My Colorful DIY Wedding

When my husband and I first got engaged there were three questions that always came up, “when’s the big day?”,  “where are you getting married?” and “what’s your theme?”   I had a response for the first two but never really thought about my “theme”.   Theme.   I imagine there are so many little girls out there that know exactly what they want their wedding to be when they grow up and when that day comes they are completely prepared for their dream wedding…location, colors, date, dress… the works.    So as I sat down and thought about my “theme” I naturally went directly to Pinterest and searched weddings.  In the words of my husband, “HOLE-LEE-FACK!” there was a lot of wedding pictures and themes and ideas and dresses and flowers and oh my!  An overwhelming feeling of, “what the hell will MY wedding look like?”  The classy look was nice, but not me.  The bohemian light colors were awesome, but I didn’t think I could pull it off.  The fancy ballroom was pretty, but expensive and didn’t scream “Sarah and Jeremy”.   So now what?  Colors.  We love colors.  That’s what I want….I want my wedding to barf colors.    So naturally we created a “Rainbow Wedding” pinterest board and between my mom, sisters and friends we pinned and re-pinned every rainbow wedding we could find.    All great ideas and I won’t lie we stole from some of those ideas, but we wanted to be different too and wanted it to be our own.  I didn’t want to have a typical rainbow wedding, I wanted to have a colorful and fun wedding.   I wanted people to walk into my parents backyard and see the decorations and look at my bridal party and say, “wow, this is beautiful and fun and so Sarah and Jeremy”.

I grew up in a crafty household and have an extra crafty mother (who in my honest opinion is superwoman and capable of everything possible), so we went to town doing and undoing ideas over and over again.   In order to save some money, the wedding was in my parents backyard and everything from the paper flowers, the table runners, the center pieces, the signs, the photo booth, and the bouquets, it was truly a DIY Wedding.

Jeremy and I love the color pink so we used pink as a central color while the other primary colors were there to accompany it.  Our first goal was to make enough flowers to surround the tent as well as decorate anywhere else in the yard that might look good with paper flowers.  In order to dress up it up we used tulle to string the flowers instead of just a thin ribbon….2,100 paper flowers later (300 of each color)…


In the above picture you can also see that we made larger paper flowers that intermingled with the paper lanterns and the wind socks that are made of a wide ribbon and tulle and the flowers that surrounded the entire tent, whew.  We rented the solid linens for color but you can see where we added center pieces and table runners.  The center pieces were cleaned up and recycled wine bottles that were sprayed painted and filled with a couple of flowers.  We put a piece of ribbon, with a colored bead and a flower cut-out of black paper and chalkboard markers to dress the bottles up some.


We really liked the chalkboard theme for signs so we kept that theme throughout the party; candy table signs and labels, yard signs, center pieces, and the programs printed in black with the touch of pink tulle to bring it all together.  My mom was able to make the pennants from a chalkboard fabric and the signs are pieces of wood, painted in chalkboard paint.  Also we were able to use left over save-the-date cards to make little tags for the candy bags at the candy table 🙂



The last touch of color was how to decorate the aisle.    Mason jars filled with flowers hanging on shepherds hooks was our initial thought.  But with the color theme we wanted color, so we found mason jars stained in different colors to hang and decided that the pink and white peonies that were growing in the garden would work perfect for the aisle (my nephew and ring bearer liked them too).   Also, instead of buying confetti we saved the tips that we cut from the 2,1oo paper flowers and used those ends as confetti for our guests to throw (in the bags hanging from the chairs), as well as gave them all bubbles to blow when they first walked into the yard.


But we couldn’t stop there, it was now time to figure out how to tie everyone into the color theme without meshing too many colors together.  After much debate on dresses (finding everyone a dress that looks nice on them but is the color I was looking for was somewhat of a nightmare), plus when I looked at “rainbow wedding” bridesmaid dresses it looked very unorganized and messy, so I decided to go with one style dress that looked nice on everyone in white.  I know I know, WHITE.  Yes.  But the key was to splash each person with their color that I had given them — shoes, jewelry and a ribbon around the waist, plus a bouquet to match their color.   Here is what we came up with….


I couldn’t let the girls have all of the fun, I wanted color in my dress too, but I didn’t want it to be overwhelming and look gaudy.  So I made sure that you could only see my color when I wanted people to see it.  My mom and I spent several hours cutting tulle and repositioning it under my dress to sew it into the perfect spot so you couldn’t see it unless I lifted my dress.  Did I mention how talented my mom is?


And the final piece was making sure that Jeremy and I had something that tied us together as a couple where we could match.  I’m not big on heals or fancy shoes so we went with personalized matching pink converses.


I give way more props to those brides that have a do-it-yourself wedding in your own backyard with your mom as your primary planner and the help of family and friends to pull together an event like this.    That day, we did have the help of a lot of people.  At a venue everything is taken care of for you, but in your backyard it becomes your responsibility to make sure all of the details and things flow right.  We had family friends that became our planners for the day making sure that while we took pictures or were getting our hair done they were at the house finalizing all the prep we started.   Setting up the tables, the bar, the candy table, the chairs in the yard, and the signing table.  We had valet parkers so that people didn’t have to walk far to their cars, and helpers that made sure trash wasn’t overflowing or the bathrooms stayed clean.   I didn’t worry about a single thing that night.  So thank you for taking lead, bartending, and coming to together as family and friends to make this day so special and as stress free as possible for us.

My Aunt and Cousin who made our cake and cupcakes ❤


My very good friends and Bartenders and the Canoe Bar


Our family talent spreads far and wide — our musicians


The wedding planner for the day — a very good friend that helped immensely with day of “stuff”


Sisters putting final touches on the candy bar!


It’s all in the details and last-minute ideas to play around with.  Thanks to my parents, family, friends and bridal party for everything you did to make this day everything we could  have dreamed of.  And to my brother-in-law Gary Johnson for the beautiful pictures. We love you!


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5 thoughts on “My Colorful DIY Wedding

  1. Lovely!!! Great pics and looks like a great time had by all!!! Thanks for sharing…

  2. it looks beautiful, and FUN.

  3. Chris (Olbrich) Murray July 10, 2013 — 11:09 am

    Awesome job! Absolutely beautiful!!!!!

  4. OHHH I just love lthis! What a fabulous wedding!!!!

  5. Rachell (Huber) Dorathy July 11, 2013 — 7:13 pm

    I love it!!! Wish we could have been there! Looks like it was so much fun! Congrats again, guys! Welcome to the family, Sarah!!

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