I've always loved those natural rope chargers you can find at places like Pottery Barn, and I knew, when I started planning my nautical wedding inspiration shoot, that I wanted to include them in the place settings.
First problem: Pottery Barn no longer sells them. Second problem: they cost more than I wanted to spend even when they did sell them. Obvious solution: make them myself!
Start by cutting a circle of felt the size you want your charger to be. I did this quickly and easily by tracing around a charger I happened to have on hand, but you could make your circle any size. Heck, there's no reason it even needs to be a circle.
Start gluing down the rope, starting at the edge of the felt circle. If you try to start at the center, I can pretty much guarantee you won't get it exactly right, and you'll end up with a lopsided charger, or having to trim the felt and ending up with a smaller charger. Starting at the outside is just way easier.
Continue coiling and gluing, until you reach the very center of the circle. Cut the excess rope off, and glue the little tail of rope in the center. That's it.
The chargers end up costing far less than purchasing them, and are incredibly easy to make, but it does end up taking way more rope than I would have guessed. I was able to make two chargers out of my 100ft coil of 1/4" diameter jute rope. I had quite a bit leftover for other projects, but not quite enough to make a third charger.
I could imagine using this at a western/cowboy/barnyard party, too. Or a mermaid party. Or a pirate party. Lots of possibilities for re-using these pieces--and let's not forget they'd look great on the dining room table any day!