In my lifetime I must have attended 1000s of weddings, before I was a wedding photographer in South Wales, Aberdare I used to sing in a rock band that were very popular on the wedding circuit. I always knew I wanted to create something that meant something to me and my wife on our wedding day so we decided to make a lot of the deco, because it is easy right ? NOT !
Ok we know lots of other wedding services in the wedding game, and I know they would have helped us out but we had ventured into something we now couldn't back out of, we had 5 WEEKS to plan this wedding !!!! So the back ache, blistered fingers with cuts, bruises, headaches, disagreements and a living area that was turned into a warehouse began !
The 10th March 2016 we got married at the Llechwen Hall, RCT, South Wales.
We wanted a pastel look to the wedding more like a washed out colour scheme, but didn't want an actual main colour (if you know what I mean) So we decided to go with lots of pinks, browns, greys, blues etc. Did it work ? We think so .
These images are just snap shots of the process.
First we needed 180 metres of bunting, didn't sound a lot but this took weeks of work every night. We looked into buying some nice material but then Kate had a brainwave, lets use our family clothes - GENIUS ! So we gathered old shirts, dresses etc of family members even some old blankets that grandparents had used that were no longer with us, this gave us the feeling that a part of them were at the wedding at least. We decided against the 'respect' table where people add photos of family members who were no longer with us and this replaced that idea. Very quickly we had run out of clothes from family members, so we hit the charity shops etc, and picked up lots of various material for very little money, some being 99p for bulk buys. We didn't want white string so we picked up lots of garden thread in our local garden centre (hessian string).
So basically we cut strips of material and tied them to the string in section mix matching the colours (not putting much thought into it if I am honest)
Bunting being made
Next up were the chair wraps and material flowers. It was the same principal of the bunting. Kate cut out lots of flower shapes from the material all different sizes so we could layer the flowers, I would then burn my fingers, I mean stick the layer together with hot glue WARNING WATCH YOUR FINGERS :(. Once dried add a button to the centre and finally hot glue a saftey pin to the back ready to attach tot the hessian wrap. We made 200 of these bad boys enough for the reception room and the actual ceremony chairs. These were less stressful than the bunting, but still a lot of effort.
We tied the hessian ribbon in a knot around the chairs and pinned the flowers to the knot to hide it. by doing this the hessian could not be used again, so maybe you could cut longer pieces and tie bows (hindsight is a great thing).We found the ribbon online at Ebay and it came in 50 meter rolls we paid for 100 but basically needed another because we ran out by 5 chairs, but we hid those at the back, no one could tell our mistake.
Material chair flowers
These are the flowers actually on the chairs, don't they look pretty ? You can see in the image above a pencil by the hot glue gun. This was a great way of not burning your fingers I found out days later, use this to press the centre of the flower while the hot glue dries ! It does not take long at all to go hard.
We know a lot of florists again who were so willing to help out, but we really wanted to try something a little different and we really wanted dried flowers, for the centre pieces, bride and bridesmaids bouquets, buttonholes and to be places around the room. We found an online company called Artisan Dried Flower Company. The quality of the flowers and price were a no brainer, and we were so happy that we decided to do this. Again a lot of effort but but worth every second. They arrived in big secure boxes and we then started to add them to the jars that we collected over the few weeks we had. These were old curry and pickle jars (can't believe how many we collected, need to cut down on the pickles I feel) We soaked the jars in a warm bath to make it easier to peel the labels and scrap the glue off.
We made some ribbon from old net curtains and hot glued (ouch) them to the jars with little buttons to finish them off, tied some dried grass to around some of the jars and this for us was the final piece in the look we wanted. It really gave our wedding a very spring feel.
Here are the flowers, with our little helpers, the cats
There were little things we wanted to make also like a welcome sign that we found in a old second hand home store. We painted this and sprayed black matt paint onto it so we could use for a chalk board where we wrote our moto for a happy marriage (these are also engraved on our rings by Thomas Sabo) "Love-Hope-Faith" with our wedding date. This was places at the entrance to the ceremony room. To finish it off we hot glued (ouch) some of our dried flower confetti that we also found on Ebay to the frame.
With the confetti we bought some white organza bags that our flower girls gave out to our guests and these were placed in little white baskets.
Out seating plan was also from the same shop. It was an old picture so I took out the picture, again sprayed it black, hot glued (ouch) some hessian string across it, found some old brown gift tags and printed our guest names on to them, and hung them with the cutest little pegs.
Rings & Signs
Basically that was it apart from seating name cards. We also tried to be a little creative here by taking images of our guests from social media pages and printing them out into frame. The worst images we could find the better, it made people laugh and lighten the mood for people who were sitting with people they didn't really know which happens at weddings.
We were going to make our own sweet cart also but we really ran out of time. So we found a very vintage looking cart that was perfect and is so different to any there cart we had seen. Thank you to Button and Bow Fancies (click for the Facebook page) for helping out at short notice, the cart was perfect. With a zillion sweets left over that our children Evan & Poppy are well happy about are living area is a little less like a warehouse.
I hear lots of brides and grooms say that once its over you will be looking for another project to get stuck into. This is very true and we did think about getting divorced so we could plan and relive the day again, is this possible ? :)
It really broke us and thinking back, maybe we took a lot on, but it turned out to be a perfect day with lots of lovely compliments on the deco, then it was all worth it.
To plan a wedding in 5-8 weeks was a very big challenge, but we did it..
Hope this gave you a little idea on some simple, painful and time consuming ideas for your wedding day, the personal touch really did means lot to us.