Wedding Reception

In my last post, I left you with a sorry looking teaser shot of the wedding reception that I decorated. As promised, here’s the post about it.

I had a budget of $100 to work with which had to include fresh flowers and decorations. The white and pink tablecloths were provided by the family. I used some things I already had:
milk vases
pink sparklies (the plastic sparkley things found in the floral dept. at Hobby Lobby)
silver beading
“diamond” floral pins
battery operated tea lights
transparent paper
wine glasses
pink ribbon
“diamond” charms
Stuff I borrowed:
big round mirrors
linen napkins
the church’s silverware
6 strands of white wired icicle lights
6 bolts of tulle
Stuff I bought:
6 yards gray fabric
1/2 yard pink satin
pink satin ribbon
round craft box
gray satin ribbon
foam poster boards (2, from the Dollar Store)
white chenille wires (commonly known as pipe cleaners)
pink craft paper (2 rolls)
Stuff I made:
satin flowers
card box
gift table sign
table squares
table lamps
napkin “rings”
flower arrangements
split scarves
lots of messes

I’m proud to say that I came in $20 under budget! (The flowers took 50% of the budget.) The bride wanted simple but elegant. It was just for their family so it wasn’t a large reception, just 36 people.

Now, this was prior to my blogging days so I don’t have any tutorials on the things I made BUT I will be describing what I did along the way. The bride chose pink and gray for her colors. The reception was held at our church house in the children’s (Primary) room. In this room are two large bulletin boards and two chalk boards, all of which hang from the wall and are not removable. The bulletin boards are always nicely decorated with the theme for the year and I certainly did not want to ruin or disassemble them for the evening. So I had to cover them. I sketched out many ideas on paper, perused the internet and finally decided on what I wanted to do:

I covered the bulletin board with pink craft paper. Craft paper is really wide, it’s a little more durable than wrapping paper, it isn’t see-through-y and it was on sale for $2 a roll! So that was taped to the bulletin board frame. Oh, and by tape I mean packing tape!

Next I taped one strand of icicle lights onto the pink craft paper so that the lights were evenly distributed across. Then I covered it with tulle. Because I borrowed the tulle, I couldn’t cut it. So for each bulletin board, I had to roll out the entire bolt in the church hall way, keeping it folded in half lengthwise, and then I folded it width wise 4 times to get it to the width of the bulletin board. I pinned the tulle to the craft paper where it was taped along the bulletin board edges.

The fabric I found at Joanns and loved that it was a silvery shimmery gray. I picked up 6 yards of it, using a 40% off coupon. I used 2 and a half yards on each bulletin board and saved the remaining yard for other projects that I’ll talk about later. I cut it down the center length wise for the split scarf effect and hemmed the edges about an eighth of an inch only. The next thing I had to figure out was how to attach it. In a moment of inspiration, I came up with the idea of using strips of foam poster board. So I cut a few strips from scraps that were as wide as the bulletin board frame is deep and taped it onto the bulletin boards frame in the places I needed to attach the fabric, thereby creating a pin cushion. In the future, if I do something like this again, I will put the foam pieces on before the craft paper so that the foam is fully covered by the craft paper. I pinned the gray fabric so that it fell in layers on the side and then gathered them in a bunch on the other side.

The finishing touch was taking some pink satin flowers I made and putting them on the gathered side. (Visit Paper Loves Glue for a tutorial on the flowers.) I made a bunch of them. Some were a combination of pink satin and the gray fabric, others were just the pink satin or just the gray fabric. I had some diamond looking floral pins from a previous project and decided to use them as the stamens for each flower. I poked them through the center, bent the pin in the back with pliers so that I could easily attach them to hanging fabric, like tulle or the split scarves. Worked perfect!

The chalk boards…. since they are thankfully gray, I decided to also layer tulle to soften them up. This time I had to fold the tulle width wise about 5 times I think. The chalkboards have a thin strip of cork along the top so I attached the tulle with thumb tacks. I designed a monogram for the bride and groom in Adobe Illustrator. I got it printed for free (thanks Honey!), and I then mounted them onto foam poster board. I hung them with ribbon on top of the tulle layer, from the top of the chalkboard. Then I added 5 satin flowers. Nothing spectacular at all but it was something to dress up the chalk boards.

