By Wendy Moyle
The right dress makes the perfect evening...
the right decorations make the perfect event.
Just as choosing your event dress and accessories is crucial to your special evening, so is selecting the right atmosphere for your big event. Both decisions can be difficult and overwhelming, especially when it comes to selecting your decorations.
Often, you step into the room where your event will take place and helplessly look around. The place is huge, the ceilings seem to rise up to the sky and you say to yourself, "How will I ever decorate this place? Where do I start?"
Don't panic! Event decorating can be fun and exciting. With a specific plan, the right products, a dose of creativity and some hard work, you can transform any space into the right setting for your prom, pageant or special event. The following are some tips to get you started.
|Dazzle your guests with wonderful decorations that complement your theme. These star theme decorations set the mood for a night that is magical. |
Choose a Theme
Start by choosing a theme for your event. This will help you define the look and feel of your space, and will also guide your choice of music, invitations, favors and other accessories. Your theme can be a destination (some popular destination themes are Paris, Jungle, Asian and Tropical), a general romantic theme (consider timeless favorites like stars, castles, underwater and celestial) or something more festive and upbeat (try Mardi Gras, Hollywood or a city theme).
Select Theme Colors
Next, select two or three colors that complement your theme. Try to incorporate a metallic color into this mix for sparkle and shimmer, especially if your event will be held at night. For a star theme, choose blue, silver and white. For a Hollywood theme, black, red and gold will dazzle and shine. For a tropical theme, pink, green and yellow will brighten up your room. Keep in mind that if you don't want a specific theme for your event, then you can always go for a basic color theme.
Cover Your Walls, Floors
If the walls in your event room clash with your theme colors, then you'll definitely want to conceal them with something that better suits your theme. Seamless paper and poly vinyl are just a few of the materials you can use to cover unsightly walls, floors, doors and more. If you have assistance from your Art Department, then seamless paper can be used as a "canvas" to create a distant sunset, a tropical scene or a starry night to complement your theme.
Choose background materials in your theme colors for a cohesive look. You can also choose these materials with a pattern to match your theme, such as a star pattern or a water design.
Use Gossamer to Transform Your Room
If you haven't worked with gossamer before, then you're in for a real treat! This lightweight non-woven "fabric" is truly a decorating marvel. Gossamer can be used to create a number of different looks, including backgrounds, ceilings, wall and door coverings, and table decorations. You can also use gossamer to create stunning swags, bows, drapes and more. Gossamer comes in a wide array of colors, patterns, and metallics, and in widths and lengths to suit any decorating need.
Cover unsightly chairs with gossamer for a fraction of the price of chair covers, or hang a ray of gossamer behind your stage to create an elaborate focal point. Theme gossamer, like star-patterned gossamer, can be hung across ceilings with twinkle lights underneath to create a starry sky. Water-patterned gossamer can be bunched and draped to create waterfalls or ocean waves.
Set Your Theme with Large Decorations
Choosing large decorations is the next part of the decorating process. These will help bring your theme to life, section off areas of your room, and add depth and detail to your space. Place a large arch at the entrance. Add columns around the room that complement your arch. Columns work especially well when they are placed next to doors, stages and windows. Balustrades help divide your room into different areas so you can separate the dance floor from the eating area, for example. Trees, both real and fake, fill corners and can be covered with twinkle lights for a wonderful touch. Balloon arches and balloon strands in your theme colors look festive and will fill larger areas for a very small price.
Create a photo setting in one of the corners of the room. Use a column and pedestal as the photo backdrop. Swag gossamer between the column and the pedestal. Add an array of balloons and shred to the floor around these items. In a pinch, a simple metallic curtain serves as a great photo backdrop.
Add Accents with Small Decorations
Once you have your large decorations in place, you will want to focus on smaller items to accent your room. Die-cut shapes like stars can be added just about anywhere. Suspend some from the ceiling using monofilament line (available at hardware stores). Affix die-cut shapes to walls and doors, and spread them out on your floors to create a walkway into your event room. Add balloon bouquets to the corners of your room and on either side of your stage area. Don't forget to use balloon weights and curling ribbon in your theme colors to keep your balloon bouquets in place.
|It's easy to create stunning tables at your event. Start with tableware and accessories in your theme colors and then add favors for the finishing touch. |
Jazz Up Your Tables
Start your table decorations by choosing your centerpiece. Add metallic or tissue shred around the centerpiece along with a sprinkling of confetti. Next, choose a table cover and table skirt in your theme colors. Select a placemat for each placesetting (larger die-cut items make great placemats!). Add cutlery and plates in coordinating colors. Use garland as unique napkin rings and to trim the edges of your tables.
Order personalized napkins printed with your event details and a theme design. Display these on top of each plate, wrapped around cutlery or inside glassware. Cover chairs with a piece of gossamer and then tie a bow around the back of the chair using gossamer streamers in a different color. Finally, add candles to your tables for shine.
Dazzle and Delight With Favors
Favors are a great way to thank your guests and add to your d�cor. Be sure to personalize them with a design and your event details. You can display them during the event, as they will add an extra decorative touch to your tables. Don't save them in boxes until the end of the evening.
Picture frames make wonderful favors and can be used in a number of different ways. One idea is to insert menus into the frames and display them at each placesetting. Or, place a card with each guest's name and table assignment inside the frame and use it as a placecard. At the end of the evening, guests can take the frames home as a special memento.
Key tags are another classic favor that can be displayed and utilized during the event. Simply slip your napkin into the key tag and place it in the middle of each plate for a fun and decorative look. Whatever favors you choose, be sure that they coordinate well with your theme and look appealing on display.
These ideas will make decorating for your next event successful and enjoyable. Good luck and happy decorating!
Prom Committee Tips
Recruit as many volunteers as possible to help with your decorations.
Prepare an outline of everything that needs to be done and assign volunteers to specific tasks.
Do as much of the decorating prior to the day of the event (except inflating balloons!).
Have a supply of ladders, staple guns, pins, spray adhesive, scissors and masking tape.
Use a balloon inflator and other tools to help with your decorating.
Relax and have fun!