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By: Mary SwensonThat of-the-moment (yet utterly classic) blue and white striped shirt seen just about everywhere these days inspired this fresh, stylish table setting. Here's how we did it! Linens Customizing individual linens for each place setting is made easy by using inexpensive white cotton napkins and multi-surface acrylic craft paint. Simply iron each napkin flat, and paint thin stripes along the bottom. Centerpiece Liven up your centerpiece container by adding a striped detail along the bottom. First, we spray-painted a clear glass vase with white spray paint and let it dry completely. Then, after marking off stripe-painting guides using low-tack adhesive tape, we painted stripes around the base of the container. Floral Simplicity A single, oversized red dahlia adds just the right amount of color and drama to this centerpiece while keeping it simple and unfussy. Menus Carry the stripey theme over to all aspects of your event! To create this menu card, we used blue cardstock, a white gel pen, and white paint. Contrast + Color The blue menu card is a striking contrast atop the sea of white. Place one card at each table setting, or put one or two at each table. Place Cards Make matching place cards by using white card stock and painting stripes along one edge with blue paint. Use a similarly-colored blue pen to print names on each card. Coordinated Paper Goods Coordinating menu and place cards are a lovely and sophisticated detail. Stripes, Stripes, Stripes! Using the same number of stripes and a common color scheme for each piece on your table creates a unified, crisp look that's perfect for a bridal shower or wedding day! (photos by Mary Swenson)
Photos By: Chelsea Fuss
Inspired by the sweet strawberry cakes that Swedes make during their Midsummer holiday each year, we came up with this festive wedding cake! It's perfect for an outdoor, rustic wedding. You can make the cake yourself, or simply embellish a store bought cake using our styling inspiration. It's easy and such a unique idea!
First you'll need a white dome cake. We used a citrus flavor dome cake filled with whip cream, from a small family bakery, and it was delicious. We just took off the doily and cardboard it came on and slid it onto a rustic wooden board. You could also make your own. Here are instructions on how to make a dome cake.
You will need around two pints of strawberries per cake.
Cut the stems off and slice the strawberries in half.
Lay the strawberries flat side down, all over the cake.
Keep the cake in the fridge until just before the reception.
Photo: Ben Q. Photography
Incorporating nature is a simple, environmentally conscious and budget-friendly way to give your wedding decor a unique, fresh look. Here are ten natural materials that make perfectly lovely wedding decorations!
Photos (from left): Jen Huang, Langdon Photography
Hypericum berries, snowberries and berzillia berries are all great choices for incorporating natural color and texture.
Photos (from left): Perez Photography, Ryan Ray
Give your ceremony and reception a rustic touch by adding moss to your altar or tablescape.
Photos (from left): Rachwal Photography, Birds of a Feather Events
Use birch pillars of varied heights to hold tea lights or votive candles, or wrap sheets of bark around vases for cool, woodsy centerpieces.
Photos (from left): Dixie Pixel, Abby Jiu
Feathers bring a bit of edgy glamour to your wedding decor. We love this fun ostrich feather chandelier and these lovely peacock feather aisle markers!
Photos (from left): Troy Grover Photographers, Leila Brewster
Grass is wonderful for displaying stationery like escort cards, place cards and table numbers.
Photos (from left): Heather Ann Photography and Design, Katelyn James
Group toparies of various shapes and sizes for elegant centerpieces, or adorn entryways with simple boxwood wreaths.
Photos (from left): onelove Photography, Rylee Hitchner
Drape greenery garlands around tables or chairs for a fresh, ethereal look.
Photos (from left): Taylor Lord, Paula O'Hara
Fragrant dried herbs are a perfect decorative choice for a wedding set in the countryside, garden or vineyard.
Photos (from left): Leila Brewster, Heather Ann Photography and Design
Gnarled, bare branches look pretty on their own, and can also be great for hanging guest notes, escort cards, votives, crystals and flowers!
Photos (from left): Lane Dittoe, Gabriela Ines
Accent your tablescapes with bright fruit for a fun burst of color and a hint of the season!
Project by Janie Medley Photos by Tori of Marvelous Things Photography The perfect centerpiece for a garden theme wedding or dinner at your home. After the event, you can use the potted pansies as favors. How beautiful these would be on a farm table lined down the center of the table. This centerpiece could also be used as the escort card table decor! Ingredients: Pansies – purchased at the garden center Terra Cotta pots – purchased at local craft store Sheet moss – purchased at the garden center Container – I used a vintage Pepsi Crate I purchased from Crate and Barrel How To: This DIY is so easy to make and so much fun! Step One: Fill the container with the sheet moss Step Two: Repot the pansies in the terra cotta pots. Step Three: Place the terra cotta pots in the container among the moss. Also, place the moss around the top of the pots to cover up the soil. There you have it!!
