Monday, June 15, 2015

DIY Wedding Table Numbers- A Tutorial

Hard to believe our wedding is less than 4 months away! I really wasn't confident this project would turn out well. I was skeptical about how well the spray paint would work, but it did, and they turned out beautifully! Now I'm going to show you how to do it!

For this project you will need:

  • Picture frames. I bought most of mine from Marshalls. I also used an old frame I didn't want anymore as a tester. 
  • Painters Tape. This is only if your frames are tricky like mine and you can't get the glass out. 
  • Mirror Glass Spray Paint. I used Rustoleum "Mirror Effect" and it worked really well. I also tried just a silver spray paint because the caps on the cans look so similar. Don't be deceived, just regular metallic silver paint will not work. Get the mirror stuff.
  • Aluminum Foil. I'll get to this later.
  • White Craft Paint. 

Step 1

Carefully remove the glass from the frames and place on your painting surface. Don't cut yourself! This was honestly the hardest step because many of the frames had the glass glued in them. Aaron shattered one trying to get it out, so I just used painters tape to isolate the glass from the more difficult frames. 

Step 2
This was after 2 coats. You can already see the shine!

Spray a coat of mirror paint. A very, very, very, VERY light coat. You will not get a mirror effect if you spray on thick coats. I did this for a few of them and they just looked silver. Fortunately, the paint scrapes off of the glass very easily, so if you mess up and spray a layer too heavily, you can always start over!

Step 3
All painted and drying!

Spray 4 more of these light layers of paint. The can says "let dry 1 minute" in between coats, but it was rather humid out. Therefore, I waited about 4 minutes. You'll actually see the color of the paint change as it dries, so you'll know when it's time for a new layer. It never hurts to let it dry more! After the last coat, let the glass sit for about 30 minutes until it's completely dry. The side that wasn't sprayed painted on is actually the "front" and will show the best mirror effect. Remove any painters tape.

Step 4
Blurry stencil example, after I put it back in the frame

Stencil your numbers/lettering onto the glass. I used the Bombshell Pro font. To stencil, I held each piece of glass up to my computer screen and stenciled the number on the "front" side (the side I didn't spray on.) I used a thin, grey, washable marker to draw my numbers because it wipes off the glass easily and any left over marks will blend in with the glass. You can always print your stencil on paper and put it under your glass to stencil and you can use any type of writing utensil that you'll be able to see on your glass. Whatever works best for you!

Step 6

Paint your numbers on and let them dry! I used the can of white sample paint we got at the hardware store. Craft paint from the craft store works too. The paint is easily scraped off the glass, so just be careful after it dries.

Step 7

Cut a piece of aluminum foil to the size of your frame. Okay this is how to really get your mirror to reflect. Because the mirror spray paint doesn't make the glass completely opaque, the mirror effect shows through whatever is behind it. Most of my frames had a black velvet backing, which made the mirror look a little dark. I inserted a piece of foil, shiny side against the glass, between the backing and the glass and it really made the mirrors shine. It's a personal preference, but if you want the mirrors to look more reflective/silver, use that tip!

Step 8

Reassemble your frames! You're done!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Butterick b5882

Some days, you just need to sew a dress...

About 8 months ago, my mom saw me admiring this fabric and bought me 2 yards "for a rainy day." I found a pattern I liked and then it just sat on my shelf as it kept getting moved to the bottom of the project list. That is until a few weeks ago, when we scheduled our engagement picture session. I knew I had to finish this dress to wear for those pictures.

Here's what the back looks like

Overall, this is one of the most professional looking projects I've ever completed and I couldn't be happier with it. I'm going to attribute it to the fact that I followed the pattern almost exactly, which is the opposite of my usual sewing strategy. Some of the directions weren't so clear, however this pattern was designed by Gertie over at Gertie's Blog for Better Sewing and she had a detailed post all about this dress that really helped fill in the blanks. 

Pretty pleats up-close

My only deviations from the pattern were not adding the "inside belt" and the choice not to put in a lining. Despite the fact the the fabric is mostly white, it really isn't see-through. A lining felt like an unnecessary step. Instead, I added a stabilization piece to the inside of the top. This also finished the top seam. 

A peek inside and a look at the stabilization piece I added in place of a lining.

