This past weekend Rob and I traveled back to NJ for my sisters wedding. It’s hard to believe she is now married and it still takes a moment to recognize her new name on Facebook. We had a fantastic weekend sans kids surrounded by family, old friends, and several new ones.
I was so honored to create several things for their ceremony and reception. Unfortunately I was having so much fun dancing and eating that I didn’t think to take many photos. I am anxiously waiting for the professional ones to be done. They decided on a Lucky In Love theme and we found ways to incorporate various forms of lucky with wishing wells, dandelions, and horse shoes.
Saturday was busy with manicures, pedicures, and I even got some hair extensions. Then the mini rehearsal, yummy dinner, followed by a hilarious round of Cards Against Humanity. That night I stayed with her for a little Sissy time although we both passed out rather quickly, lol.
The day was beautiful, everything went smoothly, the food was absolutely amazing, and the bride was gorgeous. We spent the evening dancing and toasting the new couple as they start an amazing life together as husband and wife.
Rob and I were watching Shark Tank last night and I just had to share one of the companies that was pitched to the sharks, Nearly Newlywed. It truly is an amazing idea and perfect for brides on a budget!
“Nearly Newlywed is an online boutique for modern brides to buy, try and sell ‘nearly new’, fashion-forward, hard-to-find dresses. We believe that for the modern bride, the perfect day requires the perfect dress, and finding and trying a once worn dress should be just as fun as shopping for a brand new one.”
What an ingenious idea! Give a bride the opportunity to wear a dress she could never normally afford, with the option of getting it even cheaper by selling it back when she is done. I know that many women like to keep their dresses. Really though, it spends the rest of time in a box and may come out once in awhile for children and grandchildren to see. I bet most women, if asked, would take wearing their dream dress at an affordable price over keeping it in their closet. Am I right?
I always love waking up to an email letting me know that latest issue of DIY Weddings Magazine is up and ready for purchase. Especially when I have a DIY project in it!
Since summer is just around the corner, I thought it would be a great idea to show a project I have been working on for the summer, chalkboards. Chalkboards are such great additions to your ceremony and reception. Their are an inexpensive and easy way to add a unique touch.
Not only are they functional for the wedding, but you can use them around the house or to document other life events. I use chalkboards all the time to document my son’s milestones month to month, welcome messages for overnight guests and on display in our kitchen for a little extra holiday spirit.
What is great about doing them yourself is you can use what ever shape and size you want. I found the ones for this project at Michael’s.
These are the materials I use when making chalkboards. There are many options to choose from and you may find something that works a little better. I find that using primer first allows the chalkboard paint to go on smoothly and look flawless. I am also very particular about safety and use a mask and gloves but those are really optional.
Ahhh wedding favors. In my opinion, one of the most impractical yet important parts of a wedding. Guests can get pretty snarky with comments on mediocre favors yet they would also be the ones to complain if there wasn’t one sitting at their place setting.
We chose to have a photo booth at our reception in lieu of a favor. Everyone seemed to respond well, at least they lead me to believe that, and were excited to take a funny photo home to remember that day by.
Had Pinterest been around when we got married (I joined 2 months after our wedding), I maybe telling you a different story. Before Pinterest, brides had to search online and through magazines in order to find the perfect favor for their wedding. Now, you can search for hundreds ideas based on color, theme or even DIY favors. Here are just a few I found recently that I thought were pretty neat.
I wish I could have known Courtney when she got married. By the summary she sent me for this post (all 4 pages of it) I can only imagine what an organized, creative bride she was! She did such a good job summarizing her wedding, I don’t even need to tweak it. So, in her own words, here is Courtney and Josh’s DIY Wedding!
My dream wedding was an outdoor barbecue, super casual and laid back. We found a large log cabin facility. They offered barbecue for their catering menu. It was the perfect location. We had the option of doing an outdoor wedding, but decided to do the wedding indoors as you can’t predict the weather in Maine, especially in October. We lucked out though the weather was perfect. It was 70 degrees and beautiful, so we got some wonderful outdoor picture. Our ceremony and reception were at the same location. Our ceremony was very us, straight and to the point. We didn’t want too much fuss. We were married by a notary in less than 5 minutes!
