Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Something Old into Something New: A Refabbed Hairpiece

As I mentioned in a previous post, my mom and I made my wedding veil out of her old veil.  Something cool to do to have your "something old" made into something that matches your wedding vision.  So for my sister's wedding, she really wanted to reuse my grandma's hairpiece from when she got married.  It went with the somewhat vintage-y feel of her dress and overall vision.  So, I took on the task. It really wasn't hard, it just took some time and playing around to get what she wanted it to look like.  I think this is a great way to incorporate your mother/grandmother's wedding memories into your own special day. Obviously this is very unique and you won't be able to recreate this exactly, but I hope the idea can inspire you!  And p.s. this hairpiece cost maybe $10 in materials- pretty great bargain for something so beautiful!

Here is what I did:

This is what the hairpiece looked like originally.  My sister wanted to reuse the flowery pieces, but turn it into something other than a crown.

So, the first thing I did was remove the flowers.  They were essentially glued on (with glue over 50 years old now...), so it was easy to pull them off.  Next, I arranged them into a new shape and stitched them together, as seen below.

Once I had the basic shape, I had to go about adding the tulle.  We agreed that her dress would look better with no veil, so instead I wanted to incorporate tulle into the hairpiece.  Luckily, I had some extra tulle from my wedding that I was able to use.  I basically played around with the tulle for awhile, making loops and layers and then stitched it onto the circular shape I had.  I then had something like this:

Once I decided this was what I wanted (and of course ran it by the bride), I finished it off.  I actually got some white felt that I used as a backer (to cover and contain all the lose threads, etc), and cut it into the right shape and hot glued it to the back.  Then I found a hair clip at Michael's (of course), and hot glued that to the back as well.  I then bent the hairpiece into a curved shape so that it would conform to her head better.  I tried it on and it looked fabulous and ready to go. It looked perfect with her dress and was a beautiful addition to her whole look!  Here she is at the reception, check out how great it turned out!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

My Life as a Florist

This is yet another post about flowers, but I feel the need to post all the lovely creations I made for my sister's wedding.  It was my first time working with calla lilies and orchids, so I was a bit nervous.  It was also my first time making some major flower arrangements.  I had the task of making all the bouquets, as well as 8 fairly large arrangements for the stairway at her wedding (and more).  It was a longggg day of flower arranging, and some trial and error, but everything turned out beautifully!

Here is the calla bouquet tutorial I used- I went with 12 stems for the bridesmaids' bouquets and 15 calla stems for the bridal bouquet (work with multiples of 3 for best results) and here are the floral cages I used for the stair arrangements (bought from a local shop)

This is one of my beautiful stairway arrangements!  I used a cage floral foam block and some wonderful palms, roses, stock, mums, and other filler to create these lovely arrangements. Then I added these tulle bows to jazz them up a little!

Here is her bouquet- I used callas and freesias as the collar around them.

I love making flower arrangements for cakes to add some great color and flair to simple cakes. For these I used spray roses, orchids, and limonium. Just bundle them up like you would for a mini corsage and tape them up with some floral tape.  So easy and so pretty!

Here's one of the calla bouquets for the bridesmaids.  Check out the link to the tutorial on how to make these- it's actually pretty easy.  Just group the stems into sections of 3 callas, tape them up, and then tape all the sections together so they are all facing outwards.  Then we wrapped them with simple gunmetal gray ribbon. I never was a fan of callas until now!  p.s. I also made those vases for the head table.

We got this idea when we found those black mirrors, and then my mom found the little white vases (I think at a thrift shop), and I made the little flower bunches.  Just put a chunk of floral foam into the container and stick the flowers in there in a beautiful way!

I took this while I was in the process of making the bouquets.  The one on the left was what I originally made for the bridal bouquet.  I loved the freesias interspersed into the callas, though it didn't stay like that.  I think they all look great here!

Here is what the stairs looked like (actually there were 2 more on the bottom tier).  Love how these turned out!

Favorite DIY Wedding Details

Here are some of my favorite things that I made for weddings. Hope it provides some inspiration!

I am really into having cute hangers for dresses, so I made a white one for my wedding gown, and I made these for my bridesmaids.  I just painted wooden hangers, then used a stencil to paint on each of their initials.  I also added some jewels, which may be hard to see.

Here's another shot of the hangers, just with the dresses on them!  See, looks much cuter than mismatched boring hangers.

I added these jewels to my bouquet.  My mom and I also made the bouquet wraps, and I found these jewels in my mom's house with all our old crafty stuff.  I love embellishments on bouquet stems!

My mom and I made my veil, which was really special.  We actually made it out of her old veil, which happened to still be in pretty good shape.  All we had to do was cut hers up (it was bigger than what I wanted), and then iron it. A lot.  Ironing tulle is not the easiest thing in the world.  It took a lot of time and was a little stressful (you don't want to melt it), but once we got it nice and smooth, we could cut it to the right size/shape (circular) and then gather the top edge and sew it onto a hair comb.  Then we decided to add some jewels to the edge (geez I guess I really was obsessed with jewels...).  Homemade and very special!  Most veils cost a LOT and this was essentially free... and beautiful!  Try it!

