{doable} Do It Yourself

This week has been full of crafting for me. Over the past few months I've realized I should outsource some of the projects (thank you etsy!) and other projects were simple enough to do myself. Here are some of the images that have inspired me to get my DIY on, followed by my personal tips to get the jobs done.

Lavender bunches with escort cards

7fcfdf074d7c4df73fe1e94ef84ea10cd5f0335e6f2e8fbe59da09639abd35c3-001 Sources: Top, Bottom 

Menus and a lace runner for the head table:

Wedding Crafts1 Sources: Left, Center, Right

Metallic assorted bottles for the welcome party:

Wedding Crafts29b5e911693dc542ba4402bcdf6251513-001 Sources: LeftRightBottom

This is how it went for me...

DIY No-Sew Table Runner: SUPPLIES: Lace Fabric | Fabric Scissors | Tape Measure

Wedding Crafts3

I bought the lace fabric at a discount fabric store for $23. I measured the fabric to make sure it would run the length of the table and have enough to hang down on either side. I then cut the fabric to the width I wanted. I realized if I gathered the fabric, as shown, the edges would be hidden and therefore don't need to be finished. I will be using the jute twine from the escort cards to tie each end like in my inspiration image. This project worked well for me because we only have one farm table as our head table. The other tables are round and will just have the standard linens. If you wanted to do this for more tables, you could easily get two runners out of the width - just make sure you get the length you need so you don't have breaks in the fabric.

DIY Stamped & Embossed Menus: SUPPLIES: Stamps | Stamp Pad | Kraft Paper | Embossing Powder | Embossing Tool

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I used stamps and the heat embossing powder and tool for the top oval and 'Menu' part. For the rest, I used the white pen to write it out. It took me a couple tries to get the layout and spacing just right. To help myself from writing at a slant, I used a piece of thicker, contrasting paper and held that under the line I was writing. Then, as I wrote each item, I watched the space between my line and the other piece of paper. Slant avoided! I did enough for two per table.

DIY Metallic Bottles: SUPPLIES: Assorted Bottles | Primer Spray | Metallic Spray

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For my welcome party, I knew I wanted something cost effective and related to wine since it will be held at a Springhouse Cellar - a tasting room in Hood River, OR. I found the images of gold and silver wine and champagne bottles and HAD to give it a try.

I left the labels on and used a primer and then metallic spray bottles - I just went to my local paint store and they helped me figure out what to buy. In addition to the bottles, I also sprayed some corks to sprinkle around the bottles and I called my florist who said she would provide the single stems of white and green flowers. Easy! And all-in it will come to under $90 to decorate about six tables. Not bad, right?! *Hint: take your engagement ring off and don't do this the week before your wedding - or use some gloves!

DIY Lavender Bunch Escort Cards: SUPPLIES: Lavender Sprig | Jute Twine | Cloth Pins | Small Cards (used business card sized paper from Paper Source) | Hole Punch | Pen

I haven't done this project yet, but my florist recommended grouping couples and families onto one card - that way you have less to do and the display at the wedding won't be overwhelming.

Happy crafting and happy Fourth of July to you all!


Floral Alternatives

When we first starting putting our wedding budget together, something occurred to me that was a little surprising. I decided that I didn't want cut flowers. Now don't get me wrong, I think a lot of wedding florals are gorrrrgeous, but for a couple reasons I just didn't feel like they were right for our day. Mainly, I had so many other visual ideas, that I was afraid florals would be something to compete with many other things going on. Plus I was concerned over their temporary nature.

Shortly into planning, however, I talked to some friends in the industry who said they'd been to weddings without a floral component and things just felt stark. So they encouraged me that if I didn't want traditional cut flowers, I work some natural components into the decor in some way. After doing a little research I came up with three options:

1. Live Plants to fit in with a Pacific Northwest spring wedding. Instead of succulents, this would mean moss, ferns, and bulbs.


Source: Poppytalk


Source: The Natural Wedding Company


2. Paper flowers. There are a ton of amazing tutorials out there right now, and I like that these read as a little more bold and geometric.


