8/23/2014 was my big day! My mother and I spent months shopping antique stores, running back and forth to Michael’s, and scouting the perfect venue but our hard work finally paid off! My goal was “Shabby Chic” and I think we nailed it.
A big thanks goes to The Booking House in Manheim, PA for being the PERFECT event space with their beautiful staircase, exposed beams, gorgeous chandelier and original brick walls. We were one of the first weddings to take place here and they could not have been more helpful!
Tons of people asked about our decor, where we found things or how we made them so this blog is dedicated to all of the other brides who are looking for the perfect Shabby Chic wedding, but may be on a budget. Without further to do…
Burlap is a must-have for any shabby chic theme. We purchased our burlap from a local craft store and used a regular fabric marker to achieve this look. We sewed the top of the pennants over, creating a simple way to string them together with twine. We found attaching a safety pin to the end of the twine made it easier to get through each pennant. I found something like this at Michael’s for almost $40 – our version cost less than $10.
With the same burlap we used for our Mr. & Mrs. sign, I made two little ring bearer pillows. My mom sews often so she had some lace leftover from other projects I was able to use for trim. If you don’t have lace on hand you can purchase some from a local fabric store for less than $5. I wove some twin into the top of the pillows and secured with a knot so that we could tie our rings onto the pillows with a simple bow. I purchased the stuffing for the pillows at a local fabric store for less than $5. You can find these kind of pillows on Etsy for upwards of $20 or DIY for less than $10.
We wanted to use Ball jars for the centerpieces at our reception but I wanted them to be vintage – not the new ones you can find at any old craft store. This took some time, hunting them down at local antique shops, but eventually we collected 16 blue Ball jars. Over the course of 3-4 months we spent about $100 on all of the jars but they were well worth it! We used some of the jars to hold our favors which were also DIY. We wanted to do something sweet that would look pretty so we purchased jumbo pretzel sticks from Costco and bulk chocolate wafers from Wilbur Chocolates in Lititz, PA. With pink and white pearl sprinkles the pretzel sticks were a huge hit!
In addition to the mason jars we purchased some antique glass to accompany our centerpieces. These little bottles and vases were inexpensive and we found most of them at local antique shops. Instead of having our florist create lavish arrangements for each table, we saved a ton of money by working with a local Amish lady who sells cut flowers by the five-gallon bucket. We had her fill two five-gallon buckets with flowers of my choice and then we simply divided them among our tables to achieve a beautiful, country yet shabby chic look. You’ll also notice the hat box in this photo – this was an antique yard sale find that we used for all of our cards at the reception. It only cost my sister 50 cents!
Another way we saved money was by creating our own programs, invitations and menus. You can spend countless dollars on stationary from websites like Minted, Zazzle or Etsy but at the end of the day no one is going to say, “Wow, my favorite part of that wedding was the programs!” Luckily, I have a background in graphic design so this part was fun for me, but as long as you have an eye for detail and a good sense of style you can achieve the same look. Pictured below are our programs and menus. I had the programs printed at Staples and I purchased ivory, sparkly card stock from Walmart for the menus which I printed on my own.
Saving money on our decor and stationary allowed us to book the honeymoon of our dreams and pay for our first choice photographer. We were able to achieve the shabby chic look we wanted by making smart purchases and taking our time to find the vintage items we really wanted like the blue mason jars. Here are some additional photos from the big day!