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5 Tips for Easy Patriotic Decor

Hello Friends,

I don’t know about you, but decorating for the holidays —any holiday– is hard for me. I always have the best intentions, but then whammo! It’s here and gone before I can frost a cupcake or hoist a flag.

But over the last few years, it finally occurred to me to work smarter, not harder. Now, I go simple on most holidays. Well, at least on the three patriotic ones that seem to come and go so quickly.

Here’s a sample from the kitchen nook.

5 Tips for Easy Patriotic Decor

Red, white and blue can be achieved by combining dishes and linens | #patriotic | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com

Tip 1: Use Generic Dishes and Linens

The first smart thing I did was to gather dishes and linens that carry the common red, white, and blue color theme, but have different patterns, textures, and heights. I mean, after all, if we stock these kinds of generic products, then we can mix and match whatever we have, regardless of the holiday or special occasion.


I know. So easy.

Why did it take me so long?

Finger foods are an easy serve on raised trays and cake plates | #patriotic | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com

Tip 2: Choose a Theme

Next, make the decor work for all three patriotic holidays by centering the theme around the flag. This way, you’re up and running from mid-May to after Labor Day. And, of course, the flags can be removed between holidays. Just make sure the flags are easily popped in and out of the central decor.

Which –BTW—-leads us to the central decor.

Decor that uses the American flag as a theme works for all three patriotic holidays | #patriotic | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com

Tip 3: Use Silk Flowers

Buy or create an arrangement of summer bloomers. I love geraniums, but my kitchen table doesn’t get the sun they need to stay alive and bloom during the season. By using quality silks, I get to use my beloved geraniums and the table stays put together for several months.

And for decorators who are pressed for time or allergic to fresh flowers, silks are a super-easy option.

Silk flowers make great long-term arrangements with out any fuss or muss | #patriotic | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com

I mean, after all, fresh flowers only last a few days and we have three holidays over the long, hot summer. So refreshing fresh flowers at least once a week for three months is crazy talk? AmIright? Truly #aintnobodygottimeforthat #saveitforaparty

This silk arrangement works all summer because the flags can be popped out and stored between holidays | #patriotic | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com

Tip 4: Add a Pop of Special

To make the patriotic decor special for July 4th, add something specific for that holiday. For July 4th, I only added a pillow or two. Pillows, like flags, are easy to drop into place and easy to store away after the holiday.

The only dedicated decor to July 4th is a pillow with 1776 on the front | #patriotic | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com

An even better option is to simply use pillow covers. 

Red, white and blue made easy with these 5 tips | #patriotic | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com

Tip 5: Don’t Forget the Food

And last, but not least, don’t forget to use food as part of the decoration. It doesn’t have to be fancy, just fresh and colorful. Apples, mangoes, and bananas are bright choices. I usually keep a plate or bowl of fruit on a cart so it’s handy, but out-of-the way.

Colorful food items are a great decor addition | #patriotic | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com

And, of course, the summer veggies will color pop when served in the good ole’ red, white, and blue. If you’d like to learn the secret to great summer corn, please click here.

Secret to Great Summer Corn | Fresh corn should be quickly removed from the cob and cooked | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com

And believe it or not, that’s all there is to it. Once I started using generic dishes and linens, holiday decorating for this little area was a piece of cake.

Patriotic holidays made easy with a few simple tips | #patriotic | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com

At the bottom of this post is more inspiration for revvin’ up the Red, White, and Blue from some super-talented bloggy friends. I do hope you’ll take a look at all of their great ideas and projects.

In the meantime, if you appreciate these 5 tips, please…

Patriotic holidays are made easy with these 5 simple tips | #patriotic | The Chelsea Project | www.thechelseaproject.com


Join us the last Friday of each month for a different Inspired Makers Challenge

Follow with #InspiredMakers and #InspiredMakersChallenge to see more amazing projects each month!

The rules are simple – whatever the project is, it has to fit the monthly challenge theme, which is something different to inspire you each month!

June Challenge: Red, White, and Blue
Load up on all the patriotic inspiration from your hosts:

Kimm @ Reinvented | Denise @ My Thrifty House
Sam @ Raggedy Bits | Victoria @ Dazzle While Frazzled
Toni @ Small Home Soul | Susanne @ Pearl Street Designs
Kim @ Farmhouse Made | Susie @ The Chelsea Project

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  • Reply Toni | Small Home Soul June 30, 2017 at 10:20 am

    Ahh, so many great tips here. I need to start collecting some napkins and plates in some other colors so I can make a lovely table like yours. That striped pitcher is fantastic!! I agree, silk flowers are a saving grace in the house when it’s just day to day. Lovely as always 🙂

    • Reply theChelseaProject June 30, 2017 at 10:43 am

      Hi Toni and thanks! Yes! By all means, start collecting and don’t forget to pick up oversized tea towels. I use these dishes and linens over and over for different holidays. Let me know what you find. XOXO

  • Reply Kim June 30, 2017 at 12:28 pm

    Gorgeous! That pillow cover gives me all the heart eyes!

