DIY Project: Manzanita Tree Centerpieces (Wish Tree, Crystal, etc!)

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Manzanita branch trees have been growing in popularity in the wedding sceneΒ  as both beautiful centerpieces and stunning decor (like a manzanita wish tree!).Β  Tree centerpieces and decor give your wedding an ethereal, whimsical beauty that can give your wedding a modern fairy tale feel or even a lush green forest!

Buying them already made can be quite costly.. So why not make them yourself? The branches aren’t exactly cheap -BUT- it is much cheaper than buying the whole tree already completed. You could also skip using manzanita branches altogether and gather branches from your backyard for an even cheaper alternative! πŸ™‚

You will need (for one tree):

  • Manzanita Branch(es) or branches you have gathered in the park/backyard (Make sure you allow them to dry out a bit before building!) Also – If you plan on hanging heavier objects from the branches (like votives) make sure the branches you have collected/purchased are strong enough to hold them without breaking. You don’t want your guests attacked by falling candles!
  • Container to use as a base of the tree (A pretty wide mouth vase, a cute pail, a clean flower pot…Use your imagination! Just make sure the mouth of the container is wide enough to allow arranging of the branches.)
  • Something to keep the branches in place (I have seen marbles, river rocks, floral foam, aqua beads, etc!) If you use floral foam you will want to hide the foam with marbles, rocks or moss when you have finished arranging.
  • Optional: Silver/White paint(or any color you like!), Glitter paint, Glitter & Glue (If you do not want to leave the branches in their natural state!)
  • Things to hang/decorate the branches – The possibilities are endless! Butterflies, silk or preserved flowers (preserved orchids would be stunning!), strands of crystal, lush amaranthus, fake petals strung on fishing line, lights and even hanging votives if the branch can handle the weight! Little squares of pretty paper would also look pretty for guests to write their wishes and advice upon to hang.

Let’s get started! It’s SO simple πŸ™‚

  1. First, if you plan on painting or glittering your branches do this first! Spray paint them in pretty metallic silver or a clean white…You may need more than one coat of paint! Then, add some glitter paint or glue on crystals/glass glitter as well if you like! (Which would be stunning for a winter wedding!) To be safe it is best to allow the branches to dry overnight before moving onto the next step. If you are leaving the branches natural skip to the next step! πŸ™‚
  2. Add your river rocks, marbles, aqua beads….(whatever you plan on using!) to the container. Add the branches and play around with them until you get them to look the way you want them to look. You may also choose to hot glue floral foam into the bottom of your container and then arrange the branches in the foam. Then just hide the foam with moss, crystals, rocks or marbles!
  3. Now all that is left is to decorate them! Glue on silk flower and butterflies, drape sparkling strands of crystals or strands of flowers, hang votives..etc! So gorgeous! πŸ™‚

That should do it! Whether you make one tree or multiple trees for centerpieces I’m sure your guests will be impressed by their beauty…and you can say you created them yourself!

For further inspiration I found this fantastic video on youtube to help you make your tree:

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As always please share your photos if you create your own – we’d love to see!

(Photos from Nettleton Hollow Blog and Real Simple Magazine Article)

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DIY Project: Autumn Maple Leaf(Leaves) Roses

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I found this DIY project browsing around the web and just had to share it with all of you! It would be a beautiful diy project for autumn wedding decor like centerpieces or decorations or even in wedding bouquets! Plus, it is extremely affordable as you can get the leaves just walking around your neighborhood..for free! πŸ™‚

Some tips before the photo tutorial…

  • Choose bright, freshly fallen leaves – the more colorful the more vibrant your flowers will be! Avoid the crispy dry leaves..they will not fold and form into flowers without breaking.
  • It is best to use leaves of a similar color for each flower..a group of yellow leaves make a beautiful yellow flower..etc.
  • The original tutorial is not written in english but the translation mentions soaking the finished bouquets in vegetable oil for a few days to maintain color and freshness. I have not tried this though – so don’t take my word for it! Other preservation methods would be dipping the finished flowers in glycerin(1 part glycerin to 2 parts water, left in solution 2-6 days) or spraying with acrylic spray from your local craft store.
  • The thread can be covered with a matching floral tape to give the flowers a more finished look.

