I was extremely lucky that my soon-to-be mother-in-law offered to make my dress. Since our wedding would be fairly casual, I wanted a tea-length, simple dress. Funny enough, I found the pattern for my perfect dress in an unlikely category: this office dress! We ignored the jacket and lengthened the hem to fall at the calf, and I chose a mauve silky fabric with a lace overlay. We had tons of leftover fabric, so I made a matching tie for my groom – I even added the lacy layer for the facing and the loop label.
Ellen: I also had some fabric from my mother’s wedding dress that I really wanted to incorporate into my own wedding. So I made a headpiece with the fabric, some tulle, and some silk flowers from Michael’s. I also sewed some of the same fabric into a ribbon to go around my bridal bouquet.
Ellen: One thing we did splurge on was our invitations. I laid them out in InDesign and then brought my design to a local letterpress (Firefly Press). To cut costs a little, we used one-color printing, but then I handpainted the little flourishes on each invitation with watercolors.
Ellen: Kevin baked our two cakes: a rainbow cake with chocolate frosting (using this recipe we found through CRAFT!) and a red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting and coconut. They were simple but delicious.
Ellen: We had friends and family pitch in with making flower arrangements. I’d planned for simple centerpieces: peonies and Queen Anne’s lace in mason jars tied with a ribbon. Alas, sadly, not all of the peonies opened in time and we had to scramble to substitute with whatever other flowers we had on hand. Moral of the story: Although everyone will tell you to keep your flowers in a cool dark place so that they don’t open prematurely, if it’s 60 degrees and rainy out, that might not be the best idea!
Ellen: A friend officiated our wedding, and in what was perhaps my favorite DIY, we read the personal vows that we had written for each other. We had also printed them on a Quaker-style wedding certificate, and after the ceremony was over, we asked all our guests to sign it. We now have it framed in our living room, as a wonderful keepsake from our special day!