This weekend I threw my daughter an end of middle school party and celebrated Mother’s Day. It was a very busy weekend! However, I was able to make my decor dual purpose and save myself a lot of work, time, and money. While the activities of both parties included jet ski’s, tubing and swimming in the river, we were able to utilize the beautiful yard around the river to turn the dinner table into a garden party theme. Between the two parties, I only spent $115, so only $57.50 per party! I will provide all links at the bottom of the post!
The base of the table was made up of 6 pallets. My cousin works for a pallet distribution company, so he was able to provide these to me for free. I was able to specify coloring and cleanliness of the pallets, so they made a perfect table!
The next layer was brown kraft paper. I generally keep two weights of kraft paper, a thicker one for gift wrapping and a thinner one for table covering. The link below is for the thinner one. I simply rolled it out the length of the table giving myself enough extra to be able to tuck it underneath the sides of the pallets so it would stay put, no tape or staples needed! This layer made clean up so easy! We removed everything, rolled it up and threw it away! Cannot beat that for easy cleanup!
My greenery centerpiece came next, and while this was the biggest expense, it was worth every penny! Not only did I get two parties out of it but also, I am now able to use it in my house as it will dry beautifully. In addition to the garland linked below, I stopped by Trader Joe’s and picked up some small pink roses and dragon snaps. I tore off the rose buds and pieces of dragon snaps and placed them sporadically throughout my garland adding perfect pops of pink throughout. We also used the dragon snaps for out place settings to tie them back into the garland. On Sunday we did not have enough fresh dragon snaps, so I alternated them and rosebuds with leaves on each place setting.
The brass candlesticks came from inside my house. I continually pick them up at estate sales, flea markets, thrift stores, etc. and use them throughout my home but also for parties. My taper candles come from the Dollar Tree. There are two in each package for $1.00! You cannot beat that! If you store them in the freezer until ready to light, they will last much longer, but at $.50 a piece, if you have to replace it, it’s not a big deal.
The actual place setting was free because I already own all of it, but there was some initial cost. However, as many parties as they have been used for at this point, any cost was negated! I found the entire set gold plated flatware in a box at a home we had bought when I was 20 years old and have cherished it ever since! I love the special touch it adds to any table setting! The gold charges are from Michaels. These were purchased for my sister-in-law’s wedding and between sales and coupons, I believe were maybe $1 a piece and have been used countless times since then!
I found the white and pink plates at Marshall’s one day and snatched them all up! They are by a company called Silver Spoons, but the only place I can find them online is on eBay so keep your eyes out at Marshall’s, TJ Maxx, HomeGoods, etc. if you want these! They are plastic however you can hand wash and reuse them so perfect for outdoor parties because you do not have to worry about your nice china getting broken! Just make sure everyone knows not to throw them in the trash! The detailing on them is just gorgeous and they added so much to the tablescape!
I did go with paper napkins this time but they still looked beautiful! I picked them up at Costco, and it was only $8.49 for 240! They are a little more online but not too bad. The wine glasses and salt/pepper shakers are all items picked up at estate sales for very little money. I just hold onto them and have them ready to go if anyone needs to use them for parties, weddings, or any other event. You would be surprised how often all my party supplies get used! I broke down and bought warming pans a few years ago, and I cannot tell you how many times I have used them! For our pillows, my friend Andrea graciously offered to sew pillow covers for me to save me some time! She used dropcloth and burlap coffee bags she already owned to sew very simple envelope closure pillow covers that slid right over pillows we already had in our homes. A few were pillow inserts, a few were white, and a few were floral, but you could not tell the difference! When we were down, we pulled them right back out of the covers. Simple and free! My favorite kind of decor! On Sunday morning, I simply changed out the brown paper, washed all the dishes and reset the table, replaced any candlesticks that had burned down too far, replaced the napkin and flowers on each place setting and we were ready to go for our Mother’s Day festivities! My mother-in-law and grandmother-in-law loved the gorgeous table and made all the effort more than worthwhile! So two parties out of $115! Plus I still have this beautiful greenery in my home! A gorgeous tablescape does not have to cost crazy amounts of money. If you start collecting little pieces here and there, when it comes time to pull together a stunning table for an event, you can simply shop your home and then pick up the few additional items you need to make it all come together for an inexpensive, yet beautiful party!