Rachel + Michael’s Artistic DIY Wedding

Here at DIY Bride, we not only seek for DIY + prettiness aspects of a wedding, we also seek uniqueness and different interpretations of a theme. Don’t get us wrong, we love Pinterest and all the inspiration that’s out there offering us a chance to do the same thing for our own wedding/event, but when we come across a wedding that’s completely refreshing and unique? Well, we’re pretty darn excited.

Rachel + Michael is a very artistic couple that we’re featuring on this lovely Friday. Seriously, Rachel was so resourceful and determined to make their rustic-nature-DIY wedding as unique as it is money-saving. Yes, you read that right. They only spend… *gasp* a little over $700 on everything. Rachel tried really hard (and succeeded!) in using as many free, recycled, or thrift shop finds in the décor as she could, and enlisted friends and family for everything that they couldn’t do or needed help with. With super pretty details and unique finds, Allison Pense Photography did a wonderful job capturing them all on film.

Rachel and her DIY projects were pretty awe-inspiring. She did all the art on her invitation suite, programs, treat bags and table signs. Something super special and unique during the ceremony was that Rachel’s bridal bouquet was literally made as she collected the flowers from 17 of their guests as she was walking down the aisle. Her maid-of-honor then wrapped the stems to create the bouquet! What an awesome cool way to allow the guests to be involved.

Other DIY projects made by the couple as well as friends and family:
Michael’s vows were created in the form of origami fortune teller (Salt Cellar). All the hand drawn art by Rachel for the treat bags, matchbooks for favors, seating labels, and place cards. She grew half of the flowers used for the wedding, including flowers for her bouquet and center pieces. The ring pillow was hand made as well using small baskets with moss and hand made clay mushrooms. Yarn was used to wrapped bottles, jars, monograms, and lamp (photo backdrop).

Much congratulations to Rachel + Michael!!


Photographer: Allison Pense Photography//Wedding Date:09.14.2013//Cake:Laura Zinsman//Fortune Cookies:Carol Jeans Confections//DJ:Elite Entertainment//Favors and Gifts:Fireball Printing//Restaurant:Our House//Submitted via Two Bright Lights

Jessica + Dale’s Superhero Wedding

For the first Real Weddings of this week, I’m featuring a bride who’s super thoughtful and crafty, a combination that’s pretty lethal in my opinion. As a paper crafter myself, I caught myself intensely examining all aspects of her DIY projects as I’m pouring over photos by Ashley Gerrity Photography. But what stood out the most for me was the amazing Superhero spread she created for Dale and the groomsmen, hence the title of this feature. Here’s a quick peek:

Now, onto the wedding itself…

Jessica drew Dale and his groomsmen each a different comic character. She even set up their getting-ready room by creating a Gotham backdrop for the table that was filled with mini candy bars and soda bottles… with labels hand-drawn by herself!! How cool was that??!

For the ceremony, Jessica made “All you need is love!” fans that kept their guests cool in the warm New Jersey summer weather as well as the wedding mad libs that had the ceremony details:

The super adorable cake toppers were hand-painted by Jessica, as well as the painted wine bottles and the Cards box. Jessica and Dale each DIY the favors, which was blends of spices that they use on their “specialties” during date nights!

The gorgeous blend of shades of purple kept this summer wedding looking elegant. However, I can’t deny that my favorite part of this fun and super personalized wedding is the Superhero spread Jessica did for the groom and groomsmen. What a way to make the guys feel oh so special!!
Photographer: Ashley Gerrity Photography//Date: June 15, 2013//Event Venue: Moorestown Community House//Caterer: Summit Catering//

Submitted via Two Bright Lights

Cristina + Craig’s NJ Vineyard Engagement

You know a couple’s wedding day is going be chock full of personal touches when they add them to an e-sesh from jump.  This sweet little love shoot from Janet Lanza Photography included a picnic basket from Craig’s mom who passed away a few years back.  You just know when a couple like Cristina + Craig consider their loved ones in all parts of the planning- their guests are going to be in for a very special wedding!

Like a good wine pairing, this shoot is full of great duos that are sure to spill over into their big day.  Like Cristina’s great fashion sense and movie starlet looks, Janet Lanza’s photos and her ability to capture some of the sweetest looks, and most of all, Cristina + Craig bring out the best in each other!  Thanks Janet Lanza Photography.  Congratulations Cristina + Craig!

