Hey Hey! Happy Wednesday! You guys. It’s so dang cold out today! I did not want to get my butt out of bed. If someone could pay me to sleep in every day, and snuggle my cat, I’d be like SO DANG HAPPY. But, unfortunately for me, that job does not exist.
Also, before I get started on today’s post, I gotta ask… who saw Fixer Upper last night? I have to say, the outside of that house has to be one of my absolute favorites I’ve EVER seen them do. It was so beautiful! If I was on the show, and they revealed that to me, I’d have just stood their sobbing for a solid 20 minutes.
Every time I watch Fixer Upper, I’m inspired to head over to Pinterest and start looking through Fixer Upper inspired DIYs. And every time I pull up the DIY section on Pinterest, I seem to be FLOODED with Wedding DIYs. They all promise to be super simple, and super cheap. But does doing the DIYs really benefit you when you’re already about to lose your mind?
I decided to launch a full on investigation.
And by investigation I mean I made a Pros/Cons list.
The Pros? Some projects really can save you a lot of money. (Others might end up costing you more by the time you purchase all the materials.) You can make things look exactly how you envisioned, and you’re putting “you” into your wedding.
The Cons? It takes up very valuable time. (And you don’t realize how much until it’s too late.) Sometimes, they don’t turn out like you had hoped.
Now, if you ask me, I would NEVER try to DIY everything for my wedding. And I don’t think you should either. Why? Simply because of the time issue. If you’re trying to balance a work life, social life, and wedding planning life, chances are, your window to sit and do DIY projects will shrink by the second. And I would absolutely hate it if you couldn’t get everything you needed to get done. No bride ever wants to wake up on her wedding day feeling stressed out because everything isn’t “complete”.
However, I do think there are quite a few things you can safely DIY, without taking up too much time and feeling too stressed out.
So what can you handle, and what should you leave to the pros? Here is what I would suggest!
Your Makeup. When I got my makeup trial for my wedding done, I told the girl “I want to look like me… only better.” And I feel like that’s what 98% of girls are going to want for their big day. The girl did my make up, and it was okay, but I didn’t love it. So I decided to do my own. I watched YouTube tutorials, grabbed my favorite products, and practiced once a week. By the time my big day came, I had it down to a science. And I loved that I still looked like me. I would highly recommend DIYing your makeup, and NOT paying a professional. (Unless you can have Jaclyn Hill. Always have Jaclyn Hill.) Curious how I did my makeup for my big day? Check out my Bullet Proof Makeup Routine here! It’s almost exactly how I applied my make up… except I did do eye shadow. I’m trying to think back what I used and I honestly can’t remember! But if I had to guess it was probably a mix of Make Up Geek, Urban Decay, Stila and Lorac. I also used Benefit’s High Beam as my highlight. While there are other highlighters I love more, I chose this one because it is liquid, and I knew it would stay on my skin longer.
Your Place Cards. Place and Escort cards can be one of the absolute easiest DIYs you could ever do… especially if ordering from a popular website, like Minted or Shutterfly. You just choose your favorite design, and then you type the guests names. Then you click order. BOOM. Simple as at.
Wedding Favors. Depending on your favor, you could probably easily DIY it. If it’s something like a Popcorn or Candy Bar, you can purchase everything way in advance, and that’s super easy!
Ceremony Decor. If your heart is set on DIYing some decor, I would say to do it for the ceremony. To be honest, your ceremony will last a half hour max (unless you’re having a church wedding!) so the decor doesn’t need to be too extravagant. We literally just had a pillar, with a wood box filled with flowers. My father in law made us the beautiful pillars and woodboxes, and then our florist filled them with the flowers we had talked about. It was simple, yet beautiful. I personally don’t think you’re ceremony space needs to be overdone with decorations. They’re there to see you say “I Do” and will expect the reception to be more decorated and “WOW” than the ceremony. Other things I DIYd? Our signs. This way, we didn’t have to pay a calligrapher. (Which saved a bunch of money!) Interested in how we did our chalk board signs? Give this post a like, and I’ll know you’d like to see a DIY!
Welcome Bags. Welcome Bags might be the easiest DIY you could do for your wedding. It’s literally just grabbing a bag and filling it with goodies. Plus, printing out letters and labels is easy thanks to websites like Etsy. They will have everything made and all you’ll have to do is click “print”, and label away. (Which can easily be done while binge watching Netflix with your MOH.)
