Tag Archives: DIY

DIY Tutorial: Twine Wrapped Letters

Hi there fellow RocknRollers! Some of you may already know me from www.cabinetsofcuriosity.co.uk but for those that don’t, I thought I’d share some pearls of wisdom with you. My name is Holly and my business Cabinets of Curiosity which specialises in eclectic, event styling including handmade stationery & decorations. Kat featured my own wedding which took place last October and there were a lot of people asking about the twine wrapped letters on my guest book table. So, I thought I’d make a little tutorial for those of you out there who would like to have a go! If you would like some initials or lettering for your big day but don’t have the creative fingers, please email my site with your requirements! Big thanks to Kat and thanks for looking!

Supplies Needed:

♥ Styrofoam or polystyrene
♥ Marker pen
♥ Knife
♥ Ruler
♥ Scissors
♥ Twine, wool or ribbon to wrap with

Method:

Step One: Decide on a simple font – capital letters work best. Using the ruler draw your letter onto the foam, making sure it is even and all subsequent letters are the same height and width.

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A DIY & Foodie Wedding: Kathryn & James

Kathryn & James’ wedding is one of those beautiful events that just prove to me that the details, the fluff and the stresses of making your wedding ‘cool’ just don’t matter. Simple personal touches, friends, family, laughter and love are what make the world go round – why should it be any different for wedding?

I fell in love with this couple as soon as I saw the first photo in their wedding set. The love that oozes from these two is palpable and I’m seriously honoured and thrilled to share that love with you all today.

The wedding day started with the couple and their family’s having a homemade breakfast together. They were then married at Biota Dining Bowral. “We knew walking into Biota Dining Bowral that we had found the place for us,” Kathryn told me. “Finding the venue for us was actually the hardest job. James didn’t want average food and wine as he is a massive foodie and we wanted the place to look good. After a few weekends of visiting venues, he pulled out a gourmet traveller magazine and said why don’t we contact this place. By that afternoon they had emailed through the most amazing package and we went down the next weekend and were totally in love. It meant we could have the ceremony and reception in the one venue. We could do canapés and drinks straight after and because we did the first-look photos we could eat and drink and socialise with everyone. We had the MOST fantastic 2 course meal and then when the band was up and playing there were roving desserts! Mollie and the Chef James Viles and the staff were seriously incredible.”

Kathryn wore a bridesmaid’s dress by Bari Jay which she found at Jean Fox in Parramatta. “My sister found it in the bridesmaid room on the sale rack! When I tried it on we started crying (could have been from exhaustion because I hadn’t pencilled in a lunch break on the dress shopping day). So, one day shopping and I had the dress! And under budget. I had a couple of reservations as the wedding drew closer that I didn’t have the big gown, but with reassurance from James, my sister and Mum that it suited me and the venue perfectly I put it out of my mind. And I was so happy.”

The venue didn’t need much decorating, but they did do all the flowers themselves. They bought the blooms from Sydney Flower Markets the day before the wedding! “We did a trial run 6 weeks before with a lovely lady that my sister works with,” Kathryn explained. “James and I picked up the flowers and made our way over. It was fun morning with bubbles and stories. It was exciting that for $50 we had 12 ‘trial’ bouquets. From that we decided on a rough idea of what we would like. The day before the wedding, we got up at 4.15am and made our way to the flower markets. It.was.stressful. It was raining and dark. James jumped out of the car to start shopping and I drove around with the crazy fork lift guys zooming around.”

“On Friday when we got to where we were staying one of the groomsmen made us a couple of cocktails and we got to work. It will be one of my best memories of the girls who said they weren’t confident enough to help, proudly making their own bouquets! A girlfriend of one of the groomsmen discovered a new talent and made all the beautiful buttonholes. The rest of the flowers we ‘creatively’ jammed into the different jars I collected. In the end I think we had bought twice as much as we needed. Included was kale (was also used in the menu) lavender, roses, dusty miller, berries, mountain moss and trix.”

Kathryn collected all the jam jars and bottles for the flowers herself. She continues, “We also had tealight candles on the tables. On our present/cake table was a little house we had bought the day before with some candles inside as we had asked people as a gift for money towards our house deposit. James made a thank you sign and also on the table was an Indian saying that James had found while looking for inspiration for our vows. Around the room were other frames with illustrations that James had done to incorporate with our stationery. James’ Dad also knocked up the Rock n Roll sign from old fence palings. I had bought the hearts off eBay and the boys tied them around the tree. Actually that’s where the ceremony was supposed to be held, but due to the rain during the week and that morning we moved it outside. It stopped raining at about 11.30 that morning so it was glorious sunshine by the time the wedding rolled around.”

