Chosen your venue and your beautiful wedding gown? Now it’s time to turn your attention to the smaller details of your special day. But what about your budget? Does it seem like costs are running away with you and your wedding pot is disappearing faster than quicksand? Decor details can seem like an expensive extravagance but it’s these little touches can really take your big day to show-stopping status. Over the years, I’ve seen beautiful weddings created with a limited budget so I’ve put together my favourite top 10 DIY wedding ideas that will decorate your venue with classic style and have your guests asking who your wedding planner was. Browse online or bag a bargain at your local charity shops or car boot sales and get crafty with my do-it-yourself wedding ideas your purse will love.
1. Teacup Candles: Georgia Pond | 2. Chair Decor: Marcie Meredith
Tea Party Perfection
Tables scattered with teacups and saucers create the perfect setting for a quintessential English tea party. Visit car boot fairs or online auction sites for lots of old vintage crockery or buy mismatched sets for charming vintage style. Double up on the uses of your décor detail and use your teacups as candle holders to create a pretty and charming ambience or fill random cups with scented rose petals or potpourri for a wedding reception with the most divine aroma. Accentuate your colour scheme with crockery in complementing hues or play up a wedding theme such as Gatsby Glamour with glossy black and gold geometric details.
Who would have thought a metre of chiffon secured with a ribbon tied bloom could look so beautiful? Adorning your chairs with fabric, ribbons or flowers is one of my favourite ways to transform your wedding reception and it doesn’t have to cost the earth. Keep budget friendly by visiting markets for draping fabric such as chiffon, go for large flowers such as peonies or sunflowers so you only have to use a single stem and only decorate every other or even every third chair for less-is-more style.
3. Candles in Bottles: Sonya Khegay | 4. Hanging Flowers: Glass Jar Photography
The Romance of Candles
There is something especially romantic about candlelight and there are numerous ways to display them as part of your tablescape. Collect old bottles, jars or even terracotta pots from friends and family and paint or decorate them to coordinate with your wedding theme. Paint old bottles gold and decorate with sparkles for a glamorous wedding centrepiece or tie flowers around glass holders and place them around your guests’ tables for a rustic theme. For an Autumn wedding, move away from the Halloween tradition of hollowed out pumpkins and use fruit such as apples as tea light holders.
You can let your imagination run wide with floral décor for outdoor Summer weddings. Hanging blooms look particularly effective and can be hung from the branches of trees for a romantic setting for your wedding photos or from the inside of an outdoor marquee for a romantic setting for your wedding breakfast. The blooms do not have to be extravagant, hang single stems of larger blooms or bunch together pretty blooms such as Sweet Peas which can easily be grown in large pots and cut the day before the wedding. To cut costs further ask your green fingered family and friends if you can raid their gardens for pretty summer blooms.
5. Perfume Bottles: via Style Me Pretty by Whitney Rae Photography | 6. Bunting: Max and Friends
If you’re looking for DIY wedding ideas for a rustic or vintage themed wedding reception, I adore filling vintage bottles with pretty flowers. From shabby chic vintage perfume bottles, old flip top pop bottles or even clear medicine bottles from yesteryear, there are so many shapes and sizes to choose from. Bottles can be filled with delicate blooms to suit every budget whether a single stem or a handful of blooms. For added effect, tint the water with food colourings in pastel shades to coordinate with your wedding theme. Bottles can also be spray painted or decorated with jewels, pretty labels or other crafty adornments for a beautiful and unique look.
Bunting has a vintage charm about it that conjures up memories of the local village fete or celebratory street parties for Royal Jubilees and Weddings. A budget savvy wedding decoration that has an inexhaustible combination of colours, patterns, shapes and themes which can be tailored for a vintage, rustic, summer or spring wedding with ease. Purchase fabric remnants from local markets or online and call upon friends and family for a girly night in cutting and sewing! Go for the traditional triangular shape or be a little more adventurous and tie ribbons or fabric lengths for a more tassled effect.
7. Tree Branches: Photo credit Kio Kreations | 8. Shabby Chic Setting: Dawn Wilkins Photography
Pop on your wellies and head for the woods! A totally cheap and extremely effective centrepiece can be achieved by collecting fallen branches. These can then be cleaned and left natural or painted to tie in with your wedding theme. Once prepared, you can really get creative. Make little tissue paper flowers and create Spring Blossom twigs or hang some little paper hearts or butterflies to the branches for a simple yet effective centrepiece. If your budget allows, purchase small crystals to dangle and catch the light for a sparkling showpiece or look for old crystal chandeliers in thrift shops and utilise the droplets.
Shabby Chic Setting
Shabby chic is a popular choice amongst brides and the vintage touch can add that special element to your wedding décor. Raid your older relatives lofts or car boot sales for vintage style suitcases to hold your wedding cards, pretty hat boxes from yester year can be adorned with flowers for a pretty centrepiece or a rustic ladder can be strewn with ribbons or bunting as a decorative reception feature. You may be lucky enough to find an old style bicycle which can be painted and adorned with pretty flowers which can be picked from friends and families’ gardens. Add a hand painted sign for an individual touch.
9. Photo Booth: Celine Chhuon Photography | 10. Gatsby Feathers: Linda Scannell Photography
Photo booths are on-trend at the moment and will provide some wonderful keepsake memories for you and your guests. Fun props such as hats, feather boas, glasses and masks could be purchased cheaply online or sought out at local charity shops. They could be themed for your wedding or just anything you think your guests will enjoy. If your budget allows, create a large frame for your guests to pose behind. Disposable cameras can be provided to capture the snaps and you can then have two sets of prints produced for both you and your family and friends to keep. A little thank you or personal message can be added to the prints for your special guests.
Following on from the success of The Great Gatsby which has put drop-waist gowns and Deco vintage style tiaras in the spotlight, many brides are searching for 1920s DIY wedding ideas for their Gatsby Glamour theme. Gatsby style wedding décor can be achieved relatively cheaply with ostrich feathers in various colours available for as little as £1 for 5 on auction websites. Place 3 or 5 in a tall glass vase and you have a very effective Roaring Twenties centrepiece for your wedding tables. If you want to be more extravagant, add more plumes or add faux pearl beads draped amongst geometric designed menu cards for added flapper inspiration.
Written by: Sue Bates