DIY Wedding Fan For An Outdoor Wedding


When you go to an outdoor wedding in Texas at almost anytime of the year it’s not a bad idea to have some type of fan for the guests to use if necessary.  And when it’s the end of May it’s a sure fire bet they’ll be needed.  So with my son’s wedding May 26th we knew it was a must have.   But, what style, how much would it cost, how many did we need? 

So of course we searched the web and Pinterest, etc. looking for ideas….

There were tons of designs out there….and the prices weren’t bad on many of them.

But, we needed (or thought we needed) 150-160 of them so it still added up.

So even though there were some great ideas……we found we could still save money if we did them ourselves.

wedding hand fans

Using pictures online I tried my hand at cutting my own shapes and various styles and somehow they all came out looking wonky.  Can we just say disaster? 

Then I came up with the idea to just try the old fashion accordion style fans we used to make as children.  Remember?  With notebook paper… was always either fans or airplanes.


I purchased card stock at Hobby Lobby (on sale half price, of course) and started playing around with colors and widths, etc.  I tried several looks -  the neutrals with a jewel and the turquoise with a jewel (I just used scotch tape to experiment with the different colors), I tried combining two colors, using just one color…..


I tried white with a monogram and white with a jewel……tried a single sheet of paper and gluing two sheets together….and experimented with how wide to make the “pleats”.  Who knew deciding on an old fashion fan would ultimately have so many options.  Ugh!


I decided it was easiest to come up with the right size pleat for all of them and keep them all uniform if I folded the sheet in half..


Then folded it in half again….


And, again….


And, again….of course, flipping the folds back and forth to create the accordion style.


This made managing the pleat size and the fan size much easier.


We voted on putting two sheets together for a fuller look.  I just used a glue stick and pressed the inside pleats together and stapled the bottoms together to form a “handle”.


We also decided on turquoise card stock to match her bridesmaids dresses and going with a ribbon handle to cover up the bottom of the fan where we stapled the pleats together.


Melissa wanted ivory so we got this half price at Hobby Lobby.


We wrapped the handle and hot glued the seam and the bottom together for a finished look.


And, for that added wedding touch we purchased a string of pearl ribbon – yes, of course – where else….Hobby Lobby half price! – and hot glued it along the top of the ribbon.


We were very happy with the end result and we saved quite a bit of money, but I’m not going to lie… was very time consuming!  So unless you have  team of friends and family to help or you start way early this isn’t the route to go.  We were fortunate enough to have a group of friends and family help out and even then the amount of time it took was overwhelming. (We waited too long to do this so it was a bit stressful trying to knock it out the last couple weeks before the wedding with everything else left to do.  Don’t make that mistake!) 

And, you don’t need one for every guest!  So just make enough for about half the guests.  Most men won’t use them and kids don’t necessarily need them so it’s overkill to have one for every single guest.  Something we now know in hind sight so spare yourself the extra effort!

Hope this gave you Brides-To-Be some ideas to ponder for your own wedding!  Good luck and have fun!

Happy Decorating!

Rehearsal Dinner With A “Hollywood Theme”


Memorial weekend was a whirlwind weekend to say the least with the rehearsal dinner, the wedding and my daughter’s graduation party.  But, it was so much fun and we were so happy to be surrounded by our family and friends the energy level stayed up, joy was in the air and happily all went well!


For starters, after many, many prayers, the weather cooperated. Such a huge relief! So after my daughter and sister-in-law helped me set up the rehearsal dinner venue it was time to get ready for the evening and attend the wedding rehearsal.


There was a wedding right after our rehearsal and the “other wedding party” was none too happy that we were rehearsing while they were still setting up (hence –their butterflies on the columns).  Not that I could blame them, but we couldn’t help that – we weren’t the ones that scheduled it that way.  So with the uncomfortable timing and time restraints on the rehearsal – when most of wedding party arrived together twenty minutes late – we had exactly thirteen minutes for a whirlwind rehearsal before we had to get out of their way.


