The DIY Wedding-we hear comments like this all the time:
"I really love this bouquet I found in a magazine, but I can save money by going to the flower market the day before my wedding and making it all by myself."
"I want cupcakes rather than cake, so I'm going to make them myself."
"I don't want to spend money on a Disc Jockey, so we're just going to hook my iPhone up to a boom box and play it for the reception music."
"I'm going to design, and print my own invitations -- i'll save a ton of money."
The big Myth of Wedding DIY is that it's going to save you money, it's going to save you time, and it's so easy to make. Build it yourself and it will come out just as great, or run just as well as if a professional were doing it. I understand., you don't think you will be able to find exactly what you want, or possibly at a price you can afford. And it does look so easy, doesn't it? The flowers are wrapped in ribbon, fashioned in the exact right way.
However a florist knows what the best cuts of flowers will look like, when and where to get them, and, more importantly, how to arrange them. The florist has all the materials that they need on hand, so there's no scrambling around if something is missing or if you want to change how it's appearance. Furthermore, at some point, you are going to want to change how it looks.
The Disc Jockey knows what songs to play and when to play them. When to fade the music out, when to turn it up, and if your guests want to request a song, it happens seamlessly. Someone needs to be in control of the music, and just the music, at all times.
The stationery stores are responsible for all typesetting, and all the printing for your invitations. They are responsible for whatever it takes to make that happen. On another thought, do you really have the space to bake and hold 300 cupcakes? Time and experience -- and, yes, storage -- are what you're paying for in order to get perfect results. That's right, perfect results!
Don't misunderstand me, We've worked for couples who've created gorgeous DIY wedding projects. Exquisite centerpieces, cool looking table numbers, and amazing invitations and/or programs.
But all of us have one thing in common: They do this type of thing for a living or all the time. They know exactly how long it will take, how much it would cost, and they were eager and excited to devote the time to work on it. It was their niche.
If you have never attempted any of these projects before, believe me now is not the time to start.
Yes you can do it, but my point is that you really shouldn't. There's a delicate balance between saving money and setting yourself up for disappointment. Not to mention driving yourself nuts! Doing anything new, realize it takes time to learn how to do it, and more time to learn how to do it well, and that means spending money and time on supplies over and over until you get it perfect.
Another possibility is to go partial DIY. Instead of making the invitations yourself, consider buying an invitation kit. The kit will have enough invitations for 100 guests, along with all the inserts and envelopes you're going to need to complete them. They are available at any stationery or craft store, or even the local Target. You print them up with your information, then mail them out. Remember to get an extra box for practice and mistakes, and extra ink for your printer just in case. There is nothing more aggravating than being 35 straight, centered invites in when the black ink starts to turn gray or the printer says, change this color cartridge.
Perhaps instead of a fancy centerpiece, you find ready made, non-floral centerpieces that you can just pick up and drop off. Your favors could be tiny candies you fill into small pre-made favor boxes purchased locally.
Do your homework! Do a practice run before you decide to go all DIY. Looking for vendors that fit into your budget before you decide. Focus on the priorities first, which will make the biggest impact upon my wedding. Find out what you're getting into, then decide.
Then if you do decide to go DIY, remember these three words: Practice, practice, practice.