Monday, May 9, 2016
This past weekend, I had the honor of co-hosting a baby shower for my sister-in-law. When planning, we hadn't decided on a theme, so our favorite invitation decided for us. These, from Vistaprint, inspired the shower theme for food and decor.
They were the perfect fit. My sister-in-law grew up in Florida, and who doesn't love a good nautical theme anyway?! (The one pictured is an online proof. The actual invite did, of course, include her name and the address of the venue). I knew that I wanted to create a large backdrop/centerpiece for a mantle or food table. I looked around online but didn't find exactly what I wanted, so I decided to make it myself. I'll post directions on what I did at the end of this post.
By the way, my brother brought his fancy camera for us to use so that I could get really good pictures. However, it started shooting in raw, and none of us could figure out how to make it go back to JPEG. So, we got camera phone pictures instead.
The nautical theme was carried on throughout the room with nautical pennant banners on each of the windows. Above the gift table, we had "Catches of the Day" on a red and white striped ribbon banner. The food had nautical names also: Ocean Water (blue raspberry/pineapple punch), Chicken of the Sea croissants (chicken salad), Sunset Spread (pimento cheese on toasted baguette slices), Yolk Boats (deviled eggs), Fruit Loot (fruit chunks in a boat-shaped bowl), Texas caviar, Sand and Sea cupcakes ("sand" was Fluffer Nutter and "sea" was vanilla buttercream in the cutest boat-shaped cupcake holders ever!). Here are some pictures of the wrapped utensils (complete with a life preserver) and the nautical food:
Oh, and because we didn't have enough to do that day, I also made the corsage. I called the local florist, but because it was Mother's Day weekend, they could not make a corsage for me. So, I looked up some videos on YouTube, went and bought fresh flowers and supplies, and made it myself
I could not have done all that I did without the help of my mom, my sister, and my sister-in-law's mother. They worked tirelessly to make this an unforgettable day. Now, it's time to spoil my nephew. Gotta go!
Before I go, here are my semi-step-by-step instructions on what I did to create the nautical backdrop:
I started with foam board from Home Depot (Foamular). It is pink and ugly in the beginning. It also has a plastic film on it.
I removed the plastic film and used Kilz white latex primer. Three coats later, it was looking decent.
Next were the nautical stripes. Standing in Wal-Mart, looking at and comparing masking tape to painter's tape, I tried to decide if painter's tape was worth the extra money. Then, I saw 2" masking tape and had an "Ah, ha!" moment. I would double it up (lined side-by-side) and use the part it covered for the white lines, greatly reducing the amount of actual measuring (and keeping straight lines) across all three boards. I used English Navy acrylic paint for the blue, and it was perfect.
The navy looks a bit darker in this picture than it actual is. I was completely thrilled with the way they turned out - especially that all of the lines were straight across all three boards. Thank God for small miracles. :) Next, I added the embellishments. The life preservers came from Oriental Trading. I handcrafted the anchor from cardboard. I used a large mug to measure the top circle, a yard stick for the center of the anchor, a hand-drawn stencil for the bottom part of the anchor, and a doTERRA bottle cap for the little circles toward the top of the anchor. Obviously, I don't know the names of the anchor parts (or, if they actually have names), but I hope you were able to follow along. After it was drawn, I cut it out using a razor blade and a pair of scissors. Next, I used the same primer as I used on the boards to paint it. Then, I brushed on Elmer's glue and glitter-ized it.
To attach the life preservers, I used anchor-printed navy blue ribbon that I found at Wal-Mart. I looped it through the preserver, then hot glued the ribbon to the back of the foam board. I used sprayed adhesive to attach the anchor. Of all of the crafts that I've done, this is in my top three favorites.