6 DIY Do's and Don'ts
A quick scan of a few wedding blogs or some Pinterest boards might give a bride the impression that anything is possible when it comes to do-it-yourself wedding wares — but is it?
There’s no doubt that DIY aspects add a certain feel to your wedding overall, says Cindy Lymbery, a U.K.-based florist and creator of DIYWeddingExpert.com. “Once it all comes together, your personal touch is there. I think people really do see that, as well, when things are really personalized.”
However, it is the reality of DIY – actually doing it yourself — that many brides overlook. For ambitious brides who hope to tackle projects throughout the planning process, take heed. DIY isn’t so cut and dry.
Follow these do’s and don’ts for stress-free DIY success.
DO: Find Inspiration Wherever You Go
Wedding blogs don’t necessarily hold all the answers, says Annie Lee, a wedding planner and founder of the firm Daughter of Design, based in New York. Instead, when you’re on the go, seek out inspiration. “It can be in a restaurant, or a hotel design,” Lee says. “I feel like they always have the most cutting edge ideas, and they’re always being super resourceful and using interesting materials.”
DON’T: Overestimate Your Abilities
Never held a glue gun before? Not sure how to use a can of spray paint? Maybe DIY would best be avoided, Lee says.
Brides with an artistic background, however, are golden, Lymbery says. If you have a passion for crafting, problems are less likely to arise, she says.
If a bride insists on carrying out a project despite her lack of artistic abilities, consider conducting a test-run, Lee says. She recommends experimenting on a one-off project to make sure it captures the look you’re hoping to achieve before purchasing project supplies in bulk.
DO: Plan Ahead
Avoid the headaches and stress of leaving DIY projects to the last minute by creating timeframes for your projects from the get-go. “It’s all about planning, as far as I’m concerned,” Lymbery says. “The more organized that you are and the more things you do in advance, the better. It’s absolutely essential.”
It’s important to be realistic about the time you have as well, says Lee. At her planning firm, Daughter of Design, Lee says she reminds her clients to consider the implications of dedicating time to such projects. “Your time is money. Sometimes, by the time you buy the supplies and by the time that you plan to make it yourself, it’s almost cheaper to get it premade.”
DON’T: Get Too Many People Involved
Some brides hope to mitigate the burden of their projects by enlisting the help of their bridesmaids, their groom-to-be and family members – but this can be a huge mistake, say Lymbery. “It can spiral out of control. Don’t hand out too many DIY projects that you’re not in charge of.”
DO: Consider What You Actually Want
Lee says she has found that many times with brides, it’s more about the look that goes along with the DIY craze as opposed to the experience itself. So, being honest with yourself is crucial. “If it’s the [handmade] look that’s your goal, then you can plan to get it somewhere else. If it’s because you want to add your own feel and your own touch to it, then go for it.”
DON’T: Overdo It
The majority of DIY is décor-related, Lee says. More pressing tasks, such as baking the cake or assembling bouquets, should be left to the professionals to alleviate the stress on or near the big day. “If it’s a goodie bag, a favor or décor on the table that you can make well in advance and put it on the side, fantastic. Anything that has to be done right then or the day before, I wouldn’t recommend it.”