Is there anything that hasn’t been made for the Fourth of July? Statue of Liberty tiaras? Been there. Star spangled pool float? Done that. Patriotic party horns, visors, water bottle holders – the list goes on. All month I worried about what to make for this week’s column.
Recently I checked out a party store and noticed scores of plastic banner swags for the front porch. I let out a huge sigh of relief. I knew with all the cool scrapbook papers on the market, it would be a cinch to make my own Fourth of July version.
There are two ways to approach this idea: fast or artful. To make a speedy version, simply cut your red, white and blue scrapbook paper sheets into circles, slip them over a long piece of string, and use a glue stick to secure. However, if you really want to show your Americana pride – make paper collages for each of the banner pieces, or embellish them with stamped designs. Even better, summon the spirit of Betsy Ross and use fabric, interfacing, ribbon, and a sewing machine. Add some glitter or tassels for that sparkly fireworks effect.
Here are some other ideas for Fourth of July crafting:
– Use glass paint and glitter to dress up glass Coca Cola bottles. Use them as centerpieces.
– Buy a pack of white paper placemats and use a silver metallic marker to write quotes from the Declaration of Independence (“We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”)
– Paint papier-mâché stars in red, white, and blue and use monofilament wire to hang from the ceiling.
– Set out a bulletin board with colorful papers and pens and ask each guest to write down what the word independence means to them.
– Make an Independence Day-themed music playlist, burns copies onto CDs, slip them into decorated envelopes and pass out to guests or random people you encounter that day as random act of kindness.
Independence Day Paper Swag
1 spool of string or ribbon
12 sheets of scrapbook paper (4 red, 4 white, 4 blue)
Decorative Edge scissors
Directions: Fold one sheet of paper in half and cut the corners so you have a circle shape. Use the hole punch to add accents along the edge. Repeat with the remaining sheets of paper. Stretch out the string and leaving a six-inch tail, slip one of the folded circles over the top of the string, so it rests in the crease. Use the glue stick to seal the paper together. Leave a two-inch space and add the next piece. Continue until the banner is complete.
Variation: You can also use fabric or doilies or make your banner. For rustic “Americana” look, use light sandpaper to age the paper and sew the ends together.