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Photos By: Mary SwensonCandles are that one favor you know your guests will use, and they're easier to make than you may think! Forget special candle-making equipment -- microwaveable soy wax is easy to use, and add a package of candle wicking (both available at craft stores) and you're ready to get started! Begin by choosing an interesting container for your candle: vintage tins, miniature clay pots, and teacups all make lovely and unique statements, and are easy to coordinate with your event. For our project, we used inexpensive cobalt blue jars found on eBay. First, we cut the wicking to fit the depth of our container. To keep the wick straight, we tied the top loosely around a wooden stick long enough so that it was able to rest on top of the jar, and then centered the wick over the jar. We put the soy wax flakes in a microwave-safe container with a spout (which makes it easier to control the wax when we're ready to pour it into our jars) and melted the wax according to the package instructions. You can personalize your candle's fragrance with a huge variety of fragrance oils, or leave them unscented. We added a few drops of lavender oil to our hot, melted wax, carefully poured it into the jars, and let them sit undisturbed until completely cooled and solid. While the candles cooled, we prepped the packaging for our candles. We made simple gift tags and cut sprigs of dried lavender to tie around each jar. The finished product: fragrant soy candles, personalized for each guest! Use each candle as a place setting, or display them all together on a favor table. Your guests will love them! Photos By: Mary Swenson
Photos By: Jordan Ferney
Bunting is a cheap and easy way to add color to your soiree! Materials Needed: Tissue Paper, Scissors, glue stick, and string.
First, decide how large you want each flag and then cut out several sheets at once.
You'll want to cut out pieces that are double the desired flag size so that they can be folded over.
To safely store your flags, wrap them around an empty cardboard gift wrap roll or paper towel roll so they don't wrinkle.
Project Design By: Victoria Hudgins
Photos By: Carly TaylorUsing watercolor in your wedding can be an easy way to add both color and pretty artistic flair. Make drink tags, escort cards, or favor labels with these easy instructions. Materials: You will need watercolor paints, paper tags, a white crayon, a paint brush and water. Process: Write in your details on the paper tag with a white crayon. I did a combo of table numbers and simple words to show how each would look. Be sure to press firmly with the crayon. A preview of the finished product. Loving this vibrant orange. Dip your brush in the water and the paint, before stroking lightly over your tag. Mix colors and do a couple coats to ensure good texture.
The watercolors will not adhere to the wax portion of the tag where the crayon has left its mark.
What a difference adding favor tags makes! Let dry and attach to your favor or item of choice! Lastly, get creative and have fun! Project Design By: Victoria Hudgins Photos By: Carly Taylor
Photos By: Victoria HudginsPaper marbling is a technique that has been around for a long time. The process leaves a beautiful impression on paper giving a high design style to invitations, gift tags and stationery. For your wedding why not take this traditional paper impact a little further by saturating your paint and marbling in a bold, modern and fresh way? Materials: Heavy stock white paper, 2-3 colors of acrylic paints, a shallow pan and water. Step One: Begin by dropping each of your paints into the water filled pan. Drip the paints in a straight line one at a time. Step Two: Using a kitchen skewer, blend the paints together. When you do this some of the paint will rise to the top but (unlike normal marbling) the weight of the paint will allow a majority of it to remain on the bottom of the pan. Step Three: Holding your paper on both ends make a U shape with it and set it in the water, bottom of the U first. This will prevent any air bubbles from ending up in your final design. Step Four: Once the paper is entirely in the pan quickly take two fingers and push it toward the bottom of your pan. Swirl it around the bottom of the pan in a circular motion, this is where it picks up the bold saturation. Step Five: Pull the paper out and let dry for 6-8 hours. Once the paper is dry, cut it up for tags, seating cards or any other paper-based project you've dreamed up. Project styling, design concept + photography by Victoria Hudgins
Travel expert Jetsetter.com gives us five key tips for planning a wedding abroad! (expert advice)
By Geraldine Campbell for our sponsor, Jetsetter.com
Wedding planning is an exciting, emotional (sometimes exasperating) endeavor – and plotting your nuptials in a far-off place is no different. The advantages of a destination wedding are many: For one (let’s be honest), saying “I do” abroad limits the guest list. It can also be easier (yes, easier) to plan, since the resort’s on-site coordinator can handle everything from photographers and table arrangements to goodie bags. Not to mention: exchanging vows on a sandy beach with your friends and family? Priceless. We tapped the travel experts at Jetsetter.com for their top tips on making your destination wedding go off without a hitch.
1. Do your homework
Different countries have different requirements when it comes to non-natives getting married on native soil. In France, for example, a proper wedding can be un nightmare: The 40-day residence requirement is just one of the (many) steps required. In Bali, a legal ceremony is considerably easier, although, you and your honey have to be the same religion. So, wherever you’re dreaming of tying the knot, know what you’re getting into.
2. Have a symbolic ceremony
If you don’t want to deal with overseas bureaucracy, get married stateside (pop over to City Hall for a quickie or, better yet, hop on a flight to Vegas) – and have a non-civil ceremony in your destination of choice. No one will be the wiser.
3. Make considerations
For your guests, a destination wedding can be significantly more expensive than a domestic affair. Do them a favor and give fair warning – six months at minimum (a year is even better). Also, consider ditching the registry. If you’re not willing to forego gifts completely, include inexpensive items on your wish list.
4. Stay in one place
Honeymooning where you get hitched means you can go from reception to relaxation mode without the hassle of planes, trains and automobiles. It can also be cost-effective. Resort wedding packages often include a free stay for the bride and groom. Everything is negotiable and if the hotel isn’t willing to put you up for a night or two (or longer), ask for an upgrade.
