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Wedding Day Tips

DIY Infused Waters

I haven’t always been a big time water drinker – because, let’s be honest, water can get a little…boring. Enter naturally-flavored waters. And, adding an assortment of fruit- and herb-infused waters to your hot summer wedding will make sure your guests will be hydrated enough when they hit the dance floor later in the night. Of course, nothing stops you from just making this at home, or for your next backyard party. Yes, we know, it’s butt-freezing outside now, but however unlikely it seems at the moment, summer will be here one day.

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Making infused water is as simple as throwing some fruit and/or herbs in a pitcher or jar and topping with cold water, but here are some tips to make your concoctions extraordinary:

  • Beyond adding a few slices of cucumber or lemon to your glass, start with some basic recipes (like the ones below), then feel free to tweak and experiment based on your personal taste.
  • Refrigerate for at least 2 hours (overnight works too) before serving so the fruit and herbs have time to infuse. If your produce is fresh, the refrigerated waters should last about a week.
  • When you finish the drink, you can add more water and get another batch out of the same fruit and herbs, but I wouldn’t recommend doing this outside of the week time frame.
  • Some ingredients, like berries, mango, and herbs, will release more flavor if muddled before infusing – that is, using a muddler or handle of a wooden spoon to give them a few good presses against the glass, pitcher, or jar before topping with water.  I’m usually fine with the flavor extracted through an overnight infusion without muddling, except in the case of rosemary, which always seems to need some help releasing its potent flavor and aroma. Add-ins with a high water content, like citrus and cucumbers, don’t require an extra hand to flavor water.

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Now that you know the basics, here are some recipes to try:

DIY Infused Water Recipes

Berry-basil
1/4 c blueberries
1/4 c raspberries
1/4 c loosely packed basil

Mango-ginger
1/2 mango, peeled, sliced, and muddled
5 slices fresh ginger
3 slices lime (not pictured, but really good)

Cucumber-mint
1/2 cucumber, sliced
1/4 c loosely packed mint
3 slices lemon

Grapefruit-rosemary
1/2 red grapefruit, sliced
1 sprig rosemary, muddled

Add the ingredients of your selected flavor to a quart-size jar. Top with cold water and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Store up to 1 week in the fridge.

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Fulton Market District

I have long wanted to scout the Fulton Market District to find some new shooting locations. It has always appealed to me with its dilapidated industrial look. A fancy looking couple would definitely seem out of place there and I think that’s exactly what would make for some amazing photos.  I was just using my cellphone and Instagram to capture the snapshots below, which may not necessarily be your cup of tea, but imagine the possibilities…

How to Instagram Your Wedding

Who doesn’t like Instagram and what better use of this popular photo app that to capture and share all the quirky moments of your wedding. You know you can’t be everywhere and you get the chance to experience it through other people’s eyes (or phones), so technology to the rescue! We’ve put together a handy how-to guide, and if you decide to go all the way and use the awesome Eventstagram app you might just say goodbye to the old, boring slideshow!

Here’s how to do it:

1. Create a hashtag. This will help you find your photos on Instagram.  Type your hashtag into Google to make sure its not already in use; you want it to be original, as well as easy to remember (short is best). Something like #MichaelandChristinaSayIDo or even just your wedding date and initials

2. Have a sign on display that reads something like: “If you Instagram, use hashtag #yourhashtag.” It can be something as simple as a chalkboard sign. We have a few ideas and you can even include the hashtag in your wedding program or leave cards with the hashtag at the dinner tables.

 

 

4. And here is the best part of this idea. You can ditch the pre-made slideshow with your baby pictures, braces pictures, horrible 90’s pictures, etc, and run a slideshow of the Instagram photos  at your wedding reception with your hashtag by using the  wonderful Evenstagram app.

 

A Cure for Cold Feet

Our next DYI project is 0% useful and 100% fun!. It’s very simple and the label you need costs only $7.50 over at Tie That Binds. And if you use some colorful socks for your groom and his groomsmen your photographer will have a field day with the pictures!

Materials
Your groom’s socks for the wedding
Ribbon
Brown paper / any paper (we used a paper grocery sack!)
Stapler
Scissors
Printer and the label from Tie That Binds
Sticker Paper

Instructions
Step 1: Cut paper strip about 10 inches long and 3 inches wide. Fold into a loop and staple. To form the square look of the paper, fit around socks and crease.
Step 2: Fold socks in half and loop a bow of ribbon at the fold. Then slip the socks into the paper loop.
Step 3: Print label on sticker paper, cut out, and attach to brown paper strip.
Step 4: There is no step four. It’s that simple!

