I WANT TO DIY WEDDING PLANNING BUT IS IT TOO LATE?
What time frame am I working with? Are you planning a wedding 2 years away or 6 months away?
How much time every week will I be able to spend working on these projects? Maybe you are planning a wedding 2 years away but you work 60 hour weeks and won’t have as much time to spend. Maybe you are getting married in 6 months but have a lot of time to dedicate to wedding preparations.
Am I crafty or is this new territory for me? Being already crafty is a huge plus, but don’t count yourself out on the DIY if you aren’t already into crafting. Just take into consideration, if you are new to crafting you may need a little more time and support to bring some of your ideas to life.
What is my support system like? Think about your friends and family. Are they involved in your wedding planning? Do they have time to help you with projects? It is important to look at this really carefully. Remember, it is your wedding and nobody is going to care about it quite as much as you do. There is nothing wrong with that! But you want to make sure that you don’t lean too heavily on certain members of your support system or else they will burn out! So make sure you have enough people to delegate tasks to!
Is my support system crafty or skilled in areas that will make this process smoother? Having a support system who is already great at crafting is a big bonus.
Will I actually save money doing this? DIY can be a great way to save money, but it also can add up very quickly if you aren’t careful to track your spending.
Will the money I save be worth the time I will spend? Sometimes the answer is yes. Sometimes it doesn’t even come down to money; maybe DIY is just a way to stay connected to your wedding throughout the planning process. Just be sure to have realistic expectations about how long some projects will take.
It is infinitely better to ask yourself these questions before you get going and realize that maybe you’ve bitten off a little more than you can chew. Or maybe are on the fence and by asking yourself these questions you found the inspiration to go for it!
Once you have worked through these questions and decided you would like to take on some (or maybe all) DIY projects, it is very helpful to come up with a clear vision for your wedding aesthetic. Even if you want a hodgepodge of eclectic decor, it is great to decide what kind of eclectic you want! All vintage items? All boho items? Super modern and minimalist? Whatever you decide, try to do so before starting projects. It will make your life a lot easier, trust me.
What kind of things are easy to DIY?
You can DIY virtually every aspect involved with a wedding. From the venue, to the food, to the decorations, to the music, to the bar, literally every single aspect could be taken on as a project. That is all A LOT to take on, and most people don’t choose to DIY every single aspect. There are a few easy projects that you can take on yourself though. Table numbers, seating charts, wedding signs, party favors, and centerpieces rank among what I would consider to be the easiest.
You can do Table numbers so many different ways. You can make this as simple or as involved as you would like. Some of the most common easy DIY table number tricks are
Printing out the numbers on card stock paper and clipping them into free standing picture holder. You can find these at any craft store, target, Walmart, or of course Amazon.
Printing the numbers out and putting them in picture frames
If you have access to a vinyl printer there are even more options, including staining wood planks and putting vinyl numbers on them. You can leave the wood raw or stain it to match your color scheme and aesthetic. Another idea is to use clear acrylic sheets and print the numbers on those. Make them stand by using the free standing picture holders on the bottom.
If you don’t have a vinyl printer you can always order the vinyl numbers from Etsy and apply them yourself.
Seating charts are also another relatively easy item to create on your own. There are plenty of approaches to take on this too.
The easiest way to do this is to create a seating chart on your computer and printing it out at Costco, Staples, or any big printing company. Check with your local stores to make sure they can print in the size you want (most are happy to print on large sturdy poster board). You can dress it up by downloading some layouts from Etsy or create your own design!
Finding or creating a structure that you can hang the table assignments from. I have a lovely copper structure that works amazing for this. I use some wire to string from side to side and then use mini clothespins (Dollar Tree sells packs of 50 for just a dollar) to hang the individual table assignments from.
You can also write your table assignments on a mirror or chalkboard paint pens, just be sure to measure out how much space you have first before writing. Pro tip- while measuring, tape ribbon to the outside of the frame to create equally sized sections for your seats. This way you don’t make marks that need to be erased later and your sections are equal.
If you are going the rustic route, find an old pallet, stain it, and either hang printing table assignments using the techniques I mentioned earlier, or write them on with a paint pen!
Wedding signs are also fairly easy to make!
You can of course print them on poster board using the same place you choose to get your seating chart, if you choose to go that route.
You can also print the signs out and put them in picture frames! I always love this option. They look so cute and classy.
Another option is going to chalkboard route. You can either find cute frames and paint the glass part with chalkboard paint. A simpler option is to buy chalkboard signs from your local craft store.
You can also go the mirror sign route or the acrylic sign route. You can use paint pens on either of these or if you have access to a vinyl printer, printing vinyl letters always looks nice, too!
DIYing party favors can be simple and is a really nice personal touch since these will be going home with guests.
There are really so many routes to take on this one. You can make goody bags, koozies, something that relates specifically to you and your fiance’s life, some kind of homemade snack or craft, really the list just goes on and on.
My sister and her husband made these adorable little coasters by slicing a tree branch that fell in their backyard, sealing and staining them.
A couple from a few weekends ago used small plastic drink shakers that they put their wedding date using vinyl letters. They filled the shaker with candy wrapped in their wedding colors.
Another couple used shot glasses that doubled as place cards for their guests.
The possibilities are really endless.
Centerpieces can be as easy or as intricate as you make them. We will talk about some more simple centerpiece options for now.
If you are choosing to not use a florist you and are going to do your own flowers (really a whole other DIY project that deserves its own podcast) you can find simple vases. I’m a big advocate for finding vases or candle holders from thrift stores. This is more cost effective and creates less waste.
You can also find vases and candle holders (including the large clear hurricane candle holders) from the Dollar Tree.
I’m always partial to upcycling. I love when people putting together more casual weddings use empty wine or beer bottles. Just take the labels off and you have got some amazing and unique vases!
There are SO many directions to go with these, so it is really helpful to have a clear vision of color and style that you want before you start collecting things.
IS THERE SUCH A THING AS TOO MUCH DIY
A wedding is such a big milestone in your life. The day comes and goes so quickly, so doing small projects over a period of time to prepare for this moment is a great way to stay connected and truly savor this special time in your life. A lot of people take a year to two years to plan a wedding, and that’s a lot of time to get things done… or so it seems. So to answer our question “Is there such a thing as too much DIY?” we need to go back to the questions you asked yourself in the beginning of this blog.
There are plenty of people out there that can really pull off incredibly involved 100% DIY weddings. This requires an incredible amount of time and discipline. If you have a lot of support that really does go a long way, too. You could also DIY 100% of your wedding but go the very simplistic, minimalist route. This vibe has been very popular lately, too. Just because you can DIY everything, doesn’t necessarily mean that you should. If your reasons are purely budget related, make sure you weigh all options. By the time you are done DIYing things, you may just end up spending more than if you had gone the rental or all inclusive venue route. If you really just love projects and you have the time and the support, then GO FOR It. Again, little projects wedding related are a great way to stay connected to such a monumental event in your life, especially when you start planning a long time in advance.
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