I’m talking simple, no design skills are required! Promise! This freestyle table centerpiece takes just minutes to put together and will have your guests swooning. In this Simple Fall DIY Dining Table Centerpiece idea post, I take you through “building” this layered neutral fall table runner centerpiece that can be used indoors or outdoors.

outdoor dining table with a fall garland and pumpkins.

This gorgeous centerpiece is a little unique whereas it is not made in a container or a vase like most centerpieces are and would you believe, it does not have any flowers! It is a simple design that starts with a table runner and builds from there.

tabel runner with pumpkins, clay posts and candles.

About This Fall Centerpiece Design

I created this design on our outdoor dining table in our newly renovated outdoor dining space. This outdoor space has a new faux brick wall with sconces that are not hardwired and a chandelier with battery-operated candles. This centerpiece design is so versatile it can be made on an indoor dining table, a kitchen table, a buffet, or a console table. It can even be recreated on a coffee table. Also, I used clay pots and white pumpkins however other elements could be used depending on the season, event, or holiday. In other words here’s one version of a very versatile design.

photo from above capturing a chandelier hanging above the fall centerpiece.

Helpful Supplies and Tips

Start this centerpiece with a table runner, a throw blanket, or a folded curtain panel (which is what I used) this step will help define the space. Once this is laid down you will build the additional items on top of the runner. Next, use some sort of riser to help lift some of the elements used in this design. I used 3 cutting boards that were placed on top of the runner. While they seemed to get buried under all the pumpkins, clay pots, garland, and filler they were helpful in making sure your centerpiece does not look like a lineup of fall items. Lastly, to cut corners and make this centerpiece extra easy, consider using premade garlands. I added 2 matching garlands in an “S” shape down the center of the table. This is not necessary but super helpful in filling the space.

Adding Clay Pots

I knew the clay pots would work well with my faux wood grain table top and gave a nod to fall with its orangey tone. In the center, I added a larger round pot and placed some excelsior and a large white pumpkin in it. On either side of the center pot, I laid 2 larger pots on their side to give the appearance the pumpkins were falling out. To continue with the touches of clay I filled smaller clay pots with candles and sprinkled those throughout the design.

small clay pot with white pillar candle.

Using Fillers In This Design

As you know I’m a fan of natural fillers and often incorporate excelsior, raffia, various mosses, or even shredded paper into my designs. The purpose of using these fillers is twofold, one is to add an interesting texture to a design the second is to well…fill the space up! In this design, after everything was down, I used natural excelsior to fill in blank spots.

White Pumpkins For The Win

I love white pumpkins and use them freely in my home decor during the fall season. Over the years I’ve collected quite a few faux ones and I often mix them with real pumpkins. Either real pumpkins or faux will work for this design. You can find Faux white pumpkins at your local craft supply store, Joann’s, Michael’s or Hobby Lobby. I’ve linked some from Amazon below.

top view picture of complted centerpiece with candles lit.

Supplies For Making This DIY Fall Dining Room Centerpiece

white faux gourd with a clay pot with taper candles in it.

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of table runner should I use?

The sky is the limit, I used a curtain panel folded in 1/2. You can use a fabric table runner, a natural table runner (ie. seagrass or hemp) or even a paper runner (kraft paper works well).

What should I do differently if my table is round and not oblong?

If your dining room table is a round table, no worries! You can still drape a runner and then create a circle design with the remaining design elements for a beautiful centerpiece. You may need to adjust the size of the elements as well as how many.

How can I adapt this design to other seasons?

The basics of this design can be carried over for a seasonal centerpiece. Choose a runner for the season, choose risers (breadboard, books, trays, and tiered cake holder are all great options) then a larger element for your focal point with smaller items to fill in. Lastly, plan your filler.
For example: to create this centerpiece for the Christmas season you may use small table Christmas trees or poinsettias, pine cones, tree ornaments, and raffia or ribbon. With a few swaps you can give this DIY Centerpiece a whole new look!

Do you light the taper candles?

I do not because being placed in a pot with the candles hanging over could be a fire hazard. I love the look of a collection of tapers in a container so I leave them as is for looks.

What else could I add to this centerpiece?

