20 Beach Wedding Centerpieces Ideas You’ll Want to Try

If you’re having a wedding on the beach, having beachy centerpieces can be a great nod to your theme. Here's a list of centerpiece ideas for your beach wedding.

By Deanna deBara

Beach Wedding Centerpieces
Photo by Angie Diaz Photography

If you’re having a wedding on the beach, having beachy centerpieces can be a great nod to your theme. Here's a list of centerpiece ideas for your beach wedding.

If you’re looking for a beautiful, tranquil, and inspiring backdrop for your wedding, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better spot than the beach. Whether you’re planning a destination wedding or saying “I do” at a local wedding venue on the coast, beach weddings have become a go-to for couples, thanks to their versatility (you can go casual or formal) and, of course, their unparalleled views.

Below are twenty beach wedding centerpiece ideas to get your creative juices flowing—so you can find the perfect centerpiece design for your big day:

Because the beach is already such a gorgeous place, many couples choose to keep their wedding decor minimal. But, if you’re hosting a sit-down meal, one piece of decor you’ll want to have is table centerpieces.

That said, what kind of centerpieces should you have—and how can you use your wedding backdrop to inspire your centerpiece design?

Beach Wedding Centerpiece Ideas *Photo Credit * // Rodrigo Moraes Photography

Things to Consider Before Choosing the Right Centerpiece

Looking for wedding centerpiece inspiration can become fairly overwhelming. There are practically endless ideas to choose from, from professional florals to creative DIY projects. However, there are a handful of things you need to consider before diving head-first into the internet’s world of ideas. The following will help you narrow down your vision, thus, what you should be looking out for.

  • Your venue. If you’ve already booked a venue, think about how it’ll shape and contribute to the overall look of your wedding. Just like your tables and chairs, you probably want your centerpieces to fit seamlessly with the rest of the atmosphere.

  • Your theme or aesthetic. Toward the beginning of wedding planning, you likely brainstormed how you’d like your wedding to look. Refer back to any inspiration images, mood boards, or discussions you decided on for a refresh. Then, keep them on you as you look through centerpieces to make sure what you decided on fits your vision.

  • Formality. Different styles of centerpieces will give off a different feeling of formality. For example, a large bouquet of monochromatic flowers will give a black tie or formal impression, while various colored items can lean toward a more semi-formal or casual theme.

  • Personal aesthetic. Ultimately, you and your partner should love whatever you both decide on. Whether or not they perfectly matches your venue or color palette, your centerpieces should be something you both enjoy looking at and will be excited to show your guests. If this is difficult for you to decide, ask yourself if you’d put a certain centerpiece in your house as decor. If so, odds are it’s a good option for your wedding.

20 Beach Wedding Centerpieces Ideas

1. Seashells

When most people think of the beach, the first things that come to mind are seashells and sea glass. So, if you want your centerpieces to echo your beach wedding theme, try incorporating decorative seashells into your centerpiece design. If you’re doing florals for your beach wedding, try filling the bottom of a glass vase with a variety of small seashells before adding water and flowers—or, if you want a bolder look, surround the base of the vase with an arrangement of larger shells. If you opt-out of florals, you can also make seashells your centerpiece focal point by arranging them artfully in a glass container with other beach-inspired materials (such as sand, sea glass, rocks, or sand dollars).

2. Sand

The beach is where the land meets the sea, and if you want to incorporate the land part of that equation into your wedding ceremony or reception design, try working sand into your centerpiece. Fill votives, vases, and glass containers of different heights and shapes, and then use them to anchor tea lights and candles for a glowy centerpiece that helps add a romantic ambiance after the sunsets. Dye sand in different colors (for example, to match your wedding color palette) and layer it in glass vases to create unique designs for each table.

3. Coral Reef

If you prefer the “sea” part of the beach, ocean-themed centerpieces can help you capture the essence of the sea in an eye-catching way on your wedding tables. And, if you want to grab your wedding guests’ attention, try designing your centerpieces based on a coral reef. Use shells, plants, coral, driftwood, and any other reef-inspired items (such as a sea urchin sculpture or a shell-inspired vase) to create unique centerpieces for each of your tables.

4. Beach-Inspired Florals

Beach Wedding Centerpiece Ideas *Photo Credit * // Cate Tenopir Events

If you want to keep things classy and elegant with your tables—and focus on floral arrangements—you can still bring a beachy vibe to your centerpieces by using a beach-inspired color palette to inspire your floral design. Use bold pops of color—such as coral, yellow, or purple—as a nod to the colorful fish and coral, or muted tones of blue, green, cream, and tan in your floral arrangements to recreate that feeling of calm in your floral arrangement. To start, look to orchids, hibiscus, jasmine, and breezy white flowers like white hydrangeas.

5. Floating Tea Lights

Beach themed weddings can be incredibly romantic. For an intimate look, fill tall glass vases with water and place a few tea light candles on top. This simple set-up is easy to DIY and customize to your liking, allowing you to include additions like sand, beach rocks, and fake coral at the bottom.