Your Photography/Videography. Your wedding day is a once in a lifetime event. Don’t let your friend with a nice camera take control of it. Yes, photography and videography is expensive. But you will regret it every day if you don’t have a professional take on your day. By all means, have your friends take photos too! But photos and video are two things that you can ALWAYS have to remember your day. The day of, your brain is going to be all over the place, theres going to be so much going on, that you’ll never remember it all. Professionals know which moments to capture, so that you can see every single aspect of your perfect day. And so that you’ll always be able to remember it.
Your Food (and cake!). Don’t try to cook for 200 wedding guests on your own. Talk about stress. And don’t try to make it a pot-luck. Because you’ll be so worried people won’t bring food. Ease your mind, and pay for a caterer. Same goes for the cake. Cake disasters are almost impossible to fix. Leave the cake to the pros.
Day Of Coordinating. If there was one thing I could shout to every single bride, it would be to hire a Day of Coordinator. This is not the same thing as a wedding planner. A Day of Coordinator will be there to make sure everything is perfect and in place for your big day. You will literally worry about nothing except getting ready and not messing up your vows. They will be there to point caterers in right direction, set up and take down chairs, make sure everything is decorated and in it’s place, and most of all, keep you sane. I’ve heard horror stories of brides trying to decorate the hall the morning of their wedding, and having to have random guests run from place to place to get stuff done. If a Day of Coordinator isn’t in your budget, then find your most organized friend, and ask them to help you. Just make sure they know the commitment they are about to take on. You’ll need to meet with them, and lay out every single detail. From how you want things to look, to a schedule, to making sure they know every possible detail of your day. They need to be in charge of calling vendors, making sure vendors are greeted and making sure everything is exactly to your liking. They should also have people to help them, as it is too much for one person to do alone.
Music. As tempting as it is to just put an iPhone with Spotify and some speakers out, your guests will appreciate a DJ or Band more. Plus, then you don’t have to worry about constantly changing the songs, and you can just enjoy the time with your guests. Plus, you don’t have to rent the equipment you might need. (Like speakers and a microphone.)
The I Wouldn’t Dream of Tackling These but If You’re Crafty You Can Probably Do Its
Your Centerpieces. Some people are SO crafty and can make their centerpieces beautifully. But if you’re not confident in you DIY skills… I say leave it to the pros. While Pinterest may make it look easy, I can promise you… it will be time consuming. And if you don’t have A LOT of time to devote to making centerpieces, it will save you a lot of headache/time/stress by not DIYing them.
Your Invitations. Unless you’re great on the computer, and really good at cutting straight lines, I would purchase the wedding invites from a place like Minted or Wedding Paper Divas. Both of these places will customize them exactly how you want it, send you a proof, and then send then to you when they’re ready. You can also get the envelopes filled out (sometimes for free!) which is a massive time saver.
Flowers. Same thing goes for flowers… some people have the eye and talent to make fake flowers, or hand picked flowers into beautiful arrangements. But not everyone does. Understand that flowers are a HUGE part of your budget. But if you have an awesome florist (should out to you Victoria’s Florals!) they will work with you to be sure you stay in budget. Just remember… fake flowers can be expensive too. Even when you hit a great sale at Michaels, you’re still paying at least $1, if not more per stem. So if you have your heart set on doing your own flowers, really take time to price out the difference. Because you might end up shocked.
Your Hair. Unless you’re a stylist yourself, or have a specific way you do your hair, don’t try to do it alone. If you want it to stay all day, have a professional do it. They know what they’re doing.
Now please don’t take this as me telling you not to DIY for your wedding. Everyone does! However… choose wisely! Be selective in your DIYs, and give yourself more than enough time to complete them. Consider the cost in buying supplies versus the cost of just buying something right out. And always, always, always consider your skill set. Don’t except it to look exactly like what you saw online. It never will. Know that it is okay… as long as you love it.
So what things did I DIY for my wedding? My dad and I spray painted every single frame for loved ones photos, and also the frames for my chalkboard signs. Speaking of the signs, I made them myself! I was pretty happy with how they turned out 🙂 My father in law made the easels, the pillars, the flower boxes and a set of cornhole boards that we had outside our reception. I also used Minted for our place cards. And of course, I did my own make up!
In case you want to see our wedding in action, I’m sharing our wedding trailer below! Just watching it back gives me all the happy feels!
Today has been so dang long. I’ve been a bit down these last few days. (I think it’s the weather.) So I’m off to take a bubble bath and watch some Hart of Dixie.
I’m back tomorrow with a product review on something I just can’t get enough of lately. I’ll see you then 🙂
Have a wonderful Wednesday friends!