DIY Party Projects
When the weather turns your patio and deck into expanded entertaining space outdoors, it’s time to party! You can do a little or a lot, and decorate for pennies or not at all. But to get your party started, here are a few ideas to make the most of outdoor entertaining at the height of the season!
Fruit Decanters and Décor
We’ve seen fruit turned into everything from votives, serving dishes and beverage sippers to floral arrangements. Sugar and Cloth has five inspired ways to infuse water and serve it up in an orange rind, watermelon bowl or coconut cup and HGTV offers a tutorial to turn hollowed out pineapple rinds into sweet flower vases. Functional and decorative!
Easy accordion party pendants made from paper and hung from a roof gutter, awning or pergola create a festive atmosphere in minutes and all you need is colorful paper and string!
From party central at the DIY Network, cupcake liners already have mini-folds and with a few more creases can be paired together to create little flowers to “plant” in a transformed tin can vase.
And if your party is still going after dusk, you don’t need a covered patio to hang ambient lights. Emily Henderson, Target’s entertaining guru, offers up a clever way to string lights wherever you want. All you need are a couple of buckets filled with rocks and a bamboo pole inside as an anchor!
You can use your Igloo®, or a galvanized steel tub from the home improvement store for party sodas, wine and beer, and be just fine. But if you have an empty planter sitting around, Flynnside Out Productions says use that for a great-looking and functional cooler, too.
Serving wine at your party? Do it on the cheap and disguise the bottle with your own personalized wine wrap. Here’s a printable from Better Homes and Gardens, to make your own label!
This is more that WE might want to take on, but if you’re handy with tools and in the market for a dual-purpose picnic table, look how Sarah, the Domesticated Engineer, tucked a cooler into her hand-crafted outdoor party table! Ready for ice and spirits, this perfect piece of patio furniture set her back a mere $150 (plus a weekend or two of handy woman’s work).
Bugs Be Gone
Natural bug repellent instructions from Flavour and Savour use a mason jar stuffed with rosemary and thyme, adds eucalyptus and lavender essential oils plus slices of lemon and lime. When you fill the jar with water and pop a floating candle on top, the repellent doubles as a luminary. These look and smell great, but bugs hate them!
A Subtle Revelry had this idea to keep flies away from food: ramekins stacked with sliced lemons spiked with cloves. These will banish the buzzing insects. Set out the bowls about 30 minutes before the food goes to the table and your party will be free of pests (at least of the kind with wings).
Somebody Say Steak?
From Good Housekeeping, all 40 of their best grilling recipes might become your new summer favorites. From chicken and chops to steak and salad, these will spice up your outdoor eating from now through Labor Day!
Can’t Be Beat Treats
Cool down with these refreshing spiked sorbet recipes from She Knows. You can use an ice cream maker (no stovetop cooking required), just blend and freeze. Choose from Mango Mojito Sorbet, Watermelon Margarita Sorbet or Kiwi Colada Sorbet.
Popsicles are retro and renewed when you custom-design them to your sweet tooth. Paper and Stitch has a pink champagne Poptails recipe with grapefruit and edible flowers (optional), and one for iced coffee popsicles. Click here for more boozy adults-only pops, and for the wee ones, just pour fruit juice in a mold for them and to catch the drips – pop on a cupcake liner. Need molds? Target has a ton!
Fun for Young and Old
If you’re looking for a game to play – both kids and adults love Lawn Twister, and all you need are four cans of spray paint, a five-gallon bucket and some string. For the homemade version of “the game that ties you up in knots,” anyone can call out directions like, “Left leg, red!” to get things going – no spinner needed!
The Party’s On in Crystal Valley!
Home buyers in the master-planned community of Crystal Valley in Castle Rock have a host of choices for recreation and entertainment, and a beautiful selection of home designs to choose from. If you don’t live here yet, explore the architectural handiwork of Richmond American Homes, available in ranch or two-story models and priced from the high $300s. And – coming soon – new homes by D.R. Horton and Kauffman Homes!