Red, White & Blue: Patriotic Table Décor

Studio 5 Party, Holiday and Ideas Contributor Alisa Bangerter shares some ideas.



• A good investment would be to purchase a basic red tablecloth. Red tablecloths can not only be used for patriotic parties or picnics, but are great for Valentine’s Day, Christmas or for general use.

• Cover tables with red, white or blue roll paper (available at craft or school supply stores). Sponge paint stars over paper or spatter with acrylic paint to resemble fireworks. This would be a great project to involve kids in and the great thing about these tablecloths is that they are disposable and inexpensive. You could also just cover the tables with plain paper and let guests color on them with red, white and blue crayons.

• Patriotic fabric comes in many fun designs. Fabric can make great tablecloths or table runners. Look for after holiday sales to get fabric cheap for next year.

• Paint clothespins patriotic colors and attach to the hems of tablecloths to act as weights on a windy day.

• Staple cut out paper stars (or use glue dots) around the edges of plastic table coverings. Use a star paper punch to punch out matching stars to sprinkle down the center of the table.

• Write patriotic trivia, facts, questions or jokes on paper tablecloths or placemats to add to the décor and add conversation.

• An easy centerpiece is to let the dessert double as the décor. Place patriotic decorated cupcakes on a cupcake tree and place in the center of the table(s). Another option would be to dip pretzel rods in white chocolate and then roll in red, white and blue sprinkles. Place bunches of the pretzel rods in containers down the center of the tables. Also if you have made a big patriotic dessert such as a cake or trifle, use that as part of your centerpiece so everyone can enjoy your work.

• A delicious centerpiece would be to place bowls of fresh berries and pieces of sponge cake in bowls down the center of the table. Place cans of whipped topping among them.

• Make your own customized patriotic wraps using scrapbook supplies for drink bottles, or condiment bottles and jars.

• Let guests decorate their own plastic cups with stickers, markers, etc.

• Place a birthday cake in the center of the table(s) and for dessert, sing happy birthday to the USA. Use sparklers as candles.

• Fill a variety of glass containers with red, white and blue candy (m&m’s licorice, taffy, etc.) and place down the center of the tables.

• Fill a variety of clear jars or vases with water. Tint the water blue or red. Add bunches of white flowers. Carnations will take on the color of the water if allowed to sit in the water a day or two.

• A simple centerpiece would be to take a cone of Styrofoam and add a flag in the top. Cover the entire cone with red, white and blue lollipops. Kids would love this.

• Sponge paint stars or other patriotic designs on clear canning jars or clay pots. Wrap a ribbon around the top of the jars. Fill with fireworks such as sparklers or other items such as pinwheels, flags, flowers, etc. If using fireworks they will be readily available when dusk comes.
• 12″ x 12″ scrapbook paper or cardstock makes great placemats.

• Kitchen towels make great napkins, especially for a barbecue where there may be messy foods. Red and white checked towels are some of my favorites to use. These wash up great.

• Bandanas also make quick and easy napkins. Bandanas also are fun when folded into a pinwheel shape and placed on each plate.

• Firecracker napkins can be easily made by rolling up napkins, tying a ribbon around to hold shut and adding a strip of paper out of the top to create a “fuse”.

• An easy napkin ring is to use a star cookie cutter. This can also double as a favor – attach a fun cut-out red, white and blue cookie recipe as a bonus.

• Small boxes of age appropriate fireworks would make nice favors.

• A quick napkin ring is to place a cardstock star on a strip of cardstock and wrap around a napkin. Add glitter if desired. Write the name of each guest in the middle of the star and use as a place marker.

• A simple wired ribbon can be a great addition to a table when tied around a napkin.

• A large patriotic bow tied to the back of a chair with a tag or star name card attached can be a more elegant way to create a place card for seating.

• Use flag picks or other red, white and blue picks in the tops of hamburgers, sandwiches, cupcakes etc. This can add a lot to the décor.

• Use a variety of red, white and blue tableware. Mix and match. You might be surprised what you have in your cupboards. Paper products also work well when mixed and matched. If serving on clear plates, attach a paper star to the underside of each plate.

• Make simple star garlands (think garland of paper dolls) to hang around or use as table runners.

• Have patriotic coloring pages available or have all the children coming to the party bring a patriotic picture they made and hang them up as décor. You could even judge them and give prizes if you wanted to.

• Line walkways to your home with small flags to welcome guests. Flags can also be placed in hanging baskets, flower planters, etc. to help add atmosphere.

• Don’t forget to have some patriotic music playing in the background during dinner.

• Display the Declaration of Independence as part of your table décor. Mini copies would make nice favors.


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