Summer is here, and it's bringing endless reasons to gather friends and family together for dinner parties, brunches, and holiday celebrations. Before you know it, it’s your turn to entertain. You plan a delicious menu, pick up the season’s freshest ingredients, and pop open a few thirst-quenching beverages. However, amidst all the planning it can be easy to forget one critical detail: setting the scene with a beautiful summer table setting.
A stunning tablescape can pull your whole event together, but upgrading your décor can get quite expensive. To stay on budget, save on the decorations by repurposing everyday items from around the house.
Whether you plan on entertaining or just want to revive your dining décor for the season, continue reading for eight simple and inexpensive table setting ideas to try this summer!
1. Show off the Fruits of Your Labor
Make a statement at your next party by ditching the basic glass vase and arranging flowers in a pineapple. Making a vase out of this tropical fruit is a quick project that is guaranteed to wow your guests!
To assure your vase will be stable, pick out a pineapple that stands up straight on its own. Begin the transformation by removing the top from the pineapple. Next, carefully cut a circle around the rim and scoop out the inside. Fill a small cup or votive with water and place it inside the hollowed pineapple to keep your flowers fresh. Finally, trim and assemble your bouquet.
When finished, you’ll have a sensational centerpiece and tasty pineapple to serve. Plus, the prickly fruit symbolizes hospitality, so it's an excellent way to welcome guests!
2. Get Krafty
Are you looking to give your dining space a sense of rustic charm? Pick up a roll of brown kraft paper and run strips of it across the width of your table at each seat. Add a handmade touch by using chalk to draw place settings. Though you shouldn’t stress over having perfect drawings, you can trace around a plate and utensils for a foolproof guide.
To go a step further, write out guests’ names at each setting in lieu of using place cards. If there will be kids attending, leave out a few sticks of chalk to keep them entertained during the meal.
For round tables, cut off smaller sections of the kraft paper to make individual, customized placemats.
3. Make a Vegetable Work of Art
Flower arrangements are classic decorations, but why not mix things up this season by adorning your tabletop with a medley of vegetables instead? Skip the florist and turn to your own veggie garden, or the produce section of your local market, for your next summer soirée!
Display veggies in an assortment of jars or vases in varying sizes and heights for the perfect touch of farm-to-table charm. Alternatively, line the center of your table with bowls or a narrow tray filled with chopped veggies that guests can snack on throughout the evening.
4. Gift Wrap Your Runner
A cheap and easy way to dress up your dining space is to run a roll of wrapping paper down the length of your table. Utilize leftover gift wrap you have at home, or pick up a new roll that compliments your setting. Either way, you’ll be able to test different colors and patterns without investing in an expensive table runner.
An added bonus of the wrapping paper runner is that you won’t have to worry about any spills.
5. Freshen Up Your Place Cards
Set the scene for summer gatherings by integrating bright pops of yellow into your color palette. A great way to incorporate the sunny color is to welcome your guests to the table with delightful lemon place cards. You can create these heat-resistant, budget-friendly place cards in a few simple steps.
Cut small strips of paper, or use gift tags, to write guests’ names on. Attach the name cards to each lemon with a piece of twine, string, or ribbon. For an additional splash of color, pair each lemon with a bright green leaf or a lime. Yellow and green are a naturally cheerful combination!
TIP: If you have extra lemons on hand, go a step further and stack them in a bowl or vase to create a citrus centerpiece.
6. Channel the Garden
Create a whimsical feel at your next event by channeling nature. Get outside and clip some greenery to build a vibrant, au natural display. Double check that you haven’t brought in any dirt, then arrange the foliage on the table. Using unexpected and unusual elements in your tablescape will make a bold and confident statement.
7. Sweeten the Centerpiece
There’s no time better than summer to indulge in the season’s freshest strawberries! They not only are healthy and delicious, but also can be used to decorate your next brunch.
Form a swirly line of vibrant red berries around the middle of the table to make a centerpiece that is almost too pretty to eat. Be sure to set the berries on top of something disposable or washable in case those juicy berries leave behind any marks.
8. Make Custom Menus
Elevate your tablescape by making customized menus for your next get-together. Personalized menus give an air of sophistication, but are actually quite inexpensive to make.
Type and print the menus from home, or write out your courses by hand. Decorate the menus with basic office or craft supplies, and let your creativity run wild!
TIP: The menus can also double as place cards by including each guest’s name.