If you’re looking for a fun reason to get together with your friends, look no further than a ‘paint and sip’ night. In recent years, these parties have skyrocketed in popularity thanks to their creative premise: Mingle with pals while sipping beverages and painting your very own work of art! And while many local art studios offer paint and sip nights, hosting an art party at home is surprisingly simple to do. Your guests will love sparking their artistic sides while sipping and snacking — and you’ll love how easily it all comes together. We asked event pros for their best tips on setting up a paint and sip party at home. Keep scrolling for the quick and clever how-to’s.
“Setting up a DIY art party is not only simple but also really affordable,” says party pro Brianna Adams, founder of PartiesWithACause.com. “I love it when I can create something fabulous on the cheap!” To get the look of Adams’ colorful spread, above, simply push a long table against a wall and top with a lavender-hued tablecloth and trays and cake stands layered with vibrant fruit skewers, cookies and a rainbow cake. For added flair, tape paint palettes made out of paper to a string and hang on the front of the table, then affix a peel-and-stick hexagon decal (Buy at Walmart, $10.89) to the wall and then color in the shapes with different hues (using craft paint or markers).
Stash supplies at a simple paint station
Carve out a corner where you and your guests can paint the night away! Just top a folding table with cups of acrylic paint, jars filled with brushes, water-filled plastic cups and paper towels. Place folding chairs around the table, then set a canvas at each setting along with a paint palette or paper plate. Optional: Place each canvas on a craft-store tabletop easel.
Tip: Before setting up painting stations, cover the table with kraft paper to protect the surface from splatters. For smocks, pick up oversize men’s T-shirts at the thrift store and place one on each chair so guests can protect their clothes. In case of spills, keep a bottle of rubbing alcohol nearby. The first-aid staple easily removes acrylic paint from non-porous surfaces and clothing.
Wow everyone with palette place settings
Adams played off the theme of her paint and sip party with these color-soaked place settings. To make each, she layered a rectangle of kraft paper, a square purple paper plate, a palette-inspired plate (Buy at Amazon, $9 for 8) and a polka-dotted straw.
Serve up fun by the slice with a rainbow layer cake
From the outside, this cake looks simple … until you slice it open to reveal rainbow layers! To make, prepare 2 boxes of vanilla cake mix per box instructions; divide batter equally into 6 bowls and tint with food coloring to create red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple batter. Grease 3 round cake pans, then pour red into one, orange into another and yellow into the remaining pan and bake per box instructions; cover and refrigerate remaining batters. Let cool, remove cake layers and place on cooling rack; wash pans, then repeat to bake the next 3 layers using remaining batters. Let cool, then stack the layers, sandwiching vanilla frosting between each; coat cake exterior with white icing to finish.
Refresh artists with a pretty ‘watercolor’ cocktail
This colorful drink has a layered effect that’s impressive yet so easy to create! To start, fill a glass with ice, then pour 2 oz. of blueberry-flavored syrup, like Torani (available at supermarkets). Slowly pour in club soda or for a flavor twist, try Q Elderflower Tonic Water, available at supermarkets. Pour in 1 oz. of vodka and garnish with blueberries. (Click through for recipes for delicious dessert cocktails.)
Save big on art supplies
To get the biggest bang for your buck, buy jumbo bottles of acrylic paint, then squeeze dollops of paint onto basswood palettes (Buy at Amazon, $16 for 10) and place one at each seat. Tip: Personalize the back of each palette by jotting down a name in paint marker, then allow guests to take the palettes home.
Tip: Structure your paint night so guests won’t have to take home wet art or spend time waiting for paint to dry. Simply start the paint activity first thing, then direct guests to the dessert table afterward so they can enjoy bites while canvases dry. Also smart: Set a hair dryer nearby so your artists can blast paintings (with dryer set on low heat) until the paint is dry to the touch.
Offer up easy-to-follow templates for everyone
Anyone can paint with confidence when there’s a template to follow. For free basic designs like trees, animals and flowers, visit StepByStepPainting.net and click on “Traceables.” For wintry scenes or abstract art check out Social-Artworking.com. Once you pick a design, print it on printer paper, sandwich a sheet of graphite paper (at craft stores) between the printer paper and the canvas and trace the design with a pencil to transfer it to the canvas.
Brighten up their day with ‘paintbrush’ treat favors
Surprise loved ones with a sweet favor like this one created by Adams. To make: Divide M&M’s or Skittles by color, then drop 4 to 6 of one color into a skinny treat bag made for chocolate-dipped pretzel rods (Buy on Amazon, $6.88 for 20). Continue adding different colors until full. Bend and twist brown pipe cleaners into bristle shapes and twist one around the top of each bag.
Click through for more creative DIY party ideas:
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