Category: DIY Wedding Ideas

Tough decision…or is it?

As a budget-conscious couple, you’re probably thinking DIY wedding invitations will save you lots of money. Although this is very possible it all depends on the style of invitation you want to create. The more elaborate the invitation the more expensive it will be to DIY. Not to mention all the hidden costs you won’t even realize are adding up until the invites are completed. A simple invitation printed on nice cardstock on your home printer is going to be an incredibly affordable option but are you experienced in successfully completing such a project?

Check out this flow chart to help you decide whether DIY wedding invitations are right for you. If it leads you to making your own wedding invitations, awesome! We can’t wait to see what you create. If it leads you to purchasing from a professional printer, no worries! Ann’s Bridal Bargains has quality wedding invitations available at very affordable prices, and you’ll save yourself a lot of time and frustration. Shop our collection and order a few samples. You’ll be surprised at how beautiful affordable wedding invitations can be!

Should I DIY My Wedding Invitations?

Are you having an outdoor wedding ceremony during the summer or early fall? Are you nervous about the weather being hot or muggy? Do your guests a favor and hand out wedding favor fans at the ceremony. This very simple item will make a world of difference!

Here are some tutorials about how to make DIY wedding fans from a few of our favorite wedding resources. We’ve chosen three different styles for you to check out and we’ve pointed out where to get ready-to-purchase favor fans and program fans if you’re looking for the super simple route — no judgment here!
DIY Wedding Favor Fans
Wedding Program Paddle Fans from Sweet Violet Bride
If you want a dual-purpose fan for your wedding guests then this program fan tutorial from Sweet Violet Bride is perfect for you. Learn how to turn your ceremony program into a Wedding Program Fan your guests can use to keep cool and keep informed. Sweet Violet Bride even gives you a free printable to work with.

DIY Fabric Wedding Fans from Silver in the City
Fabric wedding fans may not be quick and easy but they are super stylish. This fabric fan tutorial teaches you how to create handheld fans out of whatever fabric you can get your hands on (and a few other materials). You will need to know how to sew or recruit someone to help. WARNING: they’re almost too cute to give away!

Puzzle Program Fans from Intimate Weddings
Intimate Weddings has put together a helpful puzzle program fan tutorial, so you can create a super cute wedding program fan with fun puzzles on the back! This is a genius idea and one we highly recommend simply because you’ll get rave reviews from your guests.

The Easiest Option of All
The easiest way to make sure you have these practical and adorable wedding fans at your wedding without the hassle of DIY is to order them from a professional stationery printer. You can find a few very affordable program fans in our collection of wedding programs. Also, our friends at Invitations by Dawn offer a great selection of stylish options and they allow you to add a photo to the back of their favor fans and program fans — another fun way to show off one of your favorite engagement photos!

10 Wedding Tips for Procrastinators

1. Chalkboard Anything
Chalkboard signs, place mats, seating charts, escort cards, etc. We highly recommend using chalkboard items because it’s something you can write up last-minute. Although it looks a little messy and slightly thrown together, that’s all part of its charm. Just make sure you or the person you recruit has good handwriting.

2. Seal & Send™ Wedding Invitations
Seal & Sends Wedding Invitations make putting together a beautifully coordinated invitation ensemble a breeze! Everything you need comes in one invitation piece and it’s super easy to assemble. Just fold, seal and send.

3. Assembly Parties
If you purchase separate enclosures with your invitations (a typical ensemble includes the invite, a response card and reception card), plan an assembly party with close friends and/or family members. Assembling your wedding invitations will be way more fun and the whole process will go much faster, especially for pocket wedding invitations or invites with accents such as ribbon.

4. Skip the Seating Chart
Seating charts can get pretty complicated, and unfortunately you have to wait for all your wedding guests to respond in order to complete it. Rather than taking the time to put together assigned seating, let guests choose for themselves. Display a sign (chalkboard perhaps?) at your reception, which says something cute like, “Sit Wherever Your [heart icon] Desires.”

5. Online RSVPs
Asking guests to RSVP online not only saves you time, it saves you money because you don’t have to purchase response cards with your wedding invitations. Check out our collection of Wedding Invitations with Online Reply for some incredibly stylish and affordable options you’ll love.

