How to DIY Your Wedding into A Magazine - The Curated Collective
diy wedding ideas
How to DIY Your Wedding into A Magazine

January 16, 2017

resource library

shop now

shop now

The ultimate DIY wedding guide

Let me start out by saying, this wasn’t our goal when we began planning our wedding. But to all my brides-to-be out there, y’all know that wedding planning season is a REAL thing. This time last year, I had that moment of “holy crap I’m getting married this year I should probably start planning things!” Thus began my deep dive into the endless land of DIY’s. So if you’re knee deep in wedding planning, or have a bestie who’s tying the knot this year, or just need some inspiration for your wedding Pinterest board (let’s be real..we all have them) Then this post is for you!

Sometimes, you’ll get caught up in the stress of planning (I recommend a nice glass or two of #WaWine to help with this) and it becomes very easy to lose sight of why all of this is happening. Just remember the reason you’re doing this: to spend the rest of your life with your person. Added bonus: you also happen to be planning an epic celebration with your closest friends and family! Added added bonus: in case you need any creative inspiration, this post is for you!

It’s truly an incredible feeling and something you will cherish for the rest of your life. Ah, so much bliss, so much happiness, so much giddiness. Own that feeling girl! There’s nothing quite like it. With that being said…

I recognize those faces! Our wedding in the most recent edition of Seattle Met Bride & Groom

Zach & I were so honored to have our wedding chosen to be featured as one of the “Real Weddings” in the most recent edition of Seattle Met Bride & Groom. There were many things that contributed to this happening, including all of our beyond amazing vendors (more on this later). One of my favorite parts of the wedding planning process was getting my craftiness on, and it was so thrilling to see all of those little details in a real-life printed magazine. At times it definitely felt overwhelming, and there were numerous projects we tried and epically failed at. But, there were a few we managed to pull off!

So without further ado, I’m sharing some of my favorite DIY projects (that I PROMISE) you can do. I’m reserving the other bigger and complex DIY projects (like this Resin Bound Patio DIY) for another post. 

Signage at a wedding is way fun and let’s your personality as a couple shine! We used signage to display our dinner menu (filled with Taco & Fajita stations) as well as our bar menu (filled with margaritas and some incredible Washington wines..are you sensing a theme yet?) I started taking calligraphy classes at the beginning of this, but hand lettering everything became a bit (read: insanely) too time consuming to take on. Hence my favorite new discovery: vinyl decals. We used decals for all of the signs above, with the exception of the Mr & Mrs, which I did myself. I was able to purchase the majority of our signage decals on Etsy, and it was easy peasy to put them together. Here’s what you need:

  • Plywood from Home Depot (trick of the trade: they will cut you boards for free in store!)
  • Wood Stain
  • Personalized decals from your favorite Etsy shop (I used Dana Decals, and they were incredible!)
  • Credit card for applying decals
  1. After you stain your wood (I used a paper towel to apply the stain), wait at least 24 hours to apply the decal. Each decal will come with detailed instructions. 
  2. The decals can be a bit finicky at times, we let ours sit on the plywood with books on top to really make them stick before pulling back the decal paper.
  3. Run the credit card over the paper, making sure you really press down on ALL the decals (this is super important if you have any swirled or thin letters) 
  4. Slowly pull the decal paper backwards, towards you. This can be a bit time consuming, but once you get the hang of it, it’s a cinch! 
  5. That’s it! Enjoy your personalized wedding signage!

We were on the fence about doing wedding favors, but came up with the idea of a take away for our guests that they could enjoy after the evening was over. After finding some amazing succulents on Amazon, we were sold! They also served as our place cards, each succulent had a guests name and their table number. Win-win in my book. Here’s what you need to make these:

  1. First, print out your guest names and their table number on your favorite paper. We tore the edges of ours to give them a more vintage feel
  2. Glue each place setting onto your popsicle sticks (tip: keep these in alpha order for easy organization later)
  3. When your succulents come, transfer them from the pots they come in to the mini-canisters (this can get messy, I’d do it outside if you can!)
  4. Stick in your popsicle sticks with their newly glued on place cards and voila! You now have epic wedding favors

This project was super simple to do, but turned out to be a huge hit! We still have wedding succulents thriving (thriving-ish…thriving is a strong word. Turns out I’m not much a green thumb, and by not much, I mean not at all) Speaking of not having a green thumb, the next DIY project is perfect for those of us that lack that certain skill…

These chandeliers were my absolute favorite thing we created, but this is definitely a two person project. Shoutout to my aunt for helping me with this crazy idea! I had seen so many gorgeous greenery chandeliers all over Pinterest, but turns out they are expensive AF. But when you have a vision, you have a vision. Time to get creative! Here’s what you need to create these faux greenery chandeliers:

  • Hula hoops (Yep, hula hoops. They serve as the base for this project. We got ours from the Dollar Tree because I can’t pass up a good bargain). I’d highly recommend swinging by your local dollar store to snag a few of these!
  • Metal wire, we got ours from Amazon
  • Faux greenery garlands of your choice. We purchased ours from Hobby Lobby, they constantly have discounts and we were able to snag all of our greenery for 50% off.  SCORE! For reference, each chandelier has about 1.5 garlands of three different types of greenery. (Tip: The more variance you have in your greenery, the more full your chandeliers will look)
  1. Measure out each garland to ensure you have enough to wrap around the hoop to your liking. When you have the correct length, wrap it so it lays on top of the hoop. Have fun with this part! 
  2. Cut your metal wire (about 4 inches) and begin wrapping the greenery around the hoop, while securing with the metal wire. We repeated this step about every six inches.
  3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 for each different piece of garland you have. Your metal wire length will increase for each layer of garland.
  4. Voila! Test your new chandelier and fluff the greenery until you get the look you desire
  5. Added tip: if you really want to make your chandelier sparkle, add battery operated fairy lights so they twinkle in the night!

This. backdrop. Oh man did I fall in love with this. I originally saw this on Style Me Pretty, and was determined to be able to make it. You’ll be surprised with the tools you need to do this, all of which are under $5! This one is definitely time consuming, but I’m so happy we ended up doing this. Props to my family for helping with this. These budget friendly tools are all you need to make the backdrop of your dream.

I would detail out the “how-to’s” of this, but the tutorial I followed was so detailed, it’s definitely the way to go. Shout out to this amazing YouTube video for helping us master this!

Want to know a fun fact? You can find anything on the internet. Literally, anything. We were having trouble justifying spending $100’s of dollars on a RENTED arch for our wedding, and couldn’t find anything in our area like what we envisioned.

By this point I’m pretty sure we can DIY anything, and did a Google search for Birchwood online. It’s a thing. People sell birch tree branches on the inter-webs. Ah, technology you beautiful, beautiful beast. I enlisted my brother for this one (I seriously have the best and most helpful family around) He created the beautiful birch arch you see above. Here’s what we used:

  • Birch logs, we found ours here
  • Cheesecloth (this is the fabric wrapped around the arch. We used it for table runners and filler on tables as well, it adds tons of dimension and texture to your decor!)
  • Silver Dollar Eucalyptus bunch
  • Table saw (or handheld, you could definitely get by with either!)
  • Screws and screwdriver
  1. Measure out each birch log. You will need five total logs. For reference, we had 3 logs that were 8 feet (for the vertical logs and connecting log) and two logs that were 2.5 feet that served as the base. You can use a table saw or hand saw to do this.
  2. We set up our arch on site for transportation purposes. Bring all five logs with you to the site, along with your screws and screwdriver
  3. Connect the base logs to the vertical logs, and screw in on each side of the base
  4. Connect the top log to the vertical logs, leaving at least 7 inches on either side to serve as an overhang for fabric.
  5. We used about ten years of cheesecloth, and wrapped it around the entire arch before setting it up.
  6. If you’d like to include the Eucalyptus bunch we used, we ordered ours from the online site FiftyFlowers. Simply bunch the individual pieces together with a rubber band, and zip tie to the arch

We live in an apartment, so this project definitely required some family help from someone with a yard or larger working space. Either way, it was cheaper and much more fun for us to create an arch we loved (and got to keep!) rather than renting one for double the price. We were so happy with how this turned out!

A few other of my favorites from the day included these Ikea frames we transformed into our table numbers with a little bit of spray paint, these ribbon wands, super fun horns for after the ceremonyand our handmade programs (which doubled as fans!)

Above all, remember to have fun. The most important thing about this day is that you’re surrounded by your tribe, your family, and your new spouse. The rest of it is all details.

Call on your girlfriends, pop open the wine and enjoy!

Congratulations on your upcoming nuptials! Have a blast planning, remember to keep perspective, and savor every moment.

Cheers to you!

Vendor Love (i.e. not possible without these incredible humans)

Photographer Extraordinaire//Jenna Bechtholt (I’m mildly completely obsessed with Jenna’s work) If you’re in the Washington or L.A. area, definitely check her out. 
Venue//The Estate at Destiny Ridge (home to the delicious and delightful Alexandria Nicole Cellars)
Rentals//Fleurissant Event Rentals & John Love June
Videographer//Articulate Film Co
Photo Booth//Happy Camper Photo Booth

*This post contains affiliate links