DIY Weddingness

So it's that time again, when Pinterest's fancy turns to SO MANY WEDDING PINS. My husband and I got married last August, so this time last year I was doing nothing but wedding decoration research (because everything else had already been decided, and let's face it, making things rocks). I thought I'd share our handmade (and cheap!) trimmings for those of you in the same boat. Before we start: all the pictures in this post, with the exception of the black and white close up (blame me for that one), are from our AMAZING photographers, JayLee Photography. Seriously, if you need beautiful pictures, hire them!

Okay. First up: my wedding shawl. When I was looking for a wedding dress, my only criteria was that it not be white. I was originally going to make it, but after a dress shopping trip with my mom, I fell in love with this one:

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That handsome dude is my brother Mac, who officiated our ceremony for us. As you can see, the dress overlay had shades of pink, green, and lavender. I went with the pink for my shawl, specifically Cascade Silky Alpaca Lace in "Pixie Pink". For the pattern I picked the Heliotaxis Pi Shawl by Renata Brenner. It took a few months to knit, as I tend to jump from project to project (maybe you could tell?), but was overall a pleasure to make. My favorite part was the edging pattern:

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It matched perfectly with my dress, and was very warm once the sun went down and it got a bit chilly - it was August, but still Seattle after all!

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Next up: cranes. I learned how to fold origami cranes when I was about 10 or 11, and it's a skill that's come in handy a lot more than you'd expect. I used to work at a job where I was on the phone all day, and since I needed something to do with my hands, I would fold cranes. Origami paper is crazy cheap at our local Japanese store, Daiso, and I have a habit of picking up a pack whenever I'm there, so I had plenty of materials. One day when discussing with my now husband what the heck I'd do with all these little pieces of paper, I joked that I'd use them for the wedding. But the idea wouldn't go away, and they became the focal point. Unfortunately I didn't think to count them until I was already done, so before anyone asks, I have no idea how many there were! My husband and I then spent LOTS and LOTS of hours stringing and gluing them together into garlands to line the walkway:

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We clean up nice, right? Credit for the three tiered design has to go to my amazing friends Maggie, Destiny, and Aliya, who organized the setting up part of the wedding for us. We also used the cranes for centerpieces:

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We brainstormed for a while on how to put these together, until we decided that Ikea was the solution - the centerpiece is a bowl, two glasses stacked on top of each other, and a candle, all surrounded by the cranes. A little glue and we were set! And they looked gorgeous when it got dark and we lit the candles:

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And the last of our DIY projects was our wishing tree and birdcage card holder. These ideas were all my husbands, I just helped flesh them out a bit. The wishing tree was some Manzanita branches cemented into a pot. We had little cards with ribbon attached, and everyone wrote a wish for us on one of the cards to hang on the tree. We gathered them up at the end of the night to save for a as-yet-to-be-determined project:

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The birdcage was bought as is, but because I can't leave anything alone, I made some butterflies out of some delicate tissue origami paper and glued those on (you can see them there on the bottom corners). It wasn't my favorite wedding craft, but it did the job!

So there you have it. We probably spent about $150, max, on our decorations (maybe more like $200 including the shawl yarn), and they turned out to be exactly right...and people took them home as party favors after!