Tag Archives: DIY

Minimal Assistants


It goes without saying that, as a bride, you likely have a plan (or at least a clear vision) in place regarding most of your wedding day details. Making your ideas come to life may be challenging for many reasons leaving you wishing for sole responsibility over every component. Unfortunately, that is an impossibility as outside help, whether from friends and family or hired professionals, is required. However, every decision including the amount of assistance you want or need and from whom it comes is yours to make.

Remember that the period leading up to your special day is not just exciting for you but for those close to you as well. Many will offer their time, advice and skills to ease your burden and lower your stress level. While usually successful, occasionally their good intentions lead to uncomfortable situations and hurt feelings.

One objective of your wedding is for your guests to enjoy themselves which includes being able to take in everything going on around them. If someone offers to provide their services on the day of for something other than what you want, kindly pointing out some of the special things they would miss is a great way to decline the offer while avoiding being offensive.

Unsolicited offers will not just come for your ceremony and reception but may arise throughout the planning process too. Fortunately, those are easier to handle. During this time, you can include the individual(s) in different yet equally meaningful ways making it seem as if you are not being dismissive. For example, if your mom is determined for you to wear her veil and your heart is set on a birdcage, invite her to help you choose just the right one and offer to sew a piece of the veil inside your gown or to use it as a wrap around your bouquet.

All intentions are good when those who love you offer a lending hand as difficult as that may periodically be to keep in mind. However, it is the one day that all attention is on you and your future husband. Therefore, while always doing so kindly and with consideration, you should not feel guilty for ensuring that what you envisioned is exactly what materializes.

Best Kept Hidden Secrets

It goes without saying that every detail of your wedding, from the smallest to the largest, comes with a cost although it may be surprising that the price tag you see or are quoted is not the price you will actually be expected to pay. Many times, fees are added that either aren’t mentioned or that you certainly wouldn’t expect (although later you can be told that you should have). Here are just a few….

Invitations are representative of your motif and you want them to appear engaging, charming as well as welcoming. It is very easy to be sold on more decorative invites, heavier cardstock or are simply bulkier. What may not cross your mind is that you have to pay extra postage for each of those, not to mention the costs for RSVP cards and thank you notes all of which quickly add up. The message is the same and may be presented equally creatively in a simpler and more cost effective fashion.

While your dress should be the first (if not only) item to splurge on depending on your budget, it’s important to consider that the listed price is not the amount you are going to veritably spend.  The vast majority of dresses require alterations which are not included in the cost of the gown but your veil, jewelry, undergarments etc. must be accounted for as well. Modifications alone can set you back up to $500 unless you are lucky enough to find a bridal shop where everything is included for a set fee.

Customarily, when you pay for a service, whether a photographer, DJ, coordinator, use of your venue etc., the quoted amount is for a specific period of time. It may take you longer to get ready than expected, causing the wedding to run late and it’s easy to lose track of time during the subsequent celebration. Be aware that, just as with any other profession, additional charges accrue for overtime. Either you need to be exceptionally aware of your schedule or set aside a portion of the budget in anticipation to cover overages.

Although your wedding day is one of the most special in your life and has tremendous meaning to you, at the end of the day, to most vendors, it is a way to make a living and a means to an end. It is important that you don’t spend every penny allocated without being aware of unforeseen expenditures as almost every aspect of your special day will include them.

How Do You Pew?

The more prevalent mixture of tradition and imagination in wedding planning maintains the principles of marriage while personalizing and individualizing each ceremony. As customs and expectations change, brides find that a church ceremony does not have to be formal and are able to interject more and more touches of originality and uniqueness. Pew decorations are just one of many ways to set your wedding apart and here are a few ideas that can display your personality, are a great way to spend time with friends and will save money and keep you within your budget (hopefully).

Use photography to tell a story in place of the traditional bows or ribbons. On each side of the aisle, use pictures to illustrate various stages in your lives, beginning in the back and ending nearest the altar with a current snapshot. An alternative is to use photos of you and your fiance throughout the course of your relationship to share some of your special moments with your friends and family. Both of these give all of your guests (especially those who may not know you so well) insight into your personalities and the journey that has led you to your wedding day.

Get creative. Use buttons of different sizes, colors, shapes and textures to make hearts that will adorn the pew ends. You can easily glue the buttons onto pieces of paper or fabric swatches, frame each of them and hang them from the pews using pieces of ribbon. They add beauty and modernity to the ceremony site and a very special touch because each of them will be unique and different from the others.

Potpourri balls are another innovative option that can be done in more than one way while simultaneously filling the room with a wonderful scent. A way to combine the more traditional notion of flowers with the potpourri balls is to leave them bare so that from a distance, they look like small bouquets on each pew. Alternately, there are many varieties of round containers, ranging from very simplistic and unadorned ones to those that are ornate and have elaborate cut-outs, depending on the formality of your ceremony. Either way, the space will smell as lovely as the contribution the balls will make.

