down right down the center.  Place several lines on the field, and then put in your players. In this case we’re using cherry tomatoes, but you can really use any item.

Once you have your players in place, put dish on top of a larger platter. This will allow space to add your chips.

Keep in mind that you can always add your teams colors to the end zones by using different vegetables in your team colors. Most importantly – Have fun!

Looking for more Super Bowl Entertaining Solutions? How about 10 tips for a Super Bowl buffet! or Highend Tailgating Ideas.

Connecting Over Coffee. Stress Free How To.

How to Throw a Coffee Party via @AnAppealingPlan #coffee #entertaining #CelebrateEveryday

A coffee party is a great way to get friends together that maybe you haven’t seen in a long time, or at the office, or perhaps for a girl’s get together.In this video for, I discuss what items you will need to set up for your next coffee talk session.

Watch the video below or click here to view.



  • Regular and Decaf Coffee
  • Creamers, soy milk, half and half
  • Sugar
  • Sugar Alternatives
  • Baked Goods – Muffins, Bagels, Interesting Donuts Varieties
  • Coffee pots {one for each variety}
  • Small Pitchers for each creamer variety
  • Tags or labels for pitchers {optional}
  • Vessel for Packets or Loose Sugar
  • Mugs for Coffee or Espresso
  • Paper Cups for To-Go
  • Small spoons
  • Cake Plates
  • Small Service Plates
  • Forks, Knives as needed
  • Napkins

How to Throw a Coffee Party via @AnAppealingPlan #coffee #entertaining #CelebrateEveryday #donuts #datz4foodies 403

Be sure to provide a variety of coffees as well as baked goods to your guests. You may also provide bagels, cream cheese, fresh fruit, and any special items that you know your guests will like.

You know I love china plates so stay clear of the paper version there but…napkins are a different story. This is where you really can have a little bit more fun, and bring in the theme of your party. Perhaps it is for a bride and groom, maybe you’re having a post-wedding coffee party, you can have little napkins that have their name on them, as well as maybe it’s a spring gathering, a little flower napkins, or great summer coral napkins. Or you can go with a solid coordinating color to your theme or decor.

What is your favorite coffee time? Early morning. Mid Day. After Dinner? Let me know in the comments below. And of course, be sure to share the love… TWEET, PIN + LIKE.


{This video series was filmed at Datz Dough in Tampa, FL. For more information on the restaurant and private rooms visit:}



A Bountiful Fall Entranceway

Fall Entranceway design is one if my favorite services and topics. {interested in learning more about my design services? Set up a FREE telephone consultation by visiting the contact me page here}

This time of year is all about the bounty and harvest of the season, so head to your local farmers market and create a welcoming display using baskets to hold your treasures.

How to Decorate an entranceway for Fall. via @AnAppealingPlan

What treasures did you find this year? Let me know in the comments! Like & Share with your friends!


Interested in learning more about my seasonal design services? Set up a consultation by visiting the contact me page here}

Decorating the Front Door for Thanksgiving Harvest

In this video for eHow I discuss how to decorate the Front Door for Thanksgiving or Harvest Dinner. This is something you can easily do even  if you live in an apartment.

how to decorate the doorway for thanksgiving ehow #FallDecor #AnAppealingPlan final

Decorating your front door for Thanksgiving  and harvest is an easy seasonal decorating project you can do to bring the Fall & Harvest season to your entranceway. If your entranceway is smaller this is perfect for you!

You may live in an apartment,  or may not have a lot of room near your entrance way. There are still things that you can do to decorate the entrance way  to make a very festive for your Thanksgiving or your harvest dinner.
  • Large Heirloom Gourds. If you find large gourds at your local maybe your  pumpkin patch. Maybe your farmer’s market or your corner store may have some of  these heirloom varieties. I find they actually  last longer then some of the conventional large orange ones that you may find. I use these right from the beginning of October on through  Thanksgiving. These varieties come in many, many different  colors. Blue which I love. And then some of the different  green ones, and Mexican hat variety. And really, really brings a lot of  different texture and variety to the door if you are able to find a really nice  selection.
  • Indian Corn
  • Basket with a Variety of Gourds.
  • If you don’t have a door where you can place a wreath, a sign is nice. You  can just prop that up really nicely. Maybe put a little pumpkin in front of  that.
  • Stalks of Wheat. We can just tuck those in. And if  you keep them to the side they really shouldn’t interfere with too much with the  in and out of the doorway.
  • Preserved Leaves in various colors. Tuck them in around the larger gourds. Just giving it an effect. If you have a beautiful maple tree outside go and clip those. However, if you live in an apartment this  is a great opportunity to use some of the preserved leaves that you may find in  your craft store.
  • White Pumpkins.  Leaning and stacking them in a little bit of an angle.

What is your favorite type of gourd or pumpkin in this video? Leave a comment below and share this post with your friends.