Friday, January 25, 2013

Some Fun DIY Ideas to Customize your Wedding

I wanted to take some time to write down some of my favorite DIY wedding ideas. This stuff is relatively simple to do and can make a big impact in a small way. I, personally, have always found the details to be so important. Like ceremony programs, which were painstakingly cut, glued, sewn, whatever. It's the small things which show the personality of your wedding.

1. Use photos in your save the dates, invitations, and thank you cards. You can do something as simple as sticking a wallet sized photo inside the card or go as elaborate as having press printed cards made with many photos.

2. Homemade favors. My favorite wedding favors have been the homemade kinds. And, generally, food related. Custom cookies made in your wedding theme colors, maybe something meaningful to the two of you? I should have had Red Sox cookies at my wedding. I once went to an Italian wedding where they told me it was tradition for the Mom & Aunts to all bake cookies. They had them set out on gorgeous platters along with empty take out boxes. You filled the take out boxes with whichever cookies you wanted. Jams are my top favorite! Homemade, generally in those tiny little 1/4 cup jars. You can add a custom label and presto, gorgeous favors! (I love Online Labels for all of my labels - they have some awesome shapes and thousands of sizes.) Wine Bottles with custom labels also make great favors.

3. Speaking of labels, there is an endless supply of things you can do with custom labels. My personal favorite is custom water bottle labels. Many brides are choosing to get married outdoors. Some locations will provide water, some do not. Especially if your location does not provide it, consider buying cases of water and adding your own labels. You can put engagement photos on them, incorporate your colors or theme. You can even custom design each label to have your guest's name and table number on it and use them as place cards. Online Labels has a large selection of sizes and paper types including a waterproof paper so you can keep your water bottles on ice without having the printing run off.

Labels can be used on candies, mints, favor tins, etc. It is a cheap way to make them more personalized to your wedding.

4. Custom groomsmen gifts. Buy a 6 pack of each guy's favorite beer, relabel them with custom labels: Beer labels. You can also add a custom photo keychain with bottle opener.

5. Custom Bridesmaid gifts. Girls are generally much easier to buy for, however, you can still get them cute personalized gifts. For example, if you wanted to give them jewelry, maybe give them a sterling bracelet with a gorgeous photo charm of the two of you. Or maybe a custom cosmetic bag.

6. Get creative with your assigned seating. Instead of using basic table numbers, use something fun. Such as places you have been while dating, places you are traveling to for your honeymoon, favorite movies, mountains, etc. Be creative and see if you can tie it in with your theme.

7. Custom photo guest book. Boring guest books with lines are so out. Give your guests something to talk about. Use photos from your relationship or engagement session to create a personalized guest book. You can go traditional and leave a blank white page between images for guests to write on, or have some fun and add color. You can even a fun question to each page. For example, on one page you might have, "Give us one piece of advice for a long, happy marriage."

8. Use ribbons in your wedding colors. There's something about a tiny piece of ribbon that can add so much volume to an otherwise ordinary piece of paper. Add it to invites, programs, table numbers, favors, cake knife, etc. Tulle is also a very cheap item that can be used in the same ways.

9. Make your own labels for drink pitchers, food cards, etc. Many places don't even put labels on buffet foods. Although you and your families might have an idea of the food you chose, many guests can't tell the difference between fish and chicken when it's covered in sauce and veggies. You can easily print out custom cards on card stock. Again, use your wedding colors and be creative.

10. Custom shirts for all! Purchase shirts on clearance racks at your favorite stores (Penney's is an excellent choice) and iron on your own letters. You can make custom shirts for the guys, girls, family, kids in the wedding party, robes for the girls are cute when getting ready, "Mrs." jackets, panties, whatever for the bride. Maybe even a funny pair of boxers for the groom. This is especially fun if everyone wears their shirts during the rehearsal.

There are so many different ways to get extra flare into your wedding. Keep your eyes peeled while making choices for your wedding. You might come across something you can easily personalize. After all, your wedding is about who you are. Celebrate it!

We do sell many of these items to our customers if you prefer not to do the design work yourself, or if you don't have the right printer for the job. We can custom design anything using your photos or just implementing your theme. Please contact us for pricing.


Jennifer Duval is the owner of Duval Digital, a Colorado Springs based wedding and portrait photography studio. She loves outdoor weddings and homemade wedding favors, preferably food based. She has been asked on occasion to help with wedding planning because she loves to focus on the little details and is a photoshop wiz. However, her primary love has always been photography.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

2013 Colorado Springs Bridal Shows

Happy 2013! That's right, a new year, a new wedding planning season. Which of course means that the best bridal shows in the country are coming up in the next couple of months. For those in Colorado Springs, I highly recommend Bridal Extravaganza at the Cheyenne Mountain Resort. It is on Sunday, January 27, 2013 from 11am - 4pm. Out of all of the shows I have done in the past 5 years, this one is consistently the best. They have wonderful vendors, great food tastings, the wide aisles make it easy to navigate and they give away some really amazing prizes.

You can find more information and get your free tickets here: Bridal Extravaganza

Here are some other bridal shows coming up this spring:

January 6, 2013 11am-4pm - Bridal Gala 2013
                                        Embassy Suites, Commerce Center Dr, Colo. Springs
January 8, 2013 6-8pm - Bridal Showcase
                                 Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame, Colorado Springs
January 13, 2013 12-4pm - Bridal Festivals
                                     Antlers Hilton, 4 S. Cascade Ave., Colorado Springs
February 24, 2013 12-5pm - One Moment in Time Wedding Revue & Fashion Show
                                       Crowne Plaza, 2886 South Circle Drive, Colorado Springs
April 7, 2013 12-4pm - Bridal Festivals
                               Antlers Hilton, 4 S. Cascade Ave., Colorado Springs
April 23, 2013 6-8pm - Bridal Showcase
                               Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame, Colorado Springs