I so wish I had posted this earlier (or at least started it before 9:15pm!) because our wedding really was, pretty much, totally DIY.
There were so many aspects of DIY to our day it’s hard to know where to begin. Our main reason for DIY-ing so much of it was budget. We saw lots of things and ultimately thought, “Sod it, we could make that ourselves!” We applied this logic to pretty much everything, including the cake (more on that shortly!)
Let’s start with my own personal labour of love, the bunting. I wrote a post about how I made my bunting way back when. It took a very long time, but I’m really pleased with how it turned out. Unfortunately it looked a little swamped in the barn in the end, it was hung up so high you couldn’t really see it, but it looked nice nonetheless and I was proud of my small contribution to the DIY.
Because I have to admit, none of the DIY aspects would’ve worked were it not for my parents and sister. They pulled out all the stops to make things happen for the wedding. The paper confetti cones were handmade (Oh dear, please don’t let us get into a copyright tussle, sorry Mr McCartney (or whoever owns the Beatles back catalogue these days!!)
To fit in with our music theme, we bought some cheap Ikea frames and printed off pictures for each of the bands (Okay, so table names and numbers must be the easiest DIY but still!)
At the last minute we realised we didn’t really have a table plan (we had a rather elaborate and complicated play on American style ‘escort cards’, see below!) so we had to throw this together the day before the wedding so people had a rough idea where in the barn their table actually was!!)
Yeah, so we had this whole music theme going on with the wedding and we had this really elaborate plan that was based on escort cards we’d seen on Pinterest (CURSE YOU PINTEREST!!!) The idea being that each tape had the guests name and the table printed onto it. This was a FAFF! A: It was a faff to make; do you have any idea the strange kind of website I had to visit to buy these tapes, matching ones, in bulks?! Printing and sticking the labels was an effort using the crappiest template ever onto pre bought tape labels!! and B: It was hella confusing and we had to station the bridesmaids next to the table to speed it up a bit!! I hope no one ever played their tape, they were all terrible spoken word horror stories!!
The place names themselves were also a faff, but this time, for my sister. But they looked so bloody good, I hope she agrees it was worth it! Basically each person had a record with a printed label which had their names (obviously!) and a different Beatles track on it. I think they had a little fun choosing some of the song titles for our guests…! People loved them and at the end of the meal we handed out plain paper record sleeves for people to take them home.
I’m not sure where we had seen a wedding post box, but it seemed a lovely idea. Enter Mr Fleming. Papa. As a cabinet maker and general creative whizz, he created a beautiful post box for our guests to post wedding cards in (it saved them getting lost!)
I wish I had a proper picture of our guest book but that was another DIY thing, we bought a book and stuck a coloured envelope onto each page. Then when guests had been in the photobooth, they could write a message on a card and leave it all in the envelopes. It was a great idea, it looks lovely, BUT the book ended up being so big I think the spine might go!!
Another thing we DIY’d was the big metal hoop of sheet music. We had visited the Hard Day’s Night Hotel in Liverpool for the Hen Weekend (EPIC!) and in the Reception area they have Beatles sheet music hanging from the ceiling. We decided to emulate this using a book of Beatles sheet music and some net. The barn had two big metal hoops, one above the main area, and another over the ceremony area. We (no, sorry, Ruth, Lex, Andy and dad) hung the net and music from the hoop. It looked quite effective I think, although you did have to be told it was specifically Beatles music….
There were lots of other little aspects of DIY; the sweetie bar, the ribbons on the backs of our chairs, the dressing table the cake was on, the stand for the beer….
But perhaps the most epic of all the DIY aspects of the day was….
Epic really. To think my family did that. What clever chaps!
Cut a long story short, the cake was something that seemed time and again to just cost more than we wanted to pay. Coupled with the fact that I couldn’t decide what I wanted, my dad decided he could manage it.
In the end we bought the cakes themselves ready made. They arrived the weekend before the wedding and then the fun began. They kept it all a secret, so all I really saw was the white icing, rolled out and covering the entire breakfast bar in their kitchen (a huge slab of granite!)
It wasn’t until the day before the wedding that I got the big reveal! We had bought an old dressing table from eBay which my dad had resprayed a lovely cream (oh how I miss my dressing table, I hope to be reunited with it soon!). He had a glass top made for it so that the cake sat higher as the middle mirror on the dresser was really tall.
Layer by layer it was revealed. In the end, I had a layer of everything I had asked for over the previous 18 months! First the bottom layer, painted by my sister using our stationery design as a template. Then the stripy layer (apparently, this was the hardest to achieve!). My mum cut out hundreds of little purple hearts for the next layer and to increase the height, they added a layer of silk flowers. Next the spotty layer and finally, a plain little top finished off with a fabulous topper from Miss Cake!
It really did look stunning, and was quite literally, the icing on the cake for our DIY day….
* Also, credit where credit’s due: Some of these photos, and from the posts preceding were taken by our talented photographer, Liam Smith.