Monday, August 10, 2009

coral invitation inspiration


diy bead and feather bouquet

Like most of the brides in this economy I couldn't afford a $200+ bouquet so I decided to try my hand at making my own bouquet. I decided to do a trial run before actually making the real bouquet for my wedding day. With a little bit of patience and lots of excitment you can create your perfect bouquet. It's extra special because I know it's exactly what I want and I saved some money along the way.


  • Half a dozen of roses of your choice. I used pink and red intuition roses for texture and dark red roses for color contrast.
  • Half a dozen of red and pink gerbera daisies.
  • One string of red feathers I purchased from
  • One string of burgandy eyelash feather
  • 30 sprays of beads
  • Dark red ribbon to cover the stem
  • Tassels for decoration
  • Some floral wire and rubber bands
  • Floral tape from Hoby Lobby
  • Floral pin without pearl head from Hobby Lobby


  • Scissor to cut flowers
  • Wire cutter for the bead stray


Take one rose and put three spray around it and then bind them together using floral tape. Do this for about 3 flowers. When you're done hold the three flowers together and make sure the heads are level and they don't stick up. This is the core of the bouquet. Use floral tape to bind them togehter so it's easier for you to hold. Now you can add bead sprays and flowers as you go. I add 2-3 sprays for each flower. Don't worry about the spray running in each other since it's wire you can adjust them afterward. I added each flower around the core and keep going in a circle. Till the bouquet toward you to make sure it's a dome shape, pull the stem a bit lower to make sure that the flowers around the core is a bit lower. Keep adding flowers in a circle around the core until you're happy with the size.

Once I'm happy with it, I used floral tape to go around the top of the bouquet making sure it's secure. I only did the top and then i used rubber band to secure the stems. I used one near the head of the bouquet, one 3 inch down and one at the end about 7 inch from the flower head.

Now you can hold the bouquet up and cut the stems so it's shorter. Depending how big your hands are you can cut accordingly so it's comfortable for you to hold your bouquet. I left 2-3 inches longer since I will be storing the bouquet for the next day. This way you can submerge your bouquet in water without wetting your ribbon and cut the stem before you use your bouquet.

I use floral tape to tape around the stems creating my bouquet's handle. Floral tape will create a stickiness that will help you wrap the ribbon around easier and secure your bouquet.

Now I add the feathers. My feather came in a string so I pin one end of the string to the stem and then rotate my bouquet and keep pinning the string to my bouqet. Go around in a circle and it will create a nice look from the top of your bouquet. I added the eyelash feather first and then the red feathers.

Once I'm done with the feathers I used a red damask red ribbon to wrap the steam hidding the floral tape and the bottom of the feathers. I started from the top and pin my ribbon to the handle of my bouqet. Keep twisting and pulling until you reach about 2-3 inches from the bottom of the handle. When you're done use a couple of pins to secure it. I use a tiny white pin without pearl head so it can be hidden when I pin it in the ribbon. I aslo pin a few more pins along the handle to make sure the ribbon doesn't infold itself.

Now I just tie my tassles around the handle in a knot and I'm ready to go.

Here are a few pictures of the finish product.

Hope this inspire some of you to make your own bouquet. It's really a fun experience for me and I would do it over and over again. I spent around $24 for flowers, $15 for feathers and tassles and $5 for beads and floral tape. A total of $44 for my bouquet.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

good readings

Alright hive, start buzzing, because I need some help. Mr. Ducky and I have been discussing what we want to do for readings during the ceremony. We will be meeting with our officiant (and close friend) tomorrow to talk about the ceremony. I wanted to find some readings in advance that we could think about.


We have 1 reading that will be very special. When I first moved to Orange County I started working with a 7-year-old autistic boy doing play therapy, social skills building and behavior intervention. The entire family has become family friends and the little boy (now 9) is my best buddy on Friday afternoons. He is constantly teaching me about joy and wonder in a way that only a child can. Well, for the wedding I have asked him to read something so that he can be a part of our day. I just am not sure what to have him read.