DIY Jar Wedding Table Numbers

We have a really fun Do It Yourself project for making fun table numbers. These would be great for an outdoor wedding since not only would the they fit your decor but they could also be very helpful with keeping tablecloths from flying in the wind. If these are not perfect for your wedding decor think about using then for your rehearsal dinner. Fill the jars with pine cones, shells, wine corks, candy…

1) Clean jars and lids thoroughly and remove all labels. Soaking them in soapy water will make easy work of this, though occasionally a stubborn label will leave a residue. Goo Gone will take care of whatever you can’t scrub off
2) Print out table numbers using whatever font you like and cut down to squares that can fit inside your jars. Use a piece of double-sided tape to stick number to the inside of glass
3) Trace over number with white paint pen. Allow to dry a good 5-10 minutes, then go back and paint a second layer until number is opaque
4) Roll a piece of paper into a funnel (or just use a funnel if you have one) and pour sand into jars until full.

DYI Wedding Sparklers Favors

You’re only young once as they say, and this is never more apt than at your wedding! Today’s DIY wedding project is a Wedding Sparkle Favors.

Sparklers have been rediscovered by creative brides over the last couple of years and are making more and more appearances at weddings. They are really cheap and easy to get hold of (best to get them online). If the weather is fine in the evening they’re brilliant for guests outside and you can create fantastic photos with them.

A really creative way to incorporate them is to add them as little wedding favours to set on the tables. But you want to make them a little bit special, and that’s where we come in – a gorgeous little printable cards you can pop onto your sparklers.
Click here to download our printable template. Cut out along the grey lines, including the two in the centre of each label.  Then thread through the sparklers and done!

 

DYI Painted Pumpkins

We love fall so we were really happy to share this fall inspired DIY project. Isn’t it a little early, you say? Have you ever planned a wedding, we answer? It takes a while, you know. So for all of our fall brides we are sharing a different take on pumpkins this year and really dressing them up! Long gone are the days of pumpkin carving, now it’s all about paint, color and patterns! Take a look at these pumpkins transforming  into a gorgeous centerpiece…

Materials:
1. pumpkins of all sizes and colors (of course)
2. paints – you can use the following: glitter spray paint, satin finish acrylic paint, and metallic finish acrylic paint
3. extra accessories – say some faux pears & apples
4. paintbrushes
5. painter’s tape

Step 1: Start painting your pumpkins. You’ll want a good base if you plan on painting patterns or adding details like glitter. You can mix white, yellow and a bit of gray to create ivory for this first pumpkin.

Step 2: Roughly draw out your pattern if it’s a bit complex. We decided to do a scallop base for this pumpkin, so we quickly drew the shape around the pumpkin.

Step 3: Paint away!!! This is the fun part. You can get really creative with your pumpkins. We did a couple different things with our pumpkins which you can see. The satin finish paints will give your pumpkins a pretty solid base and do a great job of covering up the true color of your pumpkin. The metallic paints are great for a textured antique look to the pumpkins and perfect if you want a bit of the color beneath it to show through.


You can do a couple different things with your pumpkins. Use the metallic gold as an all over cover which is great if you want the antique look. It’s so classy! Or try using the metallic gold as an accent in the natural creases of the pumpkin as well as polka dots! There’s really so much you can do.

Now all you have to do is set up your centerpiece! This really makes such a fun setting for a fall dinner. Carve out the center of one of your pumpkins and add some flowers (you’ll want to carve the pumpkin before you being to paint it). Add some hand done place cards and menus and you’re set. This project is really easy and you can even get the little ones involved!

 

DIY Wooden Ring Bearer Box with a Vintage Finish!