Source: Icing Designs


Source: The House that Lars Built

3. Abstract installation: Something floral inspired but with a contemporary twist.


Source: You are my fave


Source: Anthropologie

I think right now I'm leaning toward a combination of paper flowers set amongst some maidenhair ferns for some nice contrast. Hopefully this idea can be easily interpreted into centerpieces and bouquets. I'll keep you all posted on how


Sweet Succulents

With four months to go until our big day, we have been focusing on locking in rest of our vendors (florist, cake and entertainment). This week flowers have been on my mind and I'm loving a mixture of local wild flowers and succulents. Below is my inspiration for bouquets. I love how the succulents add texture and compliment coral and white flowers.


Sources: 1, 2 & 3


Sources: 1, 2 & 3

For boutineers Derek is envisioning a simple succulent with a spring of lavender.


Sources: 1, 2, 3 & 4

For our tablescape we plan to fill mismatched vases and planters with local flowers and succulents. To keep our flower costs down we will be planting some of our own succulents to mix in with our florists' creations. We plan to replant these succulents in our garden after out wedding too!


Sources: 1, 2 & 3

Did you, or are you planning on using succulents for your wedding? Were you able to reuse them?

I have also been contemplating how to highlight our moms on our wedding day. Did you go with a corsage, wrislet, small bouquet or something else for yours? Would love to hear what other brides are doing!

Color Rich DIY Bouquet

Oh how I love florals. While perusing my local floral shop I fell in love with the simple white snow flower with such rich berry tones. $50 later, I had all the elements I needed to create a bouquet rich in color and texture. bouquet-3

I would never suggest DIYing florals for your wedding, but I understand that as far as budgets go, sometime something has to give. So if this is your "give" here is a great bouquet with a color palette that is beautiful no matter what season.

As for a few tips, grab about 4-6 different types of floral. Pair them together until you find the perfect mix of color and texture. Then go for it. Play around until you find something that you love. (These are the best tips I can provide from one non-florist to another :) )


Making a Statement {Bridal Bouquets that Stand Out}

Much of our wedding look and feel is inspired by the artist Alphonse Mucha, known for his Art Nouveau botanical paintings of women, like the ones below:

Sources: 1, 2

While we don't exactly subscribe to the school of thought of having set "wedding colors," our general color palate will be greens, golds, coppers, pewters, and some pinks. We're in the early stages of talking to some florists, and I've been thinking about my bouquet more and more. I've become quite fond of the idea of a "statement" bouquet, in a brighter, yet still complementary, color to the rest of the wedding flowers. Here are a few that I've found inspiring this week:

Sources: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Here Comes the Bride {aisle inspiration}

This past Saturday I talked with two different florists. Before doing so I gathered lots of inspiration and honed in on the look I wanted. I had been holding off on this because there are so many gorgeous options, I was having trouble committing to one. Creating a board with the things I decided on so far and adding in the flowers I was thinking about really helped me be sure I was going in the right direction. I sent the Pinterest board links to the florists and it helped them see my overall style and, more specifically, the flowers I had in mind (what did we do before Pinterest!?) One thing they both asked me on our calls was what my plan was for the aisle and ceremony space. I had been doing so much thinking about the flowers in terms of the tables and bouquets, I hadn't even thought of the aisles! So I asked them what they recommended and started searching and realizing there are endless options...

Source: left, right

Would love the candle look if I was having a nighttime ceremony.


Source: left, right


Shepherd hooks are really versatile and my venue has some I can use if I opt for this. No extra rentals =  money saved! But, you will be shelling out for the extra arrangements. One good option would be if you could move them to the tables after the ceremony for double duty!


Source: left, middle, right


And then there are petals. I love the look of petals along the aisle because it creates such a strong visual pathway. It's also romantic, timeless and (apparently) pretty cost-effective. One of the florists told me she could use the petals of a less expensive flower along the aisle.

When you have a gorgeous venue, I think you can get away with a more minimal aisle decoration. I'm thinking I will keep the ceremony decor pretty simple (we have Mt. Hood as the backdrop, so I think people will be looking at that), and put more towards the tables.

