Almost the first planning I did for my wedding was these centerpieces that quickly became the "Stick Trees". I think I designed these even before we had a venue. I knew I wanted centerpieces that made a real impression, and were very tall. I saw a picture in a local wedding magazine of some centerpieces that had these hanging candle holders, and I thought, Perfect! Luckily, for the vast majority of my engagement, I worked only 3 days a week as a nanny, so I had a lot of time on my hands. I bought the votive holders (they are kind of bubble-shaped) at Walmart for $.57 each. I got some irridescent beads-on-a-wire things from Hobby Lobby, and some regular wire. I wire-wrapped each votive holder with the regular wire, and strung in some beaded wire every so often to make a kind of cup of wire. I used more wire to make a long hanger for each votive so they could be attached to the sticks. Yes, they did take forever. I made a ton. Three per centerpiece, and some extras in case of breakage.
Here's a picture of a completed votive holder. A little hard to tell how totally awesome it is, but trust me. Awesome.
Once I had the votive holders, I needed something tall to hang them from. I got a TON of curly willow from eBay, of all places. It was pretty reasonable, and it was easy for me because I lived across the country from my wedding location, so I could just have it shipped.
I ordered pink statice, green hypericum berries, and psittorum (greenery) from www.fiftyflowers.com, and I rented HUGE (24") vases from a local place. I bought rocks at IKEA to fill up the base, and BAM! wedding centerpieces. Overall the effect was stunning, and they were fairly inexpensive. I love my stick trees :)