“We wanted the day to be a representation of us, but taking on board some advice that was given to us, we asked our parents if there was anything in particular they wanted to see”, Kathryn concluded. “We thought of our top 3 ‘wants’ – good food, wine and photos and started planning from there. Whenever we were tempted or worried we hadn’t ‘included’ something we reminded ourselves of those 3 things. The other thing we did was try and keep things simple. I also tried to make my emails and conversations with the suppliers very conversational and not from a crazy stressed out bride which I think helped things go smoothly. A sense of humour can go a long way. Especially, I think, in this wedding business.”

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A DIY Church Hall Wedding: Zoe & Richard

Sometimes I see a wedding and I literally can’t wait to learn more about it and (hopefully if the photographer and couple agree) write it up to share it with you lot too. Luckily for me, in this instance both parties were more than thrilled to share this wedding with us today, particularly because newlyweds Zoe & Richard found wedding photographer Joanna Millington on this very wedding blog. Hurrah!

Their DIY, family-central wedding was held at Christ Church in St Albans. “When we were first engaged I asked Richard if he knew where he wanted to get married,” Zoe explained. “He said he didn’t want to get married anywhere but Christ Church St Albans. It was my childhood church on the estate where I grew up and where Richard and I went to school. We knew it wasn’t exactly the idyllic wedding venue – a flat-roofed, slightly tired and drab looking carpeted church with very green curtains – but it was home. We had our reception in the same place. Luckily they had just built a shiny new hall attached to the old church building, which was very handy. No one (apart from us) had to venture out into the rain!”

The reception hall was decorated with the help of friends and family. They didn’t have a concrete ‘theme’ per-say, they just made the space warm, welcoming and fun! “My Nanny had valiantly made 150 meters of bunting with bits of fabric donated by people from the church, friends and other family members,” continued Zoe. “It was so lovely because people at the wedding said things to us like, ‘that piece there was the material I used to make a dress for my honeymoon’ and ‘that fabric was my old kitchen curtains’, so it was like all of these stories were tied together, and all the people who came together for our wedding, with all of their histories, were connected in some way. It was also very colourful indeed!! We used the left over odds and ends as table cloths.”

“Richard and his Dad had also made the most amazing Alice in Wonderland comic foregrounds. Richard had proposed to me amongst the seagulls on Brighton Beach and right at the beginning of our preparations we’d talked about how amazing it would be to have one of ‘those things you put your face through at the sea side’, but I never imagined we’d actually have them!! Although now what to do with two huge comic foregrounds is another matter…We also had sparklers as we left, which was very entertaining indeed!”

Pretty much everything else was DIY as well including the cake which was made by the bride’s aunt, the fake pom pom flowers which were put together by the bride’s parents and grandparents, and all the entertainment and music that was performed by various talented friends. The catering was also put on by some of the women who worked at the church. “My Mum had found a team of helpers from the church, who selflessly doled out and washed up after us all. We really couldn’t have done it without them, and yet they all thanked us for inviting them. People’s generosity was just astounding. After the service we ate ginger biscuits lovingly made by both of our mothers and drank mulled wine. We were really keen that everyone could come to every part of the day. We didn’t want to send some people away for the reception and then drag them back for the evening, so we decided to have curry from the place across the road. We could literally see their shop from the window in the hall where we ate. They were just so wonderful and insisted that we couldn’t possibly have onion bhajis, because they are just onion! They would make us their speciality, which was very tasty indeed. Richard and I are both vegetarians, so there was no meat, but no one seemed too phased by that! We had asked guests to bring a pudding along, and so we were not short of choice!! In fact we didn’t even get to see half of them! Thank goodness for photos! For drink, my Nanny and Poppa had bought every last Cobra from Tesco when they were on offer, and my Dad got a deal with a mixed load of wine. So we ate, drank, and were very merry indeed!”

The bride wore a short dress which she found at Whistles. “Being a fan of recycling, hand-me-downs, charity shops and vintage shops (when I’m feeling flush) I had been looking for something second hand. I knew I wasn’t a meringue bride, and I had no desire what-so-ever for a strapless floor-length number with diamante tiara and shoes to match. One friend said to me ‘You win either way, if you turn up in something outrageous, everyone will be shocked, if you turn up in something classic, everyone will be shocked.’ I contemplated dressing up as a Power Ranger for the occasion (just think of everyone’s faces!) The dress I ended up in, however, even caught me by surprise.”

