It may be April but here in Seattle we are experiencing the craziest weather! We’re breaking records of high temps and pulling out shorts and flip flops. It feels more like August, not our typical rainy April!
With the sun shining on my back porch, I’m ready for outdoor entertaining! Whenever I host a party or gathering, I like to first start my prep work by creating a color palette. It gives me some boundaries to work within and gets the ideas flowing. For a fun spring and summer color palette, I went with a combination of greens, yellow, coral and pink. Fun, happy and colorful!
For a simple outdoor gathering there’s no need for lots of decor. A few pretty details combined with the outdoor ambiance is plenty! I love thrifting for party supplies and decor. You never know what you’ll find or need until you see it! I popped into my local Value Village with my fingers crossed!
I usually hit up the fabric section of the store to see if I can find any scrap fabrics or even bed sheets that can be reused into table linens or party garlands. I couldn’t find the colors I needed so I headed down the women’s clothing aisle and lo and behold found a button down blouse in every color of my party palette!
April happens to be Earth Month, so finding shirts I could reuse and repurpose felt like doing a good deed for our earth! Did you know North Americans send 10.5 million tons of clothing to landfills every year?! Ninety-five percent of these items can be reused or recycled. With that knowledge, why be wasteful when we can be re-useful!
With my thrifted “fabric” I decided to make a decorative tassel garland. A perfect addition to my outdoor porch party! It’s very simple to do and can be replicated using just about any fabric, print or design to fit your occasion!
Fabric Tassel Garland
You Will Need:
Jute, heavy string or ribbon
1. Cut fabric into 12-16″ strips about 3″ wide. No need for a measuring tape, just eyeball it. Fold strips in half.
2. At the bottom of the folded strip (the open side, not the folded end) cut into the fabric about 1″ with scissors, about 1/2″ apart. You should be able to get about 5 cuts per strip. Again, no need to be perfect, they’ll turn out cute regardless!
3. Once you’ve made your cut marks, tear fabric towards the folded part of the strip, leaving about 1/2″ from end. (See photo below for reference). You can also use scissors if you prefer. I like the tearing because it gives the garland a bit of a ruffled look.
4. Once all fabric strips are cut, lay your jute or ribbon in the length of your choice. Take a fabric strip and tie it onto your ribbon/jute. (See photos below for reference)
5. Once your garland is complete, you can leave it as is, or trim longer pieces for a more even look. I like both!
I trimmed my garland just a bit and hung it on my bar cart for a pop of color.
During my trip to Value Village, I also picked up a bunch of wood bowls and display pieces. They weren’t in my original color palette, but I thought I could repurpose them with a coat of paint!
I gave each piece a couple of coats of spray paint in a variety of green, pink, coral and yellow colors. After they were completely dry, I sprayed them with a food safe shellac spray.
They turned out so great!
I love sending guests home with a little favor or take home gift. It could be something as simple as a little candy or some fresh baked treats. While thrifting I found some old tins that would be great to hold goodies.
I added them to the spray paint line up and voila! Perfectly coordinating the party and adorable filled with treats. I filled mine with colorful macarons and chocolate chip cookie sandwiches.
Once you have your party decor, display pieces and favors figured out, next comes the menu. I’m a big fan of a make-your-own salad or wrap bar. With this warm weather, a cool, crisp salad is delicious and refreshing!
The painted bowls were perfect for my food display. The contrast of the veggies and the bright bowls was gorgeous.
Keep drinks simple with one signature drink in addition to water. Add a few slices of oranges and/or lemons to an iced tea or lemonade for added detail. Berries, lemons and cucumbers are also delicious in a big carafe of ice water.
Once the porch is set, the food is displayed and the drinks are cold, you’re ready to entertain!
I hope you found these tips useful for your personal spring and summer entertaining! I encourage you to shop thrift and reuse items and make a difference in our environment. Even if you aren’t there to shop, donating at your local Value Village or Savers store makes a massive impact. The average person creates over 80 pounds of textile waste per year. Landfills shouldn’t be laundry piles!
I’d love to see your DIY projects and ways you’re re-purposing and re-using thrifted items! Share photos on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter using #RethinkReuse.