Updated: Oct 8
If there’s one thing to be thankful for in this pandemic, it is the time that was forced on us to pause, reflect and even perhaps dust off a long-forgotten hobby to see if we were still interested, still good at it. Hell, some of us even picked up new ones altogether. We had a moment to watch some YouTube videos for a distraction whenever we wanted a break from the monotony of isolation or a break from working from home.
If you are a soon-to-be bride, you might have had to postpone your wedding, trim your wedding budget, or wait until the next COVID-19 wave subsides before walking down the aisle. Whatever your circumstance, this could be the time to try and find corners you could cut to stretch your dollar a little further, while at the same time make your wedding special and custom to you. Here are some of the things that you could DIY.
The wedding planning process
If you have a lot of time on your hands, you could skip the wedding planner altogether and just do it yourself. You could make a spreadsheet of most of the things that you need and keep updating it. Better yet, there are some free tools that you could use for this purpose.
One of them is WeddingHappy. This is a free app that has tasks and guides preloaded to guide you through your checklist, alerting you about approaching deadlines. The advantage of this app is that it gives a good overview of the big tasks and the timelines of when they should be accomplished, rating the tasks done with a percentage and giving the number of pending duties. The plan is shareable with your fiancé, bridesmaids, or anyone else that would be helping in the preparation process.
Bridebook is another great alternative that combines your budget, to-do tasks, and vendor access. Based on your wedding budget and location, the free app can help estimate what each aspect of your wedding will cost thus helping you not lose sight of your priorities.
As they frame your wedding, wedding backdrops can be a great way to showcase your individuality or style. If they are mobile, they can be moved around and be the background at the reception too, or the Instagram-worthy backdrop where your guests would love to take photos.
Deciding whether you want a minimalist or maximalist approach will give you a framework to know what to work with. If you are going for the minimalist look, a floral hoop or a circular grid with eucalyptus and wisteria could be it.
You could also have a rectangular floral grid. If you are artistic, then a huge piece of abstract art which you can also serve the purpose. Having no limit, art can be made out of interesting materials such as framing wallpaper if you can’t be bothered with making it yourself.
A beautiful colorful rug can serve as your backdrop too. You could paint geometric shapes like the increasingly popular arcs, use cut outs, or opt for the tried and tested flower wall easily made with a hot glue gun and a bunch of plastic flowers.
A balloon arc is fairly easy to make; hanging fairy lights, tree branches decorated with flowers, or draped with fabric or both are options too and Pinterest can give you great ideas on the endless possibilities. Interesting doors and windows could also offer ready-made backdrops whether decorated or not.
If you would like to test your sewing chops and you have some time on your hands, this is something that you could make. If the task seems too daunting, you could start with a removable skirt or overskirt using materials such as tulle or lace fabric to elevate your store-bought dress.
You could also customize a simple dress that you already own by adding or replacing lace, tulle, sleeves and if you like needlework, you could work in a few sequins, beads, and even embroidery. There are several YouTube videos that can guide you on how to make your own bridal gown.
Wedding veil or accessory
This is actually something that is so easy to make if you have a hot glue gun, needle and thread, some lace, comb, or hair pin, gauzy of stiff lace and some bedazzling material like beads, rhinestones, and faux flowers. Trial and error can give you spectacular results.
But if you don’t have a lot of patience, the internet has tons of tutorials that can make the exercise enjoyable. Wedding flower crowns, bracelets or floral hoops can be made with fresh or faux flowers.
Bouquet of flowers
Whether you want the traditional bouquet or bridesmaids’ wreaths for you and your bridesmaids, this could be a chance for you to explore your creativity and make your occasion memorable. Instead of the conventional fresh flowers bunches which you can DIY, you can opt for alternatives such as fern and leaves, eucalyptus, pampas grass, pine cones, wheat, or succulents bouquets.
You could also go the eco-friendly route and use other materials like ribbon, feather, buttons, wires, or even paper flower bouquets. Other alternatives are pinwheels, fruit, candy, pompoms, the possibilities are boundless.
Just like the bouquet and its alternatives, there are great opportunities for what you can make as your décor. The bouquets that you settle on can be used as table centerpieces for instance. Candles, floating flowers, or tea lights could work just as well.
You have the option to upcycle old bottles and mason jars, old records as signage, fabrics for custom fabric letters papers to make garlands, ribbon arch. Try out a pallet board using a white marker for the text on the sign, minimalistic chalkboards and upcycled cheese boards.
Dangling fairy lights or lanterns can glam up the space especially if it is indoors or if it is an evening affair. Table runner options can range from gauzy or sparkly fabrics to trails of moss and ivy vines, along with stems of eucalyptus.
Scatterings of floral petals on the table runners and even the isle or dance floor, a ‘Mr and Mrs’ banner, make your own cake topper, tassel garlands for chairs are all easy to make and will give the wedding your own personal touch.