“My Grandma wanted to buy my dress for me, and so for a laugh we went to the bridal bit of a large department store, just so we could fake puke all over them. The sales assistant was horrified when I told her I was getting married in only four months time. We quickly left. We ended up buying my dress from Whistles. I saw it one day when I was mooching around waiting for a friend, I was certainly not looking for my wedding dress, and I phoned my Grandma and Mum that night and we arranged to head to Selfridges, where they had the last one in my size, the next day. When my Grandma used the word ‘vivacious’ to describe it, I knew I had to have it. On our wedding day, when I arrived at the front of the church, Richard said to me ‘You did it, you surprised me.’ I think he would have been less shocked by the Power Ranger costume!”

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An Alabama Cave Wedding: Melissa & Greg

Yes you did read that correctly – Melissa & Greg got married in a cave (and instantly went into my ‘coolest ever wedding venue’ mental checklist).

“Greg and I picked up the love of spelunking (caving) during our 4 ½ year relationship and wanted to show our families what we found so beautiful about underground,” Melissa explained when I asked them about their unusual choice. “The ceremony felt very romantic; low lighting, candles everywhere, glowing stalactites and the silhouettes of the people who love us the most. My stepfather Mark became ordained and performed our ceremony.”

“It was very special to have him be such a huge part of my wedding since my father refused to attend for his own personal reasons. One of the more emotional moments of the day was when I danced with my stepfather. I hate crying but there was no holding back my ugly crying face! Greg walked me down the aisle, which was a perfect way to begin our marriage. I was much less nervous than I would have been otherwise. We broke a few traditions that I used to think were important, but now I understand exactly what a wedding is all about; it’s about man and wife and everything else is too insignificant to worry about.”

After the ceremony came the reception at Morgan Creek Vineyard in Harpersville,”Our initial inspiration actually came from my lamp from IKEA! It was colorful, but delicate,” the bride continued. “I wanted to recreate the homemade vintage feel. While the stress did get to me at times it was important to me throughout the planning to make everyone comfortable because many weddings that I have gone to were to static and uncomfortable. I wanted my family and friends to relax and unwind. This wedding wasn’t put on by wedding planners who I didn’t know, or cake decorators who I picked from google, my wedding was put together by friends and family which made it more intimate.”

“The music also helped set the mood. I created a playlist on my iPhone around 3am the morning of our wedding. We played ‘Today’ by Joshua Radin, ‘Love Will Take You’ by Angus & Julia Stone, and we walked in to the beautiful soundtrack ‘The Winner Is’ from Little Miss Sunshine.”

For the reception decor, the couple decided to have each ‘centrepiece’ as a collection of differently coloured vases and glasses – a different colour for each table. “I refused to pick a color scheme. Why should I have 2 colors when I love so many colors?! It was a playful, kid friendly, colorful, wedding. My crew and I have hardly any pictures where someone isn’t hamming it up for the camera and my wedding photos reflect that too! A good percentage of out photos someone is making a face, I kind of feel a little bad for our wonderful photographers, but they got some lovely more serious images as well.”

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DIY Tutorial: Ombre Cake Icing

As I’m in the birthday spirit, what could be more celebratory than a big fat pink cake!? And with ombre being a wedding trend I’m still utterly loving, I thought this DIY from blog reader Heidi would be the perfect way to get the party started…

I’m Heidi, and I write the blog LittleMissLove. I work in Digital Marketing, drink too many iced lattes, and am also a pro hula hooper (more on that on the blog soon!) I write about things I love, and I love fashion, film photography, and getting crafty. I post a lot of mini DIY projects – pretty or tasty things you can make on a lazy sunday. It just so happens that my chap Dikki proposed to me over a home-made chilli just before New Years Eve, so since then most of my crafty projects have been some kind of trial run for the Big W. I’ve seen a lot of gorgeous ombre wedding cakes around t’internet recently, so here’s a how to if you want to try it out yourself!

Recently I met with my bridesmaids, to watch the awesome Bridesmaids film, drink cocktails and have a gossip. Of course, I need a cake for every occasion so I made a lemon sponge with blackcurrant jam in the middle. I tried out ombre icing for the first time – a gentle graduation of colour from light to dark. Here’s how!