The monogram was taken down during the picture taking sessions aftwerward and the bride and groom held it in front of them and got some fun pictures with it!

In Illustrator again, I imported a pattern for a lamp shade and put the monogram on a matching curve. Then I deleted the pattern outline and printed just the monogram onto transparent paper. I then exported that file, with the pattern outline, to my Pazzles Inspiration and had it cut out the pattern around the text for me. So now I had lamp shades that fit on top of wine glasses! Inside the wine glass I put battery operated tea lights and they became little lamps on the tables. (Directions and pattern can be found here)

As you can see in the above pictures, the actual centerpiece consists of a large round mirror on top of which are pink sparklies scattered around and silver beading laid randomly also. In the middle is a milk vase holding 3 different shades of pink roses. The napkins were rolled simply and secured by a shimmery sheer gray ribbon with a diamond charm hanging from the knot. The candy dishes were from the dollar store and filled with Valentine M&M’s that the mother of the bride had saved from February and had deliciously painstakingly removed all the red ones so what was left was white, pink and dark pink M&Ms. They were a hit and it really helped tie all the pinks together.

I set up a table for the cake in front of one of the bulletin boards so that there would be a nice backdrop for it:

Yes, I fixed the off-centered flower after I took this shot. =) This is another place that the pinned stamens came in handy!

The draped ceiling lights that you can kind of see in this shot:

…and can see better in this shot really set off the whole room!

And I have to thank the hubs for doing that for me!! He first draped tulle around the the light bases, attaching it with white pipe cleaners. He then added a few strands of lights inside the tulle. He did a fantastic job and even solved an issue I couldn’t! I had two tables set up in two corners in the back of the room. I had them set up at an angle and thought there should be something behind them but I didn’t know what. I had to take my kids home from the church so they could get to bed and left my husband setting up. When I came back, I was so happy! I am seriously married to a genius! He had, in both corners, gathered the tulle from the ceiling lights down into a knot, kind of like a thin window drape. It was perfect and beautiful! I added three of the satin flowers over each knot. It totally looked planned but it was one of those happy accidents. You can barely make it out in the above shot but here’s the lower part of it:

Also from this shot:

I made some table squares from the silvery gray fabric for the two tables I just mentioned On top of the gift table (above), I had also made a sign to indicate it was for gifts. I took a small silver frame and put some pale pink scrapbook paper inside, then on top of the glass I put “gifts” with frosted glass vinyl letters that I cut out with my Pazzles Inspiration craft cutter.
I also made a box for cards with that same gray fabric. I picked up a tall round craft box from Hobby Lobby, also using a 40% off coupon. I cut a slit in the lid for the cards to go through and then, using spray adhesive, I attached the fabric to the lid, cutting a slit in the fabric at the card opening and gluing it under the lid. Underneath the lid, I hid all the ends of the fabric by gluing some gray felt over it. For the main box, I glued fabric to the bottom, overlapping up the sides a bit. And then I added the fabric to the sides, folding over one side so that it had a nice finished look to it along the bottom and the other end went inside the box. After the fabric was attached and the glue was dry, around the center of the box I added some wide pink satin ribbon. Then over that I attached some gray satin ribbon down the center. On top of that I added another satin flower. On top of the lid, above the the card opening, I attached another monogram. I so wish I had another picture of that box! Stupid camera batteries!

The other table held a basket of glow sticks that was used during the couples send of. Fun idea (not mine though)!

So that’s it! The mother of the bride loved it and cried when she saw it, which made me cry! Tears of relief on my part! I received a lovely thank you card from the bride and groom as well.

It was fun, all consuming, stressful, and after it was done, I didn’t do anything for two days. And then I couldn’t remember what I used to do before. Thanks for putting up with my ramblings and bad pictures.

Have an awesome day!