Mason jars with fresh flowers, votive candles, other candle holders, potted plants, faux flowers, brass accessories, seasonal flowers, mosses or other organic elements or other fall decorative items.

Step-by-step Instructions

Simple Fall DIY Dining Table Centerpiece Idea

No design skills required! This simple DIY fall Centerpiece is a snap to put together! It's all about layering – read below as I take you through this easy centerpiece idea step-by-step.
Prep Time10 minutes
Active Time10 minutes
Total Time20 minutes


  • 1 piece Table runner of your choice
  • 3 pieces Round wooden breadboards
  • 2 pieces Premade fall garland
  • 1 Piece 9" round clay bowl
  • 2 pieces 8" standard clay pots
  • 1 bag Excelsior
  • 2 pieces Large white pumpkins
  • 10 pieces Small white pumpkins or gourds
  • 6 pieces Small clay pots
  • 4 pieces Pillar candles ( sizes ranging between 4"- 6")
  • 10 pieces Taper candles (8, 10 or 12 inch ones)


  • The first step of this centerpiece is laying a cloth or paper runner down the center of the table. You may use a fabric runner, a natural runner (ie. seagrass, hemp) or a paper runner. I used a curtain panel and folded it in 1/2.
    curtain panel folded in 1/2 to make a table runner.
  • If using fabric, with your hands scrunch or gather at various points of the runner. This adds interest and ensures you have adequate space for your place settings.
    runner gathered in the center.
  • Lay 3 wooden breadboards in the middle of the table on the runner.
    3 round wodden breadboards laid on top of the fabric runner.
  • Next lay 2 premade fall garlands in and around the breadboards.
    premade fall garland are added to the table scape.
  • Place a large round clay pot on the center breadboard and fill it with excelsior. Then add a larger white pumpkin.
    large white pumpkin in a clay pot.
  • Placing on their sides, lay 2 medium size clay pots on the other 2 breadboards. Add excesior and a medium size pumpkin inside with 2 smaller pumpkins on the outside.
    clay pot laying on its side with excelsior and white pumpkins spilling out.
  • Fill smaller clay pots with pillars candles and place those around (I used 4)
    small clay pot with white pillar candle.
  • Fill 2 small clay pots with a collection of taper candles and place those around the centerpiece.
    clay pot with taper candles.
  • Fill in the design with extra white pumpkins and gourds.
    adding a small white pumpkin.
  • Once everything is in place, grab a bunch of excelsior and pull it apart into small handfuls and fill in some of the gaps.
    handful of excelsior being placed in and around the items on the table.
  • When its time for your dinner party, light the pillar candles.
    Note: I would be hesitant to light the taper candles since the wax will drip on the table or the centerpiece. If you feel. more comfortable using battery operated candles, please do.
    top view picture of complted centerpiece with candles lit.


This design is made on an extra long table measuring 8.5 feet. This table can accommodate a large centerpiece. You may have to reduce the number of supplies according to the length of your table. 

Other Fall Centerpiece Ideas

Fall is such a fun season for decorating! I’m not sure what it is, but fall has me baking, making fall projects and decorating like no other season. It starts to get cool quickly here in Massachusetts and by October the sweaters, boots, and pumpkins are out in full force! My decorating bug hits hard and I usually start with a centerpiece. One of my favorite centerpiece ideas is this kitchen island centerpiece. In this post, I show you two ways to use stacked cake trays (tiered tray design) to make a tall centerpiece. Another favorite fall dining room centerpiece of mine is a beautiful dough bowl. Dough bowls are a fabulous table decoration and take center stage for all types of table tops. They always offer a dramatic statement to your fall decor. Here are 3 different fall dough bowl designs:

Making a simple centerpiece like the one in this simple fall DIY dining table centerpiece idea post – be it for special occasions or everyday use is a great way to bring the fall season to your home. A fall centerpiece like this one will last a lot longer than a fresh floral arrangement so you will be able to enjoy it for the whole season. If you’re having trouble starting your fall decorating I say the perfect place to start is with your dining space…or maybe a new wreath for your front door!

Thank you so much for visiting the blog today, I’d love to hear from you! Please let me know what you think of this design, did you try it? Do you have any questions? Please just drop them in the comments below.

Keep creating friends!

my signature, a drawing of me holding a coffee cup that says Create.

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