For my most recent article for Nashville Lifestyles Magazine, I featured a patriotic party perfect for the 4th of July. A few local stores helped me pull together the tablescape and a cozy firework watching spot and I created a fun drink, pre-meal snack and even a “mock”tail for the kiddos. There were also a few DIY elements for those of us who just throw a party without making it a little more personal.
Digital scrapbook paper found on Etsy and a little help of Microsoft Word helped create the invitation. Start by inserting the jpeg file into your document and then insert a text box over the picture. You can change the fill color of the text box as well as remove the line color for a more seamless look. Also, try using different fonts to add a little more dimension and pizzazz to your invitation. I found this thin red, white and blue striped ribbon in the fabric/craft section of Walmart and also used it other areas of the party for a cohesive appeal.
The table featured a layered place setting with straw place mats, rattan chargers and white plates. Blue glassware, red striped white napkins with beaded rings and a ribbon-trimmed blue runner all added to the festive table. Centerpieces don’t have to involve complicated arrangements. A seasonal wave petunia placed in a white urn adorned with flags was easy and inexpensive.
Caprese Skewers are so easy and fun and make a perfect pre-meal snack. Set up a station for your guests to make their own and save yourself a little time. Add a little striped ribbon to the skewers for a patriotic flair. I found red, white and blue melamine dishes in the Summer section at Kroger. Place cherry tomatoes, basil, and fresh mozzarella cubes in separate bowls and have another bowl of a balsamic vinegar, olive oil and salt mixture with a basting brush and your guests will have lots of fun making and eating this fresh snack.
Fresh & Tasty 4th of July Menu
Caprese Skewers (see above)
Uncle Sam’s Patriotic Punch (see below)
- 1 bottle dry white wine (Pinot Grigio or unoaked Chardonnay)
- 2/3 cup white sugar
- 1.2 pint blueberries
- 6-8 large strawberries, hulled and sliced
- 1 bottle Prosecco
- 2 Asian pears, sliced
- In a large pitcher, add white wine. Add sugar, blueberries and sliced strawberries. Stir and let chill overnight. Before serving add Prosecco and sliced pears. (If you want to serve immediately, serve over ice rather than chilling overnight). For a festive touch, cut pears into stars with a metal cookie cutter.
Bring out your blankets and pillows to create a cozy place to watch the fireworks. Add citronella candles to your lanterns to help ward off unwanted guests. If you have little ones, replace the candles with battery operated candles for safety, but keeping the ambiance in play. A festive banner can also be made by printing the digital scrapbook images on white card stock and using a pennant template found online to cut out the shape. String them together with a thin rope and use throughout your party. Small American flags can also be found at most craft stores and are perfect for finishing touches in every room.
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