On Monday I mentioned that I hosted a table at the Help a Mother Out benefit tea a few weeks ago. To be honest, I’ve never really thought of myself as the type of person to host tables at benefits. I strongly support the work that HAMO does though, so when my friend Lisa asked me if I was interested in hosting I decided I should step out of my comfort zone and give it a try.
My main jobs as a hostess were to invite people to sit with me and to set a pretty table. My friend Heather agreed to split the inviting task with me and I set to work on the decorations.
I decided to go with a sort of whimsical theme in bright candy colors. Think stripes, polka dots and rainbow colors. I decided to stick with plain white for the dishes because there was no need to worry about matching colors and also because those are the only dishes I have.
Basic linens were provided for us in a pale grey color, but I felt that was a little boring so I make a quick table cover by hemming a large square of orange polka dot fabric. When I laid it on the table at the venue, I found it was exactly the same size as the table. Score! I also brought bright red and yellow tea pots from home and bought a big bunch of multi-colored tulips on the way to the tea to use a centerpiece.
A few days before the tea I saw this cow creamer at Target and had to get it. Hecka cute, isn’t it?
I decided each place setting needed a little something more so I also put together these pinwheel place cards. I used little bud vases from the craft store as the base, then made the pinwheels from materials I (mostly) had on hand.
Here’s how I did it:
This is what I used to make this:
- Pins with balls on the ends
- 3 inch square pieces of double-sided paper. I used paper from this pack with stripes on one side and dots on the other.
- 8 inch cookie sticks — these are kind of like lollipop sticks only bigger
Start by boring a hole into the end of the cookie stick. This is the hardest part of this project and a bit of a pain in the patoot. I started off by poking the hole with a thumbtack, but I had to work really hard to get it all the way through, so then I switched to pounding a small nail through the stick with a hammer. It took a couple tries to get the hang if that but it was much easier once I did.
Next, Poke a hole in the center of your paper with a thumbtack. Cut slits in your paper starting from each corner and stopping about 1/4 inch from the center hole.
You also need to poke a hole in one of the sides at each corner. It doesn’t matter which side you go with, but be sure to choose a side and stick with it — always on the right or always on the left.
Start making the windmill shape by poking one of your pins through the holes in each of the corner.
Once you have the pin poked through all four corners, poke it through the hold in the center of the paper.
Then poke the pin through the hole in the stick.
You can just bend the pin down to secure it at this point, but I was afraid that someone would poked themselves on it and turn against Help a Mother Out and tea parties in a blind fury* so I clipped the pointy end off with wire cutters and then twisted into an un-pokey circle with needle nosed pliers.
* (It’s possible I’m a little bit prone to worrying.)
Like this! See? No longer pokey!
And now you have a cute little windmill! Ta da! They don’t turn around very well, but they are mostly meant for show, so it’s OK.
Have you hosted a tea party lately? Ever?