DIY WEDDING MADE EASY | free designs for your diy desires | My Favorite Picks! (Plus a crazy update regarding the site & GoDaddy servers…)

Ok, before I get into what the above is all about, I just wanna say that I really hope everyone had themselves super enjoyable/rewarding/relaxing Memorial Day weekends!  For the most part, the weather ’round here was ridiculously gorgeous, and it seemed pretty hard not to have a good time, regardless of what we were doing.  In fact, just stepping outside made my day.  Though playing a little tennis and getting half my body into a pool certainly didn’t hurt matters.  What does that mean?  That means that I was faced with frigid pool waters, and I was the only one – among numerous children – who could not get my body to dip past the belly button point.  What I had always believed to be the most difficult body part to submerge, the “undercarriage,” was already safely tucked beneath the icy surf.  But the water remained intolerable.  Mind you, six-year-olds with arm floaties were all around me, having a collective ball.  And I’m sure none of them quite understood or cared about what I was going through.  I seriously hung there, perched with my ass beneath the water line.  Oh, the shame.  (For the record, it was really, really cold.)

But I did push the fiancé in the pool about five times.  That was awesome.  Mainly because I always waited until his body had warmed sufficiently to make the cold water startling again.  Good times!!  (;

Anyway, y’all know how much I love Martha Stewart, right?  Well, it’s almost as much as I love southern dialects.  But seriously, I cherish Martha Stewart Weddings for all the DIY goodies and inspiration the resource always has to offer.  So I decided to sort through it all and I’ve collected a hefty bunch of my favorites for your consideration.  I hope you love!

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So, you see those jam jars up top?  Ok, well I am OBSESSED with their lid labels.  Completely obsessed.  Jam jars are such a popular idea for weddings these days, and these labels are my current favorite way to top them!  Get the clip art here!

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Totally in lust with this idea.  Make your girls their very own lace clutches!  How gorgeous are these?  Not to mention crazy simple to create – all there is to do is print the clip art onto heat-transfer paper, then just iron the designs onto fabric!  Get the clip art here!

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I seriously covet these monogram labels; they’re just perfect for your favor boxes, and whatever else you’d like to monogram!  :)  Get the clip art here!


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I absolutely adore these place card designs and highly recommend them for your wedding.  They’re really quite elegant, and all you need to do is print them on preperforated card stock.  Done and done!  Get the clip art here!

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How much do these lil cupcake flags rock?!!  Get the clip art here!

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Also loving these miniature gift bag prints!  Get the clip art here!

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How about creating your own uniquely designed cookie tins with Martha’s download-and-print doily labels?  I know – so cute.  They come in red, blue, and green, too.  Get the clip art here!

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I am in love with the beauty of these custom Blueprint wrapping papers!!!  I think they’d look amazing as part of your decor.  There are five in all, and only Martha has them.  Pretty rad.  Get them here!

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Last but not least, there’s this too adorable cookie gift sleeve label.  You have a whole bunch of different label options, for pretty much any occasion (for a wedding, go with “for you to enjoy“).  All you’ll need besides the clip art are CD envelopes and adhesive paper.  Get the clip art here!

So, what do you think?  Do any of these catch your eye as a fabulous DIY?  I’m curious what you guys think!

xoxo!  -Alison

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By the way, check out some of my favorite posts from the recent past:

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WIDESPREAD PROBLEMS WITH GODADDY’S SERVERS

After at least a month of server error messages, random admin logouts and a constantly spotty at best site connection, GoDaddy FINALLY admitted yesterday that it’s their servers, and not anything we’re doing wrong.  This, after being told upwards of 40 times that it’s something we’re doing wrong.  I kid you not.  Upwards of 40 times.  Finally, after much anguish and through-the-night-every-night-troubleshooting on our part, downloading and restoring databases, uninstalling, installing and reconfiguring plugins, tears (yeah, I cried a lot, I’ll admit it), GoDaddy revealed yesterday that “certain servers are not functioning properly.”  That my site “is on the list of affected sites.”  That they’ve “got their best guys on the job.”  Progress thus far?  “Umm, well we haven’t solved it yet.”  When will it be solved – ballpark?  “We can’t seem to pinpoint the problem, because, you see, we aren’t seeing the error messages that everyone else is seeing outside of our network.  So we’re having trouble figuring out why the servers are malfunctioning… but we’re hard at work on it.”  Can you do something, like migrate me to a new server that isn’t shitty?  “No, nope, we can’t do that.  Sorry.”  Really?  “Yeah, sorry.  That’s not something we can do.”  Oh.

Can you stand it?

I can’t anymore.  So I’m letting the world know, after too many sleepless nights and lost traffic.

GoDaddy is dishonest and chooses to blame the customer for its own failures.  The people on the front lines have been as kind as possible, but their supervisors have perpetuated a cover-up, and are hardly if at all concerned with customer satisfaction.

