Monday, January 27, 2014

Our DIY Engagement Photos

Jeff and I are trying to do things low budget so we decided to have a good friend (one of Jeff's groomsmen in fact) photograph us with his super duper nice spanking new camera in pre-pinned poses.

God I love Pinterest! I just went on and found a ton of cute poses to try, I made lots of props, we met up with our friend at a great location (where Jeff proposed) and SHAZAM we got some awesome engagement pictures.

I would like to say though..... our friend has a lot of experience taking professional photos for his job (he's a journalist and is responsible for a lot of his own photography). Its not like you can stick just anyone behind a nice camera and magically have great photos...I've tried and I'm a disaster behind the lens. Get someone who has some knowledge about photography (self taught or otherwise).

I think this worked out really well for us because we were both really comfortable around our photographer (often to the point of complete ridiculousness) and it made us relax and just be ourselves. He brought his fiance who just happens to be my best friend so it was really fun and not forced at all. I'm not super into PDA so I can't imagine locking lips with Jeff as much as I did in front of a complete stranger.

I'm so glad we got some of these great shots.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

DIY Wedding Decor: The Road You've Tread to Watch Us Wed

I saw this really adorable idea on one of my favorite DIY blogs. It was a map that displays where everyone has traveled from in order to attend the wedding.

In the same blog I saw a really cute idea for state string art here. I've actually made these before as Christmas gifts a couple of years ago, so I already knew I could make them and that they really do turn out awesome.
I decided to combine the two into a really cool nail string art map to acknowledge the people traveling from near and far to watch Jeff and I get married.

Things you will need:
-Piece of wood (I used precut pine from Home Depot)
-Embroidery Floss in the color of your choice

Step 1: Cut the wood down to the size you want if its not already precut. I happen to have a father who knows his way around a table saw so he did it for me. If you aren't as lucky I think they'll do it for you at Home Depot.

Step 2: Prime and paint the wood. If there are knots in the wood you will need to use "Stain Resistant" primer so the knots don't bleed through. Allow the primer to dry for at least 3 hours. Paint the wood the color of your choice. I used spray paint but you can use whatever kind you like.

Step 3: Print out the words you would like to have on your wood slab. Since I'm super original I used the same wording as the picture above "The road you've tread to watch us wed." Put the lettering print out on the wood and use a ballpoint pen to really push down hard so that you get an indentation. Paint over the indentation.

This part takes a while. My suggestion is to sit down in front of all those episodes of Dance Moms some very intellectual news program you have recorded and knock em out! (Ok so I may have some trashy TV watching tendencies when I craft).

Step 4: Now you need to find a map that you want to use. I decided to use both one of the US and one of Florida because we will have so many people coming from around the state as well as from all over the country. You can use a map from an atlas or print an outline from Google Images. I did Google Images. I also put a heart over Sarasota on the map. This is where all the pins that go in for each location will end up connecting to.

Step 5: Place your templates on the wood and now its time to get nailed! (Bahahaha.....No? No one?) Use a hammer and nail around the outline of the maps. This is going to take a WHILE and will probably hurt your wrists after a while so take some wine breaks and then keep going! The last picture is the outline of the maps when I finished.

Step 6: Tie the embroidery floss around a nail and then loop around another nail. Keep doing this over and over and over and over again. You'll run out of string and need to tie the end off and then start a new one. There really is no strategy or patten to it, I think it looks better being totally random.

Step 7: Rinse and repeat over and over again until the map looks full.

Step 8: Once I have the RSVPs in I will put a large nail in at each location and tie a big pink string connecting the location to Sarasota. I'll add an update once its finally done. I think I'm also going to add our wedding date at the top in the big blank space. We'll see.

In other news.... You can try to make your fiance help you take pictures of your work but you can't make him stop watching "the game".

Sunday, January 5, 2014

DIY Word Banners

I made a bunting for my sisters bridal shower back in June that said "From Miss to Mrs" that we hung over the food table.

I did it using scrapbook paper, I measured and cut all of the flags by hand, and it ended up getting all crumpled and wrinkled afterwards so I cant reuse it for any of my other friends' showers coming up.

I saw this cute idea for a gift table on pinterest and decided that, when we got closer to our wedding (I didn't want this one to get crumpled because it was sitting around for a year) I would painstakingly make another banner.

Then I (surprise!) went to Hobby Lobby and found these awesome premade chipboard pennants for 50% off (aka $2 for a pack of 7) and I couldn't resist.Well... I probably could've resisted but why bother? My wallet was stuffed with Hobby Lobby gift cards (thank you Santa!).

Here are some directions on how to EASILY make your very own lettered bunting.

Things you will need:
-Premade pennants (There were burlap,cloth, and chipboard options at HL)
-Paint (both the color of the flag and the color of the lettering you want
-Paint brushes
-Wax Paper
-String or ribbon to hang the finished flags on

Step 1: Paint  your flags the desired color. My wedding colors will be a deep yellow, light gray, and white, so I painted my flags white. After you paint one side I suggest that you lay them on Wax paper to let them dry. That way if something dripped to the other side it won't pull up newsprint when you pick it up.

Step 2: After one side is dry repeat with the other side.

Step 3: While you're waiting on the paint to dry make the letters for your flags. I went into publisher and made a triangle template that was the exact dimensions of my flags (the dimensions were on the packaging). Then I inserted wordart in the font that I wanted so I could stretch it to be the side I needed.

Then all you need to do is copy and paste the number of letters you will need and change the letter to make the words you want. I also did the same with a piece of heart clipart for the spaces. The font I used is called KG Only*Hope if you're interested in using that one. Its fun because all of the letters are different in both lowercase and capital.

Step 4: Print out the letters and cut them out. Leave a bit of space on all sides to give you room to hold the paper down when you are tracing.

Step 5: Trace the letters onto the board using pen. If you are using a cloth or burlap pennant you will need to chalk the back and follow steps 2, 3, and 4 seen here.

Step 6: Using the paint that you want, fill in the outlines you just traced.I blew up this picture so you can see the slight indentation marks that you should have after you trace the lines out.

Step 7: After all of the letters have dried you're ready to string them up! This next part can be done lots of different ways with lots of different materials. You decide what's best for you.

If you use a thick ribbon the pennants probably won't slide around so you wont need to tie knots. I used Jute to get a rustic look so I wanted to tie knots to make sure the flags stayed spaced evenly.

I threaded mine over/under so that the knots went in the front and the jute went in the back. If you have a pretty ribbon that you want to show off you can thread it under/over and the ribbon would show in the front.

Step 8: Trim the ends and stand back and admire your work. Or in my case call for your fiance and demand that HE admire your work :)

You can do this with pretty much anything. You could even use scrapbook paper of different patterns and glue it to the front for a cute mis-matchy pattern background....  That would take longer but I think it would be really cool looking.

I made a really awesome string art project over New Years Day that I'll post about next. I didn't have enough string to finish it, but once its done I'll share!

Happy Crafting!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Happy New Year

Happy New Year from my little family to yours! 

I spent all of New Years Day crafting so I've got some sweet wedding projects to post about soon!