Materials, Accessories for Terrific Tabletops & More

Once you’ve gotten your tables beautifully and cleverly covered, it’s time for centerpieces, tableware and finishing touches.


Use tapers, balls, and votives in a unifying color from your scheme. As long as they are out of the reach of small children, fill all the tables with various sized candles and keep them lit throughout the evening. Prior to the party, put your candles in the refrigerator or freezer, as cooler candles will burn longer.

To float candles, you might color the water with liquid food coloring. Mix colorings to obtain just the right hue. Another idea for floaters is to place a glass bowl, or several different sized wineglasses filled with water (colored or not) on a mirror. Add candles and colored or clear gemstones and enjoy the dreamy look you have created.


A sprinkling of confetti here and there should be as a delightful little surprise, and ShindigZ has about 60 designs to fit many themes and color schemes. Not just for table tops, confetti can be used on floorings, in invitations, along pathways, or even inside balloons! This provides a unique touch at a great price.

Curling Ribbon

This is a must-have if you are working with balloons, but you can also use it to tie around a favor at each place setting, to bundle table utensils, or to put the finishing touch on wrapped gifts. Curling ribbon comes in a multitude of colors. Cut 8-12″ lengths of curling ribbon, and curl each piece with the blade of a pair of scissors. Scatter little “curls” over tabletops for an easy, whimsical, and very inexpensive decorative touch!


Garland can be draped and swagged like streamers can, and is absolutely ideal to mold around centerpieces, outline the edges of tabletops, and wrap around candle bases and votives. Use it to garnish gift packages and accent balloon bouquets. Entwine a garland with twinkle lights and wind it around a column or weave it through a gate. Look for silk floral, metallic, fringe, ivy and more today.

Cracked Ice Streamers and RollsStreamers

While pretty much everyone is familiar with the traditional crepe streamers, they also come in gossamer, foil, netting, holographic and the exotic cracked ice! Streamers can be used to accent tabletops for a truly unique look. Measure the length and/or width of your tables. Add 12″ to each measurement, so that a 6″ length can hang on either side of the table. Place streamers on the table running lengthwise or across the width of the table, or in two directions in a lattice pattern. Streamers can be twisted after they are anchored to a table-end for more dimensionality. Two different colored streamers can be placed back-to-back, and twisted for a two-toned effect.

Party Table Basics

Whether you’re talking kitchen, folding, banquet or picnic, tables that reflect your event with distinction are a breeze with just a few fundamental decorating steps.

After you’ve chosen your theme, select a color scheme and work from there. Typically you’ll be working with a two- or three-color palette. Other times you may want to go monochromatic, and one way to do it is to work with two or three shades of the same color. Another is to select a single dominating color and choose an accent hue or two. You can create an especially dramatic effect by accenting one color with black, white, gold or silver. Think: navy with white, red with black, white with gold, etc.

Once the basic color scheme is worked out, you’ll be choosing materials based on theme, effects you want to achieve, ages of the partygoers and level of formality. For informal tables, bright gingham oilcloth, plastic table rolls, burlap or a patterned seamless or flat paper might fill the bill. More formal events might call for adding a matching or metallic skirting to a plastic or linen tablecloth, and/or use of taffeta, tulle, or fabrics that glimmer and shimmer.

If you are using a plain tablecloth, why not decorate it with fabric paint? Use a color to complement your theme to leave a special message at different angles all over the tablecloth. The same concept will also work with a plastic tablecover. As an alternative, stamp a fancy design onto the tablecloth with a pre-cut kitchen sponge.

Add table squares cut from colored cellophane for a whimsical look. Squares or other geometric shapes will add texture and depth to the appearance of the table.

If you have not had the pleasure of decorating with gossamer in the past, you are in for a treat. Gossamer is a wonderful, lightweight nonwoven material that creates fabulous decorating touches at a very reasonable price. It drapes, hangs and holds its shape beautifully. Ideas:

  • Swag gossamer on the edges of table skirting. Try twisting or braiding two colors together for a stunning look.
  • Cut gossamer into tabletop squares to place on the top of a plastic tablecover or cover the entire tablecover with an overlay of shimmery, sheer gossamer.

  • Gather the gossamer at the corners of the table, and tie with gossamer streamers, tassels, or satin ribbon.