Date: October 8, 2011 Theme: Superman (outdoor barbecue)
Bridal Party: 4 groomsman, 4 bridesmaids, a junior bridesmaid and our son, Orion was the ring bearer
Looking at all of the color swatches for bridesmaid dresses and tuxes it took forever for us to find a set that the colors matched up and looked nice. We ended up going with Josh’s favorite colors blue and red, which are also superman colors, his favorite superhero. He wore a red vest and bow tie and the groomsmen wore blue vests and bow ties. The bridesmaids wore blue dresses. All from Henry’s Bridal in Bangor, ME
Our gift to the groomsmen was superman shirts to wear under their tuxes. You can see they had fun with them at the reception.
My dress: I knew I didn’t want to spend much on my dress and I said that I would get my dress at a local thrift store that had last seasons dresses, tags still on, for cheaper. The weekend we got engaged was my birthday. My parents came up for lunch and the thrift store was across the street from the restaurant so we decided to look for fun. Josh was with us. We picked out a few dresses and when I put this one on I knew it was the dress that I wanted. Turns out it was the dress that Josh picked out. My parents bought the dress to put away, at this point we hadn’t even set a date. We got married just over a year later. By the time of the wedding Josh had forgotten the dress and I wouldn’t let him see it beforehand.
Cake Topper: Josh always talked about the game over cake toppers he had seen. So for our wedding cake I decided to buy one for him. It had me dragging him away from Madden, with Tony Romo of the Cowboys on the screen and the screen saying game over. I had it custom made on Etsy. It was a big hit at the wedding.
Jewelry: For the bridesmaid gifts I had my cousin make them bracelets and earrings to go with their dresses.
Bouquet: I wanted to have the diamond picks in my flowers. I sat down with Mark at ChapelHill Floral to design the perfect bouquet. I had blue and white hydrangea and bright red roses with diamond picks. The bridesmaids carried white hydrangeas while the maid of honor carried a blue hydrangea. It was important to me to include our families as well. I got our mothers, Josh’s grandmother and Josh’s sister a corsage. I also got our fathers, his grandfather, and my brother boutonnieres.
Cake: I wanted a simple cake that wouldn’t break the bank. I sat down with Rebecca at Rebecca’s cakesand found a way to make a cake within our budget. The cake I chose was a 3 tier cake with a floating tier, so 2 tiers of actual cake. The cake slices were two layers, one chocolate and one vanilla, with a vanilla butter cream The outside was a simple smooth butter cream with piping. She also put red ribbon around each layer. In the back we had a large sheet cake that the caterer cut beforehand and was ready to serve after we finished our cake cutting. We sprinkled rose petals on the table for color. We used my parents’ cake cutter from when they were married 27 years before.
My husband is evil. He let me feed him a piece of cake and then he shoved cake up my nose, ended up dropping it down my dress. I was covered in cake! When I took my dress off later the cake was even in my corset.
For the father/daughter dance and mother/son dance we danced with our parent for about a minute and then had the DJ invite the pairs on the floor. It was very popular with everyone. I really enjoyed being able to dance with our son as well. I also loved the picture of my MIL with her 4 boys.
Our son was 6 months old when we got married. We had a suit outfit we got at Burlington Coat factory for the ceremony and pictures. He was then changed into a black shirt with black pants and a tux bib. We had a chair for him at the sweetheart table, but he stayed with my mom and other guests throughout the night. My mom was nice enough to offer to watch him the whole night so that I didn’t have to worry and got to enjoy my wedding.
Centerpieces: My centerpieces were inspired by these I found on Pinterest. Unfortunately, we didn’t think to take a full picture. I got vases at the dollar store, silver dollies, floating candles, green flower foam and picked up a dozen roses before the rehearsal. The night before we prepped them at the facility, each vase received the gems a rose in the green stuff to hold it up and then filled half way with water. The staff at Peakes hill finished filling them up and added the candles the day of our wedding. My dad made place cards on the computer. We bought the ones premade for the printer and he typed in all the names and printed them.
I also made table numbers. Each table had a different picture of Josh and me throughout the years we had been together. I put them in silver picture frames I picked up at Dollar Tree.
