With summer underway, many people are starting to plan seasonal get-togethers. The economy may still be struggling to get back into gear, but that doesn’t stop crafty party-throwers from adding style to a party with the use of low or no cost decorations. If you have a crafty streak (or even if you’re not sure you do) creating your own decorations can be a fun way to make your party stand out from the rest.
You’ll need: construction paper, glue, scissors, whatever craft supplies you have around
Creating party hats for your summer shindig is as easy as 1, 2, 3. Step one: get out the paper, scissors, glue, cotton balls, glitter pens, foam shapes, and anything else you’ve got around that’s colorful and small enough to glue to a paper hat (in fact, this project can be a great way to clean out the craft closet). Step two: roll rectangular pieces of construction paper into cone shapes, with the wide end large enough to slip comfortably on your head. Step three: decorate the hats by glueing fun shapes, strips of paper, glitter, cotton balls or other craft supplies onto the cones. Some elastic thread can be tied or stapled on to hold them securely on your guests’ heads – at least long enough to have a few cocktails and take some pictures!
You’ll need: construction paper (or cloth), string, glue, scissors
Bunting is a simple decoration that can be made using just construction paper, string and glue. To make your own bunting, cut a number of large isosceles triangles out of the construction paper. Use cut outs of a contrasting color to add shapes or even letters to these triangles and glue them on so they stay in place. Once the colorful bunting “flags” are finished, glue a string along the short side of each triangle, forming a long line of flags, and string them up in the house.
You’ll need: white napkins, construction paper, glue, markers, scissors
Compared the the price of a package of 1000 plain white napkins, those little colorful party napkins are priced so high they may as well be made of gold. Not to fear, you can make them yourself! Starting with thicker, higher quality white paper napkins will give you a stronger base, especially if you use markers, but any white napkins that you have around will do. Leave the napkins folded the way they come and glue on fun party shapes that you cut out of construction paper, such as balloons, flowers, or suns. Markers can add extra details to the design as well. Only cover a small portion of the napkin with a design so that it doesn’t interfere with its usefulness.
You’ll need: construction paper (or any scrap paper), string, glue, scissors
A garland can be used in the place of a streamer, which not only costs a fair amount for a simple roll of tissue paper, but will be thrown out at the end of the party. A garland can be made and used multiple times, making it not only economical, but environmentally friendly. To make one, all you need to do is cut shapes out of strong construction paper or card-stock (you can use any kind of shapes, such as geometric ones, animals, birthday themed shapes or whatever else you imagine) and then either sew them together in a line, using a sewing machine, or glue them together in a line along a piece of string. Either way, you’ll want to make sure that the string is connected from one end of the garland to the other and that there is an inch or two between each of the shapes.
Summer Flower Centerpieces
You’ll need: flowers, a large shallow bowl, tea candles, water, matches
If you’re throwing a party with a sit-down meal or BBQ, adding a centerpiece to the table can be a nice touch. Summer, sun and flowers go together well, so collecting flowers from the garden, or even wildflowers growing in a park nearby, can be one way to add a nice decorative touch to the table. Fill a shallow bowl with water and float the flowers, stems removed, on top. For an added touch of elegance, drop a few tea candles or other small candles in the water as well and light them just before dinner, letting them float around the flowers..