Vendor Information:

Photographer: Janet Lanza Photography

Event Venue: Laurita Winery



Tatiana + Rick’s Vibrant Vineyard Wedding

I like wine a lot. I like weddings a lot.  Put the two together and I’m intoxicated with the amount of beauty captured by Sara Wight Photography.  Combine this craftsy couple with Karma Flowers and Trunk Vintage Rentals, some bold blue hues, a beautiful Buddhist ceremony, and the grounds of Alba Vineyard and you have the perfect cocktail of vibrant vineyard charm.

I can’t possibly talk about all the cool crafts in this wedding, so I highly recommend taking a look at the entire gallery.  (Well, actually I could- they are that good- but I would probably need two posts.) Along with the fabulous flowing fabric backdrop, chandeliers and the groom’s green thumb terrariums, the best part about Tatiana and Rick’s Real Wedding was that it was really real.  Tatiana not only shared some crazy cute budget friendly ideas to steal like her craft paper menus and cardboard chalkboard signs, she also let us in on some of moments that can drive a DIY bride crazy.

She also shared some 20/20 hindsight on some projects that didn’t quite have the stamina to hold up to this wild party complete with youngins: like a photo backdrop without too thin ribbon and a hand-sewn ring pillow that may have been missing some ties and dropped the ring coming down the aisle. (Not that she experienced this or anything…)

From the bride:

“We had a blast and it turned out just as we had hoped. In fact, better because for a while there I was worried it was going to be too much going on. In the end it was just enough.”

Just enough is understatement.  This wedding was beautifully crafted and executed and we can’t thank Sara Wight for documenting the deets so perfectly.  Congratulations Tatiana and Rick!

Vendor Information:

Photographer: Sara Wight Photography

Venue: Alba Vineyards

Florals, event design, and rentals: Karma Flowers and Trunk Vintage Rentals

Submited via Two Bright Lights



Meet Real DIYer, Keri Bond aka East Coast Bride

Hello! My name is Keri and on July 14, 2012, I went from being a DIY Bride to a DIY Wife.

My husband and I were married in the episcopal church I grew up going to, and had our garden-themed wedding reception at The Conservatory at the Madison Hotel in our home state of New Jersey.

My husband (to-be, at the time) didn’t get the whole DIY thing. Why DIY when someone else will do it for you? You see, our venue and vendors offered everything and anything a girl could want. Our reception venue generously offered to include our table numbers, escort cards, the ceremony location, caterer, you name it! Easy, right? All I would have left to do is buy a dress and be a bride. My husband thought we hit the wedding jackpot, while I was left with a bad taste in my mouth. Why would I want someone to plan MY wedding? I didn’t want to have the same wedding as the last Madison Hotel Bride, I wanted our wedding to be memorable, and a reflection of myself and my soon-to-be husband.

After some deliberating on both of our parts, we decided to book this gorgeous conservatory as the reception venue for our wedding, but I made it clear I wanted to tackle the designing aspect myself. I knew I could not have some generic framed table number at my one of a kind garden wedding.

I ended up DIY-ing everything I possibly could leading up to our big day. The following is a list of my DIY projects and some tips for executing each one.

To create this pink, grey, and white wedding invitation suite, I ordered the wedding invitations, response cards, and reception cards from Wedding Paper Divas for $0.99 each. This came out to cost $2.97 per invitation suite, and I ordered enough for  80 sets because we invited about 150 to our wedding. The total came to $237.60, but I found a 30% off coupon code, which brought the total down to $166.32 for our invitations. This was not bad considering many vendors quoted me anywhere from $6 to $12 per invitation!  After the discount, I got the price down to approximately $2 per invitation. This was well below my $3-per-invitation budget, so I decided to dress them up a bit. I swapped out the plain white envelopes these invitations came with for a small pink envelope for the response card and a large grey envelope for the outer invitation from Jam Paper. These envelopes came to about $50 total. I ordered grey and white baker’s twine from Amazon.com for about $15, and created the custom chevron monogram on the free website, ipiccy, and printed them with my own printer on card stock I purchased for $3.99 at Michaels. In total, I spent less than $250 on our wedding invitations. Not bad…although, this did not include the price of stamps!

