Tuesday, 25 October 2011

The One About: A Handmade Wedding

From the start, my wedding was always going to be a handmade affair. I love to make things, and so does my Mum and my bridesmaid Jenny. I think half of the fun was probably spending a lot of time on Pinterest and browsing the internet looking for pretty Wedding inspiration. If I'd had longer than 3 months, I would probably have made more but given that I only had 3 months from when we decided to get married this year to the big day I don't think I did badly considering!

The Centrepieces
One of the main things I found and fell in love on Pinterest where Manzanita branches as centrepieces. Which in hind sight was a bit silly really, considering it's a tree that grows in America and it isn't available to buy outside of the US! But, I decided I really wanted them and as we were having a small wedding I decided it wasn't outside of our budget to have them shipped over.

I also managed to find an eBay seller who was doing packs of vintage chandelier droplets in a variety of different shapes and styles that where perfect to hang from the branches. A lot of images online have tealights hanging from the branches as well, but as my budget didn't stretch to the hanging votive holders (seriously, £5 for one holder??? no thanks!) I decided to put tealights around the centrepiece on the table and it worked really well. In the evening the light from the tealights really caught the chandelier droplets and it looked so pretty! 

The branches I went for weren't huge, but I think they worked well with the size of our tables without being over the top. Each vase contains 2 individual branches, and I had them on both round tables (yes we really did only have 2 round tables plus the top table - see I told you it was a tiny wedding!).

By the way, I'm considering selling these as I really don't have anywhere to put them in my house at the moment until we've done the loft conversion. I'd be selling everything to recreate these 2 centrepieces (the branches, the chandelier droplets and the vases) so if anyone is interested get it touch!

The Place Cards
Of course I also made most of the paper related things for the wedding! I did my own invites and RSVP's, table plan, table numbers etc, but I think my favourite thing was definitely the place cards!

I designed the main part of the place card in Photoshop myself and printed them onto matt photo paper before mounting them onto purple card stock and adding the lace and beading at the bottom. I think my favourite part of them though is that each one sat on it's own mini wooden easel, seriously I love these so much!

The Favours

I also loved our favours - tiny mini succulent plants! Originally, I was thinking that I would give seed sticks as favours, but not everyone enjoys gardening so I thought about what else I could give that was a little different but the same sort of thing. Mini cactuses were suggested by Mark, but I didn't like the idea of giving people a spiky favour so a succulent plant was the ideal alternative. Easy to look after even for the least green fingered of our guests, and hopefully a lasting memento of our big day!

The Top Table Decorations & Table Swags

I also put together the top table decorations, vases of beautiful white and purple wooden roses and candle trays. I'd have liked to have the same centrepieces as on the round tables, but I didn't think branches were ideal for a top table as they'd obscure the view of the wedding party for the other guests!

We also did our own top table and cake table swags, they are so easy to do with a little patience and some safety pins! I'd suggest getting the wider width for the swag to ensure it's deep enough and the narrower width for the bow and it really is so easy to do!

The Guest Book
You can also see our guest book on this photo, it's the photo of me & Mark with the large mount and we got everyone to sign the mount. I got the idea from Jenny's wedding and I love the end result, now we just need to finish the entrance hall so I've got somewhere to hang it! It was really easy to do, I bought one of the large prints with a wide mount from Ikea (a print with a mount is here, or alternatively you can buy the same size mount with a frame here) and simply adding in our own photo! Easy and cheap too!

The Wedding Cake & Cupcakes
My mum made all the cakes, both the wedding cake and all the cup cakes although I did help! The Tuesday before the wedding I spent all day at her house helping to decorate the cupcakes, which to be honest was the best thing for me as it stopped me panicking about other things!

She also made super cute covers for the cupcake stands to make sure no flies could get at the cupcakes once they'd been set out. It wasn't intentional, but I love the way they look like mini veils!

The cake she made was stunning, a two tier fruit cake and handmade sugarpaste roses. She was so fab, it really was a case of me looking through cake books and pointing at one I liked and saying "make me one like this please", although I should tell you at this point when I was little she did have a business making wedding cakes and for as long as I can remember she's always promised to make my wedding cake!

I adore the sugarpaste roses, and best of all because they are sugarpaste I can keep them! They are currently in a little cardboard box, which I need to decorate a little so I can store it away with the rest of my wedding keepsakes.

