Dinner party, free online invitations
If your dinner party has a theme, plan your decorations to match, natch. Beyond that, decide how many guests you want to invite. Only own a table for four? No worries. Borrow, rent or buy a big folding table, or set up concrete blocks on the floor and top with plywood — just add tablecloth. No tablecloth? Get one — and a set of cloth napkins while you're at it — cheap from a thrift store or flea market, or buy material from a fabric store and cut to size with pinking shears. If you're short on chairs, make your party BYOC and ask guests to bring their own! Or circumvent any seating shortages by throwing a big blanket in the middle of your living room and hosting an indoor picnic. (Just let people know if they'll be sitting on the floor so they can plan their attire accordingly.) If you go with flowers for your centerpiece, skip the super-scented sort (no lilies or freesia, please) so they don't interfere with the flavors of your meal. Likewise, keep them low so guests don't need a machete to see across the table. Instead of huge, expensive bouquets, march juice glasses, shot glasses or teacups with just one bloom in each down the middle of the table. To keep costs down even more, cut flowers, branches or even large plant leaves from your yard, fill a small vase with fresh herbs left over from your cooking, or set out a bowl of seasonal fruit. Finally, keep in mind that nothing kills the ambiance of an intimate dinner like too-bright lighting. If you have a dimmer, use it, and if you don't, cut the overheads and turn on lamps and light candles. A grouping of votives doubles as a pretty centerpiece; add more on windowsills and side tables for even greater glow power. Candlesticks and/or candelabra can also be lovely so long as they're not blocking guests' views. You could even set the mood before guests set foot inside your door with luminaria lining your walk.