Monday, March 26, 2012

Pure and Simple

Pure and Simple, oh, and FREE!

That's what the theme, as far as decorations go, of the Purity Banquet 2012 was for our church teens and their parents.

This is a banquet that we try to do yearly for our teens.  The purpose is to teach and encourage them to stay pure in all their behavior and morals; to protect that which is to be a gift for their life mate given at marriage. 

Naturally all the decorations we do for this particular banquet is white......standing for pure, of course.

Well, you know me and the "color" white!   I love it! 

We have had six or seven of these banquets, and I actually have never been the one to decorate for it.  We have WONDERFUL ladies who do that kind of stuff.  Believe me I'm glad to have them do it!
This year, however, I decided I wanted the challenge of decorating for the Purity Banquet!  I do want to thank two very sweet and helpful ladies, Misty Snyder and Michelle Minor, for coming out on Saturday and helping get all this set up.  Thanks so much, girls!

What I didn't know, though, when I signed up, was that this event was left out of the yearly expense budge for the year for our church.  JOY!  So, I decided that I needed to accept this challenge, embrace it and just enjoy doing it.

It really wasn't too bad.   I had several positive things going for me!
One - the Lord was on my side answering prayer and giving me direction!
Two - He directed me to the back yard!
Three - He also gave me sources to draw from:  wonderful suggestions from family members and friends, and.........drum roll.........PINTEREST!  Oh. Yes! 

Now we know that Pinterest has become a household word in most homes with a computer.  So many have a pinterest account and so many get so many ideas off pinterest.  It's amazing to see all the different creative abilities of people out there.  I am not too "hooked" on pinterest; to the point of having to go and spend hours there everyday, (it is possible to do, you know).  I am glad, though, to be able to go there and get ideas.  I have said that I think every pastors wife or church event planner, decorator/coordinator should have a Pinterest account if for nothing else but to get ideas from.

Any way, back to my challenge.  I knew that if I tried I could pull this off (with lots of work, mind you), but it could be done. So I started with what I have.  This really has become my motto for decorating:  Use what you have! 

Here's what we had:  Cloth table cloths, clear vases, old white, crackled shutters, paper, twine, ribbon, and here's the best part.....white, blooming trees in the back yard!  So with all this and my friends, family, Pinterest, and the brain that the Lord gave me this is how the decorations for the Purity Banquet turned out:

The only "original" idea I had was to emphasize the word "Pure" by painting it on these huge pieces of poster board (a paper factory in the area donates these to the church for FREE), and putting it on the wall.  Amanda, a wonderful artist, at church painted them.  Thanks, Amanda
One of the reasons I wanted this done, was because our theme for the year is "Holding forth the word of life".  So, here with an emphasis on the "word" part, it is "pure".  Do you think they might have gotten the message?!
My wonderful decorator friend at church (we sometimes call ourselves "Two Women and some Tulle"!), Robbie Shumate, cut out the bunting or banner and simply placed the pieces  over a piece of jute string.  It gave these letters just the touch that was needed!  Thanks, Robbie
The flowers in the water are from a blooming cherry tree in the back yard.
The branches running along the table also from back yard.

White lights were used instead of candles.  You can see we just laid them down the center of the table then laid the white branches on top of them.  It was so pretty!
Another item from the back yard was these tree branches.  My husband cut them and also spray painted them white.  His idea was to leave a few of the dead flowery things on them, and it worked great!  The best part?  Yep, it was FREE! (except for spray paint)

This was the "backdrop" for the pictures.  It is two old shutters that have been in so many places in my house.  Yes, I borrow from my house to decorate for church functions!  I love can do so much with them.  They have a "crackled" finish and add just the right amount of rustic to an other wise fancy setting. 
See the "bunting" or banner?
This is something we made to add a little teenage flair to the decorations.  These are so popular right now, and soooo simple to make.  Lots of people are making them from fabric, of course, but since we were going for free, we just used white paper!
You can't see it, but the letters say, "Purity Banquet".

We also made individual buntings with their names, and "Purity Banquet 2012" on them for the teens to take home as a keepsake.  You can see a little of this in the next two pictures.  They were used on the table at the place where they and their parents sat.

Cherry tree branches and blossoms

Hope you enjoyed!