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The full original tutorial can be found on Natalia’s Site.

As always I would -love- to see photos if you create these beautiful autumn leave flowers! Make you e-mail us if you do πŸ™‚

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DIY Project – Fabric Punched Bouquet or Hair Pins

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I was watching Martha Stewart last week (as I always do!) and she had a beautiful spring craft on that I thought would be absolutely perfect for weddings! She created stunning fabric floral bouquets and it seemed pretty simple to do too. I’m definitely tempted to add another project to my growing list of diy things for my July wedding…fabric hydrangeas!

Here are her fantastic instructions! (If you’d rather watch the video click here!)

You will need…

  • fabric (voile works nicely!)
  • tray (something shallow like a clean baking sheet)
  • medium paint brush
  • liquid fabric stiffener
  • petal and leaf craft punches (available at Michael’s and Walmart)
  • micro hole punch
  • floral pips (or stamens)
  • contact cement
  • floral wire (if making bouquet)
  • wire cutters (if making bouquet)
  • green floral tape (if making bouquet)
  • hair comb(s) or pin(s) (if making hair combs/pins instead!)
  • needle and thread and/or a strong glue (if making hair combs/pins)

Instructions

  1. Begin by punching your fabric flowers: Lay a piece of fabric in a shallow tray. With a medium paintbrush, apply enough fabric stiffener to saturate, but not soak, the fabric. Let it dry, about 1 hour. Repeat with any remaining fabric.
  2. Using craft punches, punch out petals and leaves as close together on the fabric as possible.
  3. Using a micro hole punch, make a hole in the center of each bloom. Slip a pip through each hole, and secure it with a dab of contact cement.

For bouquets:

  1. To make a stem, cut a length of floral wire, and wrap it around each pip with green floral tape.
  2. For leaves, glue floral wire to each one to create veins and stems. Wrap stems with floral tape.
  3. Gather blooms and leaves into a bouquet, and either tuck them in a vase or wrap the stems in more floral tape to join them.

For hair combs and pins:

  1. If using a comb gently sew your flowers to it with needle and thread, reinforcing with a dab of strong glue (hot glue maybe?) if you like. If using pins place flowers where u want them at the top of the pin and glue with strong glue.

credit: Martha Stewart

instructions for fabric punched flowers fabric punched hair pins and comb

There you go! with those easy instructions you can fill your ceremony and reception with your own handmade bouquets and centerpieces that will last forever! Beautiful keepsakes you will cherish. The hair pieces would also look good not only in your bridal hair..but your bridesmaids and flowergirl’s hair too!

Make sur eyou send in some pics if you create your own..we want to see! πŸ˜€

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DIY Project: Crepe Paper Rose Barrettes, Pins or Decor!

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Martha Stewart is having her yearly Valentine’s Day workshop right now so her show is full of all kinds of pretty Valentine’s themed crafts and projects! One of the projects she featured this week were small crepe paper roses that I thought would be beautiful for weddings too! While she explains how to make the roses and turn them into barrettes, you could choose to make them into something else too if you like!

