Finding Charm in the Unexpected

Joe Jumper, owner of Riverview’s The Clay Pot, has an eye for the unexpected. Here, he shares six design ideas that are easy to emulate and chock-full of charm.

We filled these pottery pieces with succulents and pine needles. If you don’t have flowers, just find unexpected items to fill pottery and vases — even paint brushes would work! (photo above)

Screen Shot 2015-06-08 at 3.52.39 PMThis is a wire metal basket that we filled with pillar candles. We hung it from a tree branch, but you could also place it on a patio for a rustic-chic outdoor look. It glows like a homemade chandelier.







These are handcrafted boxes made out of barn wood. We used them as open-faced shadowboxes and grouped them closely together so they play off each other. Decorate them for each season – mini Christmas trees in the winter, little vases with flowers in spring, and candles any time.Screen Shot 2015-06-08 at 3.52.32 PM



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We took cloches and filled them with different things. These are filled with wooden clothes pins and spindles and used as an accent piece. I think the more unexpected you want to make them, the better. You could even fill them with colorful Legos and wiffle balls for a playful, whimsical look in a boy’s room.


Screen Shot 2015-06-08 at 3.52.07 PMYou can use any kind of bottle, but here we used Perrier bottles. Use a bunch of them to make an impact – we have 36 here, grouped closely. You don’t even have to put flowers in all of them. Just put sprigs in a few, and let the bottles’ color be your centerpiece. Another idea is to fill them all up with water at varying heights and put votive candles behind them for great illumination.


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These are old baking pans that I found at a restaurant supply store. We packed them with mood moss and used them as a centerpiece with pillar candles. You can use flowers in vases, too.

Photos by: Laura McNutt


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