When asked about event planning tips, I always say that my one tip for any party is to create a backdrop. It can be used for the food table, beverages, dessert or even the party favor table. It doesn’t matter where it goes, what you do or how much it costs, it always pulls things together and takes a party to the next level.

And when it comes to creating fun backdrops. I have hundreds of ideas that cost less than a few dollars. I have decided to start a new series on do-it-yourself backdrops for under $15. Today’s featured backdrops were all created with things I had around the house. The series starts right here, right now! 

What you’ll need for every backdrop/up-front investment:

K, let’s go!

I am working with a large canvas that I bought for our very merry cocktail party on sale the weekend after Thanksgiving. I wanted to splurge on this because I knew I could use it over and over again. For Bodhi’s little man themed first birthday (photo credit-Canary Grey Photography), we just used a big piece of foam core board which worked just as well, but isn’t as easy to repurpose because tape, stickers etc… can damage it.  Bodhi’s backdrop tutorial explains all of the details. I was able to reuse the board for Miles’ Curious George themed birthday.


See! It worked because the entire board was covered in paper medallions. And, you can even use a simple piece of tagboard for the least amount of money, but since it won’t stand on its own, you will need to be willing to mount it to the wall using Command strips.

Here are my first four of many easy do-it-yourself backdrops for events on a budget.

 1. Scalloped bunting

You’ve seen this one before, but I wanted to show it again. It is SO easy! Simply cut circles, fold them in half, hang them on ribbon and finish by gluing or taping the circle together.Then attach it to your white board. I would LOVE to use this backdrop for a little girl’s birthday party using soft floral scrapbook paper. It would be lovely.

2. Octagons

For this, I purchased clearance paper coasters from the Spritz party supply line at Target yesterday. The package cost 80 cents and comes in other colors too. It’s an easy way to punch up a party. I attached them using double-sided tape. Easy! If you wanted to spend a few more $$$, check out the layout I put in the very first photo in this post. You could cover the entire board for a seriously colorful and bold backdrop using three or four packages and the cost would still be minimal.

3. Washi tape

Washi tape is so popular now. Why not use it for a backdrop. You could use so many cute patterns of washi tape and arrange them in many ways including stripes. I was running out of time when I photographed this, but spent a few minutes doing stripes, you know, just to see, and it looked great! I bought this tape at Target in the office supply section, but I love all of these from Amazon too. I’ve been using it for my planner as well. Great investment! Or you could try the cool newish patterned duct tape. Either way, you could continue using the tapes throughout your party-wrap cups, create place cards/menus etc… using the tape.

4. Wreath

You’ve seen wreaths on mirrors, right? Why not use it as your backdrop. Obviously this one is a bit more Christmas-like, but you could use any seasonal wreath, or make your own. Check out all of these birthday wreaths on Etsy. These could be great for a backdrop. I used a clear acrylic wreath holder that I already have (the ones that go over doors) and turned it backwards (so the long part was in back. Then I just hung it right on there. So easy. The gold ribbon is just for show. :)

What do you think? Do you like this post? Do you want to see more ideas? Let me know.

Disclaimer: Some affiliate links included.

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