That’s all for now.  Just thought I should spread the word at this point, since I am now aware that this is a widespread problem, and that GoDaddy is not making efforts to alert anyone affected.

Lastly, THANK YOU to everyone who contacted me to see what was wrong with the site and where it disappears to at random times throughout the day.  I can’t tell you how much we’ve appreciated your concern.  Thanks so much for caring!  At least we finally have the knowledge that weren’t doing anything wrong this whole entire time.  But it certainly doesn’t make it any less frustrating.

I’ll be providing updates, mostly on twitter, regarding GoDaddy’s behavior and how things progress as far as how we decide to proceed from here.  I hope there aren’t too many of you experiencing these same issues!  It’s traumatizing, truly.

‘Til later!

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The Wedding of Stationer Cheree Berry! Colors: Red, Orange, Pink, Robin’s Egg Blue Courtesy: Martha Stewart Weddings

Cheree, Jeff et al

Cheree Berry’s my hero (of weddings).  Here’s why.

As you know, I’m a big fan of the wedding wow factor – whether it be an inspirational color scheme as unique as it is stunning, details that inspire the crafty creative inside me, or invitation suites that seamlessly tie into the wedding they are so dutifully announcing.  How do you know if a wedding has, as some would say, brought it, or, as I would say, achieved a wow factor of patentable heights?  I liken it to what inventors… or at least what Greg Kinnear who played an inventor in a movie… call the “flash of genius.”  This doctrine held that “the inventive act had to come into the mind of an inventor in a ‘flash of genius’ and not as a result of tinkering.  The new device, however useful it may be, must reveal the flash of creative genius, not merely the skill of the calling.”  Well, replace inventive act with wedding, and new device with innovative theme, colors and details, and you’ve got a (pretty underdeveloped and possibly flawed but works so far) formula for determining which weddings rise above.

Sometimes, if we’re lucky, we stumble across these standout performers and, when we do, our reactions are quite uniform: we get really excited, we sit back (or if you’re me, scrunch the shoulders and hunch over like Gollum protecting the ring and get as close to the screen as possible), and revel in the beauty.  Many try, and while countless weddings I’ve come across achieve near perfection, there are the few, the precious, precious few, that achieve a certain divine Greatness.

Cheree and Jeff

Featured in Martha Stewart Weddings, the transcendent beauty of Cheree Berry‘s wedding decor, which employed a brilliant palette of reds, oranges, robin’s egg blue, and splashes of pink, is beyond inspirational… it’s perfection, pure and simple.

So Martha et al, I would like to extend my grandest appreciation for this, another miraculous gem of a wedding spread from the kings and queens of Layout Land.  While the majority of images I’ve featured below are directly from the lustrous, silken pages of Martha Stewart Weddings Magazine – which unfortunately you can’t access unless you have one, or you’d like to grab coffee with me and my copy – a handful of them can be found over at Martha Stewart Weddings, the online version.  Isn’t the internet wonderful (mostly)?

1. MSW Cover

Those sunbursts – whether real or a Photoshop flourish – are so beautiful, aren’t they?  Sunset is the best time of day for a lover of brilliant colors and tones.  I get so excited about a sunset inspired wedding palette when I look at this photo of Cheree and Jeff:

MSW Cheree Berry 1

It shouldn’t be a surprise that I am very excited about her shoe choice.  Need I remind you?

MSW Cheree Berry 2

Deserving of a close up…

Cheree's red Stuart Weitzman open-toe pumps

Now, check out the brilliant reds, oranges and pinks of her bouquet, comprised entirely of ranunculus, as well as the tiny golden bee, one of her stationery motifs.  How I love the robin’s egg blue ribbon at the base of the floral arrangement.

MSW Cheree Berry 3

Her bouquet, up close:

Cheree's ranunculus bouquet

The mother of all superb invitation suites.  I tip my hat to you, Cheree.  Will you do mine?  I’d like it exactly the same as yours, except with my name and that of my future hubby.  Please?  ;)

MSW Cheree Berry 4

Cheree stated that a palette of reds, oranges, and pinks is “too perfect,” adding robin’s egg blue to splendid mix of bright, bold tones.  I love her details – the red calligraphy, the little bee she added to her reply card, Love Mail printed in the upper right corner of the envelopes – it’s art, and, at least for me, she accomplishes what she states is her goal with the suite… “to evoke a big smile.”

MSW Cheree Berry 5

Here’s a close up of that adorably delicious looking (and, I’m sure, tasting) lollipop stand:

Cheree's lollipop stand

And here’s a close-up of the dashing couple:

Cheree Berry and Jeff share a sweet treat after getting hitched!