Beautifully serged seams
When we get our engagement pictures, I will post a picture of me in the dress. I also wish you all could see me spin in this. The circle skirt twirl is seriously the best!

Updated (6/22/15)
We got our engagement pics! Huge thank you to All Heart Photo and Video for a fun day and some great pictures.
All Heart Photo and Video

All Heart Photo and Video

All Heart Photo and Video

Monday, May 25, 2015

DIY Wedding Signs

I don't know how I'd ever complete half the projects I do if it weren't for Aaron. We really work well together because it seems whatever skill one of us doesn't have, the other one does. Not only do I not have skills with power tools, I also kind of fear them. And they can smell fear! Aaron knows his way around a table saw, so that was super helpful for this project. 

The plan for these signs is to be a nice little bit of decor on our guest book table and place card table. The big sign will really set a nice tone for the wedding as soon as people walk into the venue, as well as provide everyone with a clear timeline.

We made this project before all the drama, so the date on the big sign is wrong. I'll need to sand that off and change that soon. 

This is what it looks like when we have wood in our car. Tiny car problems.

First thing we did was to plan how many boards we'd need. 

Everything cut to size

So many pieces!

Our plan for the small signs was to make each one 12"x14" . We bought two 8' long pieces of 1"x4" boards and cut them into pieces (each piece was 4"x12') with an extra piece for the back of each sign to hold it together. This diagram shows how we made the small signs:

The brown boards are the boards from each sign. The orange ones are the extras used to hold the backs together. The green dots show where we put the screws in to hold them all together.

The plan for the big sign was to make it 36" x 48". We bought three 8 ft long boards of 1"x6" wood and cut them in half (48" pieces.) Again, 2 extra boards to hold it together. Here's another diagram:

The brown boards are the boards are the fronts. The orange ones are the extras used to hold the back together. The green dots show where we put the screws in to hold them all together.

The second step was to stain it all. We freaking love the shade "Dark Walnut" by Minwax. We've used it on almost every wood project we've done. 

After it all dried, we laid the pieces together in the order we wanted them. Then we drilled the extra boards across the "back" to hold it all together.

Once they were all together, we leaned them as straight as we could against the wall and used a projector to project my designs onto each sign. This was the hardest part of the project because lining it up and getting it straight took a certain finesse neither of us have. I did the designs in photoshop, but theres a bunch of different programs that I could have used. 

Then I traced every letter in pencil. I tried a black background with white text, then a white background with black text. I found the latter works better as far as seeing what you're doing. 

This is what the traced letters look like, pre-painting

I used a very fine brush

After my wrist recovered from all the tracing, it was painting time! I purchased a sample size of white paint from the hardware store, but craft paint would work as well. I used a little bit of gold craft paint on the big sign for a nice accent.

My beautiful maid of honor Anna came over to help. 

We let them dry and they were all done!

Hopefully I can find the time before the wedding to scratch off the old date and paint on the new one!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

DIY Pocket Squares

Woohoo more wedding crafts! Aaron is a fashionable dude and for the wedding, he's forcing his buddies to be fashionable as well. He picked out a super cool suit for him and the guys, and we found some great olive green ties that matched our vision for the color scheme. We thought it would be fun to find unique pocket squares for each of the guys so that they wouldn't match exactly. We were disappointed to discover that olive green is not a popular color for pocket squares, especially in the middle of April. We didn't want to wait until the fall to find them because that would be cutting it a little close to the wedding, so off we went to find fabric to make them. 

I basically followed SewTacey's tutorial exactly and it was very easy to follow! The only thing I did differently was use a mini hair straightener to press the edges. I love using my mini straightener for things like hems and edges because I don't have to drag out my bulky ironing board. I usually keep it next to my machines on my desk, so I don't even have to move really! 

Unfortunately, we were only able to find 2 fabrics we liked, so we'll have to keep searching for 2 more.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

The Wedding Drama

I really should have seen this coming. Everyone was telling me "every wedding has it's drama" and so far (at that point), our wedding had none.

About two weeks ago, we got a phone call from our venue. Due to some renovations, they could no longer accommodate our wedding. Needless to say, we were devastated. This wasn't just a wedding venue to us, it was the building where we met. Our first dance was supposed to happen in the exact spot where we met. But with less than 5 months until the wedding and all of the vendors booked, we were scrambling to find a solution.

