Getting a room ready for a fabulous birthday party haven doesn't have to be expensive or time-consuming. Dedicate a an hour or two to making colorful decorations that start the celebration off on the right foot. Use two or three colors so all the decorations complement each other and to keep the design simple.
Streamers and Bunting
Make simple streamers from 8.5" by 11" sheets of colored paper. Fold a sheet in half lengthwise. Make 3.5 inch cut every 2 inches along the fold side. Repeat the cuts on the open side, placing them between the first set of cuts. Unfold and pull apart for a festive streamer. Tape the end of one streamer to the next for longer lengths.
Use bunting for streamers or a birthday banner. Cut felt into 6" by 10" triangles. Hot glue the 6-inch side of the triangle to a length of wide ribbon. Leave 1 to 2 inches of space between each triangle. Hang multicolored bunting around the room. Use iron-on letters on each triangle to spell out your birthday message on a banner.
Party helium tanks are inexpensive and readily available at party stores. Choose translucent balloons in your color scheme. Place a handful of small wrapped candies into each balloon. Stick a funnel into the balloon opening to make this easier. Blow up the balloons with helium and tie a length of ribbon around each. Let guests take a balloon home as a party favor.
Cut ¼ -inch diameter wooden dowels into 2-foot lengths. Wrap with ribbon or paint each dowel. Tape a small balloon to the top of the dowel. Place a small square of florist's foam in a small plastic flower pot and cover with candy. Stick the dowel in the pot and into the florist's foam to secure. Set at each place setting.
Cover the party table with an inexpensive white tablecloth or white sheet. Cut a potato and a carrot in half. Use the halves to stamp different-size polka dots on the fabric in your color scheme. Use fabric paint for stamping.
Individual place mats are easy to make. Choose a heavy fabric as a backing and clear vinyl for the front. Cut a piece of each into a 14" by 18" rectangle. Sandwich colorful confetti between the vinyl and fabric. Sew around all four edges leaving a ½-inch seam. Trim with pinking shears so the fabric doesn't fray.
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