Since casinos typically are over the top in glitter and glitz, use similarly bright colors and shiny surfaces when crafting decorations. Supplement homemade decorations with low-cost balloons to match a red, black and white casino color theme, and with Christmas lights of any color you already have on hand.
As Your Guests Arrive
Whether you use the posts flanking your front porch or simply your front door, create a large, cardboard casino sign using two uprights and a crosspiece over the door or porch with your name highlighted, such as "Janey's Casino" or "The Smith's Casino." String lights around the sign if you have an outlet available, or use neon paint to make the sign pop. Pile dice made from painted cardboard boxes or attach red and black balloon bouquets on either side of the door.
On the Walls
Cardboard or heavy stock construction paper work well for making posters of playing cards; if you're artistically challenged, make posters with large paintings of just the card suits. Use actual playing cards or play money made with a copy machine to make garlands to drape in windows and on walls. Use large sheets of cardboard or butcher paper to paint slot machines, and line one entire wall to create the colorful and crowded casino setting.
Around the Room
Use all the casino accessories you can think of to scatter throughout the party room. Cut green, felt fabric to cover the surfaces of your coffee table and end tables, and scatter playing cards here and there on the tables for your guests to use as coasters. Make dice of all sizes, with small, origami versions to dangle from lamps and large versions made from cardboard to pile in the corners of the room.
The Buffet Table
Set the buffet table with a green felt tablecloth and strew playing cards, homemade dice and poker chips on it; use either foam fabric or heavy stock paper with drawings to make poker chips. For a centerpiece, use a large round cake decorated to look like a roulette wheel, a large casino bouquet with "flowers" of card suits -- clubs, diamonds, spades and hearts -- glued to wooden dowels, or a large bouquet with red and black balloons. Cover the vase with paper also decorated with card suits.
Food as Decor
Some food and drinks lend themselves to a casino color theme. Make black and red paper liners for wine bottles or serve a bright-red punch. Serve small, round appetizers that resemble poker chips, with toppings sitting on cucumber slices or round crackers, and place shrimp in fancy glassware accompanied by red cocktail sauce. Frost brownies or cookies as dice for dessert, with either white frosting and black dots or green and red frosting and white dots.
Susan Lundman began writing about her passions of cooking, gardening, entertaining and recreation after working for a nonprofit agency, writing grants and researching child development issues. She has written professionally for six years since then. Lundman received her M.A. from Stanford University.