Sarah and Damien’s Melbourne wedding was DIY heavy and full of load of handmade touches including the cake, flowers, stationery and even the bridesmaids’ dresses which the bride and her friend Anna made from fabric bought in Tokyo!
“We are repulsed by quite a lot of weddingy things so we tried to cut out a lot of the cringe-worthy predictable things and just make it as personalised to us as we could”, Sarah began. “We wanted it to be something we would enjoy if we attended. A lot of this distain towards wedding things comes from me working at a fabric and craft store for years and having to deal with bridezillas having emotional meltdowns about the shade of a ribbon for invitations and people covering everything wedding-related in diamanté.”
“We had a lot of handmade things”, she continued. “Damien and I are both a bit artsy. We had interactive things for people to do, like signing our huge ‘munny’ toy instead of a book. We also had a tiny polaroid (fuji instax) camera which was really fun too. We also had a lucky dip box of wedding favors instead of a bonbonniere thing. The lucky dip was full of random capsule toys that we had collected during our trip to Japan.”
“We made the table settings and paper crane curtain ourselves. The curtain was constructed by the female wedding guests during a ‘Crafternoon’ party held at our house two days before the wedding (in lieu of a hen’s night). Origami paper was sent out with folding instructions with our invites, along with a self-addressed envelope. The idea was to emulate the Japanese tradition of 1000 paper cranes. This made for a bit of crafty participation for all of our guests and they loved seeing them hanging behind us during our vows.”
“The table decorations at our dinner were really simple and very affective. They were made from jam making jars filled with decorative rocks and birch tree branches from one of the bridesmaid’s backyard trees. We hung tiny paper cranes off the branches with black and white bakers twine. The beauty of these was that unlike a lot of other table centre decorations, you could see through these and still see the guest on the other side of the table.”
“We realised very quickly that weddings are such a huge deal for your parents and that you really have to find the right balance of making your own decisions and letting other people be a part of the experience and feeling included”, Sarah concluded. “As much as the wedding is ‘all about you’ its actually about family too. I’d say that sometimes its OK to let go of control of tiny elements and just let others join in the fun and fuss. It worked out amazingly for us! Damien’s mother and Oma made all of our bouquets, lapel flowers and wrist corsages, and this turned out to be an important distraction during a really hard time in our family when we lost a much-loved family member. What we have ended up with are the most beautiful hand crafted keepsakes that were made with love.”