"I do not claim that I can tell a story as it ought to be told. I only claim to know how a story ought to be told." -Mark Twain


Junk In My Trunk...and Using It!!......

My Dr. Seuss table was so well received and I am very flattered. It was fun to create. So many people commented on aspects of the table, that I thought it would be fun to show how easy it is to use the things we have to make the ordinary become extraordinary. The base of my Seuss table was a floor puzzle I got at the bookstore. It was big, colorful and sturdy. Perfect!
The base of my Seuss table was a floor puzzle I got at the bookstore. It was big, colorful and sturdy. Perfect!
There are all kinds of puzzles that would work for tablescapes or parties.

The napkin rings in the Seuss tablescape were really
Peppermint candy rings, bought on clearance.
The 'ring' part is plastic which I snipped with a 
pair of scissors to fit right over the 'napkin'.
There are SO many different kinds of
candy rings that can be used.
There are keychains that can be used as well.

Not to mention I love buying after a holiday.
I bought these placemats at half off the $2.70 price.
They are velvet and luxurious.
They were bought after Christmas.
But they worked perfectly for Valentine's Day as well!

The same thing with the LOVE signs.
They were bought at 90% off in a package of 4 after Christmas.  
As soon as I saw them I thought of Valentine's Day.
The doves were bought in the fall at Michael's.
I presume they were left over from wedding season.
I bought about a dozen of them and did 
"Peace on Earth" Christmas ornaments with them.
Come to think of it, that would have been a perfect tablescape!
But, the ones that were left over were also used in a 
Valentine's Tablescape,
as lovebirds!

My napkins last week were really washcloths from Wal-Mart.
Since I was having a (young-age) childrens Seuss party, I knew I needed a 'sturdy' napkin.
With a little ribbon, the washcloths became perfect napkins!

The centerpieces were also bought at 90% off.
They were red and white suckers bought after both  
Christmas and Valentine's Day.
I put them in ziploc bags and plan to reuse them again.
(I kept the plastic wrap on the suckers as well).
The 'place-cards' were really bulletin board materials
from Oriental Trading.
They have great sales as well if you watch for them!

The base of my football table was really a 
childrens rug that looked like a 
football field.
It even came with miniature goalposts.
I used an old megaphone as part of the centerpiece,
and pom-poms we picked up at a ballgame sometime.

"Place-mats" at the football table were really 
practice jerseys for little boys.
Perfect size for "placemats"!
"Ref" whistles bind the silverware together.
On my winter-snow tablescape I needed something for the napkin ring. The table was all whites, silver and light blues.
I rummaged around and it hit me......
Snowflake cookie cutters would be perfect!

For my March Madness tablescape I decided to 
simply use my
kitchen table.
I bought some colored painters tape and told 
my 20 year old son to create a
basketball court for me.
He went to town and created a perfect 
basketball court.
All I was out was the cost of tape.

For my Easter table I 
bought a remnant of green turf carpet 
at Lowe's.
I took the remnant home and cut it into squares.
I have used the 'grass' placemats for 
and golf.
There are probably other times I could use them as well.
That was a very cheap way to get 8 placemats.
I also picked up a bunch of carrot "baseball bats" in
the Easter section at Wal-Mart last year.
They were $1 a piece (and each even came with a ball).
I put a little stain on each of them to make them less
neon orange.
I hid the 'handle' part of the bat (see the picture two above),
and used them as giant carrots
in my Easter tablescape.
That cost me $5!

For my Oklahoma Land Run (western) tablescape
I needed some kind of rustic base. 
I rummaged around and used my roll of 
upholstery binding.
We wove it into a pattern in the middle 
and just let it drape across the edges.
It looked great!

In my Mad for Plaid tablescape
at Christmas,
I used a collection of plaid tins.
None of them were over $2.
They were collected over a few years, BUT 
when  grouped together,
on a piece of fabric that was folded up,
they make a striking statement.
The little sacks holding greenery are
simply plaid gift bags.
Just the grouping of them all together
makes them look more impressive.

On my Father's Day tablescape I knew I wanted to use 
I gathered up a bunch of colorful ties
my sons had used.
I simply draped them across the round table I was using.
I used a big galvanized tray in the middle of the table,
and I folded the tie under so that it 
bumped against the tray.
I used golf head covers and 
(new!!) golf gloves
to hold the silverware and napkins
on that same table.

For my Cinco de Mayo table I used a 
Mexican (plastic) banner 
one of the teachers at our school had thrown out.
There were some rips in it, so she had thrown it away.
I knew that plates would cover any holes in the banner.
It was colorful and went with the table perfectly.
Cost = no money!!

On last year's Dr. Seuss table I used plastic
word squares I found
in the back to school section at Wal-Mart.
A whole big plastic box of them were just a couple of dollars.
I had no idea what I was going to do with them
when I bought them.
They worked perfectly for this table.

I put cotton candy on top of cupcakes to represent
Thing 1 and Thing 2.
The cotton candy was $1 for bag.
(Hint--Don't put the cotton candy on until right before you are to use the cupcakes!)

On my Memorial Day tablescape I made my centerpiece
out of a big serving bowl we already had.
In it, I posted pictures and other military memorabilia
from members of our family.
I surrounded it with flags.
Now only was it nice to look at,
it was entertaining for everyone to look at everything.
I used "chip clips" to hold my hand-written placecards.

At the rehearsal dinner I threw for my son in October,
our caterer backed out less than 24 hours before the dinner.
I went from having a Chuckwagon Dinner catered, to having 
to make the dinner myself and decorate for a big crowd.
We held the dinner in a barn,
and went with the western theme we had planned on the 
caterer to supply.
I simply used black tablecloths and put a burlap feedsack in the center of each table.
I gathered up lanterns and chinese style boxes that looked like bandanas. I filled the boxes with treats for each table.
I used battery operated candles I had bought at 
Hobby Lobby for 90% off.
I got them cheap because they were initial candles. But they were all the initials Q, Y and Z.
I covered them with burlap and ribbon and used them
for centerpieces.

For my Earth Day tablescape, I knew I needed to use 
all natural "earthy" elements.
I took old grapevine wreaths I had and took them apart.
Each wreath made two "chargers".
Not only were they perfect, 
they looked beautiful on the table.

And what to do with an old
plate hanger I no longer used?
Well I had four of them
sitting in the garage.
Obviously, I KNEW plates would fit on it
since they were plate hangers 
to begin with!
So they became the 
perfect chargers!
The point of this long post?
Use the junk you have...
Think outside the box.
Hmmmm...how else could I use that?
Hmmmm...what would work for this party that I already have?
Hmmmm....what can I use for this table that I bought on clearance?
Think about it....and use the junk in your trunk!


  1. What a great metamorphosis! You are queen of the tablescapes. Well done.

    I am having a hilarious Linky party with prizes this Wednesday. Details are on my blog today.
    I hope you'll join in on the fun.

  2. Woweee! I LOVE all of those tablescapes, fantastic!

  3. Good ol' Dr. Seuss! My daughters love his books and they would covet that big puzzle you have - LOL!

    By the way, we have a Swap Followings Linky Party going on right now where you get to meet excellent bloggers and increase your followers in the process. It's easy to join - just whip up a post and include the party button in the post then link up and start following other bloggers in the party so they can follow you, too. I'll be honored if you party with us at http://www.homemakeronadime.com/2011/03/swap-followings-linky-pary-030711.html. See you there :)


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