5. Get inspired at Jetsetter.com
Jetsetter has hotels in every corner of the world – and a perfect destination wedding spot for every personality type, whether you’re an adventurer, a foodie, or a romantic!
They brought you into the world, now show them you care with these creative ways to say thank you! (expert advice)
photo by: Gifts for the Good Life
Your parents have played a very big role in making your wedding spectacular. Not only did they raise you into the beautiful bride-to-be that you are, they've stood beside you through all your planning stress, offered their suggestions, and they may be funding the affair. Your parents, and your fiancé's, definitely deserve a huge thank you. Set a Budget I don't have to tell you that weddings are expensive - I'm sure you're learning that! It's important to include gift giving in your original wedding budget. There are no rules specifying an amount you should spend on gifts for your parents, but it's best to spend the same amount on both sets and to choose gifts that are somewhat similar. Some couples decide to give their parents a gift for the two of them while others select 2 separate gifts for mom and dad. Thank You Gifts for Two Giving your parents a thank you gift to enjoy together can be very meaningful and can also allow you to spend a little more on each gift. Depending on your budget, consider: Travel. Cruise tickets, hotel reservations for the weekend, or a romantic retreat to a local resort are all possible gift ideas. An evening out. Whether it's a gift card for a favorite restaurant, tickets to a show or a complete night of pampering including the limo, your parents deserve a night out to unwind after the wedding. Gift baskets. Wine baskets, gourmet food collections, or personalized his and her gift sets are terrific ways to say thank you and can fit into most any budget. Something personal. Creative gifts often hold the most meaning. Consider making a personalized video or slideshow for each set of parents, presenting them with a family photo calendar, or framing your favorite wedding pictures for a sentimental touch. Digital photo frames with a personal message are big hits with parents. For Him, For Her You may decide to honor your mom and dad with individual gifts rather than a joint thank you. If you've set a large budget, you could even do both! Ideas for dads: Personalized cufflinks to wear on the wedding day. Gift certificate to a favorite store. Wine and cheese assortment. Personalized golf accessories. Pens, intriguing paperweights, monogrammed money clips or key chains. Mothers may enjoy: Spa certificates. Earrings or a necklace for the wedding day. Bath soaps, candles, and fragrances in an elegant gift basket. Personalized photo albums, frames, or a jewelry box. Charm bracelet or necklace with a family theme. Consider your parents' interests and you'll be sure to choose thank you gifts that your parents appreciate and remember for years to come - whatever your budget.
By: Jenny BattFringe is still everywhere and I don’t think it's going out of style anytime soon. Traditionally, you take tiny pieces of fringe and cover shapes and large paper mache objects. For this DIY, I will show you a new technique to breeze through fringing anything. Materials: Tissue Paper Cutting Mat and Rotary Cutter Scissors (or fringing scissors – easier) Elmer’s Glue Poster Board Step One Lay several sheets of tissue paper flat and fold in half lengthwise. Use your cutting mat, a straight edge and your rotary cutter, to cut strips 2.5” wide across the fold. Step Two Take each set of strips and unfold. Refold lengthwise. Step Three Fold in half widthwise and cut fringe on the bottom (not the folded) edge. Step Four Separate each fringed strip and refold lengthwise. Take your poster board and across the short edge, run a thin bead of glue across the length. Lay a fringed piece across the glue and press lightly to adhere. If the strip isn’t quite long enough to reach, just add pieces as needed. For the next layer add another bead of glue above the first strip and add another strip. Step Five Repeat until the entire poster board is covered. Let dry. Step Six Print out letters from your computer. Cut out the letters from the paper. Place each letter on the fringed board, adjusting it so the fringe goes left to right across the letter, and cut loosely around the edge. Once you have the smaller piece, use the template to cut out the shape perfectly. Step Seven Repeat with remaining letters. Sometimes after cutting, the tops of the letters are missing fringe. Simply add touch up pieces of tissue paper fringe and glue down. Let dry and trim. Step Eight Use a bunting template to make a fun garland. You can use the fringed poster board to make any shapes you like or keep as is for a fun backdrop or to use as a tray liner. The fringing goes quickly using this method and is less tedious than fringing each shape individually. Step Nine To make a garland from the letters, simply flip over the pieces and tape down to twine. Here I used washi tape so I can remove and adjust the letters easily after hanging. photos by hankandhunt.com
Photos By: Chelsea Fuss
If you've always dreamt of carrying a bouquet of old fashioned garden roses down the aisle, but your budget doesn't quite match up to the dream, try this version!
Directions:First, pick off the brown petals from the blossoms. We used spray roses, one of the most inexpensive roses on the market, to create this bouquet. "Edit" each stem. Spray roses have several blossoms on each stem. Clip 1-2 off each stem to leave the prettiest blossoms and the stems that are around the same level on the stem. Also, remove the leaves from these stems. Take a few of the stems with nice leaves and clip off all the blossoms. Wash the leaves. Leave 1-2 branches of leaves on the stem. Make sure none of the leaves are too low on the stem or it will interfere with the "handle" of your bouquet. Be sure to choose leaves that are hydrated and feel firm. Spray roses consist of 3-5 smaller blossoms on each stem, and have a more casual feel then your normal florists' roses. They are readily available at markets and florists all year. Gather a few stems in one hand at a 45 degree angle. Each time you add a stem, turn your bouquet. Don't be afraid to place some blossoms higher than others. This gives your bouquet depth and interest. Be sure to add leaves in as you go. These frame the blossoms and give the bouquet a natural feel. Tie with twine, cover in florist tape (to protect the ribbon) and tie up with a ribbon. By deconstructing the spray roses, you can create a bouquet that looks very natural. Your guests will never guess that your flowers came from the local grocery! The total cost of this bouquet: $12 + ribbon! Enjoy your beautiful, garden bouquet!