    • Reply theChelseaProject June 30, 2017 at 12:56 pm

      Hi Kim and thanks! LOL…pillow covers that arrive at my doorstep in an Amazon bag ready to drop into place give me all the heart eyes, too. I told you these were easy tips. LOL… Happy 4th!!!

  • Reply June June 30, 2017 at 1:51 pm

    I love it! I’m going to joanns to get my red geranium s today!

    • Reply theChelseaProject June 30, 2017 at 2:00 pm

      Hi June and thanks! So glad the silk flower idea worked for you! Happy 4th!

  • Reply Susanne June 30, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    I love this post!! Your table looks amazing, I am a super huge fan of silk flowers (fresh flowers end up in the vase way after the expiration date in our house, lol). I just love that pillow cover! It is definitely a good one to last all summer long. Have a wonderful 4th of July..Hugs!!

    • Reply theChelseaProject June 30, 2017 at 4:28 pm

      Hi Susanne and thanks! It’s always wonderful to have you stop by!

  • Reply Michelle June 30, 2017 at 4:48 pm

    This is beautiful…..as always. You really have an eye for decorating. I am in love with the little pillow.

    • Reply theChelseaProject June 30, 2017 at 5:22 pm

      Hi Michelle and thanks! Don’t you think that little pillow could appear in NW Iowa if you whip out your Cricut? I mean, just sayin’… 🙂 You have quite the knack for these kinds of things. Have a Happy 4th, Sweet Friend.

  • Reply Sam June 30, 2017 at 8:12 pm

    So many fabulous tips here! Love all of your attention to detail!

    • Reply theChelseaProject June 30, 2017 at 8:39 pm

      Thanks Sam!

  • Reply Lisa July 1, 2017 at 8:18 am

    Great tips Susie. I finally learned my lesson and am transitioning to neutral plates to go with every season.

    • Reply theChelseaProject July 1, 2017 at 8:48 am

      Hi Lisa and thanks. I know! Right? Holiday specific dishes and linens are so beautiful, but I just don’t have the money or storage space for all those lovelies. Happy 4th to you and yours!

  • Reply vrmm26 July 1, 2017 at 9:16 am

    My problem is my lack of generic dishes. My husband has wanted plain white plates for years yet we’re still using our wedding registry dishware! White would make year-round decorating easier. Love the suggestion of using pillow covers. I’ve started doing this and it’s so much easier to store. Visiting from Inspired Makers Challenge.

    • Reply theChelseaProject July 1, 2017 at 9:51 am

      Thnks so much for stopping by! I started my collection from the clearance rack at HomeGoods/TJMaxx. I’m good with lots of different colors, but try to stay away from a figure that would make the dish or linen holiday specific. Also, The Dollar Tree will sometimes have white pottery plates for $1.00 each. Hopefully, you can start a collection without having to invest too much money into it. Have a Happy 4th!! XOXO

  • Reply Marie|The Interior Frugalista July 1, 2017 at 9:28 am

    Great tips that can easily be converted for us Canucks celebrating Canada Day by eliminating the blue. Like you,
    I had great plans to decorate for the occasion, especially because we turn 150 this year, and here we are this morning on Canada Day and there’s not one decoration to be had. Work smarter not harder – I like that! Maybe there’s hope for next year. Your patriotic vignette looks fabulous!

    • Reply theChelseaProject July 1, 2017 at 10:17 am

      Hi Marie and thanks so much for stopping by! About the decorating, I’ll share a little secret if you promise not to tell. The only decor I managed to get in place for July 4th is what you see here. But one tip I should have included is to trigger the other senses. Case in point, we never have bacon around here anymore except on holidays. This morning, bacon was cooking for our traditional July 4th bacon and tomato sandwiches when I hear, “Ummmm. Smells like July 4th.” LOL… Next time I do a tip sheet for work smarter, not harder, I’ll have to add this powerful tip. Thanks again for stopping by amid your hectic schedule. Happy Canada Day, my dear Canuck friend.

  • Reply Kimm at Reinvented July 1, 2017 at 12:26 pm

    Susie, these are such awesome ideas! I often skip over the “smaller” holidays because I don’t want to spend any money on decor, but I’m sure I have everything I need in the house! So glad you shared your ideas. 🙂

    • Reply theChelseaProject July 1, 2017 at 1:48 pm

      Hi Kimm and thanks so much for stopping by! I totally agree, I simply can’t keep up with the flurry of holidays. If only my house was in order so that I could just hop from holiday to holiday. Maybe someday.. LOL. In the meantime, I’m just going to have to keep it simple. Happy 4th to you and yours!! XO

    Thanks so much for your comment!

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