Thursday, February 9, 2012

Fall Theme Welcome Reception

Last fall our church hired a new Worship Pastor, so to welcome him
and his wife, we had a meet and greet type reception. The church
asked if I would take care of the decorations, so of course, I said yes!!!

I didn't have a whole lot of time to plan or to make lots of things specifically
for this reception, so I decided to work with what was already available.
Luckily, last spring, there was a beautiful baby shower at the church, and
a lot of the decorations were still being stored in the attic (check out my friend
Jerica's blog about the baby shower for her sister here... it was amazing! She and her
sister both throw such great showers!!) So I asked if we could borrow some of those
items, and just repurposed them to work for the reception.
At the baby shower, these yarn balls (which were also used at Jerica's wedding!)
had paper flowers attached to them and were strung up behind the food table.
I removed the paper flowers, and attached red, orange, and green leaves to them.
Then hung them up around the welcome sign. They may have been my favorite
part about the whole shower! Maybe sometime I will blog about how to make
them - they are super cheap, super cute, just a little time consuming, and MESSY.
Here they are at the baby shower:

And here is how I changed them up for the reception:
Also at the baby shower, a tree was cut in pieces to make "chargers" for
each place setting. One side of the wood was painted, but the other side
was blank. So I used the blank side as part of the centerpiece.
At the baby shower:

At the reception:
For the rest of the centerpiece, I went out and gathered sticks and limbs.
Then my sister and I grabbed a hand saw and just started arranging the sticks
into vases filled halfway with stones.  Then we hot glued fake leaves to the sticks,
and added a burlap bow. This arrangement sat on the piece of wood.
I also made more fabric vases using a variety of red, tan, yellow, orange, and
green fabric and added one fabric vase per table. I raided the church's prop room
and found a ton of old burlap fabric. We cut this fabric and sewed the edges to
make table runners. It ended up taking a lot longer than we anticipated to make
 the edges perfect, and we made a HUGE mess, but I think it ended up
looking AmAzInG, so it was worth it =)

Another decor item that was borrowed from the shower were what I call
log holders. It was small pieces of a tree with a hook drilled in it. At the baby
shower, maternity pictures were put in these holders.  Since they were so stinking cute, I
wanted to use them so badly at the welcome reception, so I used them as food signs.
How they were used at the baby shower:

How we used them at the reception:

P.S. The cans wrapped in twine with pencils also wrapped in twine
were from the baby shower too!! We used them for people to wear
name tags to help the new worship pastor and his wife get to know people.
I made lots of welcome wreaths to hang around the room. I used straw wreaths
wrapped with strips of burlap. Then, using the same fabric from the vases, I made
rosettes and hot glued them to the wreath. My sister cut out triangles from scrapbook
paper and wrote the letters out using a Sharpie to spell WELCOME. These letters
were glued to black yarn and then hot glued to the wreath. Add a small bow on each
side of the sign, and it's done! These wreaths were hung on white lattice, and were
separated with black fabric that was tied with a burlap bow.

The welcome sign was made using scrapbook paper and a cricut. My sister
had the letters cut out, glued them to the paper, hole punched the top
and strung black yarn through it. Simple, inexpensive, easy, adorable =)

I found the perfect paper plates and napkins at the dollar store. And
our church already had this orange basket that we put the utensils in.
I just added a little burlap on the inside, and we were set.

This reception was such a great time, and it helped to welcome
two wonderful people (shown below!) who have already made such an
 impact on our church in just a short period of time. And it helped prove
to me that I don't always have to find new ideas - I can just as easily use
old ideas in new ways. Hope you enjoyed this post, and God bless!