Our Wedding: One Helluva DIY Project

With how busy we’ve been working on the house, I’ve sort of forgotten to share my proudest DIY project to date: our wedding!

There is so much to share — from beginning to end — so I’ll try to sum it up as cohesively as I can. Pardon my ADD if I start to jump around.

First, I’ll start with the invitations:

I emailed the save-the-dates so people would respond with their mailing addresses. That was my sneaky way to avoid tracking down all of the addresses right before I needed to mail the invites.

Then, about two months before the wedding our guests received our invitations and RSVP postcards.

All of the info was on our wedding blog (It’s no longer up): everything was included from hotel and venue information, to the story of how we met.

You’ve been patient, so now I’ll get to the good stuff: The Wedding Day!

Our wedding was at the home of our incredibly awesome family friends who just happen to have a totally killer, wedding-ready house. They are like a second family to me, so to have our wedding on their property was everything we had ever wanted. It gave us the ability to decorate exactly how we wanted, which made everything so warm and fuzzy. It was intimate, casual, festive, and every other single adjective that we were aiming for. To sum it up quickly before the water-works start, IT WAS OUR DREAM COME TRUE.

While my best friend, Molly, and I enjoyed a glass of wine before the festivities, our guests were greeted with this sandwich board sign that Steve and I made. I hand-painted a welcome message on one side, and a thanks-for-coming message on the other (I will post a tutorial on this project).

The short-but-sweet ceremony was held around the pool, with Steve and me standing on the deck. My mom gets full credit for making an aisle runner out of two tablecloths, and constructing the simple and stunning backdrop. The pretty flowers were left over from the rehearsal-dinner arrangements Steve’s mom had gotten made. It couldn’t have worked out more perfectly.

My handsome groom. Isn’t he charming?

After the ceremony our guests mingled on the driveway, where the reception was held. We had lots of activities to keep them occupied, as well as tons of yummy food.

Steve made Cornhole boards (tutorial soon) that got a lot of action.

We had a thumbprint guest book where we asked guests to “leaf” their prints. I need to post a picture of what it looks like all filled up. It’s incredible. My friends have some nice thumbprints, if I do say so myself.

I made a banner from decorative paper I found at Michaels and strung it around this gorgeous bird cage that my mom happened to have in her basement. This worked perfectly to hold cards; they slipped right through the bars.

We had a photobooth, complete with a prop table. Recognize the table? This got really fun as the night wore on. (Read: This got really fun as the alcohol kicked in.)

Two of my dear friends were unable to attend the wedding, so our other friends who did come brought photo cutouts of their faces so we could take pictures with them –BRILLIANT! Kelly and Mark ended up on the prop table when they weren’t cutting a rug on the dance floor.

We had the photobooth print doubles so we could have our guests leave a print behind for us. It was fun to see all of the strips hanging up at the end of the night. These boards were covered!

To make our initials I covered large cardboard letters with artificial flowers. It was a lot of plucking and gluing, but I’m happy with how they turned out. The boards were upcycled from old window shutters that Steve attached together. Then we strung hemp from one side to another and added hundreds of tiny clothespins.

And of course, our guests visited the bar:

The sign was made from an old frame I found at an antique store, and plywood painted with chalkboard spray paint. It really does work!

The map was probably my favorite project we made for the wedding. Many of our guests were coming from all over the US and I really wanted to somehow highlight that. This map was our little way of showing how much we appreciated the miles covered. With the help of a brilliant writer-friend, it was titled: “The Road You Tread To See Us Wed”

The map was a hit. We heard people proudly saying “That’s my pin!”

For the table centerpieces we kept things simple: brightly colored tablecloths and simple flower arrangements — that Molly and I arranged ourselves — paired with mason jars that I had been collecting for an entire year before the wedding. You can’t have too many candles.

Above our heads were strings of white lights and doily garland that I made by halving two different sized doilies over string, and then gluing together.

This is me, before slipping into my wedding dress, checking out the desert table. We had all homemade goodies instead of a single cake, which everyone really seemed to love. A big thank you goes out to all of our friends and family who baked their little hearts out. The dessert table was a hit!

I made the little “Love is Sweet” signs, and found that beautiful antique lace curtain on ebay, which perfectly framed the table.

Flip flops were a must-have; I think all of our dancing guests appreciated them. I scored these babies on sale for $1 a pop from Old Navy. I simply wrapped them with hemp and put size stickers on the heel of each shoe, which made for easy picking.

We danced our first dance to La Vie En Rose, by Louis Armstrong. I get teary-eyed just typing that out. You can imagine that I cried through the whole dance. I’m a softie.

My father/daughter dance was sweet, and it turned into a father/mother/daughter dance. What can I say? I’m an only child. They’re both my everything.

After all of the “first dances” we got the party started!

One of my favorite shots is one my photographer took on his way out. This picture most closely captures the mood of the night. We had about 400 twinkling candles, and the whole thing honestly felt magical.

Of course we had to cap the whole DIY Wedding Theme with thank-you cards that captured the spirit of the event.

FRONT

BACK

I designed vintage-themed postcards to send out to all of our friends, thanking them for sharing our special day with us.

I can easily say without hesitation that our wedding night was the best night of my life. We had everyone that we love in one place, and that alone makes for the perfect occasion. I also got to marry my best friend and the love of my life, so, yeah. Best. Night. EVER.

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