A lot of work for these little munchkins….but, they rose to the occasion and did a great job!



Afterwards it was onto the rehearsal dinner which was held in an old movie theater right down the street. Love this marquis!


Since it was at a movie theater I wanted to go with a “Hollywood theme” and I wanted the invitations to reflect that.  But, I couldn’t find the invitations I wanted so I made these to send to the additional guests we were inviting outside the wedding party.  I found some plain cards at Hobby Lobby and punched two holes at the top for the ribbon and added the jewels for bling.


I used their wedding blue and layered it with a pearl white for the details, then put the menu choices on little cards that I slipped inside.  On the left I placed a card with their last name initial on it (came on clear paper from Hobby Lobby that you peel and stick to the surface) and when they opened it up….


They found a ticket to the event….


Which of course was reflective of the movie theater venue.  (The fashionista bride-to-be was even color coordinated with the venue! Who knew!)


To go along with the  “Hollywood Theme” I added a red carpet, a movie size poster of the couple, some swanky palm trees and of course the movie theater railings to guide guests as they entered the lobby.


My sister-in-law, Gloria (my life-saver), not only helped set the venue up – she acted as the “paparazzi” and snapped shots of every single guest who arrived.


Daniel and Melissa ended up arriving separately – she with the bridesmaids, he with the groomsman.



I had to get a shot with my adorable granddaughter…


And my adorable daughter.


Once through the red carpet guests were first met with this “Hollywood-esque” table housing glitzy florals, candlesticks, feathers and a little plaque with their initials, picture and wedding invitation.



Inside the banquet room was – again – a “Hollywood-esque” picture table filled with their pictures in these blingy frames, a Cinderella carriage, a pair of candlesticks (originally black – I painted them silver for the occasion), and if you look closely you’ll see their initials, one on each side.  I bought them black and spray painted them silver, too.  Also, tucked between the frames was a framed poem I wrote for Melissa……


I actually got up and read it for Melissa and the guests that night without crying!


And, of course, we had a “concession stand” filled with popcorn and candy.


I used these popcorn bags as party favor bags for the guests to load up with their munchies of choice.  I placed them in a napkin holder I brought from home.


Each table had a feather centerpiece, a candelabra or candlestick, a cream feather boa, director’s board, crystals and name tags.  I bought champagne colored satin floor length table cloths and just used brown satin fabric from Hobby Lobby as toppers.  I just cut them to fit and turned under the edges.  (The arrangements would have had more feathers in them, but my hubby unintentionally crammed my box of an additional  hundred feathers in the corner of the garage and I couldn’t find them anywhere till after the weekend was over! Yes, I wanted to kill him! Sorry, Doogie, I had to share)


Each guest had a name tag.  I bought these pre-printed cards at Hobby Lobby and glued these blue stones on them for bling.  Then I printed each name off in brown ink onto clear label paper and adhered them to each card.  That way they were all uniform and it looked just like they were printed directly on the cards. 




Also, on each table I had their pictures enlarged on these “faux” magazine covers to make them look like Hollywood movie stars. Each table had a different picture and a different magazine cover.


I don’t know…….maybe it’s just a “mama thing”, but to me they’re cute enough to be movie stars!


We added fun picture labels to the wine bottles…


Notice the filler in the vases?  Its just sparkly birthday bag stuffing from Hobby Lobby.  Had a glitzy flare to it which fit the Hollywood theme.


At Daniel and Melissa’s “sweetheart table” I had a cheetah wrap, silk gloves and a fake diamond ring for Melissa to don.


Ever the good sport, she happily played along.


My husband emceed the event which made it really fun. 






Movie stars or not, they were the stars of the weekend and I think they had a really great time this special evening leading up to the big day!

Thanks for indulging me with, yet again, another wedding post, but hopefully you enjoyed it and got some fun decorating ideas for a future event of your own as well.

(Their wedding coming soon!)

Happy Decorating!

