Tag Archives: diy wedding

Semi-DIY wedding: The Program

I wanted to incorporate some sewing-flavor into my wedding besides what I am going to wear. It wont really be a Jue-be-Dex wedding if there are no threads and fabric involved, right?

For our wedding program, I bought papers from paper and more, an awesome place for bulk and cheap stock paper. I bought three colors of the linen (duh!) paper: black, red, and natural. The service was awesome and quality is SUPURB — they even have cutting service for a reasonable price, so that I dont have to do any cutting!

I originally wanted to wrap fabric around one side 0f our program (like our invitation, which will be posted later with a how-to). But our program had 7 pieces of the cards together, adding fabric made it way too hard to stitch. So I decided to just stitch them together with plain stitches and thick threads. Unfortunately, I did not have white thick threads around, but selfish seamstresses’ rant about double straight stitch totally saved me a trip to the store and 3 dollars. I actually had a triple straight stitch on my little sewing machine, and that seems to do a pretty good job.

(excuse the obvious photoshop to blurb out our last names and dates! 2003 is the year we started going out ūüôā )

Some tricks when I was stitching the program together:

  • I used a size 11 needle –if the needle is too thin and it will break; if it is too thick, ¬†it has a hard time penetrating the papers. I stitched through 40 programs, and only broke 1 needle!
  • Go at a medium speed, at least for my sewing machine. If I go too fast it will skip stitches, and if I go too slow the motor doesnt seem to have the momentum to penetrate the paper
  • I taped a straight block on the sewing machine to help me making a straight and parallel stitch with equal distance for all the programs!

Tada! it took a few hours to do all 40, but its done! ūüôā What do you think? Any other ideas for a sewing-incorporated wedding program?

On a related note. I wanted some card stands to display instructions during our wedding, but I could not find a good looking one anywhere! So my awesome fiance made a bunch of this for me from a tree we cut down in our backyard last year:

sewing wife and wood-working husband… ¬†ūüôā ¬†I am loving it already!

Semi-DIY wedding — Short = Awesome

It looks like I wont be doing real sewing for a while, so bear with me while I rant about my wedding (do I sound slightly bridezilla? Im practicing ūüôā ).¬† I am finally done with altering my dress! I took off a whole 2 inches off this petite wedding gown, and now it just touched the floor a tiny bit when I am on my heels. I also took out lots of room around the hips — I always thought I have a decent-sized butt, but apparently the normal butt’s even bigger!

Anyway, I had a long strip of fabric cut from the dress hemming, so I made shoulder strap (my fiancee¬† LOVES spaghetti straps and he was slightly sad when I told him my dress is strapeless)¬† and fabric-covered buttons from it and attached it to the dress. Isn’t it AWESOME being short? You get all these extra fabric to play with! I also did a three-point dress bustle using sewn-on snaps (shown on photo below) ¬†for the train so that I can dance in it! It was great having¬† a dress-form to hang the dress in while I worked the tuck and buttons — I felt like a designer!

Now I can look so very beautiful on my wedding day:

Semi-DIY Wedding – Veil

Have you ever wondered why veils are so expensive? I was looking through Davids Bridal’s veil selection — they are mostly made from polyester tulle that I can buy from Joanns for 2 dollars a yard with some crystals or beads or ribbons glued/sewn on them. The non-barebone options cost 70 dollars and up!

The thought of spending 70 dollars on a piece of slightly decorated polyster just drove my little chinese (read:cheap) brain nuts. I decided that I should make my own veil – how hard can that be, right? For 70 dollars, I can get a nice silk veil, no problem! So I set out to make my own veil.

First step, material.¬†I wanted to find silk tulle, but the rumor on the street is that it is extremely expensive, and it is hard to find. I dont really like bulky veil either, so English netting is out. I bought a few¬†yards¬†of natural silk chiffon from Exotic Silk in Los Altos(best silk fabric store ever!), but when I got home, I decided that it is not transparent¬†enough¬†for me. I started searching randomly for silk online and came upon this: Dharma trading’s silk gauze. It seemed perfect for the job — light, flowy, transparent, and cheap! Can you believe that their silk is less than 3 dollar a yard?! I bought 7 yards of the 3mm and 45″ silk gauze.

I know that I would like the veil to be finished with¬† some kind of hemming, but rolling the tissue-y fabric and stitch it up presented with ¬†much difficulties (you can all imagine, right?)¬† So I experimented around with different stitches on my machine to just sort of “serger” up the edge (imagine zig-zagging the edge of the veil) with the thinnest needle i can find (it turned out that number 11 (see left) on my machine worked out the best for this material). Because the fabric is so thin, the threads pull the fabric in to form a nice line at the edge. It also creates some nice waves¬† at the biased edge and the little fraying makes it seem to soft and airy.

I wanted a floor length veil at first, with a blusher. The width of the fabric is 45″, so I had to basically draw a long big oval and cut it out (see design 1). However, that means the sides of the oval is not on a bias cut, and it doesnt create the cute waves (though much easier to stitch), and the overall look was just, weird.¬† But I am glad I did it — because I had lots of practice with stitching the edge, and the transition from the biased edge to the straight grain stitch was a little tricky!

Finally, I decided to make another one without the blusher and just finger tip length. This time, I made a half circle with the straight line along one of the side of the fabric (pattern shown in design 2) and  I did a much better job with the stitching. and at the end I just gathered  the straight edge together onto a white plastic comb I had lying around. Tada!

I feel really beautiful in my veil! Its so soft and I feel like its glowing under the sun ūüôā That fabric made me really wish that I sewed my own wedding dress! Though it took much longer than I thought it would, and all the hours of monotonous edge stitching (you have to go really slow on the machine) wasn’t much fun, I think it is well worth it! I now have something *handmade* for my wedding (yes, I am adding that to the list of old, new, borrowed, and blue!).

Hope that this howto would help some brides out there! Let me know if you have any questions. Readers, did any of you also made your own veil?

p.s. right before this photo shoot, i had my hair highlighted and done as a mock up for the wedding at my hair lady, and then I was heading out for some ¬†shopping¬†with my awesome friend Ngoc. But somehow my¬†fianc√©e¬†tricked me into wearing the white silk dress (in photo) and I showed up to a surprise ¬†Hawaiian¬†bridal shower with lot of my ¬†favorite ¬†girlfriends!! ūüėÄ I had sooooo much fun. ‚̧ maybe when the photos come, I will show them off here! ¬†‚̧ Ngoc(+ her awesome husband)! ‚̧ let-sister! ‚̧ all my friends!

Semi-DIY wedding: Rose Bouquet

This is somewhat un-related to sewing, but I like to talk about anyway! For my wedding, I decided to do my own floral arrangements. My friend Ngoc ¬†and I ¬†did a mock up decoration last¬†Friday and we made the cutest bridal bouquet ourselves! ūüôā It was super easy — cut flowers to about 8inches on the stem, hold a few flowers without leaves in hand, slowly adding flowers to the hand. Put flowers with leaves on the outside. when done, rubber band the flowers together, cut the stems again to make sure they are even. roll ribbons tightly around the stem; and at the end, use your sewing pin with white heads and pin the ribbons to place!

Isnt it such an adorable bouquet? And its probably 1/4 the price of a bouquet bought from the stores! With a few river stones to balance cute vases, it looks like a cute center piece as well!

Material :
24 costco flowers
rubber band
hair pins
and an awesome friend!