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Should you DIY it? 5 mistakes that brides make with DIY decor

Should you DIY it? 5 mistakes that brides make with DIY decor

Doing your own wedding decor is possible but there are 5 classic mistakes that brides make when trying to DIY their decor.

One: Not having a clear idea of what decor you want.

Brides don’t realise that decor companies can spend hours researching looks, themes and colour schemes to ensure that each clients wedding day looks coherent. Everything is planned with the utmost precision. 

Then along comes a bride who wants to do her own decor. She goes on Pinterest and pins every shabby chic pin that she can find. But then the same bride sees an urban wedding shoot and likes that too. Then she sees destination wedding shoot that she likes and she pins that too. Subconsciously she will marry the three themes. Now let me be clear, there is nothing wrong with mixing themes when you have made a CLEAR decision to do so. But when you are subconsciously mixing themes and doing a bit of this and that without realising, you run the risk of your wedding decor looking like a 5 year old who has dressed herself in her mum’s clothes.

There is a process that professionals go through to ensure that everything is perfect. I will write a separate blog post on how this is done to help you on your way.

Two: Buying ‘stuff’ whilst out shopping doing your weekly food shop/on your lunch hour etc

Every bride does this; even if they are not a DIY bride! I did it (yes I am ashamed)! You nip out to buy a top as you are going out later. As you are always on the look out for wedding ideas, you nip into a store that does really nice decorative homeware (we all know the shop)! You see some beautiful tea light holders. They are only £3.99 each. You see 10 so you buy them: it’s only £39.99, right? But, what happens is by the time that your wedding arrives, you have bought 40 of these things, it has cost you over £150 and as you have 10 guest tables, you can only put 4 on each table. Now your pretty little tea lights aren’t really making an impact on your 6ft round table, in fact, they just look weird; so you don’t use them. Money wasted!

It is easy to get caught up when you go in a shops with picking up bits and bobs for your wedding only to eventually realise that even though individually everything is beautiful, they do not work together. Buying things that don’t work for your table shape or size is another common mistake. Once you realise that your items do not work for your theme, even if you have spent a fortune, you will not use them; money wasted. I have worked at many weddings where I have been responsible for the decor but the bride had bought additional decor items. I can say that in a large majority of the cases, the brides stuff doesn’t end up being used; usually they agree that their stuff doesn’t look right with the overall decor theme. Because a bride wants her day to look perfect, she will not hesitate bin off the stuff she has bought, even though she may have spent £300 plus on it.

Three: Not realising that you get what you pay for

Doing the decor for your own wedding is hard work. There is a reason why people pay thousands of pounds for companies to do it. It is not as easy as it looks. Professionals can look at a table and tell you its dimensions; just by sight. An experts experience means that what they already know, will take you months to work out. Please do not take DIY decor lightly.

There are issues that need to be thought through carefully, for instance, can you get access to your venue the night before? If not, no matter how much planning a bride does, it is unlikely that she will be involved in decorating the venue for her wedding and will have to trust someone else to do it. The cost of booking the venue the night before can cost as much as paying the professionals. All of this needs to be considered.

There are a lot of high street stores that offer decorative items that can be used for weddings. However, the quality for some items can be low standard. For example, the cost of a decent plain wedding table candelabra will cost anything between £30 (small) to £100 (large) to buy. If you buy a candelabra from the shop for £14.99, the quality will reflect that.

Four: Trying to buy all your decor yourself

If you only have 6 guest tables at your wedding, the decor for those tables could easily fill 2 cars. 

Hiring in some elements from a decor company can be helpful. It can mean that you get the best quality goods but at a price cheaper than buying the goods yourself. I have lots of brides who hire in the main elements so that they are the best quality (for instance candelabras and a sequin table cloths) and then buy the smaller bits to go with it (for instance mirror plates and tea lights). My general advice would that if you really want to DIY it, hire everything you need from a decor hire company and then do the decor yourself. This is less stressful, usually cheaper and more importantly, you can ask the decor company for their opinions and advice; this is invaluable (I’m obviously biased)! Also, if we are delivering and collecting the goods, you don’t have to worry about transport.

And please, stop telling yourself that you will sell the stuff after and make your money back; most people never get round to it. The stuff will end up in the cupboard next to the juicer that you bought 4 years ago and used twice! If your goal is to make some money back after the wedding day then buy stuff but if it is to have a beautiful looking day, then heed this advice.

Five: Not doing a trial run

The professionals will be able to decorate a venue with their eyes closed but you should do a trial run. 

Firstly, one of the BIGGEST under estimations is the time it takes to dress a table. There is an art to everything and if you don’t know the art, compensate using extra time! A trial run will give you an idea of the time you will need for set up.

Your trial run should include a mock of your decor just so that you can check that your mechanics work. You don’t want to get to the venue and realise that your glue isn’t strong enough or that something is too long or too short for your centrepieces.

When it comes works, doing your decor yourself can be highly rewarding and can make your day feel even more special. But if you are unsure, get the professionals in!

Happy getting it right!

Love you

Angels and Gypsies

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