When we started planning our wedding, I was most excited about all the crafty projects I would get to work on. Okay, that and marrying the love of my life, but let’s focus on what’s important here. I feel pretty privileged to have planned a wedding in the age of Pinterest. I’m not even sure what people did way back in early 2010 before it arrived on the scene. Naively, I thought that since we weren’t planning to have ice sculptures and fire dancers, putting a wedding together would be pretty straightforward, but sometime between the millionth paper flower and the fourth out-of-budget dress, I realized that even without those extras, planning a wedding is still planning probably the largest party of your life. And it’s a lot of work to entertain, feed and decorate for so many people, especially with pretty much everyone one you talk to subtly, or not so subtly, hinting that you’re doing it all wrong.
Luckily, even with the stress of the event that I tried so hard to avoid, I absolutely loved our wedding. Besides being surrounded by loved ones, I was also pretty proud of all the DIY projects we worked on. We ended up turning an Elks Lodge into an outdoorsy retreat.
All the pictures in this post were taken by our awesome photographer Richard Fadera from Shuttered Light, unless otherwise noted.
One of the things I was happiest with were the bouquets. I knew I wanted to do paper flowers, even though some of the succulent bouquets were pretty tempting. I had all of the bridesmaids tell me what their favorite books were and I used them in the bouquets. I used this tutorial. We had some great moments like The Red Wedding, the black speech of Mordor and various other wedding-inappropriate passages. My mom helped me make the flowers and Amanda, my maid of honor helped assemble them the night before. I purchased ferns, baby’s breath and lemon leaves from Blooms by the Box.
For the fathers and groomsmen, I made little buds with a burlap leaf wrapped with twine. The groom’s flower was made from lego instructions. The mothers got corsages made from a fabric flower with a burlap and lace leaf attached to a ribbon. The bridesmaids and flower girls had the same kind of flower in their hair.
After a few frustrating conversations about our hatred of ring bearer’s pillows we finally bought a piece of wood (used for smoking on the grill) from World Market and my husband wood burned it with our initials. I decided against a wedding band because I like my woodsy fair trade engagement ring too much. His ring has a meteorite band through it.
My husband is a Lego fan so we wanted the Lego cake topper, but he kept worrying that it would look cheesy. Instead of leaving it as it was, he wrapped the cardboard arch it comes with in twine and added the lego flowers. We also switched the lego people’s heads so they looked more like us. You can’t see it, but he’s holding a lightsaber. I have the One Ring.
The letters were painted by my mother-in-law for my bridal shower. My husband made the hobbit sign as a surprise (it’s still in our living room) and he made the wooden trees (sequoias and pines) that were on every table. His nephew even collected pinecones for us. There are a few sequoia pinecones courtesy of Robin, but they were responsibly removed NOT from National Park land. We’re good stewards. :)
We didn’t get professional pictures of the favors, but we had napkins that my husband’s aunt and sister spent all day sewing while we went cake tasting. We tagged them with a note like this. One Saturday, my sister-in-law and I spent the day making and decorating tree cookies for all the guests. Turns out, people don’t think they’re Christmas trees if you serve them in August.
There were tons more things… bags I made for the bridesmaids, the starry backdrop behind the head table, the save the dates and invitations, the National Park signs at all the tables… Not to mention the alterations Robin did on her dress! We just couldn’t capture it all, but I think every detail was worth it. Even if we didn’t have an ice sculpture. Now, who’s getting married next? Pinterest is still full of ideas and I think I’m about ready to get started crafting again.