handmade gift tags
Image: The Wedding of my Dreams

After you’ve posted pictures of your ring on every social media channel going and the last of the engagement party Champagne has been drunk, it’s time to get down to the details of who, what, when and HOW THE HELL ARE WE GOING TO DO THAT?!

We know from experience that it’s easy to get carried away when you’re Pinning all those outdoor table setups (usually shot in the US, or Italy… not the rainy UK) and beautiful handmade invites (usually made by an expert, with just one to make –  not 70!), so we’re here to keep it real and give you the lowdown on what it’s really like to DIY your wedding. Then you can make an informed decision and hopefully avoid unnecessary stress during your wedding planning…

Pros

• Making your own favours, stationery, decorations and even your cake and flower arrangements adds a personal touch. Everything you craft will be made with love, and have a whole lot more meaning than off-the-shelf alternatives.

• You can create the exact look you want, without compromise. Everything can be made in your specific colour scheme.

• You can sometimes save money (see Cons!)

• It can be fun – especially if you involve family and friends. Everyone feels that they’ve contributed to your special day, and therefore more invested in it.

• On the day itself, you get a huge feeling of pride and satisfaction – you achieved ALL this!

Cons

• Making everything is a huge task that will require an awful lot of your time. If you both work full time and have busy social lives, when can you realistically see yourselves fitting it all in?

• DIY isn’t always the cheap option! By the time you’ve factored in the cost of your materials, you can end up spending more than if you’d just bought the items online.

• It can be stressful! If you’re more keen on getting creative than your other half, you’re at risk of some serious arguments over who has stamped more invitations and who has made the most pom poms.

• Don’t forget scale – that homemade favour project you saw in a magazine looks easy, but when you have to make 100 of them, is it realistic?

Our DIY tips

• Be honest with yourself about how creative you really are. If you’re not usually very crafty, making things might take you longer than expected and you might feel disappointed with the finished product.

• Don’t take on too much – choose one or two things to work on yourselves and leave the rest to the experts.

• Ask for help! Play to everyone’s strengths rather than trying to do everything yourself (as super as you are, no one’s that perfect)

• Stick to a strong theme – otherwise you’ll end up with a mishmash of ‘It looked great on Pinterest’ ideas that don’t actually go together.

• Visit your venue with friends/family to work out which areas need styling and how much safe you have on your tables for menus, favours, plates, cutlery, that moss-covered woodland-inspired centrepiece…

• Ask your photographer to take shots of all your ‘details’. This way, you’ll remember all those little things you worked so hard on. Wedding magazines are also more likely to feature you if you have these too (there’s a little insider tip for you!)

Tell us how you’re finding DIY – tweet us @paperbrideblog #todiyornot

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