I've seen so many great DIY aisle runners from brides, and I really wanted to make my own. That is, until I had visions of myself tripping over a fabric runner during our outdoor ceremony and rolling myself up like a burrito it in. Our ceremony is in a grassy area which isn't very smooth, and I'm pretty positive a typical aisle runner would equal disaster.
I made 5 tiles to place down the aisle like stepping stones in the place of a runner. I painted the first one with a monogram of our initials, and the remaining 4 each with a date which holds special meaning to our relationship; when we first met, our anniversary, our engagement date, and finally our wedding date.
Here's how I did it:
- Five 12 x 12" kitchen tiles ($1.75 each at Home Depot)
- A fine tip paintbrush
- Outdoor ceramic paint (from a craft store)
- Sharpie marker (bright colors work best, I used orange)
- Computer & printer
- I used MS Word to make prints of each of the dates and the monogram as large as would fit on a landscape-oriented 8.5 x 11" sheet of paper and printed
- At first, I cut out each letter to trace onto the tiles, which took FOREVER and some serious scissor maneuvering. Then I figured out I could just trace over the printed images with a Sharpie and it bled through onto the tile - sooo much easier. After I traced the image, I followed over the orange on each tile with a pencil to make a clear outline of each letter.
- I painted over the outlines with the ceramic paint, which took 2 coats to look even.
- I used a ruler to draw a straight-edged border 1/2" from the edge for a polished look. After the paint dried completely, I sprayed the whole tile with matte clear sealant to keep the paint from chipping.
That's it! It's a little scary when you first start, but it gets easier once you get comfortable with the paint brush. Just take it slow! I finished each tile in about 30 minutes. The great thing about these tiles is they're cheap, easy to find, and they come in all kinds of different finishes. Plus, you can keep them after the ceremony to display or put in your garden! :) I plan to write a short explanation of their meaning in our ceremony program.