What are you doing to dress up your aisle and ceremony space? Did you have it figured out already when you talked to florists? Any cost-saving tips?

Beneath the Leaves {Choosing Ceremony Florals and Eves}

I'm very lucky to be getting married at Paradise Ridge Winery, which offers an unbeatable ceremony location. See pics below.



Because of the space's abundant natural beauty, I want to keep things simple and botanical, but would love to bring to life our Art Nouveau aesthetic. Here are some images inspiring me this week.





Thankful for {family}

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays (I think I say this at every holiday). I love Thanksgiving because it's all about bringing loved ones together to cook and enjoy a wonderful meal and remember what we are all thankful for. No presents. Just family, football, lazy couch time, cooking together, feasting and a long weekend ahead. ahhh I love Thanksgiving! So this week I've been thinking a lot about family and how we can incorporate our past generations into our wedding day, show a little bit of our families' histories, and also honor some people who will be there in spirit. I love the idea of using pictures, because it adds a personal touch and gives guests a chance to see that you have your grandma's nose or your grandpa's gap-tooth. You can't go wrong with pictures.

Source: all images above

Source: Mason Jar Photos

Source: Lockets on Bouquet

Are you doing something special to honor your family?

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Hope you enjoy the holiday with those you love!

Floral Inspiration {Succulents and Artichokes}

Our wedding is about 2 months away!  Yay!As the wedding is getting closer, the focus is mainly on all the little details. This past week we met with our amazing florist, Jan Dekker for a trial.  She put together an example of our centerpieces.  It was so great to see what she put together! She really understood my "vision" for the flowers and although I had some minor changes and feedback, I was ecstatic and thought they looked beautiful!

I would highly recommend to any bride meeting your florist for a trial of the flower arrangements if you can. It totally put me at ease!

Here are some of the inspiration photos I used when first meeting with Jan to design the centerpieces and bouquets:

Jess Flower Inspiration
Jess Flower Inspiration
Jess Flower Inspiration
Jess Floral Inspiration Artichokes
The overall look I want for the flowers is romantic but not over the top.  We also love the addition of the little succulents and artichokes! One thing I love about incorporating the succulents is that they are something that can be taken out of each centerpiece and planted. I don't have much of a green thumb but am hoping I can save a few for our home.

Next item on our detail to-do list is all the paper! Programs, place cards and miscellaneous signs. We fell in love with our vendor who did our invitations so we plan on going there in the next few weeks.

Until next week!

Follow my wedding inspiration board on Pinterest!

Tweet me @jessdawnd 

Read my past posts here and here

Designed By Me

Source: Malia Cano Photography

Make your wedding scream you!  I've read this time and time again in every wedding magazine, website and blog.  But, how does one do this in a day and age where there's pinterest, loverly, etsy, and a million wedding blogs all showcasing the perfect, and incredibly creative wedding?  I have always been a planner, and though I haven't thrown a million parties, when I do I go all out & enjoy the act of decorating and making each aspect really my own-this I'm sure my friends would attest to.  When it comes to planning my wedding, I want everything to be perfect.  I'm sure we all do.  But I really do.  I want it to be so perfectly us, with adorable details that have our personal signature.  There's just one issue.  So many of the wedding ideas have been done, so how do I make it different?  How do I make it unique?  These are the questions I've been asking myself at every step since we got engaged.

I'm still at the beginning of the wedding planning process.  Sure, we have a lot of the big decisions done, but not the design aspects.  I am in the "hunt & gather" stages, trying to determine what I love and what is doable.  After trying to put myself into one of the more obvious design categories, whether it be modern, rustic, vintage, classic {the list goes on}, I realized I could emulate my design style I've already developed into my home: eclectic!  So, I'm no longer trying to decide if an idea "goes" with the "theme" because it all does!  Now, the only issue is how to cull the ideas down & not try to do everything and the kitchen sink!  I hope you enjoy following me on this path.

Source (from Left): Lori Barbely Photography, the decorista, sweet designs.

Source (from left): Southern Weddings, source.

Source (from left): Food ChannelLove Me Do Photography, Languid Lovely, Belle the Magazine, The Sweetest Occasion