Nine theme crafts to brighten your ideal DIY wedding by Rhonda Walinga

There are so many possibilities for decorating your wedding and reception that it’s easy to get lost in the madness of magazines, websites and the ever-present “friendly” advice.

If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed with the options, take a moment, step back, and consider your overall theme.

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Are you a vintage fanatic who’s already sent out your daguerreotype-inspired wedding invites? Or are you already considering what gauzy fabrics to drape about the reception for just the right Midsummer’s Night Dream feel?

Wherever your heart lies, make sure you’ve narrowed down your direction before diving into the details.

To help you out, here are a few broad themes and fun do-it-yourself craft ideas that should help you along in the right direction. Once you settle on vintage lace light globes, for example, you can use that to inspire your table decorations and food displays.

Like the “Love Potion” glass bottle idea for keeping your guests hydrated? Consider using those design elements to inspire your guest book.

Bohemian Wedding

Bohemian is such a beautiful theme to work with, and it’s incredibly flexible. You can certainly go high end with eclectic design elements, but if you’re looking to save some change for the honeymoon, these inexpensive yet impressive projects will help set the tone for less than you’d expect.

Vintage lace doily lamps are one way to add a touch of Victorian elegance to your reception. Super simple and quick to make, consider some other ways you can use the wallpaper paste and balloon combination for unique lamp shades such as raw cotton string or distressed linens.

If you’re leaning more toward the early 1900’s plantation feel, another lighting option could be Mason sun jars. With a little solar snagging, these jars will glow for hours after the sun sets and they take very little time to create.

If your heart’s with the silver screen, however, nothing beats sharing your movie passion with film candle jars. Another quick project, these film-decorated candle holders add a touch of the retro class to any reception layout.

Casual Wedding

Casual weddings are always filled with touches of the elegantly natural. From billowing slips of loosely woven fabrics to raw wood inspiration and delicate sprigs of blossoms, casual weddings can be as stylish as they are natural.

Along the lines of lighting, a nature-inspired approach could include tastefully placed cherry blossom lights. For the cost of some tissue paper, tape, Christmas lights, and dollar store blossoms, these decorations appear far more expensive than they actually are.

To enhance the light in the room and perhaps give a little more dimension to a smaller space, twig-framed mirrors are easy to make, inexpensive and can be naturally dyed to just about any color.

Thirsty guests? It’s always smart to have a beverage bar, but keeping jugs of water out for guests to replenish with is a thoughtful touch that will be much appreciated. These whimsical “Love Potion” glass water bottles are a great way to provide refreshment and add another impressive design element to your reception.

Glamorous Wedding

It’s easy to come up with a ton of directions to take the glamorous theme, but these ideas might help narrow it down.

Photo coasters, for example, can go in just about any direction. You can use sepia images of you and your new mate, reprinted old family photos, pictures of friends, or even images of things you both enjoy.

Another ultra-versatile idea is book-page flower hangers. These can be placed throughout the reception to hold small pictures by thick lengths of ribbon, or for guests to hang fun little ribboned comment cards as a form of guest book.

Finally, you can also make these celebrity-style paper fortune cookies in almost no time out of the glitzy paper of your choice and place them around the reception. Making up the phrases for the inside will be half the fun!

No matter what your theme, it helps to come up with a few core ideas that you love and build the rest of your wedding and reception decorations around them instead of piecing together multiple random elements.

And speaking of theme, picking just the right type of entertainment – be it live jazz, a trivia-popping DJ, or a cut-loose party band – is a lot easier once you’ve settled on your decoration direction!

Rhonda Wallinga manages social media programs for, a leading provider of custom wedding necessities like wedding invitations, personalized letterhead, RSVP cards and wedding programs.

(Photo by David Ball)


About the author 


Dustin Riechmann created Engaged Marriage to help other married couples live a life they love (especially) when they feel too busy to make it happen. He has many passions, including sharing ways to enjoy an awesome marriage in 15 minutes a day, but his heart belongs with his wife Bethany and their three young kids.

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