Photo: Paige Winn Photo
1. Red Velvet - The perfect compromise if the bride likes vanilla, but the groom likes chocolate. Why? Because it's a good in-between option guests will love as long as you don't forget the cream cheese frosting!
2. Chocolate Devil's Food - Do you consider yourself a "chocoholic?" If so, go big or go home with chocolate devil's food cake layered with chocolate ganache, mocha mousse, or even fudge filling.
3. Lemon Cake - Since wedding season is at its busiest during the summer months of June through August, it's no wonder that a citrus-flavored cake is the most refreshing on guests' palettes. Adding fresh fruit like strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, or cherries are always a nice complement too.
4. Yellow Butter Cake - You can't go wrong with the most traditional of them all. This basic flavor is paired best with a light, cream filling.
5. Coconut Cake - Having a destination wedding? Instead of sippin' on tropical cocktails, give your guests an oh-so recognizable flavor textured onto each tier.
6. Champagne Cake - Ask your cake baker to add some bubbly to the batter instead of water to create a showstopping statement piece of wedding cake.
7. Spice Cake - A harvest pick (combined with apples and caramel, of course) is perfect for a fall wedding set inside a rustic venue like a barn, farm, or ranch.
8. Carrot Cake - If you're having a multitude of assorted cakes on your dessert display, opt for an unexpected flavor like this one.
9. Banana Walnut Cake - A brunch reception isn't complete without this wake-me-up favorite.
10. Funfetti Cake - Get whimsical with a non-frosted wedding cake that showcases sprinkles galore!
Photo by Jose Villa
Planning a wedding in a barn, on a farm, or in the countryside? Create a picture-perfect scene with our ten favorite rustic wedding decor ideas!
1. Grapevine Wreaths
Photos by (from left): Karena Dixon, Allison Davis
Dress up the branches with flowers, ribbons, or greenery for a pretty, personal touch.
Photos by (from left): Katelyn James, Jose Villa
Hay bales are great for creating unique displays or festive seating arrangements.
Photos by (from left): Amy Arrington, Jen Huang
Go with loose arrangements of wildflowers like larkspur, waxflower, phlox, daisies, bluebells or buttercups for that relaxed, freshly picked look.
Photos by (from left): Leila Brewster, Anne Brookshire
Burlap is a great way to incorporate natural texture into your wedding decor. Use it for table runners, aisle markers, bunting, favor bags, signs...the possiblities are endless!
Photo by Mastin Studio
Draping is a great way to bring warmth and personality to a raw space, especially when you are working with lofted ceilings, as is often the case with a rustic venue.
6. Birch Bark
Photos by (from left): Carlie Statsky, Hazelnut Photography
Wrap sheets of birch bark around vases, candles, or buckets for beautiful rustic centerpieces.
Photos by (from left): Shaun & Skyla Walton, Gina & Ryan Photography
Use chalkboards in lieu of paper for unique wedding signs, menu boards, chair signs, table numbers, escort cards, place cards, and more.
8. Galvanized Buckets
Photos by (from left): Tanja Lippert, Leslee Mitchell
Set a relaxed countryside scene with tin buckets spilling over with wildflowers.
9. Tree Stump Tables
Photos by (from left): Anne Nunn, Michelle Cross
We love these fun, creative accent tables for cocktail lounges and decorative displays!
10. Grapevine Balls
Photos by (from left): Jess + Nate Studios, Elyse Hall
Grapevine balls are great for rustic ceiling decor, aisle markers, centerpieces and more. Dress them up with string lights, flowers, or ribbons for a unique look.
For more rustic wedding inspiration, don't miss our Rustic Wedding Decor Ideas board!
Project and Photos by Brittni Mehlhoff
Create a unique groomsmen gift for the wedding party, or your groom, with these customized rustic wood coasters. They're really easy to create and make for a special and useful gift. Here's how to make your own set of wood burned coasters.
Materials:wood coasters, like these wood burning tool set (available on Amazon) alphabet hot stamps (available on Amazon)
1. To create custom nameplate coaster, screw on the first letter of the name you want to stamp, to the wood burning tool. Then plug in and turn on and wait 3-5 minutes for the stamp to heat up.
2. Now that the tool has had time to heat up, stamp the first letter onto your coaster, leaving the stamp in place for 3-5 seconds before lifting straight up.
3. Turn the wood burning tool off and wait for it to cool down. Then replace the letter you just used with the next letter in the name. Turn the tool on again and wait for it to heat back up. Once the tool has had time to heat back up, stamp the letter onto the coaster, just as you did with the first letter in the name.
4. Repeat step 3 until the entire name has been spelled out. Note: To create a monogram instead, simply use the same letter over and over again, for a variation of looks from coaster to coaster.
5. Wrap with a bow, if desired, and you have a great, inexpensive groom or groomsmen gift.
These coasters would be a thoughtful detail at a wedding reception, as well as a great place for people to put down drinks. Monogram them with the bride and grooms initials or wedding date and you're all set.