Our favors were heart containers with stickers saying Joshua and Courtney, October 8, 2011. I bought them off of Oriental TradingCompany. (Funny story: I received an order from Oriental Trading and was really confused. Instead of the card box and favors I received water balloons and kids party favors. I called them and they sent the right package. The poor little boy who received my card box). We filled the favors with silver sixlets. My mom and I went to the candy store and played with a few different candies and colors to see what looked the best.
My best friend and I decorated a prelit arch. We wrapped tulle around the front, took 2 tulle bows that we bought premade at Michaels and placed them on the edges. On the top I placed some white fake flowers and hanging down from the middle I had a foam heart that had beads stuck to it.
I DIYed my veil My MIL gave me the veil she had worn at her wedding, but being 28 years old it had started to yellow. It was a headband wrapped in ribbon, with flowers sewn to the ribbon and the tulle sewn to that. She had DIYed it for her wedding. I took the flowers off and bleached them. I decided that instead of a bunch of flowers I only wanted a few. I took off the ribbon wrapped around the headband and wrapped a new piece of white ribbon around. I then put on an old flower, freshly white from the bleach and a new one with hot glue. I also added a few extra accessories for a special touch. Finally I sewed the original tulle back on. I loved it.
For my jewelry: My MIL and I went through her jewelry and I borrowed a necklace with matching earrings and a tennis bracelet. The necklace and earrings were diamonds and pearls in white gold. The tennis bracelet was diamonds and rubies, so it matched perfectly with the theme. I think it was very foretelling because right after the wedding I got pregnant with our twins who were born in July, ruby birthstone. Our son was born in April, diamond birthstone. Finally, I wore my grandmother’s wedding band.
Our wedding date was also our nephew’s 2ndbirthday. So I had bought a small cake for him and put candles on it. Before the cake cutting I had him come up with his mom and everyone sang Happy Birthday to him.
I tried to do our wedding on a budget. One day I spent calling photographers and DJs trying to talk them into the price I wanted. That evening I got an email from my cousin, Becky, offering to do the photography and for her boyfriend, Erik to be the DJ. She has always been into photography and does a great job with pictures. Erik DJed her sister wedding, which mom had been to and said he was wonderful. I was so excited and grateful for the offer. I took her up on it right away. Having her and Erik was the best thing ever. While we were getting ready Erik was at the house with the boys taking pictures while Becky was with us. They were coordinating when people left, where people were, and made sure we all got to the facility around the same time. Erik being the DJ was great. He was so excited and up beat. He had everyone confused because his PC set to his iPhone so he could sit anywhere in the room and change the music.
The year before our wedding I worked as an event coordinator at an event center where our main job was weddings. Therefore, I had worked about 50 weddings and knew what I liked and didn’t like. I felt this helped with the planning process. Going into our final meeting I had a list of times and plans for everything to happen. This also allowed the facility and DJ to be on the same page.
We had a sweetheart table. I didn’t like the idea of having the bridal party sit with us since some of them had significant others and/or families, I didn’t feel like it was fair. Plus I like the look of the sweetheart table. We had it set for three with a booster seat in case our son wanted to sit with us, but he ended spending the time getting passed around the guests.
I asked my bridesmaids to be in the wedding by taking king size Hershey bars and wrapping them with a homemade wrapper. I printed off a logo that said will you be my bridesmaid? Wrapped the candy bar with scrapbook paper and glued the logo to it. For my two bridesmaids in town I put it in a gift bag and had them open them. For my friend Out of town I mailed it to her and had her call me when she got the mail so that she could open it on the phone with me.
Our guest book was a photo mat.
My SIL, Josh’s sister’s wedding gift to us was a drawing she drew of superman kissing his bride. We decided it would be fun to recreate it at the end of the wedding.
I hope you enjoyed reading Courtney and Josh’s wedding.
Interested in having your wedding showcased on a Wedding Wednesday? Contact me for more information. I am looking for all kinds of wedding themes, venues, locations, budgets and level of DIY projects. Didn’t have much of a DIY wedding? Don’t worry at all! This is about inspiration and every wedding has the ability to inspire other brides!