When it comes to weddings, we here at Brit HQ know a thing or two about how to add a little DIY flair. Whether it’s with floral wedding chandeliers, DIY bridesmaid gifts or DIY dessert tables, a handmade touch can be just the thing you need to take your wedding to the next level. So when our very own Brand Partnerships Manager Ashley Fischer and her now-husband Mike set out to add a little DIY charm to their own wedding, they left no detail untouched and no corner undecorated. The wedding, which took place in the foothills of Carmel at Santa Lucia Preserve amongst giant redwoods, wild turkeys and plenty of gorgeous trails, went off without a hitch and left for some jaw-droppingly gorgeous photos. With the reception in the woods and the party in a large barn, there were plenty of wide open spaces for them to add some personal touches and make the wedding their very own. Scroll on for all the DIY deets and see how you can get the look yourself.
1. Leafy Aisle Decor: The ceremony, which took place in a redwood grove, was pure woodland magic, with picture-perfect lighting and a live band. The green garland along the aisle added a whimsical vibe and photographed oh-so well. To get the look on your own, add a eucalyptus garland at the end of the reserved rows or along the entire aisle.
2. Polaroid Guest Book: Ashley loves photos, so she had guests snap Polaroids of themselves instead of signing the usual guest book. Guests could take a few for themselves and toss some in one of the baskets as a sweet memento for the happy couple.
3. Wood Slice Coaster Favors: For the wedding favors, Ashley’s parents made coasters from a tree their friend had chopped down in the Santa Cruz mountains. They sawed the branches into 300 pieces, sanded and stained each one and then laser-etched “East Coaster” and “West Coaster” on the surface as a nod to the bride and grooms’ NY and CA roots.
4. Hand-Lettered Menus: Brit + Co’s amazing designer, Rosee, hand-lettered the menus, which were then printed on tracing paper and laid over clippings of vintage botanical illustrations. Ashley loves that “they gave the table settings such a romantic touch!”
5. Haystack Seating Area: A few seating options are necessary at any big party. Ashley used the beach blankets from their rehearsal dinner to cover haystacks. The result? A boho retreat where guests could catch up or have impromptu photo shoots with the Polaroid camera.
6. Gold Animal Place Card Holders + Watercolor Place Cards: Every tablescape needs a bit of bling, so Ashley and her helping hands spray-painted plastic toy animals gold and sawed grooves in their backs so they would hold the place cards nicely. For the place cards themselves, they used an indigo watercolor wash to give them a pop of color and hand-lettered the names in gold ink.
7. Large Family Wedding Photos: Ashley and Mike wanted to display all the love from generations before them, so they printed photos from their parents’ and grandparents’ weddings and hung them right above the buffet. Talk about an adorable throwback wedding vignette!
8. Hanging Arrows: The barn where the reception was held was intimidating for a wedding of their size, with tall ceilings and open space. Ashley and Mike “wanted it to feel intimate, so we created visual divides by hanging curtains of DIY arrows.” They made over 50 oversized arrows out of four-foot-long wooden dowels, colored vinyl and feathers. This hanging decor looks great on its own, but would also work as a cool photo booth backdrop.
Undoubtedly, the weekend was one massive labor of love, but as Ashley and Mike put it, “the feeling of overwhelming love and joy is the best part. Nothing compares to being surrounded by all of the people you love most in life.” Three cheers to that, and congrats to the happy couple!
Photographer: Roger and Lyndzee Ellsworth of EPlove
Floral: Hana and Pine
Hair and Makeup: Kelly Jones
Design: Bride and Mom
Planner: Colette Cuccia
Dress: Lihi Hod
Venue: Santa Lucia Preserve
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