Monday, June 6, 2011

One Thing Always Leads To Another

You know how changing one thing in a room always leads to another change?  That is what happened after I made the shell wreath last week and hung it on the wall.  I liked the way it looked so much, that the centerpiece on the table looked out of place and in need of a little summer "pick me up."

The Old Time Pottery had a big sale a few weeks ago and I purchased some new place mats in a beautiful sea blue color for the table for only $.88 each which was a great price.  There were some napkins that I loved there in blues and tans which reminded me of the beach and ocean for only $.78 each (another bargain), so they all came home with me.  They had been sitting in the sack since then waiting for an inspiration.  The shell wreath was that inspiration.

Because we have to put a leaf in the table when we have company, I like my centerpiece to be something that can be moved easily without dismantling it every time and then having to put it back together.  This is what I came up with for the summer.

This centerpiece is easy and inexpensive. All of these items came from Dollar Tree (where else)?   I used a metal tray from the wedding section, two bags of sea glass in blues, greens and shades of tan,  a small basket of shells, a cylinder vase, two tea light candleholders and some yellow orchids.  If you are not familiar with sea glass, it is glass found on beaches along oceans, bays, rivers or large lakes that has been tumbled and smoothed by the waves, water and sand, creating smooth, frosted shards of glass. (Wikipedia). 
Sea glass comes in lots of different colors and shades and is really beautiful.  There will be another project with sea glass that I will show you later.

I placed the cylinder vase in the center of the tray,  mixed the sea glass so all colors were represented and put some in the bottom of the vase, filling it about 1/3 full.  Then, I set a tea light holder on either side of the vase.  I put 3 of the orchids in the vase and filled it with water.  The orchids were on a bush and I simply pulled three of the flowers off the stems.  The "silk" flowers we buy are really polyester for the most part and will float in water and are MUCH cheaper than real orchids.  Also, they do not have to be replaced every few days which is a plus.  (If you were using this centerpiece for a party or wedding reception, you might choose fresh orchids.)  Now, I mixed the shells and the remaining sea glass around the vase and candle holders on the tray.  I added a tea light to each candleholder and put one to float in the water in the vase.  Could that be any easier?  Total cost for this centerpiece would be $8.00.   This would also be great for a luau party, birthday party, shower or wedding reception.  The orchids are available in several colors, but I chose yellow because it goes with our decor.

Now, I needed some napkin rings.  Here is what I did - cheap and easy.  My two most favorite words.

The wire came from, you guessed it, Dollar Tree!  It also comes in several other colors, but I chose  the blue.  You will need some wire cutters and something round to make your shape.  I used the center from a roll of toilet paper.  I wrapped a piece of wire around the tube, leaving about a 2 inch overlap.   I opened the wire out and cut 5 more pieces the same length because I needed 6 napkin rings.  Next, I wrapped each piece of wire around the tube to make it round in shape and finished the top this way.  Wrap the left side of the wire over the right side, under and over .  Like this:

Now, wrap the left side over and under.  Then, use your wire cutters like pliers and bend the end of the wires into loops like this:
Doing this gives you a place to glue a shell.  I picked 6 shells of approximately the same size, placed a dollop of hot glue on the underside of each shell and placed in on the "figure 8" at the top of the wire.  The shells came from the basket of shells used for the centerpiece.

I placed the shell napkin rings around the napkins and finished decorating the table.  Two of the place mats were turned vertically so it gave the effect of a table runner down the center of the table.  We turn them horizontally when we are having dinner.  I just liked the way it looked.   Now, we have a beach look for summer and it is one more thing to help tie the beach/cottage look of the room together.

We may not have an ocean view out the window, but this will be a reminder of all the wonderful times we have spent at the beach.  Sure wish I was there now!

Everyday Donna

Things to Remember:

"Empty pockets never held anyone back. Only empty heads and empty hearts can do that."

- Norman Vincent Peale

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