December 2010
December 23, 2010

So while I usually try to stick to mainly wedding crafts on this blog (for obvious reasons), I couldn't resist some of these cute holiday projects. Here are some great last-minute craft ideas for that hard-to-shop-for person on your list, or even for that Christmas Eve party your throwing. Enjoy, and Happy Holidays!

1. Pine Cone Garland. This simple garland easily completes a rustic holiday decor look (and if your pine cones are fresh, it can also make your house smell great too!) (Twig & Thistle)

2. Peace, Joy, Love Pillows. These easy-to-make throw pillows make a perfect holiday gift and you could even use the stencils for something else (like a runner or tablecloth) once the pillows are done. (My Backyard Eden)

3. Gingerbread House. Even if you're like me, who only once successfully constructed a gingerbread house that was anything close to edible, this project looks pretty enticing. Go ahead, give it another shot. (Honestly WTF)

4. Christmas Wreath. This isn't so much a "how-to" but rather an idea: try using branches from the Feioja tree for your next wreath. It's naturally got just the right mix of green, silver, and red, as shown in the photo. (Rummage)

5. Mini Gingerbread Houses. How inventive is this!? Assembling these mini houses so you can easily dip them into your hot chocolate seems like the perfect solution to a (albeit minor) holiday problem. Yum! (Not Martha)

And just in case you're looking for a last-minute ornament idea, try these retro holiday cupcakes from Bake It Pretty.

December 21, 2010

Direct from the girls who started one of our fave letterpress studios, Hello! Lucky, comes this: the ultimate book for the crafty bride. Handmade Weddings features over 50 gorgeous crafts, each one with photos and step-by-step instructions. What I love are the ratings (easy, moderate, advance -- most crafts are either easy or moderate) and the classic-with-a-twist projects. Eunice and Sabrina of Hello! Lucky enlisted the help of top weddings stylist, Shana Faust, for the book, so each project feels homespun and beautiful.

The book hits stores in January, but you can try out this excerpted project right now.

Bride & Groom Cake Topper


With a little creativity, guy and girl doll blanks can be transformed into an adorable personalized cake topper. Simply follow the templates or sketch out your own interpretation (you may want to get a couple of extra doll forms in case of mistakes).



    Makes 1 cake topper

  • 3 1/2-inch tall male and female wooden dolls (available on or at craft stores)
  • Acrylic paints (we used white, red, brown, and black)
  • Thread
  • 20 to 25 seed beads (we used red)
  • Small piece of tulle for the veil
  • Decorative button for the veil
  • Decorative button or cabochon for the bouquet
  • 6-x-1-inch Styrofoam disc (available at craft and floral supply shops)
  • One 8 1/2x11-inch sheet patterned or solid text-weigh paper
  • 1 yard 1-inch ribbon
  • Pencil
  • Paper plate
  • Small square brush
  • Small pointed brush
  • Cup of water
  • Paper towel
  • Beading needle, or "sharp"
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • Ruler
  • Pin (optional)
    HOW TO
  1. Paint the figurines. Lightly mark your design on the figurines in pencil. customize the features to match both you and your fiance -- have fun! Squeeze a dab of each paint color onto your paper plate. Wet your brush in your cupof water, dab on some paint, test the brush stroke on the plate, and begin painting. If the brush is too wet, blot excess water on a paper towel, apply more paint, and try again. Use the square brush for large solid areas, such as the hair or clothing, and the pointed brush for fine details. Rinse your brush thoroughly in water before switching colors. let the figurines dry.
  2. Add the necklace. Thread the needle, knotting the thread at one end. String the beads onto the thread until the necklace is long enough to just fit around the bride neck. Tie the loose ends around the neck in a firm knot and trim with scissors.
  3. Add the bouquet and the veil. Cut a 1-x-2-inch piece of tulle (larger for longer or fuller veil). Accordion-fold it, and attach it to the head with a dab of hot glue. Add a button on top using hot glue. Attach a decorative button or cabochon flower for the bouquet using hot glue.
  4. Decorate the base. Trace the styrofoam disc twice on your paper, and cut out both circles using scissors. Measure the height of your styrofoam base and cut a strip of solid paper that measures as follows: [height of base] x [circumference of base + 1/2 inch]. Note: Circumference = diameter x 3.14. Wrap the paper strip around the side of the base, carefully aligning the top and bottom. Affix with hot glue. Align a circle to the top of the base and affix with hot glue. Repeat for the bottom. Wrap the ribbon around the base, and pin or hot glue in place, aligning its seam with the seam in the paper strip. If desired, add a separate bow to the front of the ribbon.
  5. Attach the bride and groom. Using hot glue, attach the bride and groom to the base. Be sure they are facing away from the seams in the paper and ribbon.
  • Retro Homespun Cover the base in gingham or striped fabric. If desire, add more features to the figures. Or make your figurines out of wooden clothes pins and dress them in tiny fabric outfits. (See for inspiration!)
  • Found Cover the base in found papers, such as kraft paper, tissue paper, recycled gift wrap, or old maps.

