We’re going a bit out of order here on our wedding posts but who really cares anyway? Today I’m writing all about the last minute preparations and DIYs that we did the week of the wedding! This will basically be a catch-all for the little DIY things we did that don’t really warrant their own post, but I wanted to write about somewhere anyway.
My parents drove down to Florida a few days before the wedding, and with them came all of the DIY things that they had been working on at home. My mom already wrote a separate post about our bouquets that were made from sola flowers – those all came down along with a ton of fake flowers to make the rest of our arrangements.
I’ve talked about our flowers a lot already on here but a quick refresh…we had to be difficult, so we had a combination of sola flowers, real flowers, and fake silk flowers. The sola flowers were used for our bouquets, boutonnieres, and corsages. Real flowers were used in our centerpieces. The silk flowers were used for all other decor, including the chair bows and the decorations for the entryway and ceremony space. Let’s focus on those for a bit…they’re the ones you see smushed in the space below the sola bouquets up there.
All of our fake flowers were purchased at Michael’s or Joann – it took a few trips to different stores to find the style and amount that we needed. We could have found them online I’m sure but we really waited til the last minute to do flowers so we worked with what we had. For decorating the entrance to the venue and ceremony, we focused on finding taller stems that would bring a classy and elegant vibe to the space. We also got some smaller filler items like leaves and the little white berry-looking things pictured below, just to fill out the bouquets a little more.
We actually also were about to purchase some vases for these large bouquets of flowers, but after a quick call to our amazing venue we found out they already had some we could use. They actually had the exact ones we were going to buy – it saved us about $100 and a lot of packing space!
Btw I’m saying “we” here like I had involvement other than facetiming my parents from the craft store – all the purchasing and in-person shopping was done by them, since they had a lot more time and resources than I ever did! They helped me SO much with all the planning and getting everything exactly the way I want it 🙂 When I say “we” in this post please assume that I mean someone else, because I was definitely not the one getting these flowers set up on our wedding day!
For the vase fillers, we had about 20 bags of these little rocks from a different event that had just been sitting in our basement at home…good thing we never got rid of them because they were perfect haha. We used 4-5 bags per vase.
The tall columns in the photos as well as the flowery chain across the aisle was provided by our venue! You can also see our aisle runner well in these photos – that came from Amazon (how did people get married before the internet?). I originally didn’t think we needed/wanted an aisle runner but I’m glad we had something, it really pulled it all together. We ended up getting this one.
These flowers turned out so nice, they didn’t take too much time or effort to put together but they looked so good!
The other major flower project was the decorations for the aisle chairs. For these, we were going pretty simple again – we bought these big white silk hydrangeas from the craft store. Using floral tape and some more of that filler greenery, we arranged them into a sort of small bouquet on a hook that could be looped around the chairs. Then we tied the whole thing with a bow of plum colored ribbon.
We had 8 rows of chairs so we decided to alternate between decorating the left and right sides, which means we needed 8 of these little arrangements. I actually DID help make these in the week leading up to the wedding – it was tricky at first but once I got the hang of it and useda lot of floral tape, they turned out pretty nice! I also made those “Reserved” signs you see on the chairs there – we basically just printed them out and glued them to a backing of black cardstock. Super easy!
All the supplies for this were from craft stores, with the exception of the ribbon which we ordered online. The ebay seller that we bought from gave us some trouble because the color that arrived was not at all what was pictured online, and we had to scramble to make something work 2 days before the wedding. My advice for anyone planning on doing this: do NOT buy anything that has to be color matched online!! Or use a color that is more easily matched than plum haha
So the flowers are all done, yay! During this prep time I also assembled all the signs I had made. We literally just put them into black photo frames and they were done, yay!
Another project was our card box. This was quite an ordeal. My parents started looking at stores for some kind of cage or chest or box that could be used to hold cards, just something that matched our wedding style. We couldn’t really find anything that we liked, so as per usual we ended up doing it ourselves. They found a little treasure chest-looking box (at, again, the craft store) that we were going to paint ivory and then cover in a sparkly spray paint to match the whole glitter thing we had going.
My dad also cut a hole in the side for people to put their cards in. We also glued the box shut so that all the cards inside would stay safely in there until we got back from our honeymoon.
It looked pretty good all said and done! It didn’t cost too much either – the total cost was under $30 for the box and paint since my mom was able to use some coupons. It was simple but did the job.
The last thing I wanted to mention here isn’t really a DIY in the traditional sense, really it’s just another thing that we bought – but I don’t think I’m going to get another place to mention it so I wanted to talk about it here. Sparklers. As you saw in my wedding day post, we had a sparkler exit:
It was beautiful and one of my favorite parts of the day. Our venue didn’t allow any kind of confetti, rice, loose glitter, or anything like that, but I wanted sparklers more than any of that so it all worked out anyway. The venue also let us know that if we were doing sparklers we should buy the extra long ones so they don’t start running down too low before we even came out of the building. After some searching we found this place literally called weddingdaysparklers.com. Can’t go wrong with that I suppose. We really liked this site because they had lots of information about what size and how many sparklers you should buy, lots of good reviews, and free shipping over $50!
We bought 1 “full box” of the 36-inch sparklers, which is 96 sparklers for $75. It was the best price we could find and they were absolutely perfect for our send off photos!!
At one point in the process I also really had my heart set on having sparkler tags for each individual one, just to make them look a bit fancier. I was dying to buy these beautiful plum tags from Etsy but they’re pretty pricey for something that is literally going to immediately be taken off and thrown away. I snapped out of it and realized that we had already spent way too much money on unnecessary things, and guess what? Our sparklers were beautiful and perfect without any kind of tags 😉
And I think that’s just about it for all our last-minute DIYs!! I am pretty sure my mom was still working on some of these things the morning of the wedding…like I said, I cannot thank my parents enough for how much they did for us for this whole event!! We put everybody to work that week of the wedding though…here’s Chris working on assembling our activity books:
Dad spray painting the card box:
And my brother…. “helping”….
We got a lot done in those last few days before the wedding, even though it was a very hectic time and we were all obviously pretty stressed. But everything got done and it looked perfect!!! Like I’ve said multiple times in these posts, I didn’t really think we were doing a “DIY wedding” until I looked back and realized how many things we did ourselves. Some of it was super easy and some was a LOT of work but it all turned out great 🙂 I hope you have enjoyed these DIY posts and all of my wedding posts, for that matter! Thanks for reading as always!!