CRAFTING A CELEBRATION
These simple and charming projects will ensure a summer party goes with a seasonal swing
Beautiful makes for a summer garden party
Pretty papers add a decorative finish to plain paper cups (opposite). Gift wrap, cut into wide strips and secured in place with double-sided tape, works exceptionally well. Tailor patterns and colours to the occasion and team with paper straws in similar coordinated designs. Papers, Paperchase. Paper straws, Pipii
Colourful and effective, this simple idea will add instant jollity to a celebration. Tie pieces of fabric or ribbon along a length of string in an informal arrangement. Similar fabrics and ribbons, Cloth House, Jane Means and VV Rouleaux
PAPER FLOWER NAPKIN RINGS
Create a pretty tabletop with flower garlands, cut from paper, to add decoration to napkins. Cut shapes from textured paper or lightweight card in a variety of sizes and petal formations. Push green wire, or wire covered in florist’s tape, through the centre of each flower and bend the end into a ball or twist to secure in place. Wind each stem onto a bundle of raffia tied around a napkin. Papers and card, Paperchase. Wire and florist’s tape, Hobbycraft
Ornate-style cutlery, found at a flea market can be given a new lease of life with a suitable spray or enamel paint. Cover the top sections with masking tape before painting the handles. Choose a single colour or mix together pastel tones with brighter shades. Spray paint, Plastikote. Enamel paints, art and craft shops
Flags made from old lace, trimmings, embroidered cloths and fabric doilies gives alfresco dining a stylish vintage look. Decide on the size of flag you want and cut triangles of the same size from the materials. Pin the flags, roughly equal distance apart, along a length of woven ribbon and sew in place, making one long length of bunting or several shorter ones. Make and knot a loop at each end to hang.
These outdoor candles, contained in a collection of jelly moulds, are scented with citronella to help keep insects away. Heat soy wax flakes in a double boiler, or a bain-marie over a medium heat. Once melted, add the scented oil. Secure one or two wicks to the base of each mould and, holding the wicks upright, slowly pour in the wax. Wrap the end of each wick around the middle of a pencil and rest on top of the mould until firm. Leave to set at room temperature. Jelly moulds, RE. Soy wax, wicks and scented oils, Hobbycraft, Amazon and Candle Makers Supplies
This is a great way to refresh old and worn table-linen, as you can hide holes and marks under interesting patches. Try crocheted doilies, shapes and lettering cut from lightweight fabrics and attach to a tablecloth using an iron-on adhesive, or by pinning and sewing them in place. Alternatively, use pre-cut iron-on lettering, available from Liberty and Not On The High Street
A thick cotton or linen used as a seat sling revives the frame of a folded stool. Heavyweight linens, canvas and vintage grain sacks are best for this. Open out the frame and measure the gap for the seat, adding extra at both ends. Cut the fabric to size if needed, allowing extra for a hem. Fold over each end and sew to create an open-ended pocket to slide the rods through, before slotting into the frame.
Fill these with sweets, marshmallows or popcorn as an alternative to a party bag. Take a square piece of thick paper or lightweight card with a jolly print. Cut out wedges, each one roughly the shape of a quarter of a circle. With the wrong side facing, cut and stick a piece of Cellophane to the inside top edge of the paper/card. Pull into a cone shape and secure with double-sided tape. Fill, closing the Cellophane top with twine and a label. Paper, Cellophane and twine, Paperchase and Jane Means
FLOWER ICE CUBES
Add a summery surprise to a glass or carafe of water using edible petals encased in ice. Pick varieties for their colour and taste, such as borage, marigolds, roses, pansies and violets. Alternatively, fragrant herbs and plants such as mint and lemon verbena work well. Choose the flowers/petals for each cube according to their size. Use distilled water that has been boiled and left to cool for more chance of clear ice cubes – fill each well in a silicone tray a third of the way up and freeze. Place the washed flower on top before covering with water to the top (or less if adding another flower) and freezing. Seasonal edible flowers, Maddocks Farm Organics