Excerpt from: Handmade Weddings: More than 50 Crafts to Style and Personalize Your Big Day. By Eunice Moyle, Sabrina Moyle, and Shana Faust (Chronicle Books, San Francisco, 2010). Photo by Joseph De Leo.

December 09, 2010

The holidays are nearly here! And with the cold weather outside, that means there's plenty of time for some DIY projects indoors. If you're in the midst of wedding planning, or you're just starting (congrats!) these projects would look great for a wintry reception.

1. Favor Crackers. Put a grown-up spin on these childhood favorites by dressing up your party crackers with a little lace and some gold stars. Have your guests pop them at the end of the night as you leave for a photo finish. (The Bride's Cafe)

2. Map Basket. Lots of out-of-towners? Give them this as a favor or as part of their welcome basket and make it out of maps of your city. It'll be a fun keepsake from your wedding, especially if you fill it with small candies or other goodies. (

3. Mango Body Butter. What better for your bridesmaids during those harsh winter months than some moisture rich body butter that smells like summer? This easy recipe makes a great gift and you can dress up the packaging to really make it stand out. (Bloom, Bake, Create)

4. Chalkboard Bunting. Using muslin and a little chalkboard paint, you can make this cute banner say anything you want (and then wipe it clean to say something else!) (The Scrap Shoppe)

5. Wreath Escort Cards. We're so smitten with these cute wreath escort cards we might just have to use them for a holiday dinner party. The added "snow" look made with glue and clear glitter is so creative! (Project Wedding)

And just for fun, here are a few more awesome holiday projects we love:

This homemade book wreath would spruce up any book lover's door.

Feeling a little Norwegian? Then try out this horse-pattern stocking.

And I'm still cracking up over the idea of making beer bottles into reindeer.

December 02, 2010

Even if you're not having your wedding on a winery, you can use these wine-inspired cork ideas to add an extra rustic touch to your reception.

For the first two photos (from left), you'll need lots of wine corks. So start drinking now! Just kidding. But you should start saving soon. Enlist your bridal party, friends and family members to save corks for you as well. Not into drinking wine? You can also buy wine corks here. For reference, a board of about 24x28 inches will take about 60 wine corks.

    You'll need:
  • lots of corks
  • cork board/ hardboard (for the back)
  • super glue or wood glue
  • a decorate frame (optional)
  • electric saw (optional)

1. Cut the corks. This step is optional, and though it's difficult, we think the board will turn out more even and stable in the end. If you're not up to the challenge, go right on to step 2. Otherwise, the first thing to do is carefully cut all of the corks in half using a small electric saw. Try to do this so the cork design is centered on top.

2. Glue on the corks. Now comes the fun part. Using the wood glue, affix all of your corks to the cork board (or hardboard) that will serve as the backing for your finished project. Be creative! Try stacking the corks vertically and horizontally (or even diagonally) to make a unique pattern. Let everything thoroughly dry overnight.

3. Attach the frame. If you opted for a decorate frame, now's the time to fit your new cork board inside, and hang it up.

Use colorful push-pins in your wedding colors to attach photos, escort cards or even notes from your guests (in lieu of a guestbook).

To achieve the look of the last photo (on the right), simply slice your corks in half (like in step 1) and then add another small slit to the top of each cork. Be careful to not slice through the entire cork, and voila, you've got some beautiful cork escort card holders.

Images by: Jeremy Underwood, (far right photo) Orchard Cove Photography.

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As the DIY editor at I'm always on the lookout for new inspirations. Check back here to find weekly Link Love, advice, and step-by-step projects for the DIY bride.

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