When you are putting together your own wedding, you might DIY a few things to save money for some luxury priority purchases. Or you might be the total DIY type, who thrives on designing and creating something from scratch; and you might view your wedding as the ultimate project.
Whether you are DIY’ing a little, or the whole lot, we’ve got some tips and tricks to bring out the handicraft superstar in all of you.
Play to your strengths
Doing It Yourself can be a wonderful way to save money as well as a gorgeous way to put your own personality into your wedding day. But if you go wrong it can waste a lot of money and not look that great.
For instance, if you convince yourself that you have the ability to bake and decorate a whole wedding cake when you’ve never done it before, you might spend a lot of time trying to learn cake decorating and in the end, have to pay a professional baker to rescue you at the last minute.
When taking the DIY route, play to your strengths.
What are you good at? You might be wonderful with food, or a skilled painter, or a talented sewer. You might be a whizz at digital graphic design, in which case the invitations and menus might be right up your alley.
There can be a fine line between an awesome DIY idea and an unmitigated homemade disaster, so make sure that you only take on the projects that you might actually be good at.
It would be nice to be able to DIY everything, but it can be smarter to outsource from the outset the bits that you really can’t do.
Don’t become an Instagram horror story
Have you ever browsed through the ‘Nailed It’ sections of Facebook or Instagram? For every perfect photo on Pinterest, there is fifty horror story tongue-in-cheek ‘Nailed It’ shots of people who tried to do the same thing and came up woefully short.
The crafts and concepts on Pinterest are stunning and would look wonderful at your wedding if you can reproduce them, but the vast majority of us can’t. To make sure your DIY wedding project is not a horror story, remember these tips:
- Don’t overreach. Don’t take on too many elements or too many intricate projects that you just won’t get time for.
- Be brutally honest about your skill level
- Practice. Buy enough supplies to get things wrong a few times and give yourself time to get the skills down. Never think, that looks easy, I’ll whip those up the night before, because it isn’t, and you won’t.
Create a vision board
Whether virtual or physical, you will find it very beneficial to put together a vision board of your ideas. This will help you get inspiration, as well as reign in your more out-there ideas. You will be able to see your day at a glance and figure out what works within your theme and what doesn’t.
This can also be a way to stop your inspiration from getting out of control. It is easy to have more and more and more ideas, but some restraint is needed to be stylish, as well as to stay within the constraints of time and budget.
Don’t just copy; create your own original wedding day
Use Pinterest as a loose guide rather than trying to copy things exactly. If you add your own talents and personality to whatever you are making you are more likely to create something good quality and unique. Part of DIY is saving money, but a very substantial part of it is putting your own stamp on your day, so make sure that you do this.
Don’t be limited by what you see, let your imagination explore and put your own personality and unique love story into every part of your day.
Browse, research, then buy
Don’t get carried away by online deals and specials or your own imagination. Many brides and grooms have got caught up in the excitement of the wedding and made purchases that ended up being not great deals, or for projects that in hindsight they didn’t end up even making.
Don’t buy a hundred tiny wicker birdcages to turn into bonbonniere because they are on special when you don’t have the time or skill to do it, and birdcages don’t really fit in with your wedding theme anyway.
With big purchases, even when you are buying supplies for your DIY wedding, there are two good rules to follow:
- If this is a great purchase today, it will still be a great purchase next week
- Talk over any big purchases with your partner or someone else who is helping to pay for the wedding.
Shop around, particularly online. With craft items you can get some fantastic deals in bulk for things like mason jars, hessian bags, and paper flowers, so don’t go with the first store you see. And although we would love to patronise the premium craft store at your local shops, you will save a lot of money and the hassle of carting things around if you buy online.
Make it fun
Call in your buddies, have a couple of drinks, and make this something enjoyable. You didn’t go the DIY option to pile extra stress on yourself; it is extra effort but should still be a part of your wedding planning that you happily back on in years to come.
Give yourself time
Pace yourself, especially if you are taking on a lot. If you have a number of projects or some fiddly details, then start very early and plan to have somewhere to store the finished products as you go along.
To help you keep organised, check out our awesome Easy Weddings app for lists, time schedules, budgets and more.
Don’t leave it all to the last minute, we cannot stress this enough!
Be prepared to scrap something if it doesn’t turn out like you hoped.
As well as being brutally honest about your skills and capabilities, you may also need to be prepared to scrap something if it doesn’t turn out well. This can be a little heartbreaking; if you’ve spent a lot of time and tears making something and then it turns out not good, but you may need to cut your losses and let it go.
Links to DIY suppliers
If you are all fired up now to get shopping and creating, make sure you check out some of these fantastic suppliers: