Friday, April 5, 2013

Guest D.I.Y: Making Your Wedding Unique and Classy On a Budget, Part 1, by Erika

Remember Erika from Stethoscopes, Style, and Grace?  When I saw her wedding photos a few

months ago (click here if you missed seeing them and reading her love story!), I loved her timeless, girly taste.  She was sweet enough to share more of her big day with me in the name of helping out the crafty bride!  Keep reading for Erika's inspired, swoonworthy, and (bonus) easy wedding DIYs!

When I was planning our wedding, my goal was to keep things simple and classy. As it got closer to thebig day (and I spent more time looking at wedding boards on Pinterest and reading my favorite wedding blog, Style Me Pretty), I started getting overwhelmed with a million different ideas for every aspect of our wedding day. I also couldn’t believe the costs of even small things (like Save the Dates). So I took a deep breath and starting looking for projects that fit the aesthetic of what we wanted for our wedding and that my mom, sisters, and I could do without spending a ton of time (I’m in medical school so time is precious). These are some of the DIY projects I found that cut down costs, were fairly simple, and made our wedding unique!

Save the Date Postcards

Note from Stephanie: here are a few other gorgeous printables from Wedding Chicks!
I originally wanted to send out cute little Save the Date magnets (like everyone else) but found these postcards on If you haven’t been to their website, you really must! They have tons of free downloads for Save the Dates, invitations, reception décor, etc. Our guests loved our Save the Dates (and ended up putting them on their fridge anyways, so who really needs a magnet?)

What you’ll need: cardstock, free download, printer (I had ours printed at our local print store).

Wedding Invitations

 Initially I found some amazing watercolor lily invitations on Etsy, but at $2.50 each (plus postage) our invitations would have rang up way above our budget. Yikes. So I took a 40% off coupon with me and headed over to Michael's, where I found these beauties.

Simple, elegant, and pink, they even came with ribbons to tie around the top. We also added a tiny clear stick-on jewel to the bottom and top of the invite. There are tons of pretty and fun options at Michael's here. Obviously they don’t have to be from Michael's (my close friend found hers at Joann Fabrics) and if you are really crafty like my cousin, you could even create something amazing from scratch on your computer.

What you’ll need: blank invitations that fit your theme, printer (we had ours printed at Office Max), ribbon and stick-on embellishments (optional).

Table Decor: Milk Glass Vases and Table Numbers

A few of Erika's milk glass finds

 My favorite part of our wedding décor was the milk glass vases. A friend of mine collected vintage vases for her wedding, and I loved the thought of finding my own unique vases so thrifting I went! I went to all our local thrift shops (Vinnies, Goodwill, Salvation Army, and two church-run stores) along with a couple antique stores. It was so exciting to find a few lovely vases on the shelves each time that I went. The varied shapes, sizes, and patterns added character to our reception tables and the small size of each vase allowed us to keep our flowers simple (we had just a few colorful flowers in each vase). During my thrifting trips, I found other fun vase options for wedding decor as well: robins-egg blue mason jars, glass bottles of all shapes and sizes, and even a full set of oval round glass vases.

What you’ll need: comfortable walking shoes, a list of your local thrift stores

 For our table numbers, I used another free template from Wedding Chicks. I printed them out on ivory cardstock and used holders from Michaels (with a 40% off coupon of course).  I loved how they turned out.

What you’ll need: free download, printer, cardstock, table number holders (I found ours at Michaels)
Place Cards

Jillian J Photography

Believe it or not, place cards can be another pricey wedding item. I know that a lot of weddings are following the “We are family, no assigned seating theme” trend, but with 175 people and a small-ish space, we really needed place cards. A friend of my sister dabbles in calligraphy (nothing professional, just for fun) but if I had more time, I probably would have tried to do it myself (there are lots of fun examples on Pinterest). The place cards were a blank ivory set at Michaels, and to add some flair we used a lily ink stamp on the back of the placecard in pink (of course!).

What you’ll need: blank place cards (I found ours at Michaels, you could also create your own with cardstock), calligraphy pen, ink stamp (if you want to put a design on the back)

If you can even believe it, there are four more amazing DIY's up Erika's J. Crew'ed sleeve!  Stay tuned for the rest of them next month, and in the meantime, be sure to visit her blog and show her some love!


  1. I love this post! I designed and put together our save the dates based of a pinterest idea and am in the process of doing our invites too. I ordered the papers/cards online, had them printed at a local print store and we're cutting (lots of cutting) and putting them together at home. I think it can be worth if it you have the time. =)

    I have been wanting to buy cute vases at second hand stores too. This may be the inspiration to start the search for my own. =)

    1. Definitely worth it! My girlfriends and I had a little invitation cutting and addressing party and it made the work a lot easier and more fun. Thanks for sharing the graphics resource!

  2. Here is another great resource a found for free printable stock vintage images. I used a pretty rose one for our invitations. I can spend hours scrolling and looking at all the pretty pictures!



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