Wow Guests by Adding a Firework Tablecloth to July 4th Decorations

5 Materials
25 Minutes

For our July 4th BBQ, we invite everyone we know and make it a huge blow-out! Every year I'm on the lookout for new July Fourth party ideas, and this year I saw this incredible technique for a fireworks tablecloth. Not only can it be washed and reused every year, but all it takes is alcohol, Sharpies, and a cotton flat sheet!
Step 1: Gather Your Materials
I used a sheet instead of a table cloth for several reasons. First, it's much cheaper, than a cotton tablecloth. Second, sheets almost always come in 100% cotton, as opposed to most tablecloths out there. Third, white sheets, unlike white tablecloths, are made without a pattern, so it was a nice, blank slate for my fireworks. I also used a red sharpie, a blue sharpie, and rubbing alcohol poured into a condiment container. The condiment container is optional, but you will need some sort of squirt bottle.
Step 2: Draw Your Fireworks
Draw your fireworks around the edge of the table cloth. You might want to put the sheet on the table to see where the sides come up to. I experimented a bit on another piece of fabric, before settling on the two shapes I thought looked the most like fireworks. I found that if the dots or lines were too close together, the firework came out looking messy. You should experiment with what works for you - it's helpful, but also it's so much fun!
Step 3: Drip on Alcohol
After all my decorations were in place, I used a condiment bottle to drip alcohol in the center of each firework. Any container that allows you to drip would work, like a syringe, medicine dropper or small squirt bottle.
I added just a few drops at a time, and the effect was incredible! The designs "bloomed" beautifully right away, and continued to spread after a minute. If you want a more dissipated firework, you can add more alcohol at any time.
Step 4: Let Your Tablecloth Dry
I let my creation dry for 10 minutes before I move it. You don't want to accidentally spread color from one side of your tablecloth to another, so letting it sit is important. You can still add alcohol to expand your firework after it's dry.
That was all it took and the tablecloth came out so amazing!! You can also make matching napkins or t-shirts for your July 4th guests.
Now I have a fourth of July tablecloth that I'm going to use every year. I can't wait to see the looks on my guests faces - they're going to flip!

Suggested materials:

  • Red Sharpie
  • Blue Sharpie
  • 100% cotton white flat sheet
See all materials

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2 of 65 comments
  • Patricia Gregory
    on Jul 22, 2018

    I like it a lot. You could also cut it down a bit and sew/iron a binding on it to disguise the "sheet" look.

  • Mary Lou
    on May 11, 2020

    Oh my stars! This is absolutely gorgeous!! And it looks really easy to do! Curious how it will hold up with washing. I am definitely trying this! Great job!

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