In this project, Mary Swenson extended the life of a pre-packaged paper flower centerpiece kit by turning the blooms into favors and centerpieces as well. Love it!
View the Full Tutorial
Available at The Green Vase
10 DIY and ready-made ways to bring paper flowers in to your wedding.
Want your wedding bouquet to last longer than a season? Consider investing in a beautiful paper alternative from The Green Vase ($325). This multi-talented NY-based floral design shop also offers single paper blooms, cake toppers, and cake decorating kits.
Available at Frances & Francis
We love the idea of topping a reception table with a single romantic stem in a vintage glass bottle—and then repurposing the centerpiece as bookshelf decor in your new home! These romantic blooms from Frances & Francis ($14 to $60) are perfect for that.
West Elm Paper Flower Shop
Several national chains are hopping on the paper flower trend. For example: Furniture store West Elm, which offers several pretty pre-made sets ($7.99 to $36).
Available at House That Lars Built
Handcrafted in Copenhagen, these gold-stemmed paper roses ($14 each) will look beautiful gathered in a vase or laid upon individual place settings. Designer Brittany Watson Jespen also creates jumbo-sized versions of these blooms, as well as paper flower hats—email her for custom projects!
Crepe Paper Flower Bouquet DIY
You won't believe how easy (and inexpensive!) it is to whip up these colorful crepe flowers—it takes just three simple steps.
Available at Paper Source
Looking for a little guidance while you construct your paper blooms? Consider a pre-packaged kits from The Paper Source your new best friend ($10.95 - $19.95).
The Crafting Book
Paper to Petal, Available at Barnes & Noble
Husband and wife duo Rebecca Thuss and Patrick Farrell are very good at what they do (which includes photography, design, and, yes, plenty of paper crafts). Releasing late this August, their new book ($16.29) will show you how to make 75 paper blooms yourself. With a forward authored by Martha Stewart herself, it's clear the couple knows what they're doing.
The Perfect Prop
Large Paper Rose, Available at BHLDN
This extra-large paper rose ($68) is almost five feet tall! At that size, it's the perfect addition to any wedding photo booth. It's also, as the website suggests, a whimsical alternative to a basket of petals for the flower girl.
Paper Posy Escort Cards
Easy-to-make crepe flowers will add a joyful touch of color to any spring wedding! This tutorial offers step-by-step instructions for making these cheerful escort cards out of streamer ribbon. It's a great way to save money on a fun but lower priority item on your decor list.
See the Full Wedding
If you're still on the fence about paper flower decor, you have to check out Liz and Josh's color-infused Minnesota wedding. They created some of the most unique centerpieces we've ever seen!
Idea By: Sarah Zlotnick
9 cute and creative ways to serve your cocktails -- Cheers!
Photo by: Michelle Warren
Water infused with mint, cucumber, and lemon -- sounds delish!
Photo by: Love Life Images
Rosemary lemonade and peach iced tea displayed in an antique white cabinet -- does an outdoor reception get any more chic than this?
Photo by: M. Norwood Photogrpahy
Does it get more refreshing than classic lemonade in the summer?
Photo by: Anjuli
Going for more of an indie, DIY vibe? Store your spirits in vintage crates.
Photo by: Hudson Nichols Photography
We love how Jessica and Matt repurposed an old cabinet to hold their beverage supplies.
Photo by: Karen Wise
Serve big batch punches in wide mouth jars. Don't forget the ladles!
Photo by: Neuschafer Photography
Don't think we'll ever get tired of mason jar mugs and striped straws.
Photo by: Jordan Ferney
A rainbow display of old fashioned sodas instantly doubles as reception favors.
Photo by: Katelyn James Photography
Mini chalkboards and log displays are the perfect finishing touches for a rustic beverage station.
By: Victoria HudginsThis DIY packaging is a fresh and modern way to present small favors to guests. Fill each cocoon with something fun to keep your guests busy (like these bright and nostalgic finger pops) and something sweet to snack on. Materials: 1/2 craft glue- 1/2 water mixture Large spool of embroidery thread Balloons (1 balloon for every 2 favors) Instructions: 1. Blow up your balloons and tie a length of thread to the end of the balloon. 2. Begin wrapping thread around the balloon, the messier the wrap the better. 3. Once you have a good covering over the entire balloon, dip a brush into the glue mixture and coat the entire balloon. Hang the balloon by its end to dry. Note: You could also use liquid fabric stiffener for this step in the project, just fill a large bowl and completely dip your wrapped balloons in. 4. Once dry, cut the balloon in half at the center width. Each balloon will make two separate cocoon wraps. 5. Gently pop each balloon and pull away from the fabric. Fill your wraps and tie together with a ribbon and simple tag. 6. Rest each favor on a place setting for a creative, modern touch.