School may be back in session, but I refuse to let summer go. I decided to throw together a quick backyard BBQ. The menu is set with some great recipes I found at dole.com/sunshine, all adding a tropical touch with Dole Pineapple Juice. Now to get the word out to family, friends, and neighbors I made these DIY invitations.
I went for quick, easy, simple, low-cost but cute invitation designs. I wanted invitations that my three kids could help me with, since they were on the planning committee too. We started with a quick run to the craft store. Everything we bought (paper, paper glue, bags, and more paper) can be found at Michael’s or Hobby Lobby for under $15 in the craft book section.
We made two versions of invites to send out: ones that were hand deliverable and another that was mailable.
First, we made the hand delivered invitations. We started with gift sacks (a multi-color pack of 12 can be found for $4.99) and traced an outline of an oven mitt using my son’s play chef’s costume. We wanted to be sure we didn’t make the oven mitt too big to fit into the bag. After we took our measurements and tracings, we got to the designing and wording of the invite.
We used clip art for the BBQ images and typed the wording in a Word document. Then, we were all set for printing. If you don’t have your own printer available or want higher quality printing at a decent price, I recommend checking out your local The UPS Store.
We also made simple RSVP cards that were actually ¼ page postcards. All our invitees needed to do was write their name, mark yes or no, and put it in the mail.
The next step was to cut out the sides of the gift bags a bit so they looked like aprons and cut out the oven mitt. I used the good ole’ eying and freehand cutting approach on this part, but you can easily measure so you’re cutting equal amounts.
I wrote ‘Kiss The Cook’ in Sharpie on the outside of the bag, giving it more of an apron-y look.
Then simply open your bag a bit and insert the RSVP card and your oven mitt invitation. From there we went to our neighbors’ homes and hung the invite on their doorknobs.
You could also cut off one of the bag handles to make it look more like an apron. Such as this:
Next, we did the mailable invites. We used 12” x 12” blue paper to fold our own envelopes. You can use any color of paper for envelopes, but we chose blue because the color would pop in the mail. Plus, we were already using a lot of the color red and wanted to give the other colors some love.
If you do a lot of your own invitations, I highly recommend getting a paper creasing board, as it makes folding the paper into an envelope much easier. Once you’ve got your measurements for the envelopes (these were 6” x 9”), glue the flaps of your envelope together.
Cut the sides of your paper to look like an apron. We used black paper as a border behind the checked paper and cut the checked paper a tad smaller than the black. These we did measure so both sides would be cut evenly.
After the sides are cut out and before you glue the checked paper to the black paper, glue ribbon on for the apron neck. We glued on the black paper backing right after we glued on the red ribbon. You can let the ribbon dry before you put on the black paper, but either way won’t affect the outcome.
The great thing about these invitations is that they’ll mail with a 1oz. First Class stamp (unless you use heavy cardstock paper, then mailing may be more). Simply fold the ribbon into the envelope, so that the invitation can be pulled out by the ribbon.
These were the simplest and easiest invites to do that the kids could help out with. We had several other easy ideas such as using a file folder and cutting it into an apron shape, putting a simple invite into the pocket, and then decorating the folder with plaid patterns and ribbon. Another ultra simple idea that the kids loved was to search Google or clip art for a hamburger image, blowing it up, and using that as the invite. If you’ve got a budding artist on your hands, there were perfect images for the kids to color in before mailing off.
After you get these fool proof beauties sent off in the mail and delivered, the next step is planning the rest of your backyard BBQ!
For delicious ways to incorporate more Dole Pineapple Juice into your BBQ recipes as well as summer party tips and more, visit Dole.com/Sunshine.
*Brought to you by Dole.