Hubs and I celebrated our third anniversary last week and after going through the photos and reliving that amazing day, I remembered that crazy hectic time and allllllll the DIY projects I did. Since this is a place for DIY, I thought I’d share. Before I go sharing all this, I need you to understand a couple things; this was threeeee years ago, I was not blogging then and was so deep into Pinterest and the vintage rustic wedding thing that seemed to consume my 2012 newsfeed. Burlap, lace, mason jars, mustaches – you get it. Don’t judge, some of you had poofy sleeves and blue eyeshadow.
He proposed in October 2011, a few days before my birthday, by bringing me a giant plate of bacon in bed. I mean… a plate of bacon, a diamond… life with my best friend… duh!
We found the venue and set the date. Then in April, six months before the wedding, my mom passed away suddenly and unexpectedly. That’s a whole other story all together and I’m not throwing that out there to get sympathy or pity (I can’t handle either), but to share the whole story. It happened, it still deeply impacts my life but it also fueled a great deal of the crafting and inspiration for our wedding.
We had our engagement pics done in Texas in July (because I’m a moron) in a place that is very special to me. The entire paternal side of my family lives in a tiny town that I completely love. The first time I took Clayton there to meet my Dad, I knew I was in love with him. I told him how I felt while sitting on the back of a pickup truck at the tiny town carnival so it seemed fitting to have our engagement pics there.
So… when I say this was DIY wedding, I’m not joking. I did alllll of it. I got every last bit of it from Pinterest. I bought Photoshop, a new printer and lots of kraft cardstock, craft paper and a Silhouette cutting machine. I downloaded a ton of free fonts and free graphics and spent hours duplicating my inspiration images I had pinned. I basically sunk myself in creating every last thing for our wedding and in hindsight, it was a way of mourning my mother. It also put family into perspective and what exactly that means. So important.
I did a mad lib for our guest book, a thank you note to our guests, some deets about the photo booth and wrapped it all up with some jute twine for each place setting. Most of the lace on the tables is all vintage lace from my Mom’s side of the family.
When I say I spent hours duplicating my inspiration pins, y’all, I mean it, hours. I’m a perfectionist and at the time I had no idea how to use Photoshop so I was trying to design without really knowing what I was doing.
On the left, my inspirations, on the right, my DIY version using freebies:
Pretty dang close, huh? Hours.
We did the first look thing, which I highly recommend. Seeing Clayton before the ceremony calmed my nerves and we got to spend a quiet moment with each other right before getting married which was really special.
It also gave us plenty of time to take our wedding pics before the ceremony, which saved a ton of time and waiting around for our guests.
Since we were both missing loved ones who had passed away, I made some small charms to go on my bouquet to remember them. I used some little charms I found at the HobLob.
…and I wore my great great grandmother’s watch.
I made a sign from a cedar post found on my Dad’s land and some wood he cut from an old barn that his Dad built. I used this tracing technique for the lettering on the wood sign and went over it with sharpie. The bucket that the sign is in is actually a bucket that my Dad used as a boy when he milked cows. The trunk in the top pic is now being used a coffee table in our sitting room. Mom told me that the trunk was used by my great-great grandfather to hold all of his earthly possessions when he made the trip by wagon to claim his land in New Mexico when they were giving it away. I made some “Kids Kits” for the tots that were attending; they were just paper bags filled with crayons and some printable coloring pages. I ran the bags through the printer to get their names on them so they would each feel extra special. The luggage under the kids kits belonged to my great-great grandmother and are now living a new life in our guest room as bedside tables.
We had a candy bar, and I made the bunting for that as well as some cute little candy bags to fill.
The photobooth props and a spot to drop the mad libs was set up in some antique voting cans that are now in our living room. Sad news: I cut all the photobooth props by hand.
The military trunks above belonged to my grandfather.
You getting the family vibe yet?
I ordered a large (100 ft) runner of 14″ wide burlap to run down the tables and, before she passed away, Mom had ordered a ton of 10-hour votives. The plan was to just use mason jars, etc to line the tables. But when we went to the tiny town where my family lives to get our engagement pics done, I started digging in an old junk pile. The spot where my Dad lives was where the original town was settled, years later, when the railroad came through, the whole town moved 2.5 miles down the road. Before they bailed, they dumped a bunch of stuff, bottles, trash, etc. When I found this little dump, I was so excited. It was filled with old bottles and were just perfect for the wedding. After making sure none of these bottles were super valuable, I printed some vintage labels on adhesive photo paper to make them look even older.
So we ended up using a combo of dollar store finds, vintage bottles, mason jars, candles, flowers and some thread spool photo holders that I made from my grandmothers old thread spools. I used old family photos from his family and mine on the tables and embellished the bottles with lace, jute, burlap, vintage keys from my grandfather and old buttons from my grandmother.
I also used family photos to hang all along the brick wall in our venue. I wanted so badly for everyone to feel loved and included and to feel like family, all linked.
We left a seat and a candle burning for Mom where she would have sat.
The ceremony went off without a hitch.
My Matron of Honor forgot the ring in the dressing room.
And this is the exact moment when we all realized it. So, this is my WTF-Face.
Next: Mandatory photo booth.
Credit to the hubs on this one. He made the frame and cut the holes and I did the girly stuff.
I only wish I had charged my camera battery before the wedding.
Such an amazing night. So much work.
Some fav moments:
And since this was straight offa Pinterest, we did the sparkler thing. (Here’s a tut for those)
Best night ever.
It was so much work and when I look back, I can barely even remember the time between April and September. I was like a crafting robot set on Auto-Craft.
It was extra important for me to have my hands on everything, I wanted all of it to come from my heart and for our guests to be able to feel that, I was so overwhelmed at the time at exactly how fragile life is…
….if I had it to do all over again today, I’d marry the same man but hire someone for the rest. Hahahaha!
DIY or Die? In this case, die, ehthankyou, not doing that ish again.