It’s that time of the year again, where Singaporeans proudly don red and white to celebrate the nation’s birthday. If you’re having company over this National Day, here are five great tips to spruce up your home for the festivities.
1. Hang up the bunting
A string of red and white on a bunting will add a touch of whimsy to your home – especially if you pick designs that are composed of small prints. Make some yourself with fabric scraps cut into triangles of equal size, fastening them to a long strip of twill with a glue gun or by sewing. If you don’t have scraps lying around, search online for printable bunting patterns.
2. Create a festive table setting
Watching the parade aside, your National Day dinner will probably be the evening’s main event. Jazz up your table setting with some patriotic accents in red and white – think napkin rings, custom place cards, and a centrepiece of red and white flowers. If that isn’t quite festive enough, extend the theme to the evening’s menu as well: treats like red and white agar-agar, strawberries, and white chocolate eclairs are good picks.
3. Repurpose your Chinese New Year decorations
Chinese New Year is the only other time of the year when everything is splashed in red. Make the most of the decorations you have in storage, especially items such as red cushion covers, red artificial flowers, rugs and containers – anything red that doesn’t scream “Chinese New Year”. Juxtapose these with carefully-selected white decorative items as well to get a good balance – it is National Day after all. If you have red and silver decorations from other occasions, such as Christmas trimmings or tinsel, for example, now’s a prime opportunity to get some extra mileage out of them.
4. Add festive lighting
A cheerfully-lit home will create the perfect atmosphere for a National Day shindig, particularly if you have plans to watch the fireworks from your balcony or window. Put your chasing Christmas lights at their red or white settings, and arrange them round your window – or, have them line a ledge or balcony. Those with a creative bent can experiment with arranging them in star-and-moon motifs on a plain white wall, or create National Day-inspired text. The sky’s the limit!
5. Hang the flag
National flags hanging outside the windows of HDB flats used to be a common sight in the 80s. The numbers seem to have dwindled in recent years, but you can help prop them up. If you don’t already own one, pick up a national flag this year and hang it from a window. If you’re having company over, do it a little differently and use the national flag indoors as a bold centrepiece on a plain wall, if only just for an evening. It’s probably the simplest and most cost-effective way to show some love for Singapore this National Day.