Enter a miracle. We reached out to a local theatre in the area that has a really beautiful space frequently used for weddings. They didn't have our date available, but they had another date very close to ours. We really loved the venue and decided to go for it. Through some miracle, all but one of our vendors is available for the new date and we were able to find a replacement fairly easily.

Oh, did I mention the new date is exactly 6 years (to the day) after we met?

We're really lucky everything worked out, despite the financial and emotional damages. And hopefully, this is it as far as wedding drama goes.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

DIY Bridesmaid Boxes Tutorial

I haven't been able to craft like I want to in the past couple of months, hence why I haven't been posting much. Nothing made = nothing to write about! Between launching my Etsy shop, completing several freelance projects, planning the wedding, etc. time has not been on my side to craft. There are a lot of DIY projects that need done for the wedding, however they all involve spray painting or wood staining, and winter on the East Coast has not been kind. I'm hoping this month is warm so I can get some stuff done!

This project began before the winter hit, so I was able to use spray paint!

When we got engaged, our friends basically all knew we'd ask them to participate in our wedding. But of course I still had to do something adorable and crafty to officially ask them.

This is how I built my "Will you be my bridesmaid?" boxes and you can do it too!

Materials needed:

  • A Box. I got mine a Michaels, but most places with craft stuff have them. Or if you need a bigger box, try a shoe box!
  • Spray paint. The color I used was "Satin Aubergine" by Rustoleum.
  • Tape to cover any metal pieces of your box. I used painters tape.
  • Glitter.
  • Stickers to print on. Again, mine came from Michaels.
  • Modpodge and a brush to paint it on with.
  • Fillings (I'll go into detail on what to fill it with in a little bit below.)

Step 1:
Tape over any metal pieces of your boxes. Mine only had the clasp in the front, but I've seen boxes that have little metal feet as well. 

Step 2:
Spray paint your boxes (as many coats as needed) and let them dry for at least 24 hours. I chose to spray both the inside and outside of mine. Make sure they're totally dry because you won't want them to be sticky for the next steps.

Step 3:
Print on your stickers and stick them on the inside lid of the box. Mine were fairly simple to print on, but every printer is different. I recommend printing a test page to see how everything will line up before using your sticker page. 

Step 4: 
Using your brush, Modpodge around the sticker, staying as close to the edge of the sticker as possible.

Step 5: 
Glitter over the entire inside of your box! Let it dry a little and then dump it over and shake to remove the excess glitter. Obviously, don't shake it over any surface you don't want to be glittered forever. I always shake off glitter over a large piece of paper so I can dump it back into the container and not waste any, but if you don't care about wasting glitter a garbage can works fine too.

Step 6:
Let it dry completely and fill!

For my fillings I chose some silly things to bring out my wedding themes and colors, but I also threw in a few nice things to celebrate with as well.

Here's what I put in:

  • Paint chips with my colors on them (Eggplant and Olive)
  • Nail polish in my wedding colors 
  • A magazine with inspiration of what I want their dresses to look like
  • A ring pop to "propose" to them
  • Print outs of important info for the wedding (dates of the shower, wedding party members, etc.)
  • Homemade cookies, 1 bride dress cookie and 3 purple bridesmaid dress cookies
  • A bottle of champagne to celebrate with them (Maura didn't get one because she's only 20)
  • A cute little book all about being a bridesmaid


Obviously all of these are not mandatory. If you're on a budget or have a lot of bridesmaids, the paint chips, the print out, and the cookies were all free. The book and the champagne were a little pricey, but I didn't mind including those since I only have 3 bridesmaids. 

Other suggestions of what to include:

  • Gift card to go out and celebrate with 
  • Jewelry 
  • Pocket agenda with all the important dates written in
  • Beauty products, like fun soaps or bubble bath
  • Other baked goods, macarons, brownies, etc.
  • A card or a nice letter expressing why having her as part of your day is so important

I would have loved to have included some of these but the boxes were kinda small and I had a budget.

P.S. They all said yes!

Next week Aaron is going to write a post about his groomsmen boxes and how he made them!