I know Mardi Gras is not for a while but I was asked to make Mardi Gras centerpieces for my fiance’s business party being held at the end of January. The tricky part? There’s a really tight budget. So I had to think creatively, roll up my sleeves, and hunt for a good bargain.
I scoped out a couple party stores and took photos of their over priced masks so that I could use them as inspiration. Why pay $5.00 or more per mask when you could make 6 masks for less than $9.00? I also did some important strategizing on Mardi Gras Outlet.com – they have the most fantastic prices and you can buy a lot of great party gear, in bulk, for a fraction of the price at iParty or at the craft store.
My fellow crafters, you know how pricey a project can get when you go out to buy supplies. I checked out my usual go-to store Joann’s to see what it would cost for me to buy my own sequins, feathers, project board for the mask base, rods, etc. I did the math and realized I would be paying about $10-12 per mask if I did it myself purchasing the supplies from the craft store. So what did I do? I bought supplies at the Mardi Gras Outlet and the rest at the Dollar Store in my town. I was able to spend a grand total of $49.79 on all of the supplies – enough to make 10 table centerpieces, extra masks for guests, and have some feathers & garland left over for extra decor. The only part I made myself by hand were the masks. The rest of the super cheap supplies were all ready to go upon purchase.
So here is how I did it!
Supplies Needed to Make the Masks:
1. Recycled Cardboard
2. Solid Colored Scrapbook paper (dark green, purple, gold)
3. Sequins – $10 (dollar store)
4. Feathers – 5 packs x $1.25 =
6. X-acto knife
7. Plastic rods or Drinking Straws – $10 (dollar store)
How to Do It:
1. Recycled cardboard works just as well as project board. The difference? Project board costs about $20 for a pack of 20 at the craft store. True, the project board comes in perfectly cut 12″ x 12″ slabs, but who needs that if you’re cutting out masks? I used cereal boxes as my base for the masks (easier to cut out than a cardboard box). Trace the shape of the mask and use the x-acto knife to cut it out.
2. Use your Mardi Gras colored scrapbook paper as a solid base to cover the card board you cut out. You can trace the cut out shape of the mask on the scrapbook card stock. Then cut out your second shape of the mask using your x-acto knife.
3. Adhere the scrapbook paper mask to the cardboard mask. They should line up neatly so one is right on top of the other.
4. Add sequins and feathers however you want. Use scrapbooking glue to secure everything.
5. Glue on your rod for the mask to serve as a stem. I found black plastic drinking straws from the dollar store (10 for $1). They are thick drinking straws sturdy enough to support the mask and serves as the perfect stem.
Other Materials Needed for the Centerpieces:
1. Glittery mardi gras colored foam balls – 2 packs x $5.95
2. 10 Plastic vases – dollar store each $1 (total $10)
3. Mardi gras beads – 24 strands for $4.00
4. Mardi gras garland – $2.99 (dollar store)
5. Extra feathers – 2 packs for $2.50
6. Elastics for additional masks – $2.99 (dollar store)
How to Assemble the Centerpiece:
1. Use the glittery foam balls as vase filler
2. Add some throw beads pouring out of the top of the vase or leave them out and around the vase
3. Stick in one or more masks into the vase, like adding stemmed roses to a vase, and arrange however you want.
So there you have it – another easy way to make something from the party store for a lot less. AND you get to use recycled materials too! So you are staying green while you’re at it! Hope these tips help you to decorate and make your own masks for Mardi Gras this year! 🙂