6. Shop at Department Stores
Department stores like Nordstrom and Macy’s offer gorgeous dresses perfect for your bridesmaids or even your wedding gown. You don’t have to make an appointment or order your dresses months in advance. Just walk in, shop to your heart’s content and walk out with a dress. (TIP: We especially like Dress Barn for finding bridesmaid dresses.)

7. Envelope Moistener
The envelope moistener is a real timesaver and it’s a huge relief for whoever is sealing the envelopes. Be sure to have one of these at your assembly party!

8. Skip the Program
Create one large sign displaying your Order of Ceremony so guests feel informed without you having to get all the details together two weeks in advance to have wedding programs printed.

9. Last-Minute Card Box
Grab an old, antique-style suitcase from your parents, grandparents or local thrift store and display it at the reception with a sign that says “CARDS.” All you have to do is close it up and carry it off at the end of the night. You’ll probably be able to tuck some small gifts in there as well for easy transporting.

10. Wedding Favors
Apples, oranges and pears make GREAT last-minute wedding favors. Depending on the time of year, you can usually get one of these options for a good price. Find some cute stickers at your local craft store and apply one to each piece of fruit. Put a piece of fruit on each guest’s plate or display them together in a glass bowl or vase. You could even get creative and create a caramel apple bar for guests to enjoy before or after the reception.

A birch bark wedding honors the beauty of nature as well as its rustic charms. If you’re planning a birch bark theme for your wedding, we fully support your choice! This theme is elegant, whimsical and very affordable.

Get this look! Birch Bark

Carved with Love
We have to point out how incredibly romantic the carved heart theme is in this birch bark wedding look. You’ll find the heart theme on everything from the wedding cake to the wedding invitations. Check out the carved heart and infinity design on this Birch Beauty Invitation. The neat thing about this style of invitation is that it includes room for additional information so you don’t have to spend extra on additional enclosures. Check out the entire collection of Wedding Invitations with Online Reply.

Naturally Abundant
If you’re a fan of this look, you’re probably in an area (or within drivable distance) where birch trees are plentiful. We suggest using birch as much as possible in your wedding décor. You don’t have to cut down living trees to do so. Just take a walk through the woods and you’ll find plenty of fallen birch trees you can use in a variety of ways. Oh, and don’t forget to take plenty of wedding photos in the natural setting you hold so dear. Imagine admiring a photo like the one shown above hanging in your own home for years and years after the wedding.

Get Crafty
Once you’ve gathered your birch tree materials, it’s time to get crafty! You’ll find that birch bark is quite versatile. You can write on it, bend it, curl it and more. The birch bark centerpiece with flowers and candles is a great example of getting crafty with birch bark. The wedding sign hanging on a tree is another great use of birch bark. You might even consider asking your future husband to get involved by making some place card holders like the ones shown above. Those paired with some custom wedding napkins at your wedding reception will lend just the right amount of beautiful details to your reception.

Photo Credits: Place Cards and Holders: Kate Preftakes Photography via Style Me Pretty, Cake:  The Grovers, Candle Centerpieces: HBA Photography, Couple in Trees: Invites Weddings, Sign: Joleen Willis via Capitol Romance

Dress Up Your Invite: DIY Magnetic Polaroid Photos

Photos are a great way to add a personal touch to your wedding invitations. We love the photo invites couples have been sending but why not DIY your own photo wedding invitations with a bonus keepsake for your guests? We wanted to add the fun retro look of Polaroid photos to these Gold Lace Wedding Invitations. However, we don’t have a polaroid camera just lying around. Lucky for us, we found this tutorial: DIY How to Fake Polaroids. This tutorial uses Photo Shop but feel free to experiment with other ways of creating Polaroid-inspired photos.