The cupcakes were a big hit too. After much taste testing we finally picked 3 flavours (it was actually meant to be only 2 but we couldn't decide!); Lemon, Fudge Surprise and Chocolate.

Oh and we're also selling 4 of these cupcake stands (sorry to turn this into a selling post, but I thought I might as well say on here before I put them on eBay!). They are beautiful 3 tier ceramic cake stands in Ivory with a delicate lace design around the edge of each tier. If you'd like to see better photos of the stand itself, just let me know! Unfortunately the matching stand the wedding cake sits on is not for sale.

 I love this photo - hair and make up done, tiara on and putting out cupcakes. Fabulous!

The Card Box

 My mum also made me a beautiful card box, it started off life as a plain box and she decorated it to match everything else I'd made. It was perfect to keep all the cards people gave us on the day together. This was one of those last minute makes where my Mum asked me if I had thought of making a card box and I said no, and there was no way I'd have enough time to make one myself so bless her she made it for me and just showed it me when it was finished. It was gorgeous and matched my other wedding decorations perfectly. Hurrah for Mums!

The Jewellery and the Veil

All of mine & Jenny's jewellery (including my Tiara and our hair clips) was handmade by a Folksy seller with real pearls. I wanted pretty jewellery without it being too blingy, and pearls fit the bill perfectly! I fell in love with the hair clip and she then made all the other jewellery to match to my specfications. She even made my Tiara based on a photograph I'd found online! I had a really hard time finding a Tiara as they all seemed over the top when I tried them on, but I was really happy with this one - a double wishbone with alterating freshwater pearls and swarovski crystals.

My Mum made my veil for me and attached it to the comb. I love the fact she made my veil, it really added to the sentimental value!

Jenny also wore the same hair clip as me, just in a slightly smaller size. Her jewellery, was one of my gifts to her to say thank you for being my bridesmaid!

The Flowers
One of the big time investments in the run up to the wedding was making my own flowers, as I made all the buttonholes and corsages as well as the bouquets, but as I decided to use silk flowers it meant I could make them ahead of time. The cost of wedding flowers is ridiculous, and because we were travelling up the day before making them myself using fresh flowers wasn't really an option so I started to investigate silk flowers and if you shop around you can get really high quality ones that look fantastic.

The bouquets are just simple ivory roses, but they have a silk chiffon wrap that drapes down (another Pinterest find that I decided I had to have as it matched the silk chiffon panels on my dress perfectly!) and the stems are wrapped in lace with pearl pins studded all the way up. Oh and of course diamant√© pins in each of the roses for that added bling!

I don't seem to have any photos of the corsages, but they were all variants on the same theme. Compared to the bouquets these were made so quickly, a simple silk rose bud and an open purple rose (two for the groom, one for the other members of the wedding party) made sure they tied in the wedding colour - purple! The corsages were similar to the buttonholes, just a little bit more elaborate with some extra bling and lace added in for good measure!

The Bridesmaid Dress & Shawl

I've mentioned it before, but Jenny made her own bridesmaid dress - how talented is she? If you want to check out more details on it she's blogged all about it here.

She also knitted a beautiful shawl to coordinate - she didn't need it during the day (thankfully as we got lucky with the weather) and only used it during the evening so sadly there's no photos of it on the day, which is a shame because it's so pretty! She even used beautiful pearl beads to co-ordiante with the wedding theme. If you want to see more details she's also blogged the shawl here.

Seriously, how lucky was I to have such a talented bridesmaid?

Wow, I can't believe how long this blog post was! For those of you that are still with me after this mammoth post thank you! I hope I've not bored you all too much and you've enjoyed a little glimpse into the wedding. I've still got one more wedding related post planned, but I'll save that for another day.

I'll be back tomorrow for WIP Wednesday with an update on my ripple blanket... it's grown a lot since you last saw it!

See you soon,

Emma X


Julie Kirk said...

Oh Emma - what a lovely day! If ever have need for party favours I'm so stealing your idea. I love succulents so this would be amazing [although possibly not quite a good enough reason - alone - to have a wedding ... mmm.

I'm so impressed by yours / your Mum's and your bridesmaid's talents! Good for you, it must truly have felt like 'your' day.

I *had* to pin it to the board: http://pinterest.com/notesonpaper/purple-phase/

Julie x

Whimsy Woo Designs said...

You've been a busy girl! From the mum in the blog. :) xxx