DIY Wedding

Welcome to my DIY Wedding & Reception

We are having a simple Justice of the Peace ceremony & later having the Big Reception! We have changed our minds and are now going for a Western style Wedding, but I'm leaving the beach theme wedding posts on here.
All ideas are Welcomed, as I'm kind of a DIY kind of person & can't see pouring tons of money into just one day of our lives, when we have so many years ahead of us (God Willing). We are both Christian. He's Latino & I'm a lil bit of everything, mostly white. We want to cultivate both of our customs into our reception. Please feel free to browse & leave a note of advice! Thanks!

A Walk in my Boots.....

The Big Day

We all want our Wedding Day to be Extra Special, that is just a given, but how do we get there? What are the steps to achieving our Dream Wedding & being able to afford it, without debt.
1st We need to think of where we are willing to Splurge our funds & where we would like to scrimp.
2nd How do we pull this off?
3rd What can we do ourselves, our friends & family do (Do NOT include jealous people!) & our fiancee do? Who do we know that may be in a business that could help us? Networking!!!
4th Where do we start?
I've been researching for about 11 months & I have a good grasp on things. I want to Share what I've learned & want more ideas, too. We can help each other!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Beach Theme Reception Ideas:

        You or your friends & family can transform your Reception Hall or site into a Beach like setting with a little imagination & creativity. Shindigz offers wall coverings in a wide variety of styles or you could get a friend (or do-it-yourself) to create some murals on a large, white roll of a paper (party supply store or craft store).  You can make edible Pineapple Palm Trees ( that would tie nicely into your décor and make your guests’ mouth water. The best part is you can use it as an appetizer, too.  Another tip is to stock up on Brown Sugar & use it to make sand castles or mounds of sand (possibly around a bowl of blue jell-o or just a bowl of water (add blue or green food color to add more of a beach touch or fill with a few gold fish). These will make great centerpieces or eye catchers on a side table. Be careful with height & placement, especially if children are present. Children are naturally curious & if fish are used, they may try to catch them.  Another idea is to place Brown Sugar around your cake & draw a heart in it with your names. This gives your cake an extra personalized touch & will make great photos!
            Centerpieces will be needed for all of your guests’ tables. If you choose flowers, choose those that are in season & sturdy ones. You could use tiny pails (craft store or maybe toy department of a store, or a dollar type store) fill with only enough water to keep stems wet (less mess if spilled) & arrange in easy style.  Or you could opt for a more exotic flare & add real or fake palm leaves to each table with a bowl filled with seashells & a candle (you can purchase battery operated candles).  “Colorful toy beach pails complete with the sand sculpting tools would be great for a beach theme. Fill them up with sand, throw in a few shells, a bottle of suntan lotion.      You can buy those large, 4 wick scented candles. Place one in a glass pie plate or other shallow dish. Add water and floating, short stemmed flowers and greenery. These smell great and will burn long into the midnight hours! If you want to use silk flowers, just create a wreath out of them to fit the base of the candle.
* For a variation on that idea, instead of water, add sand, shells and miniature starfish!
* You can also get candles that have seashells or other objects embedded in them. They are a bit more expensive though. If you want to keep it cheap and personal, make your own! Here is a wonderful site that has a "Free Projects" page that even tells you step by step how to make beautiful candles. This site is friendly, informational and sells everything you need at wholesale prices! Visit Candles And Supplies!” ( These ideas should get the ball rolling, for you. You can always post a comment for more help & I’ll be glad to help you out!     
The Cake is at a high priority for your reception! There are oodles of ways to do this & getting an idea of a head count or approximate head count will help. First you can choose a traditional cake or opt for the new trend of Cupcakes. Cupcakes are much less expensive & can be decorated to reflect the beach them, as well. You can purchase cupcake stands at most craft stores Michael’s, A.C. Moore (Beyond The Page MDF Cupcake Stand-15.5" Tall, $30.79. they have others, too), Walmart (Wilton 3 tier stacking dessert tower, $13.00), just to get you started. You can rent them, too. After you make your choice, you must choose a Baker or Professional Cake designer. Again, head count is essential for this, too. Cakes are costly & more so during peak wedding season. You, also, must book well in advance to make sure your Cake Caterer has an opening. You can always ask a few friends or family members to make your cake instead of buying you a wedding gift. This would be a great help to you & they would be a part of your Special day, too. This could save you a ton of money! I’ve priced wedding cakes & they average (for 100 people) around $300 & up, easily! You will want to pay a deposit to your Baker immediately, to hold your day for you.
Okay, now how do you tie your meal to the beach theme? Barbeque (very messy),  tropical chicken bites on real sugarcane skewers, speared with papaya, mango or pineapple salsa, for a casual wedding, picnic fare hors d'oeuvres can be fun; mini hot dogs, mini cheeseburgers(in paradise) Men go nuts over beef sliders, Do a Slider Station- You can have beef, chicken and even vegetarian sliders with all the fixings. It could be an action station where a Chef/Cook is actually grilling the burgers on a grill or hibachi and the guests can garnish their own sliders, Citrus-grilled vegetable skewers with roasted garlic aioli for the vegetarians and the health-minded, roasted pork loin/chicken/shrimp, pasta salads (using Shell shaped pasta), jell-o, & there’s even more choices. Remember the shrimp will be costly. You can have whatever you want for food. The guests will still know that your wedding is beach themed! Remember creativity is the key!
Boy! All that food has made me thirsty! Never, ever have an Open bar, especially if money is an issue! There are many other ethical reasons not to, also. First, you have to choose drinks suitable for all guests. Bottled water is always a great idea. Add some flavored waters, too. Tropical fruit punch would be great with a little umbrella or a slice of fruit on the edge of each glass (it will make the littlest guests excited, too). Sweet tea is another option. I live in the South & Sweet tea is more popular than soda-pop here! You could also, offer a non- sweetened tea or a regular iced tea with lemon or lime. Just think Beach & summer time, you will get more ideas as you go. For alcoholic beverages there is a wide array of choices, too. Maybe jell-o shots in tropical flavors, or margaritas in tropical flavors (mango, watermelon, papaya, etc). You get the idea.
Time to dance! If you really want to make a hit with the younger crowd, try adding the limbo into your music choices! The Beach Boys have great beach songs (big hit with those from the 1950-1960 era, too). You can mix up your music selection by adding a few beach type songs in with your favorites. Bands are more expensive than DJs & if you have an I-Pod or MP3 player, you have hours of music. I-Pods & MP3s are the new trend in wedding music DJs. They will save you a big expense, too.
You want your gifts to have a keepsake from your wedding. You can save a lot of money by making these favors, yourself (or with help from your bridal party). Edible gifts are a great idea & easy to do. You could make Sea Glass Candy (tropical flavors with food coloring to match bridal colors), seashell-shaped (or palm tree-shaped) cookies, or M&Ms (bridal colors), or almonds, etc. I have a recipe for Sea Glass Candy. I will email you, if interested.  Non-edible gifts are fantastic, too! You can purchase favor sized pails or use mini flower pots and make your own seed packets (heavy cardstock, markers, glue) & send each guest home with a seed of flowers, herbs, vegetable, or fruit that they can plant & enjoy. Personalize each pot or pail with you & your spouse’s names & wedding date. You can also, fill these with candy &/ seashells. There are endless ideas to work with.
This should get you off in the right direction to your Beach Themed Wedding Reception! Think Beach: flamingos, sand, surf, water, fish, dolphins, coral, seashells, starfish, & sun! And you can come up with a great wedding!

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