I knew I wanted something unique for our wedding ceremony programs. I narrowed my search down to scroll-inspired programs and these rustic burlap booklet programs. I found this tutorial while scouring the internet for the perfect ceremony programs, and knew I had to tackle this project. Before our wedding, I was not much of a sewer, but luckily I have a very crafty mom, who I could not have done this without!

Some tips:

*Buy your burlap at a local fabric store, NOT at a craft store- it’s MUCH cheaper. I bought mine for $2.99 a yard and purchased 2 yards. This was more than enough and I had plenty left over.

*You will need one sheet of cream card stock per program, but you will only need half the number of kraft paper sheets. For example, if you are making 100 programs, you will need two 50-sheet packages of cream card stock, and one package of kraft paper. Card stock is essentially heavier than regular printer paper, but lighter than poster board. It comes in a variety of weights (I used 110 lb.) Kraft paper is actually made from the pulp of cardboard. It is a bit lighter than card stock and has a subtle rustic texture. The actual pages of the program are printed on the cream card stock and the kraft paper is used as the back cover of the booklet.

*You can get two covers out of the large scrapbook paper. This is the paper I used.

*Use embroidery thread to sew the program; it’s thicker than regular thread. Also make sure your sewing machine has a sturdy needle or it may break.


This was a simple but effective project. I used the same book of scrapbook paper I used to make the programs, leftover cream card stock, and a glue gun. This project was very inexpensive and easy to execute. I dressed up the escort card table with some rose petals from our florist and photos from our parents’ weddings.


This was a project that scared me. I knew I wanted to DIY the table numbers, so when I found these on pinterest, I knew I had to have them. The problem was the sewing. Sewing a straight line for the programs was one thing, but these looked complicated. Fortunately, I enlisted the help of my mom who gave me a full sewing lesson.

Some Tips

*If you are using regular sized wine bottles, cut the burlap to 13.5 inches long and 11 inches across.

*Try to cut the burlap using the finished edges for the top of your bottle so you don’t have to finish them off with the sewing machine!

*If you are adept at using a sewing machine, consider lining the burlap with a sheet of muslin so you can’t see through the burlap.

*Light colored burlap as shown in the picture is more expensive than the traditional brown, so if you are looking to cut costs, you may want to make these with the darker burlap. I paid $6.99 a yard for the lighter burlap, also purchased at the fabric store. Also, if you use the dark burlap, you won’t need to line it with the muslin.


This sign was another simple, but effective detail to incorporate into our wedding day. My good friend, Krista, found this vintage suitcase at a flea market for $5. I knew I had to use it for our wedding, and the suitcase inspired the rustic cards sign. I used the leftover burlap from the ceremony programs, 2-inch letter stencils, and a small container of paint I got at Walmart for $0.57.

It wasn’t long after returning from our honeymoon that I began to miss constantly crafting for the wedding. In August, Krista and I decided to open an Etsy shop with some of the items I made for the wedding. We named it East Coast Bride, after our website we started shortly after her June 2011 wedding and in the midst of my wedding planning. Thanks to the shop, we don’t have to stop crafting (not that I ever would…just wait until you see the DIY holiday gifts I am working on)!

Any projects or tutorials you are dying to see?

*All photos by the fabulous, Cassi Claire Photography.

**See more of our wedding here!


Keri is a newlywed, who is addicted to endorphins and lattes and obsessed with all things pretty. She is the co-founder of East Coast Bride, a wedding website and etsy shop dedicated to her love of beautiful and handmade weddings and lives in New Jersey with her new husband Dan and their rescue dog, Cooper.

Nicole + Jared


Happy Friday, everybody! We’re going to kick off the weekend with this wonderful wedding from New Jersey. I’ve been buggered down with the flu and an ear infection all week, and this wedding totally turned my sick frown upside down – how can this couple’s joy not jump off the screen and grab you?!

Nicole and Jared were married in a very traditional church ceremony before kicking off their decidedly untraditional Hollywood-glam reception. For their entrance, they made a big splash by appearing through the red velvet curtains of the club’s stage. Nicole’s crafty touches extended to the place settings and favors, which she designed herself, and the photo booth with the Hollywood style props was a big hit!




Location: New Jersey

Photographer: George Koroneos at GLK Creative

Exit mobile version