We will probably have 2-3 readings and I’d like to find something meaningful to put in our program booklet that we are creating.

Here are a few that I really liked while browsing the Weddingbee reading archives late last night.

Union by Robert Fulghum

You have known each other from the first glance of acquaintance to this point of commitment. At some point, you decided to marry. From that moment of yes, to this moment of yes, indeed, you have been making commitments in an informal way. All of those conversations that were held in a car, or over a meal, or during long walks – all those conversations that began with, “When we’re married”, and continued with “I will” and “you will” and “we will” – all those late night talks that included “someday” and “somehow” and “maybe” – and all those promises that are unspoken matters of the heart. All these common things, and more, are the real process of a wedding.

The symbolic vows that you are about to make are a way of saying to one another, “You know all those things that we’ve promised, and hoped, and dreamed – well, I meant it all, every word.”Look at one another and remember this moment in time. Before this moment you have been many things to one another – acquaintance, friend, companion, lover, dancing partner, even teacher, for you have learned much from one another these past few years. Shortly you shall say a few words that will take you across a threshold of life, and things between you will never quite be the same.
For after today you shall say to the world –
This is my husband. This is my wife.

Ruth 1:16 -

Entreat me not to leave you, or to return from following after you, For where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God. And where you die, I will die and there I will be buried. May the Lord do with me and more if anything but death parts you from me.

Cheese talked about this verse a while back and I thought she phrased it beautifully. Ruth has always been one of my favorite books of the Bible.

I’d like to find something kind of light-hearted for our favorite 9-year-old reader. I’m not sure that this it, but I’d like to find something like it.

A Lovely Love Story by Edward Monkton

The fierce Dinosaur was trapped inside his cage of ice. Although it was cold he was happy in there. It was, after all, his cage.
Then along came the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
The Lovely Other Dinosaur melted the Dinosaur’s cage with kind words and loving thoughts.
I like this Dinosaur thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
Although he is fierce he is also tender and he is funny.
He is also quite clever though I will not tell him this for now.
I like this Lovely Other Dinosaur, thought the Dinosaur. She is beautiful and she is different and she smells so nice.
She is also a free spirit which is a quality I much admire in a dinosaur.
But he can be so distant and so peculiar at times, thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
He is also overly fond of things.
Are all Dinosaurs so overly fond of things?
But her mind skips from here to there so quickly thought the Dinosaur. She is also uncommonly keen on shopping.
Are all Lovely Other Dinosaurs so uncommonly keen on shopping?
I will forgive his peculiarity and his concern for things, thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur. For they are part of what makes him a richly charactered individual.
I will forgive her skipping mind and her fondness for shopping, thought the Dinosaur. For she fills our life with beautiful thoughts and wonderful surprises. Besides, I am not unkeen on shopping either.
Now the Dinosaur and the Lovely Other Dinosaur are old.
Look at them.
Together they stand on the hill telling each other stories and feeling the warmth of the sun on their backs.
And that, my friends, is how it is with love.
Let us all be Dinosaurs and Lovely Other Dinosaurs together.
For the sun is warm.
And the world is a beautiful place.

What readings are you doing for your ceremony? Have any readings stood out to you in weddings that you’ve attended?

name funnies

life is reed-iculous
my reed-iculous wedding

welcome packet and emergency basket w/awesome saying

DIY: Out of Town Gift Bag Welcome Packet

It's always exciting to get a reader request. Reader M asked that I show the information included on the Welcome Packet/Letter in our Out of Town Gift Bags. As I mentioned earlier, the packet was 8 pages. Since it was layered, we had four different size pages.

Below, I have labeled each page number and each group number. The group number represents the different size pages.

It took some time, especially the map, but the guests loved it. Denton used Google Maps to create a saved map. Then, he used this link to make the map printable. Finally, he had a lot of work to do to get the numbers out and arranged appropriately for our template.

If you have any other questions, feel free to leave a comment or email me!

