Trashtastic Mardi Gras Centerpiece with Chris Norwood

Trashtastic? What in the world is trashtastic? And what does it have to do with Mardi Gras? Don’t worry, you won’t have to go dumpster diving for materials. This is a fun, festive, care-free Mardi Gras centerpiece that is still gorgeous, but it certainly goes for a more crazy personality than most decorative pieces we show you how to make. Which is only befitting for a holiday like Mardi Gras.

The purpose of this centerpiece is to mimic a Mardis Gras or Venetian mask, which are famous for their outlandish style. To get started, you’ll need a gold vase (it can be either tall or short). Place a collar of green dianthus around the rim of the vase’s mouth to hide the “mechanics” of your arrangement. Now take peacock feathers and insert them into the vase between the collar of dianthus. Make sure most of the stem shows for each feather, giving the impression that the feathers are fanning out of the vase.

Next, you’ll need two Mardis Gras masks (make sure they are green, purple and gold). Attach two short rods to the masks so that you can stick them in with the feathers on either side of the feather fan. Once the masks are in place, begin adding orchids to the arrangement, sticking them diagonally into the dianthus collar (we used orchids with dyed colors). Now add beads to hang around the masks and throw in a few purple irises to mix with the feathers. This should cover your purple and green, but don’t forget your gold. We suggest adding in gold lilies right beneath the masks.

When you’re happy with the arrangement, place a fleur de lis in the middle of the arrangement on a pole so that it “caps” off your design.

Be sure to catch Chris Norwood every Tuesday morning between 9 and 9:30 on KATV’s morning show. You can watch his recent appearance below.

Mardi Gras Decorating Tips with Chris Norwood

It’s time to don your beads and bring out the king cake, it’s Mardi Gras season already. For home or office Mardi Gras decorating tips, here’s a quick, easy and flashy mesh wreath you can throw together in no time.

First start out by getting rolls of striped mesh in Mardi Gras colors: purple, green and gold. Take a metal wreath form and start entwining the mesh around the metal form in bunches, starting in the middle and working your way around. Next get a large Mardi Gras mask and place it in the middle of your wreath, tying the mask’s strings to the form to keep in place.

And of course, it’s not Mardi Gras without the beads. Grab some bead necklaces and start twist-tying them to the form so that they hang below the mask. Feel free to go as flashy as possible. This is Mardi Gras after all. For all of your Mardi Gras decor needs, come by Tipton and Hurst and see what we have in store.

And as an extra bonus, here are a few Mardi Gras facts you might find interesting:

  1. The official colors of Mardi Gras have meanings. Purple is for justice, gold is for power and green is for faith.
  2. The colors were chosen by the visiting Grand Duke Alexei Alexandrovich of Russia.
  3. The beads only date back a few decades to the 1970s when glass beads were thrown by the floats, but since demand got so high, glass beads were replaced by plastic beads.
  4. Mobile, Alabama is considered the first U.S. city to celebrate Mardi Gras. Today, it still has the second largest celebration after New Orleans.
  5. And a fun tip if you find yourself in New Orleans on Mardi Gras: if you miss a doubloon thrown from a float, don’t reach down to try and pick it up. Instead, put your foot down on it. If you reach down, you’ll probably miss it or get your fingers stepped on.

Watch Chris Norwood design the Mardi Gras wreath for yourself below: