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Unity Ceremony ideas

Are you trying to make your ceremony unique?  Want to do something besides a Unity Candle?  Here are 25  fun ideas that you can incorporate into your wedding celebration.

Rose Ceremony: A simple unity ceremony where the bride and groom exchange roses as their first gifts to one another. Other variations: the families exchange roses, the bride and groom exchange roses with their families, the bride and groom exchange roses, then present their mothers with the roses.
http://myceremony.ca/rose_ceremony.htm

Wine Ceremony: The bride and groom each take a carafe of wine and pour it into a single glass, which they both drink from.  The below image is a variation of containers.
http://www.yourweddingcanvas.com/cereutywine.html

 

Wine Box Ceremony:  A wine box sealed during your ceremony  with a special bottle of wine to open on your anniversary!
http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com/lovebox.html

Credit: Mossy Holler

Credit: Mossy Holler

 

Love Letter and Wine Box Ceremony:  Similar idea to the wine box ceremony, however, you each add a sealed letter expressing what you love in each other and why you fell in love.  Other keepsakes could also be included: photos of the couple, some flower petals thrown by the flower girl during the actual ceremony.  The box  is to be opened on a milestone anniversary or earlier if you feel your marriage has reached a hardship and you need to reflect upon the reasons you fell in love and chose to marry each other.
http://www.celebrateintimateweddings.com/ceremonylovebox.html

Celtic Oathing Stone: “The couple holds or puts their hands on a stone during their vows to “set them in stone”

The Pebble Tradition – or well wishes rocks.  Have everyone hold a rock and bless it during the ceremony.   After the ceremony they place it in a vase or other container for the newlyweds to display in their home.
http://www.chaosangel.com/17feb/ceremony2.html#bell

Ring Warming Ceremony – rings can be passed around the room on a pillow or in a bag. The officiant can explain a little about it right at the beginning of the ceremony. http://offbeatbride.com/2009/08/ring-warming-wedding (or search google)
Everyone holds the rings for a few seconds and says a little blessing/prayer for them. Then by the time you do your vows the rings have made their way all the way around the room and all your loved ones have given their blessings.

An alternative is to have them displayed at the ceremony entrance, and have people give their blessings before they sit down.


Hand Blessing Ceremony
: Bride and groom hold each other’s hands while a blessing if said.
http://www.weddingministerct.com/wedding-hand-blessing-ceremony.htm

hands

The Unity Cross
The Unity Cross is a multi-piece sculpture that is assembled during the Unity Service of your Wedding Ceremony representing how the -Two become One. The Groom places the outer Cross in the beautiful wood base as the Pastor explains how God created man- Bold, Strong, the Defender of the Family yet how he is empty and incomplete without the woman. The Bride then places the more delicate cross inside of the Grooms cross as the Pastor explains how God created Woman- Delicate, multi-faceted, taking care of all of the little things that completes the man, and the -Two become One. The Bride and Groom then use the 3 golden pegs to lock the union (cross) together in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit as the pastor exclaims that: What God has brought together let no man take apart. Then the Unity Cross is taken home and displayed as a Daily Reminder of your Wedding Day and the Covenant that you both have made.

Unity Cross

Unity Cross

http://shop.getmarried.com/Wedding-Ceremony/

Cord of Three Strands: The cord of three strands symbolizes the joining of one man, one woman, and God into a marriage relationship. http://www.godsknot.com/CordOfThreeStrands.aspx 

DIY – http://www.themakeyourownzone.com/2012/01/homemade-gods-knot-cord-of-three-strands.html


 Feet Washing Ceremony:  A beautiful idea for a Christian wedding.  A  sign of being humble, thoughtful, and willing to serve.  Have a beautiful pitcher with just a little water in it, a bowl, and a sponge. The bride and groom take their shoes off, placed the sponge in the bowl, poured the water on top of the sponge, lightly washed each others feet with the sponge, the dried their feet off with a towel, and placed their shoes back on once they were done.You can get special monogrammed towels to go with it.

Handfasting: Handfasting is a simple and traditional ceremony used in Irish, Scottish, and Welsh weddings, which goes back to the medieval and renaissance period.  It involves the tying of hands together to symbolize the coming together and remain tied together.
http://www.officiantguy.com/handfastingceremony.html

 

Unity Sand Ceremony: a symbolic blending of two different-colored sands into a single vessel. The blending of two different beings, into a single, inseparable unit that is their marriage — the joining of their lives. Hard as it would be to separate out those grains of sand, that’s how difficult it is to separate these two people.  Multiple sand vessels can also be combined to include God or children.
wording optionshttp://www.forthisjoyousoccasion.com/unity-sand-ceremony.html

 

Salt Covenant:  Many cultures consider salt to be the purest of all natural substances. Salt has also been seen as a symbol of other elements of life, such as permanence, purity and good luck. In the Bible, salt is mentioned in the expression “covenant of salt” in reference to the substance’s binding nature.  By pouring the two separate jars of salt together, the couple are totally mixing the grains. It would be impossible to ever distinguish the salt as coming from one person or the others again, much as their commitment to each other before God can never be broken.  (Don’t color your salt, then you can distinguish the grains.)
http://www.weddingsfl.com/files/Covenant_of_Salt.pdf

credit: studio512

credit: studio512

 

Your take on the Sand/Salt Ceremony:  Mix any two items into one vessel.   Are you chefs or have an interesting connection with food? White peppercorns and black lava salt, turmeric and paprika, salt and pepper, cinnamon and sugar.

Hour Glass Ceremony: A take on the sand ceremony but it can be turned on every anniversary.   The idea is that when you put each color of sand in the glass they’re inseparable but not entwined. As time continues on the colors become so entwined they are impossible to part.  http://heirloomhourglass.com/weddingunitysandceremony.html

Water Ceremony:  “as you pour your yellow water into the container you bring sunshine and wisdom to your marriage…as you pour your blue water into the marriage vessel, you bring confidence, trust and loyalty to your marriage.”
http://www.sacredweddingvows.com/wedding-location-ideas/wedding-ceremony/wedding-ceremony-personal-touche/unity-water-ceremony/


“Science” Water Ceremony:   
clear to pink with phenolphthalein
Cat and Andrew came up with a science-based ceremony: “Since Andrew is a Chemist, and a big science nerd. His favorite moment was our special version of a candle lighting/unity ceremony. We each poured a vase what looked like plain water into a large pitcher, causing an instant color change from clear to pink. Magic! (I mean… science!) The audience gasped and applauded, and we were beaming.”
http://offbeatbride.com/2011/04/unity-ceremony-options#.UwpGIM0XtZq

credit: Whitney Lee

credit: Whitney Lee

Tasting of Four Elements: An African-American wedding tradition. This ritual dramatizes the “Traditional” promise to love “for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health.” Lemon, vinegar, cayenne pepper, and honey — represent the sour, the bitter, the hot, and the sweet times of marriage.
wording options:  http://www.trystanphotography.com/tips-and-tricks/great-wedding-ceremony-ideas-tasting-elements/


Chocolate Ceremony
: “By sharing  this chocolate with each other,  you promise to always be present for each other, in darkness and light, in sweet and bitter,  in dismal and delicious.” by Celia Milton

German Wedding Cup:  Centuries ago, in old Nuermberg, the nobel mistress Kunigunde fell in love with a young and ambitious goldsmith. Although Kunigunde’s wealthy father did not approve of this pair, it was clear that she only wanted the goldsmith to be her husband as she refused many titled and rich suitors who asked for her hand in marriage. Her father became so enraged that he had the young goldsmith thrown into the darkest dungeon.  It did not end their love, and the father created what he thought to be an impossible task:  “If your goldsmith can make a chalice from which two people can drink at the same time without spilling one single drop, I will free him and you shall become his bride.” The young goldsmith created a girl whose skirt was hollowed to serve as a cup and her raised arms held a ‘much smaller cup’ that swivels so that it could be filled and then swung towards a second drinker.  The  ”Bridal” or “Wedding Cup” remains a symbol; love,  faithfulness and good luck await the couple who drink from this cup.

Red String of Fate:  An East Asian  belief originating from Chinese legend  and is also used in Japanese legend. According to this myth, the gods tie a red cord around the ankles of those that are to meet one another in a certain situation or help each other in a certain way. Often, in Japanese culture, it is thought to be tied around the little finger.   The two people connected by the red thread are destined lovers, regardless of time, place, or circumstances. This magical cord may stretch or tangle, but never break.

credit: purrincup

credit: purrincup

Tree Planting Ceremony:   Plant a tree together with a little dirt from your childhood home.  An option is to have the parents  water it to symbolize the way they have been an influence in teaching and encouraging  love.  After the ceremony, take the potted tree, and transplant it at the newlywed’s home to symbolize putting down roots, longevity, and strength within this marriage.
http://www.reynoldstreasures.com/tree-planting-ceremony-as-part-of-your-wedding/

Unity Candle for an Outdoor Ceremony:  Get a 3 hook shepherds hook and lanterns to hold the candles.

For an Outdoor Wedding - Hang landerns

For an Outdoor Wedding – Hang landerns

Actually “Tying the Knot
Both the groom’s mom and the bride’s mom can present the couple with a long piece of thick ribbon or cord (2 different colors, maybe your wedding colors) which you will tie in a knot to symbolize the union of the two families. You can also plan to “tie the knot” every year on your anniversary with the same piece of ribbon/cord.

Maybe practice to get it smooth? Do it slow for the photographer.
*  practice tying a sailors knot
* The groom first takes his piece of rope and makes a knot on one end of the brides’ piece of rope. Then, the bride makes a knot on her end of the rope.
* Then you both pull one of your ends, and the knots will slide together and “kiss” creating the knot.
* The fisherman’s knot is the strongest knot known – your  love is its strongest when tied together.

Officiant:
Groom and Bride have chosen to do something unique and special today in tying “the love knot” (maybe tell something about how you plan to do this every year if you like that idea)

(Groom and Bride will be holding these strands for this part of the ceremony.)
Start Tying of the “love knot” (slow for photographer)

Spoken after you tie the first part of the knot
To start the knot, both Groom and Bride must do their part as individuals.

Groom:  As these two strands intertwine
Bride:  So we join, your life and mine.
bride and groom finish tying the knot

Officiant:   spoken after you finish the knot
In finishing the knot, Groom and Bride will understand that only together, and through continued effort can they create a lasting union.

sailors-knot-300x224

Truce Bell. A bell is rung on the wedding day, the happiest day of the couple’s lives and then is placed in a central location in the home. If the couple starts to argue, one of them can ring the truce bell, reminding them both of that happiness and hopefully ending the disagreement.
http://www.chaosangel.com/17feb/ceremony2.html#bell

1,000 Origami Cranes:
Since the elegant bird mates for life, it is a popular motif in weddings.  An ancient Japanese legend  promises that anyone who folds a thousand origami cranes will be granted a wish by a crane. Some stories believe you are granted eternal good luck,  instead of just one wish, such as long life of happiness or recovery from illness or injury.   The duty of folding 1,000 cranes was initially assigned to the father of the bride who was wishing a thousand years of happiness and prosperity upon the couple.  The the meaning and task of folding 1,000 cranes  is now assigned to the bride; symbolic of showing the groom’s family what a patient woman the groom will be marrying.  Couples can also do it together to practice patience, determination, and cooperation.   If you wish to do this, know that on average, brides report investing more than 100 hours over six months.
http://weddingtraditions.about.com/od/MarriageTraditions/fl/Folding-1000-Wedding-Paper-Cranes.htm

Check out:
http://www.wedd101.com/bxh-outline-wedding-ceremony.html
gives a nice ceremony outline, and some examples of symbolic ceremonies.

ideas pulled from and some other ideas
http://offbeatbride.com/2011/04/unity-ceremony-options#.Uwr2C80XtZo

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DIY Photo booth

Photo booths at weddings can be a lot of fun for you and your guests.  Many have created DIY photo booths and back drops to help cut costs.  If you are on a tight budget, and would like to try  provide this entertainment for your guests, here are some links to tutorials to Do-It-Yourself.

~ Happy Planning ~

DIY Backdrop

DIY Backdrop by Angel Burgher

~ Angel Burgher ~  created a GREAT blog with instructions and  blueprints on how to make your own backdrop!  PVC materials comes to under $20!

DIY - Sheet Backdrop

DIY – Muslim Sheet Backdrop

photos by Megan Christine Studio

photos by Megan Christine Studio – Everett, Washington

~ On a Super Tight budget and a little Crafty? ~
Get a giant piece of muslim or a clearance bed sheet and paint your design.  Cut a hole and hang with a rope (or from PVC pipes)

Jen H created some cute backdrops on sheets.  View some  photo examples from her wedding.

DIY - Photo booth Pictures

DIY – Photo booth Pictures – by Aireen

~ Looking for instructions for the camera/printer set up? ~
Check out this blog entry by Aireen on the supplies and program needed to print out the pictures!

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Modified Gazebo by Ashlee C

~ Have an old Gazebo? ~
Cut it down to make it shorter and cut the bars on top to drape the tulle/fabric from.  A suggestion from Ashlee, put a solid color behind the tulle to prevent the light from shinning through.

28181_649828871724924_515003348_n

Sequin curtain created by Valene V

~ Have time on your hands and LOTS of patience? ~
Instructions from Valene: I got round sequins at hobby lobby in 2 different sizes. I also bought little round jewelry rings to hook the sequins together.   It is very time consuming depending on how long you want each garland and how many strands you need.  I bought the foam boards at michaels and bought black wrapping paper and covered the foam boards.  It was nailed up on the wall.*  {Party was at her home}  I think I spent around $60 for everything. The one thing that did get pricey was the jewelry hooks. I tried to buy them when they were 50% off  at hobby lobby.  *perhaps the wall mounting squares would work

or try this DIY Wax Paper Dot Garland
http://greenweddingshoes.com/diy-waxed-paper-dot-garland/

~ Ideas for back drops ~
Nature and Hanging Frames, Muslim, Cloth, Wood & Wall paper, Foam Board and Wrapping paper, Bed sheet, Bed Sheet  painted, Sequins, Streamers, Tinsel Garland, Balloons,  Paper Poms, Paper Chain  links, Paper pinwheels, Shower Curtain, Plastic tablecloths, Quilt, Wood Circles, more and more!

Credit: marvelousmommy.com

Credit: marvelousmommy.com

~ Want to print out some props? ~

60092_10100510238924508_2137490047_a

Credit: ohhappyday.com

Materials Checklist

  • prop printouts
  • spray adhesive
  • heavy cardstock (100 lb. or more)
  • scissors
  • glue and/or tape
  • popsicle sticks, straws, or dowels
Optional:
  • foam core (to create sturdier props)
  • X-ACTO (or other utility) knife
  • cutting mat
  • embellishments
    (feathers, rhinestones, etc.)Click images to get to sites to download the pdf

    props magnetstreet

    DIY Props – Credit: Magnetstreet.com

props - 12 pages

Credit: kensiekate.com – 12 pages of props

Credit: botanicalpaperworks.com

Credit: botanicalpaperworks.com

photo-booth-props

Credit: ohhappyday.com

photobooth2_button-1

Credit: ohhappyday.com

Credit: ohhappyday.com

Credit: ohhappyday.com

~ CHEESE ~

Wedding Planner.Checklists.Worksheets

Looking for checklists to keep you on track?  Starting to plan your wedding, and don’t know where to start?  Here are some tips and links to help you out.   ~ Happy Planning ~

now what

First you need to sit down with your future husband/wife and decide how much money you can afford to spend on the wedding. Look at how much you can take out of savings, and how much you can save per week in the next year.  Then you can find a Budget Calculator tool to help estimate how much you can distribute to each portion of the wedding to stay on budget.     These can be found via google on theknot, weddingwire, or even http://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/Events/Weddings/Calculator.htm

If you are not sure how much weddings in your area cost, check out this site.
http://www.realsimple.com/weddings/budget/wedding-cost-calculator-00000000008302/index.html
Here is a more detailed breakdown of a cost estimate.  Enter your zip code and see what comes up.  http://www.costofwedding.com/index.cfm/action/costest.index

Then, think about the size of your event.  Also have an idea of what mood and atmosphere you want your celebration to have.  Are you going traditional, casual, intimate, elaborate, unusual, unique?  Do you want a small wedding 20 – 40? More around 100-130? Huge with 200 plus? Remember the more people the more you will spend on dinner and drinks. The venue (food and drinks) will take up most of your budget.

Once you have a budget and guest list, you can start talking to the venues to sign the ceremony location and reception location. Check out the amount the Budget Calculator distributed for Reception: Food & Beverage.  Take that amount and divide it by the number of guests  you plan to have.  This will give you your “Dollar Per Plate” amount.  You will need to know this amount so you know how expensive of a location and meal choices are available in your budget.

If you don’t care When you get married, you can get some great deals if you pick a date in the off-season.  The most popular dates are May – October.  But off-peak wedding months vary according to regional climate and the desirability of the weather.
*Be sure to find out the policy on changing dates just incase something comes up.
After you sign contracts you can think about colors. You don’t want to pick Colors and a Mood for your wedding and have the atmosphere of the venue clash with your choices. You can always start with a favorite flower and find things to match it.

Take a look at this site for some ideas. They have some really great color combos to consider. http://www.squidoo.com/weddingcolorcombinations

A great site to see color combinations in a new way
http://design-seeds.com/index.php/search

Here is a color wheel site
http://colorschemedesigner.com/
You can slide the little dot around to pick your first color. Then pick what type of color combination you want. You can move those dots around to do the following:
Mono- different shades of the same color
Analogic – colors that are next to each other on the color wheel
Complements – colors oposite on color wheel – give the most contrast
Triad – three colors spaced an equal distance apart
Tetrads: color harmonies 4 colors

***  LOOKING FOR A WAY TO ORGANIZE ALL YOUR THOUGHTS AND FINDINGS? ***

Here is a link to a 57 Page Wedding Planner  by Russell and Hanzel that you can print out and place in a binder to help you with your wedding planning.  I wrote a table of contents for you, so you can print the whole thing, or just the pages you need.  Some pages, i.e. Guess List tracker, you would print out multiple pages as needed.

http://www.russellandhazel.com/PDF/WeddingTemplate.pdf

Page 1 – 5 : Monthly Timeline Checklist
Page 6 – 7 : Beauty Worksheet
Page 8 : Wedding Party Contact Worksheet
Page 9 : Bridal Salon Appointment
Page 10 – 11 : Bridesmaid/Bride Fashion Worksheet
Page 12 – 16 : Budget Worksheets
Page 17 : Ceremony Worksheet
Page 18 : Day of Wedding Checklist
Page 19 – 20 : Destination Wedding Event Schedule/Travel Worksheet
Page 21 : Emergency Kits
Page 22 – 24 : Floor Plans
Page 25 : Flower Worksheet
http://www.russellandhazel.com/PDF/wedding/FlowerWorksheet.pdf
Page 26 – 27 : Groom & Groomsmen Fashion Worksheet
Page 28 : Guest List Tracker
Page 29  : Honeymoon Travel Details
Page 30 : Menu Worksheet
Page 31 :  Music Play/Do Not Play Worksheet
Page 32 : Music Planning Worksheet
Page 33 : Photo Shot list
Page 34 – 36 : Registry Worksheet/Registry Checklists
Page 37 – 39 :  Rentals Worksheet
Page 40 :  Transportation Worksheet
Page 41 :  Travel & Accommodations Worksheet
Page 42 – 52 : Vendor Contact Information
Page 53 : Wedding Cake Worksheet
Page 54 : Wedding Day Timeline Worksheet
Page 55 : Wedding Gown & Accessories Order Worksheet
Page 56 – 57 : Wedding Invitation Worksheet

and here is a link  to “The Packet”
15 page itinerary
It is more for the week/day of the wedding. (for the OCD bride or great for OOT weddings)
www.weddingbee.com/2008/08/07/the-packet/

How to Word Wedding Invitations

Getting ready to order your invites?   Remember, consistency is important.  Keep the same fonts, colors, paper weight, and designs for the invite and rsvp.   If you spell out  the time, spell out the date  (and vice versa).    Write in the 3rd person and keep track of your pronouns.    Here are a few common tips and suggestions I make when proof reading wedding invitations.

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-Grammar – It is suggested that you never write your wedding invitation request in first person, (for example – Stephanie Jones and Adam Michaels invite you to join us at our wedding).   But if you do use first person pronouns (I, we, us, our and me), use them everywhere.
Traditionally, invites should be written in the third person, “Stephanie Jones and Adam Michaels invite you to join them at their wedding.   If your parents are hosting, still keep everything in third person.  If using third person pronouns (them, they, their), use them everywhere.

– Honor/Honour-  Be consistent with your usage of “honour/favour” or “honor/favor.” Traditionally the formal, British spelling with the “u” is preferred in proper wedding etiquette but whichever form you choose, use it in both words.    (the honor/honour of your presence – the favor/favour of a reply)

Also, the phrase “request the honour of your presence” is traditionally used for a service held in a house of worship. The variation “request the pleasure of your company” is used for a wedding held in any other location.

Capitalization – You only want to capitalize proper nouns, (person/place), and the beginning of a sentence (or each new thought on an invitation).

  • “corner” as in “corner of Fifth and Main Streets” is not capitalized.
  • only capitalize the first letter of the year: Two thousand twelve
  • day of the week and month are capitalized, but not the date: Saturday, the fifth of June
  • time should never be capitalized: two o’clock in the afternoon

-Zip Codes-  Are not needed on the invitation or accessory cards.  GPS does not need a zip code to find a location.  Zip codes are for the post office when sorting mail.

-Abbreviations-  Spell out your state name.  To be socially correct, all words should be spelled out on invitation, accessory cards, and envelopes.  EX: “Road” instead of “Rd.”, “Boulevard” instead of “Blvd.”, “Indiana” instead of “IN”.
*exceptions:   Mr., Mrs., Ms., Dr., “Jr.” or “Sr.”

-Time-   Please do not fib on the start time of your ceremony.  You are rewarding the late and punishing those that are punctual.  An early start time can be especially annoying if there is extreme temperatures.  Nothing is more annoying that showing up 15-30 min before an outdoor summer ceremony to find out that it won’t be starting for an additional 30 – 60 min because of a fibbed start time.   Those most important to your wedding ceremony should arrive early despite what the invite says.  Your wedding party and family members should be with you before the ceremony starts for photos.

The time should be spelled out and should never be capitalized.
Time, on the hour, should be followed by “o’clock” (Note: lowercase and apostrophe).  Do not use “o’clock” if the time is not on the hour.  Time, not on the hour, should be hyphenated. EX: “two-thirty” instead of “two thirty” or “two forty-five” instead of “two forty five”.   The formal way to write the time is “half after” rather than “half past.”  or “three-thirty”.  (half after three in the afternoon)
Time should  be followed by “in the morning”, “noon”, “in the afternoon”, “in the evening”, or “midnight”.

    • 12:01 a.m.-11:59 a.m. is morning.
    • 12:00 p.m. is noon.
    • 12:01 p.m. – 5:59 p.m. is afternoon.
    • 6:00 p.m.- 11:59 p.m. is evening.
    • 12:00 a.m. is midnight

-The Year-  No “and.”  There is a big discussion about the use of “and” in the year.  Some invitation sites show examples with “and” in the year and some don’t.    Many would argue that the word “and” is used when speaking of money and not the year.  (Two thousand twelve = 2012  and two thousand and twelve = $2000.12)

-Respond Date–   The R.s.v.p. date should be 2 weeks before your final head count is due.   This should give you ample time to track down missing replies.   It should not be more than 4 weeks before your wedding date.  The closer your R.s.v.p. date is to your wedding, the more accurate your guests reply will be.    Also, mail out your invites 3 or 4 weeks before the R.s.v.p. date.  When your guest receive their invites, you  want them to look at the date, check their calendar, and mail it back within 2 or 3 weeks.  If you send out your invites too far in advance, your guests will toss the invite aside or misplace it.  (“Oh, this isn’t for 4 months, I don’t need to look at this yet. ”  *or*  “Oh, this is 4 months away, I can’t think that far ahead.”)

  • Always follow up with missing R.s.v.p.’s.   The post office and mail system is not perfect.  Letters can get lost in the mail.  Don’t assume your guests did not mail in their reply.  Don’t assume your guests are not coming if you do not receive their R.s.v.p. in the mail.  Call and speak to your R.s.v.p.’s missing from your guest list  (don’t email or text),  or leave them a voicemail asking them to reply by a certain date or you will assume they are not attending.
  • Number your R.s.v.p. inserts.   Take your guest list number each social couple.  Number your R.s.v.p.’s with a small pencil number on the back.  When stuffing your invitations, put the corresponding rsvp into the envelope that matches your guest list.  This will help you sort your R.s.v.p.’s as they are returned and make it easy to check off your guest list on which replies you are still waiting on.  More importantly, if Uncle Bob forgets to write his name on the reply card, you can match up R.s.v.p. #15 to Uncle Bob on your guest list.
  • “R.s.v.p.” is capitalized since this is an abbreviation for a French sentence, “Repondez s’il vous plait.” Likewise, since the sentence means “Respond please”, never say “Please R.s.v.p.” since that would be redundant.

– Reception cards –   You will need a reception card if your  reception is at a different location than your ceremony.   The ceremony location and start time is on the invite.  The reception insert will have the reception location and start time.    If your ceremony and reception are at the same location, you may have “Reception to immediately follow” on the invite.  Only use these words on the invite if they are at the same location.

Registries – Don’t mention gift preferences, registry, gift table/card box/wishing well info on invitations–not even on the enclosures.   Doing so makes the gift seem more important than the invitation.   Convey gift preference through word of mouth or on a wedding website.   Save those little registry cards to hand off to your Maid of Honor or whomever is throwing your bridal shower.  Many guests know you are a new couple starting off and will provide money as a gift, no reason to request it.    Also, there are a select number of stores that do wedding registries, many guests can find your registry by searching those commonly used stores.   I realize this subject is a regional one, so ask around for opinions.  If your parents and family don’t believe people will be offended by a registry card, go ahead and add it.

**** Formal Wording ****
http://www.emilypost.com/weddings/wedding-invitations-and-announcements/335-wording-formal-wedding-invitations

Mr. and Mrs. Thomas  Chase
request the honour of your presence
at the marriage of their daughter
Mary Lou
to
Mr. Jonathan Stevens
son of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Stevens
on Saturday, the twentieth of March
at two o’clock in the afternoon
Saint Joseph’s Cathedral
121 Main Street
Boston, Massachusetts

-Additional Tips-

  • Be sure you order 10-25 extra invites and envelopes for add on’s and errors.  It is much cheaper to order a few extra initially than it is to rush order a few extra later.
  • Before you buy those fancy custom stamps, be sure to take a fully stuffed envelope to the post office to be weighed and measured.  You want to be sure that you are ordering the correct stamp amount for the size of your invite.
    *   Square invites cost more to mail than rectangle
    *   The smallest size envelope for a regular stamp is 3  1/2 ” high and 5″ long.  The largest is 6  1/8″ hight and 11  1/2 ” long.   It can also be no thicker than .007 inch.

DIY Projects

I must confess, I have not made any of these DIY projects.  I have just collected a LARGE amount of neat ideas and the links to the tutorial.  ~ Enjoy ~

Hundreds of Ideas… I can’t even name them all… Check out this site!
http://www.favecrafts.com/Modern-Decor

DIY your own Runner:

http://www.weddingbee.com/2006/12/26/diy-aisle-runner
– 36″ wide cotton muslin in length and color you desire.

– A cardboard tube that’s at least 38″ long.- Iron-on adhesive tape
– At least 4 yards of satin ribbon to use as pull cord
– Clear Packing Tape
– Scissors

DIY – petal bumper- petal ribbons

– search ebay “1000 petals” for inexpensive petals from China

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or purchase from Petal Happy

 http://posh-parties.blogspot.com/2011/04/pretty-petals-my-diy-rose-petal-aisle.html

DIY – Dye your Crinoline

– Make sure it is made of anything BUT Polyester

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WW-brides example

http://www.weddingwire.com/wedding-forums/would-this-be-to-much/047cccdac0663381.html

how to links: http://www.weddingbee.com/2009/01/10/dyeing-your-crinoline-a-complete-guide/  or
http://offbeatbride.com/2009/02/how-to-dye-crinoline

http://www.ehow.com/how_7162586_dye-crinoline.html

http://reviews.ebay.com/How-To-Dye-Your-Wedding-Slip-Petticoat-or-Crinoline_W0QQugidZ10000000006495651?ssPageName=BUYGD:CAT:-1:LISTINGS:1

DIY – Garter

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sosweetsowild.blogspot.com

http://sosweetsowild.blogspot.com/2012/01/makin-my-thigh-pretty.html

DIY – ruffled chair sashes

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http://boards.weddingbee.com/topic/bees-who-sew-need-your-help-with-diy-project-advice

They are made by cutting a circle of fabric into a spiral. Try it out with a scrap piece of fabric in various sizes until you get the length and fullness you want.  More Details on how to create them http://boards.weddingbee.com/topic/help-bees-how-can-i-make-these-awesome-038-cute-chair-sashes#axzz2dQPQA0Hh   and  http://boards.weddingbee.com/topic/need-help-ruffled-chair-tie#axzz2qIQQmPie

DIY- Wine Glass Candle Lamps

Buy vellum and print a pattern or use a decorative hole punch to create a pattern.  Or buy on-line.

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from save-on-crafts

http://www.save-on-crafts.com/wincanlamfro.html

DIY – colored Mason Jars

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momtastic.com

http://www.momtastic.com/diy/168908-diy-tinted-mason-jars-in-rainbow

DIY – Unity Candle

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blog makezine.com

http://blog.craftzine.com/archive/2010/06/how-to_wedding_unity_candle.html

DIY – Cork Ball

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created by CherubinoCrafts

http://www.ehow.com/how_7661596_make-cork-balls.html#ixzz1HFo3VQCo

DIY – String Ball Centerpieces

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jldesigns.blogspot.com

http://www.onestylishbride.com/diy-center/easy-peasy-diy-string-spheres/

DIY – Doily Lanterns

– I suggest using a punching balloon (very round) Hold it shut with a twist tie, deflate, remove and re-use. Don’t know why she would buy so many balloons/balls and pop them

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glamourandgraceblog.com

http://www.glamourandgraceblog.com/2011/diy-doily-lantern/

DIY – Doily & Burlap Mason Jar Tea lights

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craftsbyamanda.com

http://craftsbyamanda.com/2011/01/burlap-doily-luminaries-rustic-meets.html

DIY Tissue Paper Mason Jars

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sold by usedandabused on Etsy

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by 100directions.com

Tissue Paper Mason Jars using wax paper and leaves
http://www.100directions.com/mason-jar-and-tissue-paper-luminaries/

Tissue Paper Mason Jars using Mod Podge
http://www.favecrafts.com/Modern-Decor/Girly-Pink-Collaged-Mason-Jars

Tissue Paper Mason Jars using a Xyron Machine
http://www.100directions.com/mason-jar-and-tissue-paper-luminaries/

DIY Vase – Found objects – Empty Jars

tin can deco diy

brides.com – Ideas for Every Season

Tin Cans

cardstock-jars

Card stock around any jar

crepe paper candles

Martha Stewart centerpiece ideas

Dollar store vases and crepe paper

paint string

Mark Montano

Any empty glass jar, string, and paint

http://www.markmontanoblogs.blogspot.com/2011/07/my-most-popular-blog-this-summerquick.html

DIY – Paper and ornament centerpiece

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8x7P9P42TQk
Book from dollar store, ornaments from dollar store – plus glue = $2 per
The size of the wreath itself is appx 28-36 inch in diameter.

