Fall is my FAVORITE time of year to decorate. I like to decorate my house as if I still live in Wisconsin, where the leaves are changing colors and the corn is abundant! So I set out to use gorgeous Indian corn from the Midwest to act as the centerpiece on my Thanksgiving table this year…and the best part is that you can keep this corn, year after year, and it won’t go bad! The colors are so beautiful that some don’t even look real.
For a little history lesson: Flint corn, or Indian corn, is one of the oldest varieties of corn, a type that Native Americans taught the early colonists how to cultivate. Its kernels, which come in a range of colors including white, blue and red, have “hard as flint” shells, giving this type of corn its name. Flint corn kernels contain a small amount of soft starch surrounded completely by a larger amount of hard starch, which means the kernels shrink uniformly when drying and are dent-free and less prone to spoiling (and therefore ideal for autumnal décor). Despite its tough exterior, this type of corn can be consumed by livestock and humans, and is used in such dishes as hominy and polenta. (From History.com)
You Will Need:
- Indian, or flint, corn dried
- Plastic or glass vases of varying sizes
- Hot glue gun/glue sticks
- Florals to go in the vases
- Satin ribbon
- OPTIONAL: Pruning sheers
- Clean and dry (if needed) your corn pieces.Mine arrived with the husks still attached and strings around the corn so they needed a little bit of tidying up.
- Arrange your corn by size.If you plan to make a few like I am doing, group them together by similar sizes.
- Make sure that you have enough corn to go all the way around your vase, so dry fit them to make sure.
- Usually with corn that we eat, we can snap it in half if we need to.This corn is very tough and not easy to break, so instead of trying to break it down in size, use the size it is. If you need to cut off the top that perhaps has lost some of its kernels, take pruning sheers to cut it down.
- Take your hot glue gun and start gluing the corn around the vase.You can have all the corn facing one direction, or mix it up and down.
- Once all the way around the vase, use the husks to cover any spots that you can see through.
- Add a silk or satin ribbon around the corn for decoration.Hot glue in place so that it doesn’t slide along the corn (it is a bit slippery).
- Fill the vases with florals, put them around your house and enjoy!
- Indian corn comes in a variety of sizes ranging from 3” high to 15” high. Use the different sizes to make different sized vases!
- Indian corn can be hard to find if you don’t live in the Midwest. My advise here is to search early to allow enough shipping time.
- You can use the husks to hide imperfections in the corn, and also use it as the base layer of your florals. This will give it a professional look without having to have perfect form.
- Although there are ways that you can convert this corn to be edible, it’s best not to unless you are a pro. Use the white and the yellow corn to eat and save this for gorgeous Autumn décor!
- There are many theories out there on the internet regarding the staying power of Indian corn. My mom kept an Indian corn wreath for 20 years here in California. But if you are in a humid climate, or keep your décor outside where the critters can nibble on it, it might only last the season.
If you missed the episode check it out by heading over to Home & Family!