Page 1, Group A
Page 2, Group A
Page 2, Group B

Page 4, Group B

Page 5, Group C

Page 6, Group C

Page 7, Group C

Page 8, Group D

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Bathroom Baskets

Bathroom Baskets are one of those nice extras that couples can provide for their guests. They are baskets (or any type of container) filled with tolietries and emergency kit items that are placed in the bathroom for wedding guests.

Couples can get most of the items at grocery stores or chains like Target or CostCo. They are not a wedding "must" but a very nice extra.

Items for the Men's Bathroom Basket
Items for the Women's Bathroom Basket

Here is a list of the items that I included:
Band Aids
Bobby Pins
brush ups
Clear Nail Polish
first aid
Hair Spray
Hand Lotion
Hand Sanitizor
Nail File
Rolaid Chews
Safety Pins
Sewing Kit
Shout Wipes
Spray Deorderant
Tide To Go

On the outside of the Basket, I wrote the following note:
For Your Convenience
So happy you are here to share our day
But if something should happen to go astray,
Please help yourself to the contents within,
Safety pin, hand lotion, and even aspirin,
Use only what you need and leave the rest
It may be helpful to some other guest,
So repair the damage that may have been done,
Then hurry back and join in the Fun!

Compliments of the Newlyweds

diy feather and moss centerpieces

That Wedding: Dining Details

Walking into the Great Room for our first dance was my first glimpse of the room, and when we sat down after our dance I took a few seconds to soak everything in. Tiffany (my DOC), my wonderful Aunt Janelle, my mom (because I know she wouldn't be able to resist helping), and Donna (the hotel coordinator) set things up even better than I could have directed, and I didn't have to lift a finger to do any of it.

I love the bright splash of color that the punch adds. This is where not having a color scheme comes in handy.

Our little sweetheart table was just what we needed. We were very gushy throughout the entire meal, staring into teach others eyes and repeating over and over "We're married. Can you believe it?"

Tables were named after locations found in our favorite novels. I have to admit that I was stumped concerning what the tables should be named and That Mother suggested they be named after our favorite novels. Why didn't I think of that? I decided it would be more fun to name them after the famous locations found in those books. It turned out to be a fun chance for guests to try to figure out what novels were being represented at each table.

Our table was named Paradiso. Where else would the bride and groom sit? I liked Inferno much better, but it didn't seem very appropriate for a wedding.

Our fluffy mini book centerpiece was topped off with an antique book That Mother found in France last summer.

Our table name signs were rather flimsy and we needed a way to have them sitting high enough for guests to easily find where they were sitting. The solution was taking wire, wrapping double strands around a pencil to create loops that would hold the paper, and then creating two larger loops on the bottom to hold it up. That Mother's ability to dream up inexpensive solutions to the common problems encountered during wedding planning amazes me.

Table signs were fashioned by ripping (gently) pages out of an old novel we found at antique and thrift stores. That Mother gently taped the book page to a sheet of printing paper and printed the table names directly on the novel's pages. If you look closely at some of the signs you will see that some of them have text from the novel on them! I think it was a fictional book about Cuba. I didn't really proofread the pages, I hope they were appropriate for the event!

Below are all of the table names we used. Can you tell which novels these locations can be found in?

Pretend that "a" is really an "e" to spell Hertfordshire. This is why wedding projects should not be done late at night.

This table contained the only novel That Groom could think of as a favorite. He is more of a non-fiction business themed book kind of guy. He originally suggested Lord of the Rings as his favorite and I said "What location are we going to name the table after from LOTR, Mordor?" We decided to go with The Hobbit instead.

This one was also a little bit of a stretch. I've never actually read Frank Baum's "The Wizard of Oz", but I do really love the play Wicked and I've read the novel that inspired it. That counts, right?

I do realize that Anne didn't actually live in a town named Green Gables. If I can change the spelling of Hertfordshire I can certainly reinvent where Anne fell in love with Gilbert Blythe, right?