6. Pillar Candles

If the idea of large vases of water as table decorations worries you or simply isn’t your style, consider instead setting a pillar candle inside a tall glass vase and then filling it partially with sand. The sand will anchor the candle into place and also provides a base to set shells, fake starfish, and similar accents on top of.

7. Beachgrass

Boho, beachy weddings can lean into their look by using beachgrass in their centerpieces. This tall type of greenery can be bundled together in tall glass vases to give a natural, breezy appearance. Style alone for an elegant look or with sand and shells for an authentic outdoorsy look.

8. Driftwood

Driftwood is another beach themed centerpiece idea that looks incredibly elegant on reception tables. Place smaller pieces in large glass vases for an artistic look or style directly atop your wedding reception tables with moss, succulents, and/or florals.

9. Lanterns

Evoke a beachy lighthouse look with wooden or brass lanterns. Each can be filled with candles, seashells, fake starfish, florals, or other elements that coordinate with the rest of your decor. This is especially ideal for those who love the look of a rustic wedding.

10. Pearls

Beach weddings aren’t limited to a boho, outdoors aesthetic. They can also lean very formal and chic. If the latter sounds like your wedding, considering utilizing pearls in your centerpieces. Vases filled with pearls are elegant, stylish, and very easy to coordinate with other pieces of wedding decor.

11. Succulents

Bring a beach landscape to your tablescape with one or various succulents. These can be placed in pots, glass vases, wooden containers, atop driftwood—whatever seems to match well with your wedding venue.

12. Nautical Rope

A beach theme can also lend itself directly to a nautical wedding. If your idea of a beach wedding is more so along the lines of boats, anchors, and nautical stripes, consider using nautical rope in your wedding table centerpieces. Ropes can be tied into knots, wrapped around vases, or even used in place of linens as table runners.

13. Palm Fronds

If large, unique wedding centerpieces and decor ideas are right up your alley, think about swapping flower bouquets for palm fronds. Like seagrass, several can be gathered together in tall, thin vases, adding height and visual interest to every reception table.

14. Mercury Glass Candles

A solid piece of wedding decor that we’ll reiterate is as follows: If you wouldn’t have it as home decor, don’t have it as your centerpieces. Along that line of thought, if you’re a big fan of large statement candles (à la those that are sold at Anthropologie), opt to make them the focal point of your centerpieces. Those will mercury glass candle holders are especially volcanic and beachy. What’s more, you can choose to give them out as wedding favors at the end of the night.

15. Model Ships

Those seeking impressively elaborate decor will love the idea of utilizing model ships. These display pieces are stunning and can be found in a wide variety of styles and sizes. Carefully place them at the center of your tables on a platform or purchase those that are set inside a glass bottle for a more adventurous, piratey look.

16. Pineapples

Perhaps your ideal beach wedding decor is full of bright pops of color and fun decor accents. In this case, consider highlighting pineapples—or pineapple shaped decor. There are a surprising number of ways you can DIY them, too, from coring them and filling each with flowers to spray painting them in your wedding color palette. That said, we also love leaving their natural beauty as is and pairing them with palm fronds, seagrass, florals, or candles.

17. Coconuts

Likewise, coconuts are a beautiful and beachy fruit that can be included in your wedding reception table setup. With their neutral, natural colors—typically white and brown or green—they can easily be matched with plenty of wedding color schemes and other decor elements. Place small ones as is on tables or half them and place them amidst other beachy elements.

18. Sea Glass

If sand, rocks, or shells as a filler aren’t doing it for you—maybe you want a bit more color—look to sea glass. Sea glass often takes on the shape of small stones, but is most often blue and green. It can be used to fill glass flower vases or be the material of the vases themselves. In either case, they’ll be a soft, stunning color that light reflects beautifully off of.

19. Fishing Net

In lieu of a table runner or centerpiece platforms (such as wooden slabs), lay a piece of fishing net down underneath your other centerpiece items. For an authentic and aesthetic appearance, go for netting that is beige or brown in color. Being neutral, it’ll be easier to match to other centerpiece or decor pieces.

20. Message in a Bottle

Make your reception centerpieces interactive by decorating glass bottles and putting handwritten messages for your guests in them. This adds a lovely personalized touch—plus, your loved ones will enjoy discovering, handing out, and reading the kind letters.

Design the Beach Wedding Centerpiece That Feels Right for You

When it comes to centerpieces for your beach wedding decor, you have nothing but options. You can take your inspiration straight from your venue and use beach-inspired materials (such as sand, shells, and driftwood). You can also embrace a more subtle nod to your beach theme by incorporating beachy colors into your centerpiece palette. Use these beach wedding ideas as a jumping-off point.

Ultimately, the key—from wedding invitations, to centerpieces, the decor—is to choose what feels true to you, your event, and your wedding style.

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