While the overall experience and the significance of a marriage are, by far, the most important aspects of your wedding day, many brides get caught up in the details because those are what make the occasion even more special. With just a little bit of forethought and imagination, the pew decorations can be both memorable and tailored specifically for (and perhaps by) you.

Guest Wishes

 

When it comes to your wedding day, it is inevitable that not everyone you wish could be there will be able to be, whether due to budget constraints, prior commitments, etc. However, there are ways in which your friends and family who are not in attendance can take part (aside from sending a gift) that will let them know they are valued and that their presence is missed. Here are a few ideas to achieve that as well make those who can be present feel special and appreciated.

Send a fabric square along with each invitation for your guests to decorate and return with their RSVPs. Let them know that they can sew, paint, glue etc. a wish for your future, a favorite memory, story or anything else they would like to share. When you get them back, they can easily be sewn together to create a quilt which can either be used for warmth or hung on a wall as decoration. It will serve as a whimsical, yet sentimental reminder of not only your wedding day but also of the people and relationships you cherish.

A similar idea (perhaps for guests who are a little bit less crafty) is to, in lieu of a fabric square, include with your invitations a blank puzzle piece. Have everyone write a wish for you both or a word that comes to mind when thinking of you, etc. Not only will your guests feel as if they were able to participate, you and your husband will have a wonderful time putting it together.

If you are going to have a yard, a great idea is to place a basket of different rocks at the entry way to the church and an empty basket next to it. Request that every guest, as they come into the ceremony site, pick up one of the rocks and make a wish for you and your fiance before placing it into the empty basket and proceeding to their seat. All of the rocks can later be used to decorate your yard or as part of a garden. Although you will likely never know what the wishes were (unless your invitees disclose them to you), each time you see the rocks, you will be reminded of your wedding day and it will be fun to spend time wondering and guessing.

Depending on an individual’s relationship to the bride or groom, there are people who might feel as if they were invited out of a sense of etiquette or obligation. Taking the small amount of extra time to show your guests, both in attendance and not, will not only be appreciated by each one of them, but it will leave you with tangible memories of both your relationships and your wedding day.

A Day to Remember

Having everything go just perfectly at your wedding is very important and many brides find themselves stressing over every minor detail. Before anyone can appreciate all of your hard work, they have to get to the church and fun and unique save-the-dates are great way to catch your guests attention and help them remember the pertinent information.

Go with your fiance to a photo booth and capture some fun and silly pictures of the two of you holding up cards showing the date, time and location. Not only will it provide the necessary information it will surely bring a smile to the faces of everyone you invite.

Use seed packets of a flower that is either special to you or that ties into your ceremony in some way. You can attach them to cardstock with the information. That way, not only will your guests have a card containing the details but they will be reminded every time they look at the beautiful blooming flowers in their yard.

Personalize stickers so that all your guests have to do is peel them off and put them on their calendars. In fact, many office supply stores have kits so it would be a great DIY project that is both unique and easy on the budget.

Make your save-the dates into a jigsaw or crossword puzzle. People are more likely to remember things when they require interaction and thought, not to mention it is a fun and different way to invite your friends and family to your special day.

If there is something you and your fiance are really into, try to incorporate that in some way.  If you both love movies or music for example, fashion the cards so they resemble either movie or concert tickets. You might be surprised at just how realistic they turn out. If you are very tech saavy, you might consider putting your save-the-dates on old computer disks.

Save-the-dates are important reminders for your guests and are also a creative way for you to showcase your personality and have some fun with everyone you want to incorporate on your big day.

Wedding Trends 2012

It’s hard to believe but 2012 is almost here and there are new and exciting things that are popular for weddings. Here are some ideas of what is up and coming in the bridal arena.

Dessert tables are very popular instead of wedding cakes. It allows couples to offer a variety of options and specialty items. Whether cookies, cupcakes or miniature cakes, guests will love the options available and feel like the experience has been personalized to suit them.

Weddings are getting smaller. Instead of inviting everyone you have ever met, consider inviting only the people who are close to you and mean the most. After all, your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life and is not a public affair. There is a focus on intimacy and family which makes everyone who is invited feel special.

DIY. Lots of brides are doing more and more on their own. Not only does it save money but it ensures that you will get things done just the way you want them and can surprisingly reduce your stress level.

Going green is more popular than ever. Whether you use recycled paper for your invitations or repurpose old items for centerpieces, there are countless ways to both save money and have a positive impact on the environment.

In this day and age, many couples live together prior to getting married and already have most of what they need for their homes. Alternatives such as having guests make donations to charity in lieu of gifts or requesting contributions toward your honeymoon, such as for airfare or hotel accommodations are other popular trends for the new year.