This has become our favorite new alternative to the traditional ring bearer pillow. If you’re anything like us, you know what it’s like to get that major anxiety watching a 4-year-old boy walk down the aisle with however-many-thousand-of-dollars worth of metal and precious stones hanging off a pillow. Our eyes literally become glued to the rings while watching them being walked down (we are also trying to get the perfect shot, but that’s another story) Yes, yes, it’s crazy and we know they’re supposedly tied to the pillow with a string/ribbon, but it still gives us major nerves. Today’s DIY does a bit more for the little OCD guy hiding inside us… an enclosed box that’s sure to keep the rings safe all the way down the aisle! 🙂

Here’s what you’ll need:

・ unfinished wood box with divider (you can pick one up at the local craft store for $2)
・ interior wood stain (we used the sample size of Minwax’s Wood Finish: Special Walnut #224)
・ paint brush
・ extra fine point white paint pen
・ muslin or other neutral fabric

Step 1: Stain the outside and inside of the box using a paint brush. Typically it is recommended that you stain wood by using a cotton cloth to rub in the stain, but we found that painting is easier and equally effective in this situation (since we used a fairly light color, applying it liberally with the paintbrush didn’t end up in any overdramatic results). Don’t worry about removing the metal clasps or anything, either. The stain wipes right off metal, and if there is any residue, it just gives a little more of an antique feel. Apply a few coats if necessary; let the box dry overnight.

(Depending on the roughness of the surface, it may also be helpful to lightly sand down the box first before staining)

Step 2: Use the paint pen to decorate the top of the box. You can use your initials, the date, etc… the fine point paint pen makes it very easy to draw, but if you aren’t confident in using it without any guidance, you can trace your design with a pencil first!

Step 3: On the inside of the top, use the paint pen to mark the spaces accordingly with “Mr.” and “Mrs.”, or “His” and “Hers”… whatever you prefer!

Step 4: Cut two rectangles of muslin to line the bottom of the box where the rings will lie. We measured the piece to be able to fold into thirds, and placed them in the box.

Voila!

DIY Noise Makers

We have a soft spot for simple DIY projects. And if they’re also crazy cute, that’s even better. It’s projects like these DIY Noise Maker Place Cards that beef up your wedding, infuse it with personality and wholeheartedly make it yours. These babies are gorgeous for weddings, uber fun for New Year’s and for a New Year’s Wedding ? Pitch perfect. What’s not to love about that?

Instructions

1. Purchase store bought noise makers (they are affordable to buy in large packs.)

2. Take off the hideous outside and trace it as a template onto pretty shear scrapbook paper.

3. Print out table numbers onto the same sheer paper and cut into small squares.

4. Roll the paper to fit into the noise maker and glue to close. Insert the table number into the bottom of each noise maker.

5. Finish off with a pretty ribbon and simple guest tag.

6. Set out as place cards and enjoy the noise making for kisses that your guests will proceed to make throughout the night!

DYI Time!

You guys are going to go bonkers for this next DIY feature. A simple and totally adorable do-it-yourself project made especially for the boys. It’s SO, so so easy and can be completely customized to fit your own unique style. Love them! Oh and to sweeten the pot, we have a really clever packaging idea. Spice things up and make them for your bridesmaids, as party favors, as holiday gifts… the options are endless!

1. Buy blank, light colored t-shirts sized appropriately for the boys in your wedding.

2. Play around with fonts. Choose a style you like; simple, fancy, formal or fun. You can use the same font for all shirts or mix them up!

3. Size your graphics, measuring how wide across the chest you’d like your word to extend. 8″ is a good maximum width for a single word. If using the same font for all shirts, size the longest word (groomsmen in this case), and make all 3 words the same font size, so they look consistent.

4. Reverse your graphic horizontally so it’s a mirror image. Make it whatever color you want it to be on your shirt. Save your files separately as a PDF, TIFF or JPEG . Take them, along with your blank t-shirts to your local Kinkos. They will make a transfer of your artwork and iron it on your shirt for $10. Be sure to tell them how many inches down from the top of neckline to place your graphic (4.5″ – 6″ is a good range.) Feel free to use these templates for your groom, your groomsmen and your best man.

*You can also do this at home really easily and save even more moolah. Office Depot sells printable transfer sheets that you can use to print out the words using your color printer. Then, simply iron on the letters using the instructions provided on the transfers box. SO easy.

And here is a really easy, really cute way to package these babies up…

Here’s how you do it. Go to Icon Global to order 3″ x 12″ clear, plastic mailing tubes. You can leave as is or find cool paper to wrap the tubes with. Lay the tube over your paper, mark a line on the paper at each end of the tube. Use a triangle to draw straight, 90 degree cut lines on each side. Use either scissors or an xacto knife and straight edge to be more precise. Once the paper is cut to the exact width of the tube, line one edge with double sided tape and attach to tube. Roll paper around tube and double stick the loose edge to the tube, overlapping about an inch. Roll your t-shirt, place inside the tube, add end caps and adorn with a ribbon.