MSW Cheree Berry 6

Her napkins:

Cheree's reception napkins

Another couple of shots of her rectangular reception tables, which have been draped in orange tablecloths, and are topped with the most stunning centerpieces, which feature floral arrangements of red, orange and pink flowers.

Cheree's reception table decor, upon rectangular tables

Cheree's reception table decor, featuring her centerpieces

That cake takes… itself?  (Cheesy?  Yes.  A pun anyone would be hardpressed to resist?  Also yes.  So it stays.)  Simplicity coupled with color is a fine combination, done quite expertly here:

MSW Cheree Berry 7

Wait, what’s that?  That huge red board that reads, “PLEASE TAKE A SEAT”…

MSW Cheree Berry 8

It’s her AMAZING seating chart!!!  Now, up close:

Cheree's Plinko style seating chart

I love everything about this – the personalization, the hard work involved, the fun, the color, EVERYTHING.  Cheree told Martha it was styled after the Plinko game on The Price is Right, which was definitely my favorite game on that show.  I have to give this a difficulty rating of *Intricate* and potentially *Frustrating* but if you’re looking to really wow your guests and you’ve got some time on your hands, check out the How To for detailed instructions.

MSW Cheree Berry 9

The favor bags:

Cheree's favor bags

What’s inside the favor bags, you ask?  Well looky here:

Cheree's favor bag contents

A breathtaking image from her ceremony (don’t you LOVE those signs?):

Cheree's LOVE signs - what an idea!  That's why we love her.

Awwwwww.  Now that’s a photo.

MSW Cheree Berry 10

Cheree and Jeff’s wedding vendors/details:

Ceremony Location: Graham Chapel at Washington University in St. Louis (St. Louis, Missouri)

Reception Location: Lumen

Event Planning: Rebecca Boillat of St. Louis Wedding Design

Catering: Lumen

Flowers: Bloomin’ Buckets

Cake: Mathew Rice of Niche Restaurant

Stationery: Cheree Berry Paper

Calligraphy: Cheryl Tefft of Calligraphics

Music: The Ultraviolets

Wedding Photography: Susan Jackson

Gown: Carolina Herrera

Bride’s shoes: Stuart Weitzman

Bridesmaids’ dresses: Siri

Groom’s Suit: Jos. A. Bank

Tie: Murano from Dillard’s

Hair: Jennifer Jones of Jones & Co. Hair Salon

Makeup: Suzy Bacino

{Photo and vendor/detail list, courtesy of Martha Stewart Weddings, Summer 2009}

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DIY Wedding Projects, Courtesy of Martha Stewart Weddings

Men often say that they read risque magazines, eh-hem, “for the articles.” Well, I love Martha Stewart Weddings, and I’ll admit it’s almost entirely for the pictures.  They are MESMERIZING.  The golds and pinks, the reds and blues, the sparkle and shine, the glitz and, of course, the glam.  I have no shame about this.  But that’s probably because there are no bare chests and questionable positions in the PG world of Martha.

Anyway, there are oodles and oodles of exceptional ideas to be found on the pages of MSW, and I highly recommend getting yourself a copy next time you pass a newsstand, but in the meantime, I just have to share with you some of the shimmering inspiration I so enjoy each time I pick up the mag…

MSW Fall 2009 Cover

This project – which features do-it-yourself golden flower pin wheels (you can purchase the party picks to which they’re attached here) atop mini vanilla cupcakes, which themselves are encased in itty bitty cupcake shells… which you can also make yourself – makes me so uncontrollably excited about what I can actually achieve for my wedding that I might pass out.

MSW Fall 2009_1 DIY

You see that precious little gathering of varied punches on the left, below?  Those punches, by Martha Stewart Crafts, are responsible for the entire DIY STYLE spread in Martha’s Fall 2009 issue.  Those adorable punches made it all.   Ah-mazing.

MSW Fall 2009_2 DIY

Weren’t planning on adding the wow factor to your wedding tea tags and place mats?  WHAT’S THE MATTER WITH YOU?  Honestly I hadn’t planned on getting quite that detailed in my efforts, either.  But now as I’m writing this sentence, I am totally falling in love with the place mats.  Those edges are darling, are they not?  They are.  Love it.

MSW Fall 2009_3 DIY

Look.  At That.  It’s a crown of paper flowers for your (well-behaved, careful with delicate things) flower girl.  OMG.  That’s some kinda wonderful.

MSW Fall 2009_4 DIY

Got votives?  Got vellum (or a craft store in your neighborhood)?  That’s all you need for these vellum-wrapped candles, which have been spruced up using Martha Stewart Crafts punches, seen in the third image from the top.

And take a closer look (you can click on the image and then zoom in to view the directions) at the bottom project, which features miniature escort cards (created with those punches you keep hearing about) tucked into slits in the branches.  Too.  Cute.  … I just hope there isn’t a draft by the seating card table.

MSW Fall 2009_5 DIY

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