Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Budget Wedding and Bridal Shower Centerpieces

It's wedding and shower season again and I helped with a bridal shower for a dear friend's daughter just this Sunday.  I was in charge of the table centerpieces and I wanted to do something fun and pretty that wouldn't break the bank.  I thought I would share some of my budget ideas just in case they help someone out there who is trying to throw a shower on a budget too.
I don't know about you, but I prefer to put my money into the gift. I had 10 tables to decorate and even at a bargain basement budget of $5 per table that adds up quickly.  The bride to be is creative and fun and I wanted something that suited her personality and added some color to the tables.
 
 These pinwheel centerpieces got lots of compliments and they cost me a whopping 50 cents each.  The secret is to use what you have on hand.  Now, I did not have 10 matching hobnail milk glass vases in my collection, but the church did! Lucky me. But look around, do you collect vintage tins? Bud vases (very affordable and plentiful at most thrift stores and you can spray paint them!), whatever you can borrow or have on hand can be adapted.  The silk flowers and greenery were left over from Victoria's wedding last year, and the pretty paper and pearly centers cost me $5 total at the craft store.

 Pinwheels are super easy to make, I just hot glued mine, they don't have to turn to be decorative.  Look on Pinterest for instructions. Mine were cut from 4" squares of paper and they turned out to be a good size for what I wanted to do.

The ribbon and vintage earrings were in my craft stash already so the only real cost was the paper and centers.  A tip on the sticks for the pinwheels. The craft store wanted 50 cents each for small dowels, I went to the grocery store and picked up a pack of 100 bamboo skewers for $1.99.  I stuck what I needed into some leftover floral foam and spray painted them white so they would look more finished. The rest of the package will be used this barbecue season :)

While I am on the subject of great prices for centerpieces, I just got two Boston Ferns  at Home Depot (not sponsored) for $5.  Checking Pinterest  showed me a couple beautiful ideas for using them as wedding centerpieces.  I love the baby's breath added to these ferns in a rustic box.  These would look lovely with the burlap and lace trend for a rustic wedding wouldn't they?
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 Or break them up and use them down the center of the table with candles. Gorgeous! And if you think ahead you can get the ferns now and just let them grow until the wedding.  Five bucks people!
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I have seen a $5 deal on plants every month this year.  I don't know if that is something Home Depot is planning to keep going but keeping your eyes open and thinking outside the box could get you some great deals on wedding d├ęcor. Flowers and centerpieces are a huge expense but look how gorgeous this could be! I have even seen large Orchids for the $5 deal this January.  You CAN do the flowers and centerpieces yourself and have a beautiful, unique and budget friendly wedding.
I would love to hear any great tips you may have for budget friendly weddings or showers.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

A Litle Bit of Decorating

You all know this isn't a decorating blog right? I mean, I try to make my home warm and welcoming and a cozy place for my family, but for the most part I pick up stuff by the side of the road, and places like Salvation Army and garage sales and make it work.  When I was a young wife and mom, all of our furniture was second hand because times were hard and I chose to stay home with my babies instead of working to buy new furniture. That is pretty much how I roll. I seldom do vignettes. So when times got better and we had the budget, Earl and I went shopping for our first new furniture. I saw this red plaid set and it was set up all cottagey and pretty in the showroom, and you KNOW my aversion to neutrals and my weakness for red, and plaid, and cottagey and we bought it. And I really loved it at first. But as time went on I learned the first rule of decorating. Don't box yourself in with the expensive stuff. Sure, you can paint the room, you can change the pillows and even the accessories, but if you have a red plaid couch, well there isn't much you can do with that.
 Thank goodness the red plaid couch was poor enough quality that it did not last because I have such a hard time spending money on things that don't need replacing.  And that furniture needed replacing. So this Saturday we waved goodbye to old red and replaced it with a piece of furniture that came with a mixture of fear and exhilaration. The white sofa.  Well, it's really more of an off white or cream but you get the idea. By the way, this is not a slipcovered sofa. I know. Am I crazy?  Earl actually showered before he sat down that night, that is how nervous we were about getting it dirty.  He sat in a different chair to drink his coffee. I began to wonder if I had made another terrible mistake.  So I took the matching cushions that came with it and poured coffee on one of them. Yes I did. I had to know what would happen! The coffee beaded up and did not soak in. I let it sit for a couple minutes, then I wiped it right off! The fabric on the couch is Sunbrella fabric and it feels like soft cotton but doesn't absorb the spills.  We have our coffee on the sofa now without fear.
Why white? Because I finally realized just how fickle I am when it comes to decorating. I get tired of things quickly and want to change them up. I have a fear of commitment when it comes to decorating.  The white means I can change the pillows and art and anything else, something I was never able to do with that red plaid. The first thing I did was grab a remnant of yellow toile and whip up a slipcover for the footstool and a couple pillows.  I love how sunny they look.  Then, I got online and ordered two black and white, cotton, buffalo check tablecloths.  At $12.50 each they were super affordable and the fabric looks and feels like linen.  The length is almost perfect and I love the  boldness of the checks and the fact that, once again, I can put anything I want with them.  The company had a red and white check too, how long do you think it will be before I go back and get those for a quick change option?
 At the moment the room looks pretty bare. I have whited it out and stripped it down to the bare essentials so I can start over. I am leaning toward a much lighter, brighter look with some farmhouse touches,  I'll share as I work on the room but it is always a work in progress for me. 
I would love to hear, what is your biggest decorating revelation? Surely you have learned a thing or two through experience. Do share for those of us who aren't super decorators!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Happy Easter!

Have a Blessed and Happy Easter!