I Covet Ribbons, Lanterns and Milk Glass

When I started to pull together my vision of our centerpieces I had three distinct elements in mind. It took a little time for these to gel into an integrated idea.

Like Miss Pencils, I’ve got a hankering to use ribbon on our tables. I blame credit Martha in all her wonderfulness. I saw this image in Martha Stewart Weddings and knew I must create a lattice out of ribbon. Thanks, Martha.

Martha Stewart Weddings

Being the budget conscious gal that I am, I also remembered reading that using bud vases on your tables is a good way to keep the cost low. I’m hoping to use Dahlias at our Seattle reception and handmade tissue paper flowers in Fort Wayne so bud vases would be the perfect way to display 2-3 beautiful blooms. Following Jessica’s wedding over at The Budget Savvy Bride is where I first spotted milk glass bud vases. The crisp white was a clean contrast to colorful flowers and reusing vases seemed pretty earth friendly to me. Checking in at my local St Vincent De Paul’s I found a wide assortment of milk glass ranging from $.60 to $1.50. I quickly filed Milk glass away as a great budget saving option.

Source: The Budget Savvy Bride’s wedding

Source: Peter and Dianna’s Wedding on TBSB

The third element? Paper lanterns. I love me some paper lanterns. L-O-V-E. I already had filed these splashes of color away for reception decor and church decorations when Mrs Frenchie posted images from Head of the Table that made me stop dead in my tracks.



Umm”¦ yes, I would like me some of that—with a side of ribbon and a tall glass of milk glass. K, thanks.

Suddenly I had an image of what our centerpieces would look like. The best part? I could easily reuse them at our Midwest Party and make them that much more affordable. OK, OK, they are pretty darn affordable right now—under $12 per centerpiece. Here is a quick picture of what I envision them looking like.

Style A uses fresh dahlias for our Seattle reception. Style B uses tissue paper flowers for the Midwest Party in November (when bright colorful flowers will be out of season). I love the different textures that this mix incorporates.

But would it work in real life? I took the opportunity when Mr Pretzel and I were visiting his family over Christmas to work with my FMIL to create a mock-up. I discovered that the mini lantern holds a battery operated tea light perfectly! Needless to say I was pleased.

High ho high ho”¦ in search of ribbon and milk glass I go.

How did you piece together the elements of your tablescapes? Did you find inspiration in pieces or all at once?


Mrs. Pretzel

Wedding Date:
July 2010
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  1. Member
    marcam882 296 posts, Helper bee @ 4:38 pm

    It’s so colorful and fun but at the same time fresh and clean!! Damn Martha, some times she makes us feel inadequate, but other times she’s golden. I absolutely love the lattice ribbon runner!

  2. joey Member
    joey 1078 posts, Bumble bee @ 4:40 pm

    Go to the Goodwill on Dearborn in Seattle. I used to see milk glass vases like that all the time.

  3. Member
    slicey19 3500 posts, Sugar bee @ 4:49 pm

    I love what you came up with the smaller version of the table ribbon makes a perfect table square and the mini lantern is adorable. Where did you get the mini lantern? I’d love some of those!

  4. frenchfries Member
    frenchfries 2168 posts, Buzzing bee @ 4:55 pm

    Cute — and bonus that you got them to work double duty for both of your receptions!

  5. Member
    fromcharleston 651 posts, Busy bee @ 5:05 pm

    THAT’S THE PICTURE I WAS TRYING TO FIND!!! I’m so glad you found it. The green lattice ribbons from Martha are perfection. Le sigh.

  6. hotwings Member
    hotwings 2200 posts, Buzzing bee @ 5:14 pm

    oh my word. Those mini lanterns are the cutest sweetest ever. I have no table decor as of yet. I’m sooo behind.

  7. Member
    Kemi82JP 749 posts, Busy bee @ 5:16 pm

    fun idea, but i like how martha has the ribbon draping over the edge of the table better. also, major issue i could see arising: those ribbons will never stay in place. Just had to put these concerns out there, cuz this is a cute detail that could end up as a mess real quick and there goes your perfect centerpieces.

  8. mouse Member
    Mrs. Mouse 5689 posts, Bee Keeper @ 5:29 pm

    I love all of these elements! Miss Pretzel, I have three milkglass bud vases that I saved from my wedding. Want to borrow them? I’m PMing you now!

  9. potatochips Member
    potatochips 1193 posts, Bumble bee @ 5:32 pm

    Lovely! I’m so glad you posted the first pic. I ripped it out of a copy of the magazine and had since lost it!

  10. pretzel Member
    pretzel 670 posts, Busy bee @ 5:47 pm

    @slicey19: http://www.paperlanternstore.com/ they are 3.5 inches wide and come in a 10 pack for $5.50
    @Kemi82JP: Because our tables are different sizes in Seattle and Fort Wayne, (cocktail and 6 person rounds vs cocktail and 8 person rounds) I decided that making one size “mat” was the way for us to go. I also prefer Martha’s version but for my sanity decided to scale it back. I actually constructed the mats using a heavy fabric glue to tack the ribbons in place- so no worries- it wills stay put.
    @Mrs. Mouse: Ohhh! Yay!

  11. Member
    KendraBakes 108 posts, Blushing bee @ 6:26 pm

    Do you have a good online source for ribbons, or are you buying them in person? I’ve been looking online but am skeptical about the quality, since I’m not able to see the ribbons!