Dress Up Your Invite: DIY Magnetic Polaroid Photos

Step 1: Gather Your Materials
• Polaroid-Inspired Photos
• Wedding Invitation Parts and Pieces
• Magnetic Stock – we bought these magnetic sheets on Amazon.
• Metal Ruler – or other straight edge for cutting.
• X-ACTO® Knife and Cutting Matte
• Permanent Marker
• Twine or Ribbon

Step 2: Trim the Photos
Trim the photos down to the standard Polaroid size using your knife, cutting matte and metal ruler to guide the knife. Feel free to leave a little more white space on the bottom and/or top depending on how much you want to write or what looks best with your wedding invitations.

Step 3: Prepare the Magnetic Stock
Once all of your photos are trimmed and ready, determine how many will fit on one sheet of magnetic stock. Then remove the paper backing from one sheet only to avoid accidents with sheets not being used.

Step 4: Apply the Photos
Place the photos carefully on the magnetic stock and gently smooth the photo from one edge to the other as you press down firmly against the stock’s adhesive. Don’t worry about the photos being evenly spaced or crooked. Just make sure they don’t overlap.

Step 5: Cut to Size
Trim the magnetic stock along the edges of the photos using your knife, cutting board and metal ruler just like in Step 2.

Step 6: Write a Message
Use your permanent marker to write whatever message you like at the bottom of each photo. Here are some ideas: XOXO, your names, the wedding date, So excited to see you! or a favorite quotation.

Step 7: Assemble
Place your wedding invitation (wording side up) on the table. Now place the reception card on top, then the response card and then the magnetic Polaroid photo. Now tie everything together with twine, string or ribbon. We used brown hemp twine found on Amazon.

You’ve just created some pretty adorable DIY photo wedding invitations! Get ready to get some major compliments from friends and family, and remember to keep one as a keepsake for your wedding album.

Whether you’re having a destination wedding on the beach in Mexico or have chosen a travel theme for your wedding celebration at home, maps are a wonderful way to dress up your wedding invitations!

Wedding Invite Maps

1. Surprise!
Sometimes you don’t have to do anything to the invitation itself to make an impact on guests. Print out maps or find old maps from your local thrift store and cut them down to create DIY envelope liners. We suggest using double-sided tape or spray adhesive to adhere the liners to your envelopes. This fun detail will surprise recipients while perfectly portraying your love for travel! We created envelopes liners to complement one of our favorite travel wedding invitations, the Boarding Pass Invitation.

2. Heartfelt Details
Get yourself a heart-shaped paper stamp and some old maps from your local thrift store. You’ll be able to quickly and easily create confetti to include in your wedding invitation ensembles. Just drop some hearts into the envelope with the invitation and a few will fall out when recipients open the invites. We paired the heart confetti with the One Heart Invitation because we’re not afraid to put a lot of heart into our invitation designs!

3. Watercolor Display
Accent bands are a wonderful way to dress up simple wedding invitations, and maps are an inexpensive yet incredibly unique resource for creating accents that fit your wedding style and theme. We stumbled upon a very cool site called www.maps.stamen.com that will turn any location into a watercolor map! Using this tool, we were able to create an accent band that fit beautifully beneath the names featured on the Elegant Script Invitation. We used glue dots to secure the band to the back of the invitation.

4. Wide Open Spaces
Last but certainly not least, we really enjoyed dressing up the Wild Ride Seal and Send Invitation with a full-size map on the back. Not only is the map useful for your wedding guests, it looks awesome and complements the motorcycle theme perfectly. Since we chose an ecru wedding invitation, we printed the map on ecru paper as well to create a seamless look from front to back. Again, we suggest using spray adhesive or double-sided tape to adhere the map to the backs of your invitations.

Get ready for another great addition to the Dress Up Your Invite series where we give affordable wedding invitations a DIY look with embellishments you can find at your local craft store. Today we’re focusing on gorgeous accents for your winter wedding invitations!

Dress Up Your Invite: Winter Accents

1. Hello, sparkle!
Stick-on rhinestones are available at most craft stores and you are going to LOVE how easily they add just the right touch of sparkle to any design. We especially love how they look on the Winter’s Wonder Wedding Invitation as a gorgeous design accent between your names.

2. All Wrapped Up
Making a great impression is all about the presentation, and ribbon can help dress up any invitation! The Let It Snow Wedding Invitation and response card look amazing when wrapped up with green sparkling chiffon ribbon. Choose the perfect color of ribbon for your invitation’s design and wrap it up like a gift for your wedding guests!

