Simple Fall Centerpiece

In middle school, there were two standard birthday gifts that everyone gave:

1. Candles

2. Scented lotions and body sprays

Does anybody else remember this? Going to a birthday party in seventh grade where the birthday girl opened 5 bags of scented body products and three kinds of scented candles?

I was never a huge fan of either of the gifts.

I did like the lotions, until we realized that I am allergic to almost all scented products. There went the vanilla bean hand lotion, the “cooling cucumber” spray and my favorite citrus shampoo.

I never lit the candles, so they just sat on my shelves, taking up space. They just seemed a little…pointless. I continued to feel that way about candles until last Christmas.

I don’t know what happened, but I just couldn’t resist the hanging star-shaped candle holders. And now I want to decorate with candles all fall and winter.

For instance, our dining table currently looks like this:

Our apple-shaped fruit bowl is overflowing with apples and pears. Matching mini apple dishes sit on either side, along with four candles.
Two are apple-scented tea lights, nestled into beds of candy corn.
The other two are set in black craft sand ($2 bag from Michael’s). In one, I currently have another tea light, while the second has a spice cake-scented votive.
Take it from me: your votive candles should be in individual holders in the jar, unless you want the wax to melt and spread over the entire surface of the sand.
How are you decorating for autumn?


  1. says

    i made a cute fall-themed centerpiece too! mine is pretty typical: winter squash of all different shapes, sizes, and colors on our brown or “chocolate” serving platter on top of a fall-colored place mat.

    ahhh, and i remember those middle school gifts! my friends gave lots of lip-glosses too. i know i threw away so many random tubes of chapstick when i cleaned out my old bedroom. gross.

  2. says

    Cute dishes! I’ve been looking for cute candy dishes for my candy corn – that’s the only candy my bf will eat. Michael’s will need to be one of my next stops. I decorated our coffee table with a leaf place mat with a clear centerpiece that has pine cones and cinnamon sticks in it. I also have candles around – Yankee Candle’s Farmers Market and Pumpkin Pie.

  3. says

    That’s so funny about the middle school gifts. I used to have so many baskets of lotions that I never used just sitting in my closet. I did, however, love the candles. My room probably smelled horrible from burning so many different scents!

  4. says

    I completely remember that! Probably if I looked in my parent’s bathroom, I’d still find some of those lotions and body splashes and smelly candles. I think I had enough lotion to supply a small country.

    But I’m with you–now that I’m older, I’m interested in candles again. As long as I get to pick the scents.

    • Julie @savvyeats says

      I definitely spent an afternoon at my parents’ house in college just getting rid of all those lotions and sprays!

  5. says

    I never liked all of those girly scented products either:) I found some old limited too berry body splash when I visited my parents a few weeks ago. So far I have some gourds and a witch costume for a wine bottle. I am going to do some more decorating this week.

  6. says

    I had more sun-ripened raspberry lotion than I knew what to do with back then. I’d love to burn candles nowadays, but our cats can’t seem to keep their paws out of the flames, so our candles never get burned πŸ™

    • Julie @savvyeats says

      You could try a hanging candle decoration, maybe? We have glass stars that fit a tea light candle and hang from our ceiling. They are Christmas decorations, but you could probably find something similar that would work for other seasons…

  7. Kristie says

    I wish the scented lotions were limited to middle school – I get them from people still for gifts. The gift you get for someone you don’t know very well, I guess? πŸ™‚

    Love your fall centerpieces… I am not much of a decorator but I do the fruit in a bowl one sometimes just because I run out of places to put the fruit!

    • Julie @savvyeats says

      Regift to a middle schooler in your life? πŸ˜‰

      Fruit bowl is the easiest decoration ever. You’re going to have the fruit in the house, might as well display it until you eat it!