I first “met” Haddy from House of Creative Designs last Christmastime on Instagram. It’s a crazy social media world we live in. Haddy was always doing some amazingly cute things with her Elf on the Shelf and I was getting into it at the same time. We just started chatting and have been in touch for a year, now. Since that time, Haddy has officially created House of Creative Designs and has an incredible eye for design (something I do not have) and is so stinking creative. When I saw her DIY Outdoor Movie Night, I asked if she’d be willing to do a guest post.
Friends, meet Haddy. Haddy, meet our friends. Let’s begin, shall we?
First of all let me say this was super fun and I’m absolutely doing this again. My guests all loved it and demanded that we have one monthly. The bonus was how inexpensive and easy it was to create. It took just ONE WEEK to prepare.
- EMBELLISHMENTS & FUN TOUCHES
I literally had less than a week to make our very first “Outdoor Movie Night” happen. So the first thing you need is going to be a projector. We lucked out and just borrowed one from My aunt’s office and hooked it up to my laptop, then used some computer speakers to amplify the sound (optional). If you don’t have the same luck and would like to invest in a projector, I have seen some pretty good deals on Overstock.com and Amazon for about $200. The other option is renting. There are several online AV rentals companies and they typically charge around $55-$90 for a weekend.
The next main staple you’ll need is a screen. You don’t need anything fancy and you don’t need to spend a lot of money. Just head over to your linen closet or thrift store and dig out a stain free white sheet and iron it. You can also use a fabric shower curtain, drape panel, or a tablecloth – which is what I used. I used strong clips to hang it from the gutter off of the roof line but you can also run rope or heavy duty fish line or clip it to a fence.
For seating, a mixture of blankets, pillows and chairs will give your guests options.I would suggest writing instructions on your invites for guests to “Bring your own lawn chair”.
Now for the fun stuff. Of course, movie night is not complete without popcorn. Why not a popcorn bar! Remember people like options and popcorn is cheap! To create this, I used an existing tablecloth and bought a couple of yards of burlap (cost less than $10) and threw that on top. I wanted my popcorn bar to be rustic and a bit vintage so I incorporated an old create and wire basket and made a wood popcorn sign. (more on the popcorn flavors under EMBELLISHMENTS & FUN TOUCHES)
The popcorn sign was also pretty inexpensive to make just using some old wood, nails, rope to hang it from the fence and paint. I wanted a bit of a wow factor so I decided to add little lights along the center of all the letters by drilling holes as evenly spaced as possible. I stuck the light bulbs through the holes and taped them down on the backside of the sign. This was my rustic approach to the DIY marquee sign.
EMBELLISHMENTS & FUN TOUCHES
Some of the staples you’ll need to pull off the popcorn bar are:
- Cups or boxes
…for the popcorn. This is where the Dollar tree comes in. They actually sell all the “Popcorn” labeled bags and plastic containers. They even have big serving bowl sizes to match. I, again, like to give my guests options. So I had some pre-filled bags of buttered popcorn for those who didn’t want to scoop their own. I put them in glass jars and a DIY sack (which was just a paper grocery bag I lined with butcher paper with burlap and twine wrapped around the outside).
The flavors of popcorn I went with were:
- Butter popcorn
- Chile lime popcorn
- Moose Munch (recipe HERE)
I had to add a jar of red vines – another movie staple. My bar was made to feed 15 people. For a larger group, I would suggest adding another couple of containers and a third savory flavor like cheese flavored popcorn. We also had other treats for guests to snack on like 7 layer bean dip served in individual cups and little finger foods.
That’s it. Just start the movie and tell everyone to be quiet. A last minute fun touch I wanted to add was a chalkboard with the movie(s) that were playing. You can pick up a piece of plywood at Lowes for cheap and some chalkboard paint. Just remember when using chalkboard paint you need to make it 2-3 days before you intend to write on it.