Centerpieces on a Budget: Nurses Day

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Centerpieces on a Budget

Some of you might remember, that about this time last year my hardworking cousin asked me to help out with a Nurse’s Day celebration she was organizing? Well, I guess I left an impression because she asked me to help again this year! This year’s theme, Italian Ristorante!

Working initially with an existing design from my shop (CUTE Italian themed printable kit!), I worked to create a relaxing environment for these nurses to enjoy their lunch.

Centerpieces on a Budget

At the entrance, I set up a handmade faux chalkboard “sandwich board” that simulated the menu boards I saw all over Italy when I visited a million years ago. It really set the mood because, I am not sure about you, but nothing relaxes me more than knowing someone else will be doing the cooking.

Centerpieces on a Budget

Now, I know it’s always a challenge working within a tight budget, trust me! But we wanted our guests to walk in and be wowed with some seriously charming centerpieces. We talked about this event around the office until we were blue in the face, so I’d like to share with you some of our “best practices” for making decorations appear to be without a budget.

Centerpieces on a Budget

First, save your wine bottles! They are your best friend when it comes to cheap vases… well, maybe not “cheap” because you have to spend $5-$10 for the wine in them. But you could do what I did – hit up your neighbors and you can collect enough in no time and without spending a dime. Here is the kicker…the labels can be a pain to remove. Soak them for as long as you can in the sink and that should make it easier. After removing the labels, we spray painted some white and some with black chalkboard paint, then wrapped jute around the bottom third to kind of represent that Chianti bottle look.

Centerpieces on a Budget

Next, I found some public domain images of “vintage” Italian labels and travel posters and was able to manipulate them enough to use them on soup cans, wooden crates, and in standing frames. Speaking of soup cans, they made the perfect vessel for small bouquets of sunflowers.

Centerpieces on a Budget

Our Nurses Day event is hosted in the Spring, so it was easy to come upon potted herb plants everywhere. They are inexpensive, beautiful, and fragrant. I added a basil plant and a rosemary plant to our wooden crates, tucked a bit of leftover burlap in, and voila! A perfect accent to a sweet setting.

Centerpieces on a Budget

Centerpieces on a Budget

What else? Well, of course because it is me… I HAD to design photo booth props. These Italian inspired photo booth props totally made the day more festive-if I do say so myself.

Centerpieces on a Budget

Want these props for your next Pizza Party? You can have them! With all these cool items, your guests will think they are in Italy. Wink wink. You can grab this set of printable Italian photo booth props for yourself right here:

2 slices of pizza
giant fork with pasta
cappuccino and espresso
red wine and glasses
paint palette and brush
Italian flag
gondolier boater hats
chefs hat
Italian bread
Parmesan chese
mini pennant banner of Italian flags +
chalkboard sign +

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