Dollar Store Style

Free Decorating Ideas and Tips by Marlene Alexander

Kitchen and Bath



Outdoor Living

Backyard Beach Party

Beach-Themed Outdoor Entertaining 

The May, 2010 issue of Better Homes and Gardens had some wonderful ideas for outdoor entertaining and I found that I could duplicate quite a few of them with less expensive things from the dollar store. Sticking with the beach party theme, here are four ideas for summer entertaining that will cost you a lot less if you shop at the dollar store.


Beach towels are only $2 each at Dollarama. They’re an easy way to dress up plain patio chairs or perhaps disguise worn or mismatched furniture. And the towels make the chairs more comfortable to sit on, as well. Just ask my Jack Russell, Christie.

Beach towels are also a great alternative to traditional table runners for outdoor dining and, at these prices, you won’t be upset if they get stained or otherwise damaged while serving that purpose.



Another great suggestion for eating outdoors is using trays instead of place mats. When they’re finished eating, friends and family can easily carry their own dishes into the house. Melamine dishes are still only a buck each at dollar stores, colorful plastic trays are $1.25 each and the faux bamboo-handled silverware costs $1.25 per set consisting of a knife, fork and spoon. 



This idea wasn’t in the magazine, but here’s a simple centerpiece to compliment the beach party décor, using decorator sand, sea shells and a small lantern. The sand isn’t recommended if you’re seating young children around the table. Kids will be kids and you don’t want them adding a sand condiment to their burger! 

These tea light lanterns are $2 each at Dollarama and come in different styles. You can also get Chinese-style lanterns to hang around the yard for $1.25 each. They take two AAA batteries that you buy separately. 

Citronella torches are only $1.25 each at Dollarama, a lot less than department store prices. If the store doesn’t have any torches left, there are still plenty of options for helping to keep from being bugged by multi-legged party crashers intent on sipping a cocktail of your guests' blood. 

A citronella pail is one idea that’s still in keeping with the beach party theme and it will last a lot longer anyway. The larger ones I saw cost $2 each but, of course, you can always find citronella in a variety of different containers and sizes.







See also: Garden Party

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