(need apprx 120-140 page per wreath may vary based on how large the base is – example is  10 inch diameter)
To use as a table centerpiece, I would recommend hot glueing a round mirror as a base in the center instead of ornament and decorate around the mirror. You can also place a round vase then place your favorite column candle in there. Can use wrapping paper instead of book pages, for a different look.
* example made by tram n.

check out tram’s full post

Tutorial for the rose

DIY – Paper towel roll Wreaths!
Some have coffee filter carnations – Some have paper roses
– check out tram’s post –395371_10100510231823738_244515930_a http://www.weddingwire.com/wedding-forums/want-to-share-my-latest-project-with-you-ladies-and-tip-to-save-pic/c707654418893743.html

DIY – Coffee Filter Pomanders – Coffee Filter Roses

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by Heather Gerrity

http://heather-weddingflowersmadeeasy.blogspot.com/2011/08/paper-roses-diy-4-pomander-kissing-ball.html

DIY – Coffee Filter Peony Pomander – Kissing Ball

pomander_balls_Final2

by –  holiday-crafts-and-creations.com

http://www.holiday-crafts-and-creations.com/pomander-balls.html

DIY – Coffee Filter Carnation Pomander

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by kbee2011

http://diy.weddingbee.com/topic/coffee-filter-pomander-balls

Instructions
www.marthastewart.com/266346/paper-roses

template
http://images.marthastewart.com/images/content/web/pdfs/pdf3/coffeefilterrose.pdf

Tips / adjustments:
tutorial:

http://alicew.typepad.com/thoughts_from_alice_w/2010/02/somerset-life.html
Using the “staple & big corsage push-pin” method was NOT working. INSTEAD: Use T-pins – No stapling required. Push the T-Pin in the center of the coffee filter, hold the bottom part of the pin that is exposed and with your other hand, slowly squish the filter up and together. Repeat this with 2 more filters on the same pin, for a total of 3 filters per “flower bunch”.
Colored flowers – create a paint bath using acrylic paint, water & a disposable pie tin. Use about a table-spoon of paint – filled the rest of the pie tin with water – mixed it – longer they soak/darker the color

DIY – Crepe Paper Roses

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created by Olivia Kanaley of A Field Journal.

crepe paper rolls and some beads!
http://www.thebridescafe.com/?postID=805

DIY – glitter heels!!!

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by mmarcial619

http://www.weddingbycolor.com/mmarcial619/milestones/164425

Here is the DIY youtube tutorial – for glitter heels
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hY6PUf4IQqc

DIY – Glitter Soles

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by Francesca-Restyle Restore Rejoice

http://restylerestorerejoice.blogspot.com/2011/10/diy-glitter-pumps.html

DIY – Tinsel wands.

real exit

wand

http://www.weddingbee.com/2010/08/02/wedding-sparklers-alternative/

DIY – Build a Photo Wall Backdrop

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created by Laura

http://ruffledblog.com/diy-photobooth-vintage-wallpaper-frame-wall-backdrop/

Different instructions – more tips – another example

wall

http://www.weddingbycolor.com/jennyfur

DIY how to build a fake wall with pvc pipes

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http://www.diyphotography.net/diy_studio_equipment_backdrop_stand

http://www.instructables.com/id/PVC-stage-backdrop-or-room-divider/

DIY photos onto canvas

– with White tissue paper & Mod-Podge!

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by Cydney

http://sarahsprojects.blogspot.com/2010/02/wall-art-for-siennas-room.html

Check out Cydney’s example! http://www.weddingwire.com/wedding-forums/my-diy-photos-onto-canvas-using-my-first-look-pics/b1f27501cd22296d.html

FREE ~ Printable Photobooth props !!!!

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ohhappyday.com

http://ohhappyday.com/2011/05/photobooth-props-diy-and-free-printable-2/

More Decoration Ideas for a Bride on a budget
http://www.thethriftycrafter.com/tag/99-cent-store-crafts/

SUGGESTED POSTS:  Check out my DIY photo booth post
https://weddingtips101.wordpress.com/2014/01/10/diy-photo-booth/