Supplies Needed:

♥ Cake
♥ White Icing (can be bought ready made or you can home make some butter cream or cream cheese icing)
♥ Food Colouring in your choice of colour (I used red to make a white-pink-red ombre effect)
♥ Palette knife
♥ Spatula
♥ Bowl

Method:

Step One: Firstly, cover the cake in white soft icing, this is called a crumb layer, and it smooths out your palette. I cheated and bought a tub of Betty Crocker ready made frosting, since you can’t buy white butter in the UK (unlike the US) so you can’t make white buttercream at home. If you do want to go fully DIY just make a cream cheese frosting, that way it will stay nice and white (and it’s delicious!)

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A Barbie & Breakfast at Tiffany’s Inspired Wedding: Anna-Marie & Paul

Anna-Marie & Paul had a simple, down-to-earth and beautiful wedding. Barbie pink accents sat perfectly with their eclectic styling ideas and Breakfast at Tiffany inspiration. The reception was held at The Grand Café in Oxford, as the bride explained, “We went for a high tea affair in a beautiful 1920s style café. It is a special place for us as we started our dating years visiting Oxford and The Grand Café. In fact Paul proposed in Oxford too. We were aiming for a relaxed and informal atmosphere. No cutting of the cake, no first dance – just tea, cake and friends. We created a playlist of all our favorite songs and put it on shuffle throughout the night. It isn’t a wedding venue, partly why we picked it, we didn’t want anything typically wedding style. We aren’t crazy party animals so we only hired it for 4 hours, (5pm – 9pm). We wanted maximum impact, and minimal drunk people (the latter bit didn’t work out, It seems people cram more in a short space of time!!) All in all, it was the perfect choice for our wedding reception.”

Anna-Marie asked a friend from art college to make her wedding dress for her. She was inspired by the dress Audrey Hepburn wore in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. “I wanted an exact replica of the iconic Breakfast at Tiffany’s dress but in ivory. I also designed a top to go with the dress and decided 3 days before the wedding to cover the collar in pearls…it was stressful but often the best ideas come to me last minute! She did an incredible job, she is a pattern cutter for Coast, so I knew she was good, but I had no idea she was that good until I saw the dress for the first time! She even made me a cute label inside with my college nick name embroidered in ‘Annabell’. It’s finishing touches like this that made it even more special!”

As well as the pink colour scheme, Barbie dolls were featured throughout the wedding, making it a really girly but cute affair. “I collect Barbie dolls, and was determined to feature them in the wedding somehow, so I had the flower girls carry a Barbie doll each and the page boy carried a Thomas the tank engine toy. That way they had something to keep them occupied during the ceremony. I didn’t want all my closest friends walking down the aisle with me, as there were 7 of them! I had a corsage made for each of them to wear on the day and I attached tags to each corsage with a scrabble ring tied to it. Each ring spelt out the word ‘Friends’ and I wrote on each tag the reasons why they were special to me. Even though they were not official bridesmaids (we wanted to keep it informal), funnily enough when I got to the church I asked my sisters and best friend to walk down the aisle before me, it’s funny how tradition creeps up on you, but Im really glad I did, it made it more special.”

The couple added DIY touches where they could including making their own personalised stationery. “I’m a printer and designer by trade, so the stationery had to be amazing!” continued the bride. “The pressure was on! I created a Rob Ryan style laser cut invite, with a really lovely poem about marriage and love intricately cut out to form the shape of a lighthouse (we call our house the lighthouse, it has become our own special theme!) I made a fun spiral bound long thin Order of service, to be different and included a double page spread of pictures of all our friends and family. Printed on all my favourite papers, all 50% recycled stock. Then I made tissue slip cases for the church with the words ‘Tears of Joy…or a runny nose’ printed on each one. Each guest had a packet of tissues and an order of service on their seat.”

“The reception stationery include tea bag tags personalised with each guest name. We made our table plan a compilation of guests faces on a Polaroid picture in random countries around the world as backgrounds and each table was named after a different tea.”

“I created our own logo using the Tiffany’s & Co. logo, but then crossed out with Hughes scribbled above Tiffany’s. I printed it onto large luggage tags with questions on the reverse for each guest to fill out, this was instead of a guest book. We asked guests how and when they first met us, what we should call our next dog and what their advise for our marriage would be. We got some hilarious responses! We then tied each one to the willow tree that we took from the ceremony (saves on cost). We gave each guest a free drink voucher, entitled ‘fancy a drink?’ and placed in a tiny gold envelope on each place setting. I also made round disks with ‘the legend of afternoon tea’ printed on for our tea cup candle wedding favours.”

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