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Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something… Sentimental?

Grandma's gown turned into fabric roses for a bridal bouquet? Sentimentalicious!

Everyone is always saying blah blah it’s all about the bride blah blah. Almost everyone, anyway. And it’s not like the media is much help there when it comes to combating the idea that weddings turn women into self-absorbed harpies. But I know and you know that they don’t. In the six years I’ve been writing here, I have read many touching and beautiful comments from people planning weddings and thinking about just about everyone else before themselves. Which isn’t to say you can’t go too far in one direction or the other. Have the wedding you want, right, but keep in mind that weddings are typically family affairs. That way, everybody wins.

Some brides and grooms in thinking of others while planning weddings go above and beyond he’s vegan and she’ll need a wheelchair ramp and so on, and think of ways to incorporate the past into the weddings of the present. For some, that means a couple choosing a wedding theme based on the adventures they’ve had and the destinations they’ve visited. For other people, it might mean wearing mom’s wedding dress or carrying one’s late grandfather’s handkerchief during the ceremony. There are lots of sentimental touches that can make a wedding feel extra special, from memorial photo charms woven into a bouquet stem ribbon to having the groom’s initials embroidered into the lining of the bride’s dress to making a group vow renewal part of your wedding ceremony.

But that’s not all. There are probably an infinite number of sentimental touches that can be incorporated into a wedding. Me? I was the aforementioned handkerchief carrier. Now you tell us: What are YOU doing to make your wedding that much more special?

LOVE/HATE: The Open Book Edition

Are you part of a crafty couple? Because one couple out there made mini wedding invitation books (seen here) to send out to all their guests and they turned out pretty spiffy! Kind of the opposite of the traditional ecru wedding invitation with a single color of ink, so most certainly not for everyone, but I know for a fact that some of my readership is def. on the funky side!

Is your love an open book?

Wonder what the fine for not returning it is?

For the second week in a row, I’m going to have to go with L-O-V-E. I wouldn’t have had the graphics skills to pull these off or the money to hire someone else to make them for me, but I wouldn’t have said no if someone in my life had wanted to hook me up with kooky wedding invitation books!

What do you brides and brides-to-be think about these book wedding invitations? Too busy? Or just the right amount of busy?

Inspiration: 6 Creative Table Numbers

Table numbers – if you’re assigning seats or tables at your wedding reception, you’re going to need them. I know, I know, your table numbers don’t necessarily need to be numbers, so take these ideas and translate them into non-numbered table numbers if you want to! Because they are awesome and fun and definitely a step up from a number on a stick randomly erupting from a floral arrangement.


via Lil Missi, but easily DIYable with burlap wine bags, fabric paints, and stencils


via the Back Porch Shoppe

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Jam Wedding Favors – DIY It or Don’t

Brides-to-be with a knack for canning can default to an easy DIY wedding favor in the form of homemade jam in cute wee jars. But just because you’re not particularly handy in the kitchen doesn’t mean you can’t have jam wedding favors – there are plenty of personalized jam wedding favors on Etsy and elsewhere, in addition to the less expensive non-personalized mini jams. Check out how pretty they can be:

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Puzzle Place Cards Can Make Finding a Seat a Little More Fun

I am absolutely enamored with the idea of using puzzle pieces as reception table place cards! Like these, which feature images of the bride and groom. A table’s worth of puzzle pieces are assembled by guests and *voila* a keepsake that can go home with some lucky guest.

Brides and grooms who have a bit of artistic talent (or can use paste without freaking out) can even DIY this one with a package of blank puzzles!

Images by Kurstin Roe Photography

A Quilled Marriage Certificate

The fabulous Rebecca sent me a link to this totally amazing quilled marriage certificate created by paper filigree expert Ann Martin. Glorious!

Now, paper filigree is new to me, and maybe to you, too. According to Wikipedia, “paper filigree is an art form that involves the use of strips of paper that are rolled, shaped, and glued together to create decorative designs. The paper is wound around a quill to create a basic coil shape. The paper is glued at the tip and the coil shaped, these shaped coils are arranged to form flowers, leaves, and various ornamental patterns similar to ironwork.” Zow! Sounds like one of those hobbies that’s time consuming but produces an amazing finished product.

And what a nice way to display a marriage certificate – it’s certainly a lot nicer than the one issued by the state. I have one of those, and it lives in my fire safe.

You can see more of Ann’s quilled marriage certificates in this little Flickr set – and from what she writers, it looks like she’s in the market for commissions. So if you love what you see, get in touch with her!

P.S. – Don’t forget to enter the yummiest giveaway yet!

One Way to Have a Picture-Perfect Wedding

For brides and grooms who want nuptial documentation that goes beyond the usual wedding photographs and wedding videos, there’s something called live event painting. Have you heard of it? Because I hadn’t, unless you could the court artists who sketch the accused and everyone else in trials where cameras are verboten, but that doesn’t lend itself to a joyful image of a moment in time. Live event painting is like courtroom artistry with fewer dour judges and more happy couples… not to mention fewer benches and more centerpieces. Here’s an example, from Event Painting By Agnes:

live event painting

If you hire Agnes, she comes to your wedding, where she creates a fine art painting as the matrimonial action unfolds. If you’re wondering how she can do that – get the background and so on with people milling about – Agnes arrives at the reception good and early to lay down the scenery so she can focus on the bride and groom and so on once the party actually starts. Her painting is developed and perfected as the night progresses, which means you don’t end up with a perfect representation of a single slice of existence, but rather a sort of amalgamation of events.

Guests, according to Agnes, dig watching an artist at work, especially if they’re in the painting. She can, if you wish, make sure to include specific relatives or friends so that the finished work is personal. Rather like the ultimate perfect wedding photo that is impossible to actually get. That’s the element of live event painting that appeals to me – had I even known about it prior to my own wedding, I don’t know that it’s something I would have sprung for myself. But if there’s a wedding reception image that you can’t imagine living without, live event painting might just be the way to get it.