3. Sensational Snowflakes
Once again, we used the stick-on rhinestones to dress up one of our winter wedding invitations but this time we placed each rhinestone in the center of the snowflake framing the invitation wording. The Snowflake Sensation Wedding Invitation is a stunner but adding just a few faux rhinestones makes it truly sensational.

4. Pearls and Feathers
Who knew cheap wedding invitations could be so glamorous? The Shimmering Pearls Wedding Invitation features rows of shimmering foil dots framing your wording like pearls. We added a white chiffon ribbon with a white feather tied in the center to give it a luxurious look that’s unforgettable.

Give your wedding invitations the perfect finishing touch in no time at all with craft store embellishments! We’re showing you five different affordable wedding invitations all featuring a coordinating craft store embellishment.

Wedding Cards: Craft Store Embelishments

1. Wrapped in Twine
We used the Wooden Crest Separate and Send Wedding Invitation to get this cute country look! We separated the invitation, response card and reception card. We then stacked the enclosures on top of the invitation in the right order (read How to Assemble Separate and Send Invitations). Then we wrapped everything in twine and secured it to the back of the invitation using double-sided tape. You can also tie the twine to secure it but getting the twine tight enough can be tricky. We then added a stick-on burlap bow from the local craft store for a sweet little accent.

2. Linen Flowers
We thought these linen flowers with beaded accents would look fantastic on the Country Details Petite Wedding Invitation. We glued the flowers onto the invitation using a hot glue gun because it dries faster than conventional glue, and we arranged them into a group of three with each one overlapping the other for a lovely layered look. So simple, so cute!

3/5. Layered Flower
Layered invites are beautiful but they can be expensive! We recommend purchasing affordable wedding invitations and dressing them up with a layered accent. We found these adorable burlap and linen layered flowers at the local craft store. These stick-on flowers are super easy to use, and they look amazing. We placed them smack dab in the center of the chevron design on the Quirky Chevron Wedding Invitation and to the left of “Mr. & Mrs.” on the Country Couple Wedding Invitation.

4. Twine and Bow
Wrapping twine around your invitations is always a great way to add a bit of rustic flair. You’ll remember we used twine on the first invitation but this time we’re using a burlap ribbon. Again, you’ll want to secure the ribbon on the backside of the invitation by using double-sided tape or glue dots. We then added a stick-on burlap bow from the local craft store, which became the perfect finishing touch for these Worn Wood Petite Wedding Invitations.

We’ve dressed up some of our favorite fall wedding invitations with fabric autumn leaves. If you’re going after the look of DIY fall wedding invitations for little cost, fabric leaves are an inexpensive embellishment you can find at your local hobby store. You can also use fresh autumn leaves but remember that dry leaves will not hold up well in the mail.

autumn leaves wedding invitations

#1 Leaf & Twine

We doubled up on brown twine and wrapped it around our Rustic Details All in One Wedding Invitations. We wrapped the twine around the back and toward the front of the invite, then we placed the leaf upside down on the front and tied the twine around the stem of the leaf. You can tie the twine however you like; it doesn’t have to look like the knot shown (although we do like the twine tails).

#2 Leaf & Ribbon (two-sided)

To get the look of lace wedding invitations without relying on the invitation’s design, we wrapped cream lace around the Country Floral All in One Wedding Invitations and tied it in a knot on the front. Then we tucked a leaf inside the ribbon on the back of the invitation above the wording.

#3 Leaf & Ribbon (single-sided)

We used the same lace ribbon as in #2 and wrapped it around the Band of Lace All in One Wedding Invitations. We then placed a leaf, stem-side up, over the invitation’s photo and tied the lace into a bow around the leaf’s stem.

#4 Leaf & Twine (with knot)

We doubled up a piece of thick brown twine and wrapped it around the photo portion of these Sweet and Simple Wedding Invitations. We tied the twine in a knot on the front and cut the extra strings off flush with the knot. We then tucked a leaf behind the twine, which complements the photo beautifully!

