Hey guys! Remember me? ???? I know it has been a while!! I took a little blogging hiatus as we worked on some home renovations to get ready for a graduation party for our 2nd son. We really didn’t need to get them done before the graduation but it was a good motivator. We had planned to finish these renovations several years ago after our first son graduated but honestly we got a little lazy. ???? The home renos are nearly completed and I will be sharing them with you soon. But first, I wanted to share some of our graduation party ideas for a garage party.Reading: how to decorate a garage for a partyWe had our first son’s graduation party in the backyard but it was very windy that day so it was hard to decorate for the party. Mr. Wonderful suggested having this party in the garage. Originally I wasn’t very thrilled about the idea of having a garage party but in the end it turned out great!!My biggest problem with it was that I really didn’t want all of our “junk” in the garage to be out on display for everyone coming to the party. Not that we have a super messy garage or anything, but it just didn’t look very pretty. The decorator in me wanted a nicely decorated themed party, of course! ???? Here are some of the ideas we used for our party that helped to dress up the garage for very low cost I might add. Bonus!!
Plastic Tablecloth Curtains
I looked on Pinterest for a solution to hide our junk and saw how some people hung plastic tablecloths or curtains along the sides of the garage to make it look more festive. The pictures I saw of colored tablecloths on the walls had a little too much color for my taste so I opted for plain white plastic tablecloths. I think it looks a little more classy this way too.We measured the distance of the sides of the garage we would be covering and I figured I needed about 21 tablecloths. I knew you could get them at the dollar store but I actually found some at Walmart that came in a package of 3 for 2.47!I wanted them to hang and drape like actual curtains instead of just straight plastic. In order to do that, we strung up some small string/rope across the length of the garage sides. We used some small hooks that screwed into the ceiling to hold the rope. Our garage only partially finished so it really didn’t make a difference to us to put the hooks up there. If yours is finished, you could always use command hooks.To hang the “curtains”, Mr. Wonderful just folded the edge of the tablecloth over the rope and taped it to itself. He used clothespins to aid in the process. Because we wanted them to drape like curtains, we did not tape along the whole length. We used clear packing tape and cut it into smaller pieces. Mr. W would clothespin the beginning and middle of the tablecloth to the rope to secure the tablecloth in place first. Next he would tape down the beginning and middle followed by 3 more pieces of tape spaced out in between. After the first half of the tablecloth was secure, he would slide it down the rope and work on the second half.Here is a tip we learned… make sure you don’t handle the tape too much or it may not stick to the tablecloth very well. We had a couple places that we needed to fix the next day due to this. After we replaced the tape with new non handled tape, they held up for a week!I LOVE how the curtains turned out. We had lots of compliments on them and some people even thought they were actual fabric curtains! Ha! They looked very classy and hid all of our junk! Mission complete! ????
Easy Festive Party Backdrop
Now that we had the white curtains up, I wanted to add a nice festive backdrop to add some color. This backdrop was really simple to make and inexpensive. It served as a great backdrop for pictures and could be used for that purpose exclusively. We placed ours behind the food table more as decor however. I wanted the backdrop to make a statement so I ordered these HUGE 2019 balloons. They actually came in a kit with the numbers, regular and confetti gold balloons and a gold fringe curtain.*There are links to products in this post that I use or are similar to products I use. If you buy something from one of these links, I may make a small commission (with no additional cost to you) from the purchase. I will not recommend anything that I would not buy myself.Obviously from the pictures, you can tell our school’s colors are purple and gold. We already had some decorations left over from graduation #1 like the paper lanterns, balloons and streamers. We had a couple different shades of purple with all the leftover and new decorations so I decided to embrace the different shades. This also allowed me to use our yellow decor with the gold balloons. I love how the backdrop brings together all the shades of purple and gold.To make the backdrop, we cut the different color paper streamers the length of one 8 foot table. Then we decided how long we wanted the backdrop to be (based on the wall size we put it on) and ran a strip of packing tape sticky side up over a couple tables. We taped down the ends of the tape to the table so it wouldn’t move on us in the process. We alternated the two shades of purple. Then added the yellow streamers in between every third purple. Finally we cut off single strands of the gold fringe curtain and added those in between the remaining purple streamers.Read more: how to measure band saw tires | Top Q&AWe added another long strip of packing tape over the first strip to sandwich the streamers in between and secure everything together. Lastly, we folded over the tape edge on the rope holding the plastic curtains and used binder clips to hold it in place.Instead of adding helium to the 2019 balloons (which I have heard can get very expensive!), we decided to fill them up with our air compressor and hang them from small hooks from the ceiling. This worked perfectly!
