Jen really went all out with the details, but as you will read below didn’t go overboard when it came to her budget. She prioritzed what was important to her and took care of everything else by making it or sourcing items herself. I adore the s’mores packets she passed out to guests at the end of the evening…what a fun idea!
As I mentioned earlier, I go crazy for the smaller creative details. Brides think they have to spend outrageous cash on huge things that guests ultimately hardly notice. My philosophy is to pick a few big things, if you like, and then add lots of smaller, well-designed and well-thought out details to add a big overall visual punch.
For our wedding, I created pretty much everything from the wedding paper suite (save-the-date, invitation, RSVP, programs), cupcake flags, our wedding cake topper, to the kids’ activity basket (which proved to be a terrific idea for the little ones). I also created individual guest s’mores packets (we had a fireplace and a bonfire, so cozy), custom labels with gingham and twine for pumpkin butter favors (delish), custom cutlery envelopes with phrases like “good grub” and “chow down”, and a grapevine wreath with an “M” in the center (our last name) to hang over the fireplace. For the ceremony readings and for our service, I created custom kraft paper books tied with orange ribbon – we now have a beautiful keepsake book with our wedding vows. Lovely.
We wanted everyone to sit together family style for the BBQ, so we chose not to have place cards or a formal seating plan. I cannot tell you how easy this was! We had about 75 guests so it was very manageable. I had brown and white gingham runners sewn for the long tables and accented with pumpkins of varying sizes and colors, and antique mason jars I scoured from antique stores filled with orange, pink and ivory roses from…are you ready? COSTCO! (By the way, for brides on a budget, I think saving money on reception floral is a no-brainer place to trim costs.)
I also sourced rustic metal and glass hurricane lanterns from an online wholesaler for CHEAP; we filled them with ivory pillar candles for the tables. Especially gratifying since I saw the same style at Pottery Barn for mucho bucks. The coolest part about this? My bridesmaids’ got to take them home at the end of the night! For the bridesmaids’ gifts, I designed custom glass paperweights and placed them in silk Indian pouches in shades of pink and orange. Here’s another money saver – instead of having the girls’ buy expensive matching dresses, I asked each of them to wear whatever dress they liked as long as it was brown, and they accented their dresses with matching pink or orange pashminas we ordered online. It was easy, gorgeous, and no one had to buy a dress they will never wear again or secretly loathe. Hooray.
I essentially either hand-made or sourced all of the décor for the reception. It was a big task, but one idea led to another and I really wanted everything to hang together from a visual perspective.
Pretty much everything was DIY with the exception of the lanterns and
pumpkins! One easy DIY project that I loved was our cupcake flags. They
can be anything – a picture, a graphic, a phrase – whatever follows the
theme of your wedding. I made little 2” designed circles with
horseshoe, a hitched horse and tandem bicycle images with phrases like
“lucky in love”, “gettin’ hitched” and “bicycle built for two”. All you
need is thick paper, a circle cutter, white lollipop sticks from the
craft store, and some clear strong glue. Voila!
The s’mores packets were also a big hit. This is so easy for an
outdoor Fall wedding with a fire. All you need is two graham crackers,
a jumbo marshmallow, and miniature Hershey’s bar and a clear cello bag.
Tie it all up with some cute ribbon and a custom label and you are all
set. Low cost but big impact.
Ceremony and reception – The Inn at Serenbe
Ceremony flowers (all bouquets and boutonnieres) – Gloriosa
Catering and wedding cake – Gloriosa
Jen, thanks so much for sharing your awesome wedding with us today! Stay tuned for a little bit more about her adorable paper goods company, Miss Pickles Press…