Thursday, June 28, 2018

Hallowedding 2016: DIY Centerpieces - Part 1

     We mulled over ideas for centerpieces for a very long time.  We both pinned numerous ideas on Pinterest.  In the end, we didn't use any of them.  We had twenty 8 foot tables to decorate and wanted to keep costs as low as we could.
     Halloween items started hitting the stores in August that year and the wedding was very near, so we went out to the local stores to get DIY ideas.  One of our first stops was at our local Dollar Tree.  We looked at the traditional vases and mirrors, but they were small and we would have needed several per table to fill the space.  Even at a dollar apiece, the price was really racking up and we didn't even have the stuff to fill them with yet.
     My bride-to-be found these very nice clear glass candle holders and plates.  She had the ingenious idea of gluing them together to make standing platters.  This would make the centerpieces larger, but not too tall, and we'd need only one per table.  We could paint them black and just make smaller items to fill the extra table space.  We decided to sit on the idea for an evening before we bought anything.
7" Glass Plate for $1.07 after tax at Dollar Tree.

Glass Candle Holder for $1.07 after tax at Dollar Tree.

     After going to a few other stores and collecting ideas we ended the evening grocery shopping at the local Walmart.  I was looking for a pack of paper plates for the house when I spotted these two items below.  My brain spins in a lot of crazy directions on DIY shopping day.  These trips can produce some very amazing creative ideas and some very strange terrible ones too.

Chinet Cut Crystal 10" Plastic Plates 20ct for $4.98 plus tax at Walmart.
Solo 9oz. clear plastic drinking cups 40ct for $3.98 plus tax at Walmart.
     The plates had a nice decorative edge, were sturdy, lightweight and the right number in the package.  The 9oz cups were a perfect height and turned upside down would be very sturdy.  I got very excited as I had just created centerpiece platters for less than $10 for all 20 tables.  It was going to cost us $43 to make ones using the Dollar Tree glassware.  While nice, we would have been stuck with trying to get rid of the glassware because I mean, where was I going to store them.  At least this way we could dispose of them or give them away without guilt.  We were going to paint the glassware black and we could still do that with these.  Now all I had to do was convince the bride-to-be.  Luckily, I didn't have to try very hard at all.  She loved the idea.  It was super crafty and we saved money!
     I went home and got out my trusty e6000 because that's what you use when you don't want your stuff coming apart ever again.  Once the gluing was done we stacked them and left them to cure overnight.

Chinet Plates and Solo Cups glued together with good ole trusty e6000.
     Next, we needed to paint them black.  Can you guess what I used?  ...that's right...  Spray paint!  Everyone knows how much I love this stuff.  I used Krylon Black with a Satin Finish.  These platters were not the main attraction, so I wanted something prettier than a matte but without too much shine.

     And here is the result...

Simple but tasteful

     Back to the Dollar Tree to find some inexpensive Halloween trinkets to put on these platers.  We debated on spider webbing or creepy cloth for the base of the platter top.  Creepy cloth won.  Spider webbing is nice but can be a bit tacky and is entirely overused.

Creepy Cloth from Dollar Tree. One can never have enough.
     We bought several of these, in both grey and black, because I always add more to my stash every year.  One can never have enough creepy cloth.  We only cut up a few into smaller pieces and stretched them a bit to warp them.  Then we laid each piece on top of the platters allowing them to droop off the edges a bit.
     I knew I wanted skulls on the platters but really decent looking ones can be rather expensive and I needed 20 of them.  So we found some really cheesy looking ones at the Dollar Tree.  I bought a case of 24.  I figured we were creative, we could figure out how to fix them up.  And we did after a few trials-and-errors.

Dorky Dollar Tree Skull from Dollar Tree.  Needs a serious facelift.

     We had 4 extra skulls to play with.  First, we tried to dry bush them to see if we could creep them up.  However, they were very cream colored and it took a lot of effort to get something we were semi happy with.  Then we thought, what if we cut out the eyes, slit the top open, cut out a tooth or two and put a flameless flickering candle inside?  Again it was a lot of effort.  It didn't look half bad, but we still weren't quite pleased with it.
     So of course, I brought up spray paint.  Of course, I did.  Bride-to-be was a little discouraged at this point and was willing to try anything.  We talked about colors.  We knew we had a lot of orange and black going on with the decorations and wanted something to stand out.  We went with orange but also added in purple and green.
     I spray painted the skulls and it tremendously improved the dorky looks on their faces.  The bride-to-be was happy.  However, Raven Fallweather (bride), being the glitter queen that she is decided they needed some magic and sparkle.  The venue we chose for our event had a very strict policy against glitter, so we bickered a bit on how to accomplish this.  I told her we'd have to seal them to prevent the glitter from flaking and again it seemed like it was starting to take too much effort.  Mod Podge to the rescue!  They make an extreme glitter version that dries clear, doesn't flake and didn't destroy the look of my nice paint job.

Here are the colors we went with.  In the dim light, the key lime looks less yellow.

Painted Skulls before Mod Podge Glitter is brushed on.  They don't look so dorky now.

Drying remaining skulls on stacked painted platters.

The Final Result on HalloWedding Day...

     The Modge Podge Glitter did not photograph well, but in person, it was a beautiful, subtle touch.  It also ended up on all the decorations.  Also pictured you will notice that we still went with a flameless flickering tealight candle on the platter.  The light-up skeleton hand candle torches were given to us by a dear close friend as a wedding gift.  We also had tons of leftover styrofoam glitter bones, pumpkins, and spiders from our Halloween tree decorations that we bought one year.  We threw those in for effect along with some plastic bugs we purchased at Dollar Tree.
     The small lanterns shown in the last picture above will be in another post, but to be honest, these were not our original idea, we just enhanced the project to suit our need.  I'll be linking to the original blog we found them on in the next centerpiece article (fingers crossed that I can find it again so I can credit them appropriately.)

Well, I hope you enjoyed this post.  Stay peculiar and I'll see you next time!

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