  12. elephant Member
    elephant 6339 posts, Bee Keeper @ 6:32 pm

    Way to pick an idea that will do double time with your two events!

  13. pretzel Member
    pretzel 670 posts, Busy bee @ 6:34 pm

    @KendraBakes: I see pretty ribbon in the store, I buy it! That’s been my strategy. I have ordered ribbon online in bulk for some of my projects and it works for me too, but for this project I wanted to see and touch and feel the ribbon I was picking out.

  14. cardigan Member
    cardigan 8645 posts, Bumble Beekeeper @ 6:57 pm

    Holy cow that is so freaking adorable! I love the ribbon lattice under the vases!

  15. frenchbulldog Member
    frenchbulldog 1088 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:00 pm

    Glad I could help :)

  16. moonbeam Member
    moonbeam 1711 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:13 pm

    Oh, I wish I had seen that ribbon lattice a few months ago!

  17. misspug Member
    misspug 3668 posts, Sugar bee @ 7:20 pm

    love it! seriously, that’s a wonderful idea and you’re making it come together so well!

  18. frozen yogurt Member
    frozen yogurt 2600 posts, Sugar bee @ 7:21 pm

    Swoon! Milk glass and me are BFF. :)

  19. snow Member
    snow 875 posts, Busy bee @ 7:33 pm

    Yes. Just yes. As soon as I saw the inspiration, I knew it’d be perfect for your wedding. Love it!

  20. Member
    Magenta 1860 posts, Buzzing bee @ 7:37 pm

    it look so cute and eclectic… i piece my centerpieces with everything i had learned here in weddingbee.com

  21. spaniel Member
    spaniel 6778 posts, Busy Beekeeper @ 8:08 pm

    I love this style; it looks totally fun!

  22. Guest Icon Guest
    Emily, Guest @ 8:27 pm

    This Martha was the first wedding magazine I bought when I started thinking wedding… and that picture is also my inspiration. :) Looks great! Can’t wait to see it finalized!

  23. cheeseburger Member
    cheeseburger 1020 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:34 pm

    looks AWESOME!

  24. Member
    tigs_pal 75 posts, Worker bee @ 8:41 pm

    Hey–I just had an idea that could be easier (or harder) than craft glue :) What about that iron on stuff that I used to make those lovely sweatshirts? You can buy it in ribbons, I think, and it might not “booger” like the craft glue does sometimes? Hmm.. Maybe I’ll call you after Lost :) Hugs..

  25. cola Member
    cola 2827 posts, Sugar bee @ 9:19 pm

    Those look awesome! :)

  26. trailmix Member
    trailmix 6663 posts, Bee Keeper @ 9:59 pm

    Wow, that looks so good!!! LOVE the ribbon and the mini-lanterns, tre chic!

  27. mspencils Member
    mspencils 1015 posts, Bumble bee @ 10:10 pm

    those look awesome!!! your inspiration produced some awesome awesome real life centerpieces!

  28. poodle Member
    poodle 3386 posts, Sugar bee @ 10:30 pm

    I love your inspiration!! and the trial looks adorable! :)

  29. Member
    what2bee 229 posts, Helper bee @ 10:58 pm

    Ohhhh Martha!

  30. Guest Icon Guest
    Happy Nappy Bride, Guest @ 11:01 pm

    Wasn’t someone selling a bunch of milk glass in the classifieds recently?

    Anyhoo, I got a lot of ours at local antique stores pretty cheap.

  31. argyle Member
    argyle 2519 posts, Sugar bee @ 11:02 pm

    LOVE the ribbon! I have seriously lusted over that idea since I saw it.

    As for the paper lanterns from Head of the Table – that was one of our original centerpiece ideas (nevermind that those pictures are taken at my actual reception location – woot!).

  32. Member
    Vitsippa 1369 posts, Bumble bee @ 12:29 am

    Oooooooooh … I love this!

  33. Member
    KBsquared 289 posts, Helper bee @ 3:40 am

    i found tons of milk glass at antique shops, our local HOB (they sell lots of random crap, im just glad to have found some good) and i asked relatives for some pieces on loan…. i’m also using glass and crystal bud vases and putting white paint inside them…. semi handmade milk glass!

  34. quiche Member
    quiche 3150 posts, Sugar bee @ 10:32 am

    Love milk glass :)

  35. Member
    Lo 538 posts, Busy bee @ 1:05 pm

    The Martha Stewart ribbons are gorgeous. As much as I like the milk glass I swoon for the blue mason jars but I actually like the look of them together a lot.

  36. Member
    Miss Chicken Wing 1225 posts, Bumble bee @ 4:20 pm

    SO cute!!! I love the mat! I think that’s a great idea and how awesome is getting to reuse these?!??! Wicked awesome – that’s how awesome! :)

  37. Member
    mandalynn17 1046 posts, Bumble bee @ 3:24 pm

    I fell in love with milk glass too, but had trouble finding a bountiful supply where I am. Instead I painted clear glass with high gloss spray paint. Looks exactly the same. Just a thought if you run into issues finding the milk glass!

  38. Guest Icon Guest
    amorette, Guest @ 5:12 pm

    I want those mini lanterns!! OMG – so cute!
    Can you share???

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