For these pretty roses, you will need…

  • double sided crepe paper (choose colors to match your wedding theme!)
  • rose template (download here!)
  • stapler
  • scissors
  • toothpick
  • 28 gauge wire
  • bamboo skewer
  • hot glue gun and hot glue sticks
  • smooth-cast 327
  • piece of styrofoam
  • pruners
  • krylon clear matte finish spray
  • small scrap of green felt
  • pencil
  • barrette or pin backing (optional, you may choose to use them as decor instead!)
  1. First, cut out three 6.5″ by 2.5″ rectangles from your doubl sided crepe paper.
  2. Next, print the template! Then cut out the rectangle containing the petal shapes and stack them on top of the three paper rectangles. Staple into place.
  3. Now, cut out the petals! You will end up with three tear-drop shaped petals and nine heart shaped petals.
  4. To shape the petals: Cup in center; Wrap left and right top edges around a toothpick to curl.
  5. Build the flower by placing the tear drop petals first, and then the heart petals around eachother, holding onto the bottoms.
  6. Fasten the petals in place by wrapping wire around the base, then wrap the wire around a bamboo skewer. Secure with glue.
  7. Mix Smooth-Cast 327 according to manufacturer’s directions. Dip the flower into the mix and shake off excess. Insert bamboo skewer into Styrofoam while the flower hardens. Repeat for a second coat.
  8. Use pruners to snip off the “skewer stem”.
  9. Finally spray both sides of the flower with the krylon matte spray and allow to dry.
  10. To complete the rose, cut out the leaf shape from the template and trace it on your green felt. Cut out your leaf!
  11. If you are making a barrette or pin, glue the barrette or pin backing to the back of the flower and then cover it by gluing on your green felt leaf. If you plan on using the roses simply as pretty decor, skip gluing on the barrette or pin and just attach the felt leaf!

Here’s the video if you would rather watch the roses created first hand than read the instructions πŸ™‚

That’s it! When complete you will have a pretty crepe paper rose that is actually pretty durable since you sealed it with the smooth cast and the finish spray.

Some ideas for their use..

  • Pin it into your pretty wedding hair, make one for each of your bridesmaids hair..or put some in the hair of your flower girls!
  • You may choose to scatter them around your cake on your cake table for decoration, or even around the center of the guest tables as an addition to your centerpieces!
  • Something that may be worth trying would be threading the backs of the roses with monofilament or clear fishing line, securing with glue..Then you could haveΒ  pretty strands of raining crepe paper flowers to hang as decor! You may need to thread them before sealing them though..I’m guessing the seal may make it hard to shove a needle through! You may be able to avoid the threading all together and just glue them directly to the monofilament and hide/secure the glue job with your green felt leaf!

These are just a few ideas..If you create these pretty flowers for your big day we’d love to see!

credit: Martha Stewart

DIY Project: Autumn/Fall Cascading Hanging Leaves Decor

My previous post I featured a project by David Monn, an event designer featured on Martha Stewart. This is another fantastic autumn project he created that would add some warm autumn colors from an unexpected place! Sure, you have autumn florals and centerpieces..but how about some fall decor cascading from the ceiling? These Cascading autumn leaves are extremely affordable and easy to create and would look stunning in a number of places on your wedding day! Hanging around doorways, above tables or maybe just above the cake table to make your autumn wedding confection pop out even more! Let’s get started!

You’ll need…

  • Monofilament (a fancy word for clear fishing line!)
  • Scissors
  • Pressed Leaves from your yard or faux silk leaves from the craft store
  • strong craft glue that dries clear

Now is to create these dandgling beauties!

  1. Take your monofilament and cut it into lengths you want the cascading leaf strands to be. Make them as long or short as you wish!
  2. Mark the monofilament with a pencil where you want each leaf to be spaced on the strand. Place a spot of glue in the center of a leaf, and then attach it to the monofilament strand where you made your mark.
  3. Add another spot of glue on the leaf now glued to the monofilament and push another leaf on top. Double facing the leaves will hide the spots of glue used when attaching!
  4. Repeat gluing 2 leaves on each premarked spot on your monofilament strand until each mark is covered.

That’s it! make as many strands as you wish and hang them at your ceremony/reception site to add rich natural warm colors of autumn from an unexpected place – the ceiling! I think they are an absolutely perfect add on to your fall wedding decor..Every little detail personalizes your big day!

Make sure you send in your pics if you use these leaf cascades at your wedding!