#5 Leaf & Twine (wrapped stem)

The Lakeside All in One Wedding Invitations are gorgeous for fall but an autumn leaf adds a fun accent. We placed the leaf’s stem toward the middle of the twine and wrapped the twine around the stem a few times. We then tied a knot on the backside of the stem to prevent the twine from unraveling. We positioned the leaf where we wanted it then wrapped the twine around the back of the invite and tied it in a knot. We secured the leaf in place with a single glue dot toward the bottom.

Dress Up Your Invite: Paper Tags
Adding your own unique accents is a great way to dress up inexpensive wedding invitations but what if those accents could also be a useful addition to your ensemble? We’ve taken cute paper tags and used them to add a handcrafted look to several of our wedding invitations. We’ve also printed a few of them with useful information to supplement your wedding wording. Check out what we did!

Dress Up Your Invite: Paper Tags

1. Important Details
You might not want certain details to be a part of the actual wedding invitation wording, so why not create a fun and cute way to call these details out? We’ve used the Starfish and Burlap Invitation to demonstrate!

How we did it:

  • We printed paper tags on ecru card stock with the wording “Beach Formal Attire” and “Adults Only Reception.”
  • We punched a hole at one end of the tag and threaded natural jute cord through the tag and around the back of the invitation where we tied it in a knot.
  • We pushed the tag to one side so as not to interfere with important details.

2. Please Respond
So many couples are foregoing the response card and relying on website response services, so we created a small paper tag to be used with this Woodgrain and Lace Invitation in place of a response card.

How we did it:

  • We printed rectangular tags on aqua card stock to match the invite’s accent font color. It reads, “Kindly respond by March 10, 2016, using the following website: www.alyssajason/happycouple.com.”
  • We punched one hole on each side of the tag and threaded brown twine through the tag and around the back of the invitation, then tied it in a knot.
  • We also added a single glue dot to the back of the paper tag to help secure it.

3. Well-Rounded
We’re suckers for a well-presented wedding invitation! This round tag and ribbon is a great way to secure this entire Vintage Victorian Invitation ensemble together while adding an elegant touch of personalization.

How we did it:

  • We personalized the round tags using one of the custom stamps sold by our friends at Invitations by Dawn. These stamps are super cute and fun to use on a variety of things throughout your wedding.
  • We punched a hole at the top of the tag for threading with black satin ribbon.
  • We threaded black satin ribbon through the tag’s hole (front to back), around the invitation ensemble and then back through the tag’s hole (back to front) so both ends of the ribbon were resting on the front of the ensemble.
  • Then we tied a cute little bow!

4. Tag, you’re it!
Sometimes all you want is a cute, handcrafted look to accompany your wedding invitations. We left the tag blank on this Country Couple Invitation but you could put a stamp on it, draw a design or write a note to your guests.

How we did it:

  • We purchased Kraft paper tags from the local hobby store.
  • We used natural jute cord to thread through the tag and around the invitation, securing the twine in a knot on the back.

5. Lovebirds
The Rustic Whimsy Invitation is really quite cute already but we couldn’t help but add a fun little accent to make it even cuter! You could use any stamp you want but we decided a lovebirds design was appropriate for the invite’s garden theme.

How we did it:

  • First we wrapped a green satin ribbon around the invitation and secured it on the back with two glue dots so it would lay flat.
  • Then we purchased round ecru tags from the local hobby store and customized them with a rubber lovebirds stamp.
  • We chose natural jute cord to thread through the tag and wrap around the invitation several times for a really crafty look.
  • Finally, we tied the twine in a knot on the back of the invitation.

6. Registry Info
According to “proper etiquette,” it’s not advised to place registry information on your wedding invitation. However, etiquette is quickly making way for convenience in today’s world. We’ve used the Wood Heart Invitation to show you a cute (and polite) way to add registry info to your wedding invitations!

How we did it:

  • We printed rectangular tags on white card stock in a color that matches the invitation’s main font color. The tag says, “The couple is registered at Bed Bath and Beyond and Amazon.com.”
  • We punched a hole at the end of the paper tag and used a copper brad to attach it (strategically with the design) to the invitation. Brads can be found in the scrapbooking aisle of your local hobby store.