That’s Amore’!! An Italian Themed Couple’s Wedding Shower


With all the wedding hoopla going on in my life I know I’ve been absent from the blogosphere way too much this last six weeks.  I just simply couldn’t find the time to sit down and blog between my work load for a dozen or so clients and all that was going on leading up to the wedding.  Literally every minute of everyday of the last few months and especially the last two was either work, wedding or rehearsal dinner “stuff”.  But, now the wedding has come and gone and life is settling back into some sort of normalcy so I plan to do my best to catch up.


But, of course I can’t catch up without blogging about some of the exciting events we had going on in our world leading up to the wedding. One of these events was the amazingly wonderful shower some of my good friends gave the bride and groom.  It started with these adorable invitations done by Nicole Page Designs.  (I blocked the address and contact info with the little strips of black paper.  Obviously it looks better without that stuck on top!) An Italian themed shower with the catch phrase “That’s Amore’” leading the way.


  It was held at my good friend Connie’s beautiful home.  If you’re a follower of my blog or read it frequently you will have seen her home before.  It’s the place for many occasions in our group – the most recent being the baby shower we had which you can check out here.


Oddly, one consistent “issue” we’ve had with all the couple’s showers we’ve thrown for our kids – and there have been numerous – is that we’ve been almost “cursed” with horrible weather.  We’ve experienced unexpected snap freezes where multiple heat lamps had to be purchased last minute, unexpected stifling heat waves where fans had to be added last minute, thunderstorms with torrential down pours (you can view that shower here) and even a tornado……yes….a tornado!


The last time we had a couple’s shower at Connie’s house a tornado blew through three days before the party.  Yep – right after she and her husband had meticulously cleaned out, planted and groomed their lawn and gardens for the event – a tornado came roaring through and snapped 11 or more tree’s, ripped up flowers and all but destroyed their beautiful gardens.  As well as knocked out their electricity! I was actually there when it happened – helping her to babysit her grandchildren so her girls (the kid’s mommies) could go out for some “grown up” time.  We crouched in the bathroom with the little ones and her dog while her husband looked out the window counting as the trees came down.  Crazy!   It was unnerving and unbelievable, but, with the help of family and friends they whipped it back into shape within a couple of days and on we went with the shower!


But, fortunately for my son and his fiancé’ the “weather curse” seems to have been broken and we actually had picture perfect weather here in Texas for their big night.  And, I mean picture perfect! Something right out of a storybook.  Her gardens were immaculate, the weather was comfortable and crisp……the atmosphere absolutely magical.


All around the lawn were tables with checked cloths or toppers, Italian bread sticks, candles and later big bottles of Chianti.



All her flowers looked amazingly vibrant and colorful.



As did the hostesses….


Three of my oldest and dearest friends.


They used wine bottles and mason jars as candle holders and added little vases of roses for a sweet touch. 


So quaint….


A great turn out with family and friends.


My daughter-in-law with two of my wonderful friends.  Connie, an event coordinator by trade, and Barb, a fabulous chef and party thrower extraordinaire, brought their ultimate expertise to the wedding prep and helped me out immensely!   You can see them at one of Barb’s awesome parties on my blog post here.


The adorable happy couple.



To create this long 16 foot table that accommodated twenty seats Connie and Craig set up three or four saw horses for support and placed two 8 foot boards on top.  They covered the boards with white paper and added crayons for the guests to draw or sign the table top with.  Great idea, inexpensive to do and worked like a charm!


More great friends who were there to support Daniel and Melissa.    They’ve watched him grow up.   Love them all!  You’ve seen them before on several of my blog posts, too.  One of the couple’s showers with this group – I blogged about last summer – you can check it out here. 






As part of the fun Connie had them re-tell their “love story” in intermittent intervals throughout the evening and re-enact the proposal.  You can see the real proposal here.  While Italian music played in the background – every time the phrase “That’s Amore” was said they had to stop and smooch.   Too cute.



Melissa said the evening was even more wonderful and magical than she expected and said it was the perfect prelude to the wedding.  And, I must say, I couldn’t agree more!

Happy Decorating!


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