Friday, May 23, 2014

getting crafty

In preparation for my parents' 50th wedding anniversary, I put together some 'living' flower arrangements that my mom could replant outside or wherever she wanted after the party. The plants are in their own plastic storage bags(idea found here)that make it easy to water and keep moist without dripping out of the pot. I then covered up the plastic bags with moss kept moist with a spray bottle, twice a day. My color scheme was loosely based on this French blue tablecloth that I gave to my parents and was used for the party.

Bunting is quite popular and makes a festive and simple addition to any area. I chose a red, white and blue theme from some fabrics I have inherited from my mom.  Despite some harried moments with the sewing machine and the fabric, I think it came together mostly like I envisioned. I did follow suggestions for fusible interfacing in between the fabric from this post. But instead of sewing along the top, I inserted the jute first and then sewed the triangles closed over them, leaving extra space to slide the triangles along the jute for spacing. I also did not cut the jute until we hung it up at my parents house to make sure there was enough swag. In some of the photos of the bunting, you can see that I hadn't trimmed my sewing thread when I took the photos. I did tidy it up before it was used.

I also added some washi tape flags to my potted plants for extra flair. By the time I was done, there was a trio of flags of staggered heights using ribbon and tape in a couple of the plant arrangements. All of the plant pots came from Ikea, some from this season and some from last year's season. They do not have drainage holes but look very pretty.

I wanted a drink and dessert table, so we cleared some of the furniture away and set up a cherry desk in front of the bay window. I had hand-sewed three tea towels I found marked way down at Ikea and made a table runner for the desk. Here it is hanging dry after I hand-washed it the day after the party.  You will see it in some of the other upcoming photos from the actual party. Before decorating the table with our flower arrangements, food and drink, it did look strikingly like a communion table ready for the bread and wine, but thankfully not for long. In the end, it lent a rustic look to the table that seemed to fit well with our jute bunting which was hanging just above it in the window.

I ordered the cake from my parents' local grocery store bakery since they have enjoyed their cakes before. I asked for a tiered cake and upon my parents' request, it was marble cake with white creamy icing. It was delicious. The bakery decorated it with dots and scrolls and added some cake glitter to make the icing look just perfect. I supplied the cake topper in the form of cake bunting with two strands. The top fabric bunting matches the larger bunting I sewed. And the lower strand is ivory cardstock triangles with the year of my parents' wedding, 1964, printed in blue. I used white embroidery floss on the fabric strand and red and white butcher twine for the cardstock one. 
I used this page to pick a diamond template for my bunting triangle which I printed out, traced onto my fabric and paper. I lined them up on the string and then carefully hot glued them into triangles in the place I wanted them. Cardstock can be difficult to fold with a nice neat crease, so I used a sharp knife to make an indentation where I wanted the fold to be and it seemed to work out well when I made the actual fold. I left extra thread to give myself plenty to work with when assembling the bunting over the cake. I trimmed off a little, but left some to just hang as you can see in the photos. Most of our family and friends had never seen cake bunting before, so it was new to them even if it is all the rage right now. 
If I could do it over, I would have taken time to put fresh flowers and leaves on the top of the cake, but I was beginning to run out of creative juice by this time, so I just added my bunting flags in secret and brought the cake up from the basement refrigerator when it was time to cut it. It was well received and I was so pleased that I had managed to pull it off without ever having made one before. I will show the photos of my parents cutting the cake in the next post.

My goal for the party was to make things that could be used again for regular use or a special memento to save from the occasion. Since we did not print invitations for the anniversary party, the cake bunting, the fabric bunting and my sister's beautiful mason jars seen below can be kept by my parents to remember the special day.  The flower jars were gorgeous and we used them as centerpieces on the main table.  I had no idea she was making them, so it was a lovely surprise to have all these gorgeous flower arrangements with jars decorated to remember the day. The K on the jar is for my parents' last name in case you were wondering.  The lettering on the jars looks so perfect.

Next up, more photos from the party, including my parents, the guests of honor, in their own home.


  1. We used bunting to dress up our outside area when we had our daughter's 21st the other month. It looked great!

  2. Kathleen9:19 PM

    Mason jars make everything pretty....


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