Summer parties can be a lot of fun, but wondering which drink is yours among dozens of plastic cups is definitely not fun. We have an inexpensive and customizable solution for your next party!

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Summer parties lend themselves to some of the most playful themes, from colorful tropical fruit (we love pineapples!) to beach motifs (sand castles and sea critters forever!) and the undeniable patriotic trio of red, white, and blue. With so many options, the sources of inspiration for décor and party favors are abundant. However, if your summer party theme is feeling incomplete, let us suggest a solution to a problem with which neither you nor your guests will be concerned until the inevitable happens.

First, let’s take a quick poll to assess the level of need. Raise your hand if you have ever misplaced your drink at a party. Yep, I thought so. Navigating a sea of Solo cups can be treacherous, but fear not, sailors! These drink charms are functional décor, as well as great party favors.

Drink charms = décor + party favor + life saver

Sure, you could sloppily scribble names with Sharpies on condensation-moistened cups, but this option only requires a few more dollars and minutes of preparation. It will achieve the desired effect of impressing guests with your thoughtful consideration of their forgetfulness, while enhancing the party theme.

You will need…

  • Solo cups. They come in a variety of colors, so don’t feel obligated to always buy the red ones!
  • Ultra-fine point permanent marker. These dual-tip Sharpies will serve you well. Buy a single black marker or an eight-pack of rainbow colors.
  • Wooden craft charms. They may be labeled as “gift tags” if you are searching online. There are so many sizes and shapes to choose from. For a summer party, I love these anchors or this variety pack of flowers and fruit.
  • Twine. Some charms will come with string, but if yours do not, you will need to purchase this separately. Baker’s twine is generally thinner and less “frizzy” than jute twine, so it may be a better purchase if you are not sure how large the holes of your charms are for threading. However, the natural aesthetic of jute twine may suit your theme better. Overall, I recommend 1mm / 2-ply thickness.
  • Paint. Spray paint is the quickest and more expensive option. Acrylic paint is also easy to apply, but it costs less. Choose a color that coordinates with your theme.
  • Hole punch. Don’t forget a hole punch if you do not already own one! You will have a difficult time attaching the twine to the cup without one.
These supplies are ready for guests to personalize their drink charms.

Once you have the supplies, the project is straightforward—and aren’t those the best projects?

Let’s do it!

  1. Paint the charms at least one day before the party. This is not a time-consuming project, but you definitely do not want to expose your guests to paint fumes or stain their clothes.
  2. Cut the string into appropriately-sized pieces (just a few inches). You will have plenty of time to complete this step and clean up from painting while you are waiting for the charms to dry.
  3. Punch a hole near the mouth of a few of the cups. The first few guests to participate will be lucky enough to have this step completed for them!
  4. Display one finished cup as an example along with the supplies located near the beverages at the party. You can print or write out instructions if you think it would be helpful, but this has not been necessary in my experience.
Ready to party!

Simple, inexpensive DIY projects that serve multiple functions are our FAVORITE. What is also great about this project is that switching a red anchor for an orange pumpkin or white snowflake instantly translates to a fall or winter theme. A pink unicorn or yellow emoji would be a hit at a kids’ party, too!

Raise your hand if you have ever misplaced your drink at a party.

How would you personalize a Solo cup so yours does not disappear in the crowd? What themes, décor, and favors do you love most for summer parties? Share your ideas in the comments section below!