Each centerpiece was resting on a stack of antique books. I think my favorite is the enormous yearbook from 1920, with record of women's sports teams playing croquet matches and such. I originally wanted to find books that would be relevant to us or the theme of love in some way, but when you live in a tiny town in central Washington you take what you can get.

As guests sat down I admit they were a little bit overwhelmed with the information presented to them, but tucking things inside and under their napkin seemed like the best way to make sure no one was missed.

The menus were printed on sheets of cardstock cut into thirds. Want to know why the first item on the list makes me smile? Andersen Organics is the brand name my dad farms under, and the soup they served that night was custom made just for us. We managed to organize the whole thing as a surprise for him.

Underneath the napkin guests found a card inviting them to visit our Flickr site and upload their snapshots. Until I got my pro pics back I hit refresh several times a day on our account to see if any new pictures were up.

The other card under the napkin detailed the favor we would be providing them with after the wedding. Kelli Nicole and I worked out a system that would provide guests with the opportunity to go to the proof site, order a print of their choice, and have it shipped to their house free of charge. We wanted to provide guests with something to help them remember the event that they would actually want to keep.

Above the napkin sat the place cards with a button attached. I wanted to find a way to use buttons on the table (like you would expect anything else from me), and as a former waitress I know how frustrating it is to try to read the tiny text at the tables when serving meals. The buttons were not only a pretty decoration, but a secret code for the catering staff. A white button meant fish, black button for beef, and a gold button for pasta.

We also have several gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free and so a map of the room with the location of each place setting and their meal preference/allergies was provided for the catering staff so there would be no mistaking who got which meal.

Dinner was served and I should have been starving, right? Nope. I had to force most of my meal down because of the excessive amount of over stimulation I was experiencing. There were people to talk to, and moments to drink in, and my brand new husband sitting so close to me, whispering sweet nothings in my ear.

I did manage to eat about half of this delicious onion soup. I believe it was a blend of organic shallots, cippolinis, and onions, all of which I shamelessly claim are the best found in the Pacific Northwest.

diy feather and moss centerpieces

DIY Stick Based, Moss Covered, Feather and Crystal Centerpieces

Back when we visited the wholesale warehouse for our decor elements, I never thought we would wind up with this...

but I'm not that surprised since That Mother is truly one of the craftiest people EVER! I don't have step-by-step photos of the process, since That Mother and Friend Patti were a little busy assembling these just a few days before the wedding to take photos. I did manage to grab a few shots of the basic elements before they were assembled however, which should give you enough of an idea to recreate your own version if you so choose.


1. Vases
We originally were going to create these mounds of floral foam covered with moss (it doesn't really make sense to me now either), but That Mother stumbled on these "vases" for something like $2 each. We had lovely intentions of staining them a kind of bronze color, but that didn't happen, and I think they still look okay.

2. Sticks and Crystals
The crystals are threaded through a thin wire, and were purchased in a huge roll at the wholesale warehouse. We toyed with the idea of purchasing sticks at the warehouse, but the prices are insane! Instead That Mother and Friend Patti headed out to a nearby abandoned orchard with some wood cutters and snipped away. They then cut lengths of crystal and wrapped them around the sticks.

3. Feathers and Mossy Sticks
The feathers and moss were both found at the wholesale warehouse. The feathers were stripped from their sets to make them go a little bit farther.

4. Sparkly Doodads
I wasn't a huge fan of these when we purchased them, but That Mother insisted we needed some color and sparkle (she was right, as usual). They were also stripped down to smaller sections to be spread throughout the 12 centerpieces.

5. Moss
Several different kinds of moss were used, with this earthy, natural stuff being my favorite.


Step 1: Insert floral foam (the soft kind that is fun to poke holes in) into vases.
Step 2: Poke crystal covered branches and moss covered branches into floral foam.
Step 3: Embellish with feathers and sparkly doodads (use hot glue gun when necessary to keep things stable).
Step 4: Use hot glue to cover the base with moss.
Step 5: Stand back and say "Look how pretty!"

