Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Thinking Ahead to Thanksgiving

No, I'm not confused - I know Thanksgiving is more than 2 months away. But there is nothing I hate more than scrambling for a last-minute craft idea and coming up empty. So, if you're like me and like to think ahead, I thought I'd share a project we did a few years back. We used it as part of a service project, but it could just as easily be a cute holiday craft to take home.

Our troop is fortunate in that we meet right next door to a retirement home/nursing facility. In talking with the activities coordinator, we learned that they received lots of groups and visitors at Christmas, but not as many at other holidays. We did a little brainstorming to see what we could come up with for Thanksgiving and ended up creating about 20 of these centerpieces for them to use in their dining room. (We also hand-delivered them during a meeting and stuck around a bit to sing some songs and visit with the residents.)

Clay Pot Thanksgiving Centerpiece

I found the original idea here but adapted it a bit for our girls, who were Brownies at the time. Now's a great time to start shopping around for the clay pots. We were on a budget and didn't want to buy them brand-new, so we called around to nurseries and garden centers to see if any of them had used ones that we might be able to have. You also could try checking Craigslist or Freecycle, or maybe you have some parents with green thumbs who have them lying around.

  • Clay pots
  • Black acrylic paint and foam brushes (or spraypaint)
  • Black construction paper, cardstock or fun foam
  • Yellow construction paper or cardstock
  • Floral foam or styrofoam
  • Artificial flowers (we chose mums for a nice fall look)
1. We had the girls paint the pots at one meeting and then finished the craft at the next. 
2. For the brim, place a pot upside down on construction paper and trace around it. Then draw a larger circle around it, about 1 to 1 1/2" wider all the way around. Cut around the large circle and poke a hole in the middle. Make several cuts from the center back to the line for the smaller circle (like the spokes of a wheel). You can then attach the brim by gluing the center strips to the inside of the pot. 
3. Cut out a square of yellow paper. Fold in half to cut a smaller square out of the middle and glue to the front of the pot. 
4. Place a piece of floral foam in the pot and arrange flowers as desired.


  1. I have made these in the past with my daughter... Lots of fun... We have used clay pots in the past as a Christmas craft as well... get a multitude of sizes. Paint them green and then hot glue them stacked on top of each other... largest on the bottom to the smallest on top... decorate like a Christmas tree... Cute!

    1. Oooh, I like the Christmas Tree idea -- might have to steal that one. Thanks for sharing!