These were our favors- got the boxes from Michael's of course, and I just like how they looked and fit into the whole theme

I love this idea and did it for my sister's wedding too (see below).  I made these out of scrapbook paper, foam letters that I hand painted, tulle, and jewels of course.  I love the look :)

This was something I was excited to do- a lot of people do the family tree kind of thing at weddings, so I made mine into an actual tree!  Photos of both of our parents/grandparents from their wedding days.  It was lots of fun!
 Here are the letters I made for my sister's wedding. Also the wonderful table runners that my mom made herself!

Okay so this was not my idea and I didn't make it, but it is really cool so I had to share it... For my sister's wedding she used a peg board with wine corks for the place cards/favors. I did do the sketch for the design of the board, so I guess I did work on it in a way.  I love how it looked- props to her and my uncle for making the board!

Stationary Galore

I guess you could say I am a perfectionist and I need to have everything exactly the way I want it.  Yes, you could definitely say that.  So when it came to all the details for my wedding, I did it all myself, the way I wanted it.  This went for all my stationary needs as well.  I got a little help from Michael's (okay so I pretty much lived there for a few months), but I put a lot of time and effort into making everything look perfect. 

I like showing people that it IS possible to do things yourself! You don't need to spend hundreds of dollars on invites and menu cards!  As long as you have some time and patience, you can do it too!  I want to show what I made and hopefully inspire some ideas for other brides!  Below you'll find items from my wedding as well as my sister's wedding.  Enjoy!

These were my programs- I got the cover from a Lutheran church supplier and then made them my own with white sheer ribbons and purple inserts with the ceremony information

This is the head table.  You can see the place cards and the menu cards that I hand made. You can see I went with a jewel theme and of course the purple and silver color scheme!

My place cards were in various shades of purple to create a cool effect when they were all placed out on the table together.  They had different sized jewels as well.

I made the guestbook to be like a scrapbook, and then all of the guests signed the pages kind of like a yearbook.  I found a blank bound scrapbook and decorated the pages with pictures of us.  It is something I actually like to look at!
These are our invitations- I bought the blank invitations at Michael's (best deal ever!) and then designed them with the layout that I wanted and printed them myself. If you don't want to spend a lot on something people will throw away anyway, use Michael's!  Just my advice...
This is the menu I designed for my sister's wedding.  You can't really tell but they are resting on adorable mini easels that we found at... you guessed it, Michael's.

I am obsessed with the programs I made for my sister's wedding.  They all hung on the chairs like this, and I loved the simple elegant look!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Flowers, Flowers, Flowers

I never saw myself as a florist.  I never knew what it would be like to create bouquets, flower arrangements, centerpieces, or any of that.  I figured it couldn't be that hard, and what I discovered after 2 weddings is that it really isn't.  I did all of the flowers for my wedding and my sister's wedding.  The one thing that I will say honestly, and I am sure many have heard this before, is that it is very time consuming and a bit stressful to do your own flowers.  Many wedding "experts" tell you to not even try it.  I would agree that trying to do ALL of your flowers is a lot, and it was kind of crazy to do them all myself (with some help, but let's be honest, I am a control freak and took on most of it myself).  However, if you want to save a LOT of money and have everything look exactly the way you want it, do it yourself. 

If anything, do the bouquets yourself.  I promise that it is actually really simple, if you have any craft ability whatsoever.  I watched a lot of tutorials online (some of which I will post) and spent some time practicing.  And I spent a LOT of time surfing the web and researching to find exactly what I wanted my flowers to look like and which flowers would be best to use.  We ordered flowers from wholesalers and then I worked my magic.  Below are some photos of the bouquets and flower arrangements from my wedding.  In future posts I will explain in more detail how I did this all!

My bouquet which included white roses, purple roses, white alstroemeria (my new favorite flower), purple lisianthus, purple limonium, and lemon leaf.  It was hand-tied and wrapped in a white fabric stem cover with some jewels.
Another view of my beautiful bouquet!
All of our lovely bouquets- each bridesmaid's bouquet was unique and each girl got to pick her favorite as her own!

Close-up of a bridesmaid's bouquet- each included purple & white roses, purple & white alstroemeria, purple limonium, dark purple lisanthus, and lemon leaf.
I made 2 of these for the ceremony at the church.  We found the urns at Michael's and used floral foam to create the sprays.  Each included gladiolas, roses, alstroemeria, and limonium.

This arrangement I made for the altar, and it was the beginning of the aisle runner.  I used a long block of floral foam and the same flowers as in the other arrangements, as well as a lot of greenery (some from my parent's backyard!)

When You Love Something...

I love planning weddings.  I love designing, I love creating, I love searching the internet for hours in order to find the perfect inspiration.  I planned my first wedding (my own) over a year ago now, and though it was a tad-bit stressful, I loved it.  When my sister and her now husband set their wedding date, I started actively helping her plan her big day, and I loved it.  After her wedding, I realized that even though I wasn't able to plan a wedding for myself anymore, and I had no more sisters to help plan weddings for, I didn't want to stop.

Hence the blog.  I hope to share some of my inspirations, some things that I have done, and some things that I would do if I were to have another wedding (though I don't anticipate it!). 

I always tell people that my next career will be wedding planning, and though I love what I currently do (teaching social studies to middle/high schoolers), I hope that one day I will be able to live my other dream.  I hope that you enjoy my blog and perhaps find some inspiration of your own.  And who knows, maybe one day I'll be able to help you plan your special day.