  • One of the hottest trends today is to cover banquet or reception chairs with chair bows…and the trend tends to be quite costly! Do it yourself with gossamer! You can drape a piece of 19″ gossamer across the top of each chair back, and then tie a gossamer streamer bow around the back of the chair. The bows can be cut to any length, and even look lovely with tails trailing on the floor. The bows hold their shape just fine, and at a fraction of the cost of wired ribbon.

    For more decorating ideas using this wonderful material, see our video presentation of “How to Use Gossamer” — and we hope you’ll check out our other selections of decorating fabrics, too!

    Go West for a Backyard Birthday Campout

    A Western theme is a great one for summer birthdays because it dovetails nicely with barbecues, evenings around a campfire and the ever-popular kids’ sleepover parties.

    Perhaps one of the best parts of a summer campout party is that a child who is old enough to camp out in the back yard will also be able to participate in much of the party planning. Be sure to allow the birthday guy or gal to take the creative lead in as many of the following areas as possible:

    1. Invitations. Select from our Star Party Invitations, the My Horse Invitations or the Create-an-Invitation option. Or, create your own invitation on the computer; get out the old wood-burning set and brown the edges, create pouches for them out of denim and/or bandanna fabric or attach them to inexpensive straw cowboy hats.

    Remember that summer schedules fill up very fast! Try to get the invitations out as much as 4 weeks in advance for the best response.

    2. Decorations. Bales of straw for seating, pop-up tents for sleeping, and a fire ring or pit turn the back yard into a Western campsite. Add strategically-placed pieces of fencing, ropes and bandannas. Place citronella candles in tin buckets with holes punched in the sides, or into Mason jars with an inch or two of sand in the bottoms.

    3. Activities. If the party starts early enough for supper, serve standard barbecue fare or set up a taco bar. Later, try campfire popcorn and s’mores. Have the birthday boy or gal look up ghost stories on the Internet. Draft a real-life guitar hero for a ballad or two, and supply Uno cards for games by flashlight.

    4. Favors. Old-fashioned red paisley bandannas with ends gathered and knotted in the centers make great theme-oriented favor containers. See ShindigZ catalog of Western Party Favors for more favor ideas in this theme.

    See? With some advance planning, you and your child can flavor a backyard birthday sleepover with a taste of the Old West.

    Character Theme Favorites for Boys

    G.I. Joe™, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™(TMNT) and Transformers™ are three very enduring character birthday party themes beloved especially by boys.

    G.I. Joe™ is the oldest of this particular set of three, having first appeared in the movies in the 1940s and become immortalized as an action figure in the early 1960s in response to the Barbie™ phenomenon. Joe reinvents himself from time to time and his latest popular incarnation is G.I. Joe™, The Rise of Cobra. Go Joe!

    Who knew that our “heroes on the half-shell” would come back so strong after their cartoon debut over a generation ago? The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™ has everything a young lover of action wants but is also a witty send-up of cartoon action heroes and villains that grown-ups can appreciate. TMNT fans, who recently celebrated the 25th anniversary of Turtle Power, can look forward to a new live action movie expected to be released in 2012. Looks like TMNT are enjoying this round and not going anywhere soon. Cowabunga, dudes!

    Transformers™ toys appeared in the U.S. in the 1980s and have achieved success ever since in cartoon TV, comic books and feature films including last year’s Revenge of the Fallen.

    Whatever character or other theme you and your child select for a birthday party, the four-part formula for party success stays the same:

  • Invitations
  • Decorations
  • Activities
  • Favors
  • Be sure to visit ShindigZ Character Birthday Party Supplies pages for more theme birthday ideas.

    Give Your Son a Birthday Party for the Books

    Batman Birthday Party Supplies

    Batman Birthday Party Supplies

    If you know a little boy who is about to turn one year older, make him feel like a million bucks by throwing him a fantastic boy birthday party. There are plenty of themes that are sure to delight a little boy, so pick one that suits your special man.

    Many boys play sports during the summer, so why not decorate for this party with some athletic imagery. For starters, find some mylar balloons in the shape of soccer balls, or deck out your living room with grass mats to turn it into a baseball diamond.

    For younger boys, a superhero theme is sure to be a hit. Party tableware adorned with Spiderman, the Hulk or Batman will bring a smile to his face.

    You’ll want to plan out some party games for your son’s get-together. Pinatas in the shape of a rocket ship, football or wild animal will delight each and every one of the guests at this event.

    At the end of the shindig, hand out some party favors for everyone to bring home. Plastic beads, streamer string, or cookie tin favors will help your son’s friends remember the best party of the summer.


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