Globe lights make any space look better, amirite? They automatically give a space a party atmosphere. We had used these in our backyard for the last graduation party and I have to share a couple pictures because they looked spectacular! Especially in the evening. ????This time around we hung them from the garage ceiling using little hooks. We just went back and forth with them in a scalloped pattern. They helped to add some festiveness and hopefully detracted from the eyesores of the garage door openers. Ha!
I can’t take any credit for this brainchild! While I was inside making frosting for the cupcakes on the morning of the party, Mr. Wonderful was in the garage hanging the 2019 balloons. I really had no plan for the other balloons so he came up with this awesome idea! Aren’t they great!?They were like little chandeliers over the tables and food areas! They were super cute! I love how they all are different while still incorporating the different shades of colors.Again, these balloons did not have helium in them, we hung them from the ceiling. If you don’t want to create a bunch of holes in your garage ceiling you could use mini command hooks as an alternative. To make them, he just tied two inflated balloons together. He repeated this two more times as each cluster uses six balloons. Next he crossed two of the sets over each other to form a cross. Then he took the third set and wrapped it around the other two. You can twist it around a bit to secure the cluster if needed. Tie a string on the cluster to hang from and VOILA! ???? Perfect party decorations for low cost!
Graduation Party Food
We served taverns at our party. If you aren’t from the Midwest, you might not be familiar with the term tavern (aka loose meat sandwich). They are similar to a Sloppy Joe just not very saucy. I would describe them as more of a flavored crumbled ground beef sandwich. They don’t sound like much but are very good! I will have to share the recipe here on the blog. ???? We used an inflatable buffet cooler to keep some salads and veggies cold. Along with some chips and fruit and dips, it made for a good spread.We arranged the fruit on a 3 tiered tray. It looked so nice and was an fun and easy way to display the fruit. We also offered some cut up fruit with yummy fruit dip.Read more: How to start an herb farm businessFor dessert we had cupcakes with purple and yellow buttercream frosting. I enlisted my mom for help and showed her how to make our DIY cupcake liners. I took a page out of our Eagle Court of Honor decorating and used these crates again for the cupcake display. Although this time we only offered two flavors, chocolate and vanilla. ????I set some paper lanterns on top of the crates to add some color. Another tip for you… when you are decorating with paper lanterns, fill a small baggie with sand and place it inside the lantern to hold it in place. This way you can position them how you want and they won’t blow or roll away! ????The cupcakes are so good, check out this post to see the secret for making a box cake mix taste like bakery cupcakes and to get the buttercream frosting recipe!For the beverages we offered lemonade and an Italian Soda bar! We had the Italian Sodas at our first graduation party as well and they were a hit both times!The Torani syrups come in lots of different flavors! The flavors we offered were Raspberry, Cherry, Vanilla and Passion Fruit. We were supposed to have Strawberry as well but somehow ended up with two Cherry flavors. Oops! ???? We ordered these pumps to put into the bottles.The kids all love the sodas because they can choose whatever flavor(s) they want. We just used lemon lime soda for the base, we have seen club soda used before but we all think the lemon lime soda tastes better! I made up a fun chalkboard printable for instructions on how to make them. Feel free to download it and use it yourself if you want to! Make sure to buy lots of whip cream as people loved to load them up! Top with some fruit if desired and add a fun striped straw. Definitely picture worthy! ????On the other side of the garage we had a small gift table and a table with a TV set up scrolling through pictures of the graduate. I made the circle paper garland decorations for our first graduation. They are simple to make, just cut out different sized circles from colored and patterned papers then sew them down the center to connect them to create the garland. My MIL made the cute chest box to hold all our son’s cards. She makes them up for special occasions and they work great!Whew, that was a long post! Hopefully it gave you lots of fabulous ideas for your next party! It was a very fun weekend but I am glad it is done. Thankfully we had lots of family here to assist with the party. They were a big help!! Now we get to take a little time to relax before we get back to our renos! But not too long! ????Read more: how to tame a trex in minecraft
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