Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Christmas Tea: Part 3

place card tags for a Christmas tea

Place cards are such a special touch and a few details can make them beautiful.  It takes a little bit of experimentation to come up with a design.  Brown kraft paper tags were my beginning of my idea.  I had the brown twine and the metallic washi tape.  I found the leaves rubber stamp set at a local craft shop, Creative Addictions.  The set is Fossil Leaves by Inkadinkadoo.  If you don't have a craft store near, Amazon sells them for less than $5.00.  The espresso ink pad used is by ColorBox.  I had been given a package of smaller white paper doilies and I wanted to incorporate them in some way.

My Pinterest board for many of the ideas and products I used can be found HERE.

In keeping with the simplistic design, I opted for clear plastic silverware from the dollar store.  At the Christmas Tea, platters of appetizers and desserts (in small portions) are served at each table; plastic silverware would make clean up so much easier.  I've got a silver/gray tablecloth and napkins from last year.  My napkin folded design would be a small rectangle shape with a pocket.  These place cards would be tied around the napkin.

In Publisher software, I created a table 4 columns by 2 rows.  By stretching this table to fit the paper, I adjusted to the size I wanted for my tags.  I edited the table format to have a dotted line outline for easier cutting on the paper cutter.  The names were typed in Landsdowne font, size 55 with placement at the lower portion of the rectangle shaped cell.

I printed a rough draft on plain white copy paper to check the size of the tags.  When I was pleased with the size and design, I printed it on brown card stock.  The tags were cut apart on the paper cutter.  I played with a blank tag to get the angles right; that tag served as a guide to trim the other tags.  With scissors, I clipped the top corners of the tags.  The square blue punch shown is a handy tool to have!  Slip the tag in, press down and the corners are now rounded.

I don't have step by step photos of the process.  I first stamped the tag with the leaves in espresso.  Next, I added the washi tape to the bottom edge.  White paper doilies were trimmed on the paper cutter to create a lacy edge.  I glued it on with a cheap craft brush and tacky glue.  A hole punch finished off the tag.  The brown twine was added and later tied around the napkin.

The church has beautiful vintage glass luncheon plates.  Among the different designs, I found two sets with a leaf design.  The dainty size of the plate and cup matches perfectly with the petite folded napkin.  

The addition of a little hostess gift bag was the final touch.  I bought clear little gift bags and brown paper filler.  The seed packets and assorted teas and chocolates were placed in the bags.  A little air dry clay ornament with a leaf stamp impression was tied with brown twine.

The overall table design came together in a way that was beautiful yet simple.  It was not easy to resist the urge to keep going with ribbon or other details.  Like art, you've got to be sensitive to the right time to stop.  Keep going and it will result in losing its main focus.

My unusual take on a table design for a Christmas Tea is much different than most.  In September, when I began forming my plans, I wanted to use decorative items I already had here at home.  Making the most of what's on hand is a great starting point.  Checking the second-hand stores and dollar store are another great idea.  My budget was quite limited because my daughter was hosting her own table this year.  I moved away from using seasonal decor items...maybe it's just my own personality and interests.  My table from 2014 had much more sparkle and winter-like details.  Nature seems to play into my decor in a big way.  

I'm hoping to get the watercolor palettes out soon.  So much has been going on lately.  I hesitate to get started because it's common to have a lot of interruptions that stagger my progress.  Next week, I'd like to share about calibrating the monitor display.  For anyone who might someday be interested in making prints of original artwork, it will be valuable information.  If  you've got any advice for me to add from your own experience, please email me or comment below.

Enjoy the rest of your week and we'll visit again soon!


because she must make art.

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