Handmade Wedding: No. 1

March 13, 2013

If you haven’t already noticed, there are two things that I’m a bit obsessed with when it comes to weddings: thinking outside the box, and using handmade elements wherever humanly possible. That said, I thought it would be fun to share some decor ideas here for those of you that are in the process of planning your wedding. We all know I love a good DIY project, so I’ve decided to share things that you can make yourself (or you can, you know, hire me to do that for you..). My mind is constantly reeling with ideas that can be used for weddings, and I’m always finding inspiration everywhere I look – so this type of post may just become a regular thing around here.


(via Small Shop)

Ceremony Backdrop: Spotted Canvas

Yes, I realize that this is a photo of a (quite lovely) gallery wall. But where you see framed art, I see possibility. That simple polka dot art in the center? Do it on a grander scale and you’ve got a killer backdrop idea, if you ask me. This just goes to show that you can find inspiration for your wedding from anywhere – so please, don’t forget to look around in unexpected places!

How to make it yours: This would be a super simple project that you could easily pull together on a Saturday afternoon. All you need is a canvas drop cloth (or two, depending on how big you want your backdrop to be) from your local home improvement store, some paint – plain old acrylic crafting paint would be fine – and a small sponge or paint dabber. You could even freehand the dots with a paintbrush if you’re going for the imperfect look, of which I’m always a fan. Let dry, hang with some twine, and ta-da!


(via Hatch Creative Studio)

Escort Cards: Toy Animals

I’ve been totally, completely obsessed with this idea for as long as I can remember. This is such a fun and playful idea, and there are so many directions you could go with this project.

How to make it yours: Does your fiance’s family live out in the country? Collect a bunch of farm animals and spray paint them white, or gold, or whatever color fits in with your scheme (or not). Are you both history buffs? Hunt down every miniature toy dinosaur in your city and go to town with that spray paint. Heading out on a safari for your honeymoon? Find those jungle animals and – you guessed it – break out the spray paint. Painting the figures will give them a more cohesive look, especially if you plan to display them all together (say, on a table at the entrance to your reception). You could definitely put one of these at each guest’s seat, but I think these would work great as seating cards – put each name and table number on a tag, slip it onto each figure, and call it a day. And hey, they can even do double duty as favors!


(via designworklife)

Table Numbers: Custom Stamp

I’m all about custom stamps right now, so this one is sort of a no-brainer for me. Stamps are easy to use, they give you the ability to repeat the same design or message over and over, and the finished product has a handmade look to it that you don’t always get when you print it out.

How to make it yours: If you’ve never heard of Simon’s Stamps before, you’re seriously missing out. You choose your size, upload your graphic, and about a week later you get your stamp in the mail. If you can draw it, design it in Photoshop, heck – type it up in Microsoft Word – you can turn it into a stamp. I think it would be fun to take inspiration from Table No 1‘s logo and do something similar for your table numbers – just leave out the number when creating your stamp and draw it in later. Stamp on paper, wood, fabric – the possibilities are endless.


(via Oh Happy Day)

Centerpieces: Paint-Dipped Jars

I’m all for re-purposing wherever possible, and this is a great way to do just that. I used a ton of jars and bottles for my own wedding, so I’m a bit partial to that idea, but I think this is a great way to use something you probably already have (or have easy access to) and turn it into super inexpensive, yet really cute, centerpieces.

How to make it yours: Start collecting every jar and bottle you use or come across, and ask your family and friends to do the same. You’ll be surprised how quickly your stash will grow – seriously. Spend an afternoon soaking them to get rid of the labels and glue (this is the only part that’s a pain, I’m not going to lie), and you’ll be left with a ton of vessels for holding flowers, branches, candles, feathers – whatever your heart desires. Jordan Ferney has a great tutorial for dipping the jars, so be sure to head over there and check it out (link to the DIY is under the photo above).


(via Hostess with the Mostess)

Place Settings: Watercolor Placemats

I realize it probably doesn’t make sense to have individual place settings at every wedding, especially larger ones with a lot of guests, but if you’re having a more intimate gathering this would be a beautiful addition to your tables. Place settings are a great place to get creative and add some detail, especially if your centerpieces are simple.

How to make it yours: I can never say no to gold, so if you’re able to incorporate gold silverware into your wedding – please do! (Plastic cutlery has come a LONG way, people – don’t be afraid to use it!) But aside from that, I’m loving the idea of watercolor placemats. All you need is a roll of butcher paper, some scissors, some paint, and a good chunk of time and patience. Swipe some paint across your placemats once you cut them from the roll, let them dry, and that’s it. You could even splatter paint, if you’re going for a more artistic look. Have some little ones in your life that like to make things? Have them help with this project!


(via Chelsea Brink)

Menus: Stitched Menus

As a quilter and overall sewing-obsessed person, I love any decor element that includes stitching. These save the dates are fun and simple, and would be extremely easy to customize. (P.S. – check out Chelsea Brink‘s site, she’s done some really cool design work!)

How to make it yours: I think it would be awesome to take this idea and use it for menus, if that’s something that you want to include as part of your wedding decor. Individual menus aren’t always necessary, but if you can swing it, they can certainly add a lot to a table. You can find some patterned fabric at your local craft or fabric store, cut into small pieces, and sew your printed (or stamped – see, those stamps are so versatile!) menu on top. Voila – menus! This could definitely work for programs, too.


(via 100 Layer Cake)

Favors: Treat Bags

Are you planning to do something like cookies or candy for favors? Instead of wrapping them in cellophane, why not find some cute paper bags, write messages to your guests on them, and tuck the treats inside?

How to make it yours: You can find bags like these all over the place (search online for stores/sites that allow you to buy in bulk), and they come in a variety of colors and sizes. Add a message with a colored marker or custom stamp (yes, the stamps strike again!), tie them closed with a bit of twine or yarn, and pile the bags in a basket, bucket, bowl, pot – or put one at each seat. Easy!


(via Perpetually Chic)

Florals: Flower Garland

I’m totally, completely smitten with this garland. It’s so beautiful, and could easily be used as a ceremony arch, in an entry way to your reception, behind the head table – it would look amazing pretty much anywhere. It’s such a unique use for flowers, especially if you don’t plan to have florals as your centerpieces but still want to incorporate some pretty petals in some way.

How to make it yours: I really want someone to use the tutorial (linked to above) to make one of these, but if you want to use this as inspiration and take a different a spin on this idea, you could also use paper or tissue paper flowers and get a similar effect. Head out to your backyard and pick up some fallen branches or foliage to add in, and you’ve got a really pretty – and unique – garland.


(via Heart of Light)

Reception Decor: Fringed Lanterns

Lanterns are super cheap and super easy to find. Cover them in lots of crepe paper fringe, and you’ve got yourself some awesome ceiling decor. I think these would look really amazing over a head table or bar area, or even the dance floor if you’re feeling ambitious.

How to make it yours: Grab some paper lanters, some crepe paper, some scissors, and you’re good to go. You can easily coordinate these with the rest of your wedding decor by incorporating your colors (you can find a massive array of crepe paper options here), or go a totally different direction and make them stand out by covering them with a contrasting color. I think I might just go make some of these myself, for fun. Why not?


I’d love to know if you decide to take on any of these projects and incorporate them into your day. Happy creating!

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