The vases came pre-assembled, but there were still more centerpiece elements to be put together at the wedding so I created this little picture guide for my DOC to use.

My only advice in choosing centerpieces like this would be to make sure you have a way to transport them to the wedding! That Mother and I are definitely glad that stressful experience is over. :)

Remember that these centerpiece elements were chosen as we scurried through the wholesale warehouse picking things out at random. If you want to re-create your own version it would be very easy to switch out some of the elements to make it look perfect for your own wedding!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

diy ribbon wreaths

Mrs. Cupcake's DIY Ribbon Wreaths

posted 1 month ago in Miscellaenous DIY

Around Halloween, I saw this great idea for ribbon wreaths via Design Crush, originally found on

I didn’t have the time to create any then, but I kept the idea in the back of my mind, and with the hopes of having a semi-homemade Christmas, I decided to make some wreaths as gifts for some family members. I am really excited at how they turned out and everyone seemed to like their gifts (at least I hope so!). This is an easy project that could possibly spruce up a ceremony or reception space, bridal shower, or newlywed nest, or perhaps it would be a nice hostess gift for someone who hosted a shower for you… so I thought I’d share the how-to with the hive! I started with a 12″ round wreath form from JoAnn and some grosgrain ribbon. The instructions called for 1.25″ wide ribbon, but I went with 1.5″ as that’s what I could find online for the best price. It didn’t make much of a difference. I purchased this ribbon from PaperMart and was able to make two wreaths from each 50 yard spool. (I went with a spool of wine and a spool of ivory. Here you’ll see what the ivory wreaths looked like in the end.)

Beginning with the ivory ribbon, I first cut two long pieces of ribbon at 48″ long — these would later serve as the large loops for hanging the wreaths. Then, I cut the rest of the ribbon into 16″ long strips. When I was done, I counted them out into two even piles so I knew what I was working with for each wreath. (If you’re only making one wreath, you need only cut one 48″ long piece of ribbon, and about 45-50 16″ long strips.)

On wreath numero uno, I started with my 48″ long piece — I tied one end to the wreath and made a double knot; I did the same to the other end right next to the first end, so there was now a large loop of ribbon hanging from my foam wreath form.

Next, I began knotting the 16″ pieces of ribbon. It doesn’t matter how you do this, as long as you stay consistent all the way around. I did right-over-left:

… then pulled it tight:

… and then did left-over right to make my completed knot:

One trick I learned was to tie the knots snugly but not TOO tight — if you tie them too tight, you will need more ribbon all the way around to fill in the space (otherwise you can see the foam wreath form peaking through).

Once I had my knot-tying-strategy down pat (very high-tech), I just kept tying! Round and round and round…


Now, I wasn’t quite finished yet. From all the man-handling of the ribbon (I guess we’d call that ribbon-handling), the edges got a bit frayed.

Very slowly, in my true OCD form, I worked my way around the wreath and trimmed very carefully. Using grosgrain ribbon helps as you can just follow the straight lines of the ribbon as your cutting guide. Just make sure you have some nice sharp scissors so you don’t keep fraying them even more!

Once all the ribbons were trimmed, I was really excited at how pretty it looked. I spent a little time maneuvering some of the ribbons so they sat nicely alongside each other, and it all came together much like the picture (which I find to be very rare when tackling DIY projects). I really like that the wreaths can be hung any time of year and I hope my loved ones appreciate the craftiness that went into them. I may have to make a few to hang around our apartment.

We don’t have a very pretty front door, so I hung the finished product from our china cabinet-turned-storage shelves to take a picture.The benefit of moving into an apartment at the same time that your mother sells the house you grew up in — you get all her fancy dining room stuff, even if you don’t have a dining room!

Here’s the cost breakdown of this project, not including the shipping for the ribbon:

Ribbon: $11.99 per 50 yard spool / total for two spools: $23.98

Wreath forms: $5.99 per 12″ form / total for four forms: $23.96

Total for all supplies for four wreaths: $47.94

Total cost per wreath: $11.99